Archive: Breaking Cat News

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Part of my job here as second-string comic blogger is to watch for developments in the comic-strip universe outside Josh’s King Features-centric orbit, for readers dying for commentary on oh, say, Between Friends or Phoebe and Her Unicorn. You’re welcome!

Herb and Jamaal, 8/31/21

You bet, Herb—try a lot of overanalyzing, that’s the ticket!

Breaking Cat News, 8/31/21

As the Sage once said, “Breaking Cat News is a subject about which reasonable people may disagree.” I keep it on my daily list as a sweetener after hatereads 9 Chickweed Lane and Luann, and before I try to decode Nancy. But I understand the perspective of people who can’t get used to the art—is that watercolor?, or who find the one-note “cats report the news” theme as confining as Kevin and Kell‘s “carnivores and prey try to get along” schtick. If you want to make up your mind in a hurry, dive into the catlady abyss of the strip’s GoComics comment thread.

For the record, though, that is exactly how bluejays converse.

Take It from the Tinkersons, 8/31/21

This is a family strip that gradually went all Dick Tracy on us. Tinkerson père Ted has agreed to wear a wire on Joe, his Sales Manager, for the FBI. Joe is suspected of killing several of Ted’s sociopathic ex-boss Helen’s beaux, among whom he apparently numbers Ted the latest. Only Joe and Ted’s wife Tiff could possibly think this of milquetoast Ted, which is why I hope Joe and Tiff hook up and Ted murders them. Take that, Lockhorns!

Pearls before Swine, 8/31/21

Uh-oh. Better put that flag at half-staff in anticipation.

And hey, panel two violates the “180°” rule and changes Goat’s “How come?” from “How come you ask?” to “How come they sent him?”

Assassinating Rat, or the joke: which is more heinous?


It’s like magic!

If you just gotta gotta have your daily dose of Mary Worth, Funky Winkerbean, or Mark Trail, may I recommend strip specialists Mary Worth and Me, Son of Stuck Funky, and The Daily Trail for deep dives into fan favorites.

— Uncle Lumpy

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Spider-Man, 8/25/19

Fandoms and conspiracy theories (pretty much the same thing, IMHO) have this weird tendency to crystallize attention around characters that normies see as incidental. So while I’m dimly aware of the likes of Boba Fett, Jean Grey, Konstantin Kilimnik, and Comet Ping Pong, they’re the center of the universe for yarn-and-corkboard trufans WHO KNOW WHAT’S REALLY GOING ON!!11!

Gwen Stacy is one such secret nexus, I think? You can tell this is a flashback to the earliest days of the canon because Green Goblin’s the only Spider-Man nemesis drawn in a cartoony style; later ones are “realistic” types like Melvin the Mole Man, Electro, and — God help us — Clown-9. So “Gwen and Norman die” is an origin story and plot driver, like the Uncle Ben thing. Except it’s messed up: Harry is mad at Spidey because Norman accidentally killed himself. Spidey swore vengeance on Norman because his own botched rescue attempt killed Gwen (“killed in a fall” is an elegant circumlocution). Maybe after she hears all this, Black Widow will set Spidey and Hobgoblin straight and get them to shake hands, exchange secret identities, and maybe catch The Price Is Right on TV?

Crankshaft, 8/25/19

Humanity’s disordered nature inclines us all toward sin, but I try to give unpleasant people the benefit of the doubt, you know? If somebody seems unreasonably belligerent, say, I chalk it up to them having a bad day, a shaky start in life, or the inability to get past some old grievance. I figure nobody gets up in the morning and says, “I’m going to be a total asshole today, all day long.” But seriously, how else do you explain something like this?

Breaking Cat News, 8/25/19

It’s the long-awaited crossover event between Breaking Cat News and Marvin. At last, POOP IS EVERYWHERE!


— Uncle Lumpy