Archive: Dick Tracy

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Dennis the Menace, 2/12/20

Just to show you what it’s like to be me, a guy with a head full of random trivia, I read “homeowner’s rates” and thought Alice was using the British term for property taxes, which made me wonder if the Mitchells had relocated to the UK so that Dennis could take on his actually much more menacing rival. But a little Googling shows that sometimes people say “homeowner’s rates” when they mean “what I pay for homeowner’s insurance,” which sounds very strange to my ear but feel free to sound off in the comments if this is part of your everyday speech and you think that I, personally, am an idiot. The important thing here is that Dennis would not have any possible impact on the Mitchells’ property taxes, but could very well be the source of their skyrocketing insurance premiums, because he breaks so much stuff.

Dick Tracy, 2/12/20

Good news, everyone! Mysta escaped from Mr. Robot’s clutches and defeated him using her Lunarian powers, so now we’ve got a new story, about the origins of a bad guy called “Shakey,” because he shakes. Few things in recent comics history have made me laugh more than today’s Dick Tracy, in which the narration box says little Shakey “quickly learned the Golden Rule” and depicts him beating the shit out of other kids and stealing their money. There’s not even an attempt to make some kind of pun or wordplay on “Golden Rule!” “Here’s your Golden Rule, kids: just absolutely terrorizing people with violence is a great way to make a lot of cash.”

Mark Trail, 2/12/20

Ah, yes, it’s an all-too-common story: a sad, isolated person — say, an newly disabled man who isn’t sure who he is anymore — gets big on Twitter and gets a chance to reinvent himself — say, as a guy whose leg was eaten by a yeti. How often do we have to hear this tale before we learn its lessons? Anyway, Minga and Pemba are watching all this from afar, probably wondering if anybody is going to be able to pay them, now that the guy who hired them is dead.

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Hi and Lois, 1/28/20

True story: When I was a kid and my mom first got an answering machine, her mother did not know how to deal with it, and would leave messages like she was talking to a person who wasn’t us, e.g., “[long awkward pause, then speaking very slowly] Tell Carol that mother called.” Anyway, this is just to say that Lois clearly has a physical answering machine attached to a landline, not “voice mail,” and you can’t listen to the latter in real time, so I question when this strip was actually written, or at least when the joke was conceived. I also don’t think we’ve ever seen Lois’s mother appear in the strip, so maybe she’s running to the phone to turn down the volume, because she doesn’t want her kids to know they have grandparents.

Mark Trail, 1/28/20

So, uh, the Mark Trail art is continuing to shift and change even outside the context of Dr. Camel’s flashback? Not sure if this is meant to represent everyone slowly losing their mind due to oxygen deprivation or if new-ish artist James Allen is trying to put his own visual stamp on the strip rather than hewing to the models established by his predecessors, but the important thing is that Mark and Harvey are going to snipe at each other until they freeze to death.

Gil Thorp, 1/28/20

Finally, something interesting is happening in Gil Thorp: the bully clique is going to mess with the aspiring valedictorian by playing what I firmly expect to be a series of escalating fart noises during his oral report. I hope this goes on for weeks.

Dick Tracy, 1/28/20

Mister Roboto acts like he’s mad that he has to mansplain Styx’s concept album Kilroy Is Here to a sexy part-alien lady dressed as a robot who he’s tied to a chair, but let’s be clear: he’s very excited that he gets to mansplain Styx’s concept album Kilroy Is Here to a sexy part-alien lady dressed as a robot who he’s tied to a chair.

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Dick Tracy, 1/24/20

Oh, hmm, it looks like bank robber/Styx aficionado/robot cosplay enthusiast Mr. Roboto is a theater critic in his everyday life, and he’s become sexually fixated on Mysta Chimera playing the role of the sinister robotrix Futura in Vitamin Flintheart’s stage production of Metropolis (not unlike Vitamin himself). The really sad thing is that Mysta is already a gangster’s daughter who’s memories were wiped and body was transformed by injections of moon-alien DNA. Isn’t that interesting and sci-fi-y enough for this creep? Why does she has to dress up like a robot as well to catch his interest?

Marvin, 1/24/20

There’s this whole running plot this week in Marvin where Jeff is hanging out at a motorcycle showroom with tough bikers that I don’t even want to go into because it’s so dumb and bad, but I am saddened by today’s strip, in which Jeff declares one of the bumper stickers on display “pretty funny.” Which of these lame non-jokes managed to prompt a grin from this pathetic man? “Bike at you!”, which I guess is supposed to be a takeoff of “Back at you”? “I [heart] the road” or “Leather rules,” which aren’t even supposed to be funny? This is a truly pathetic look into the joy-starved soul of Jeff Miller, if this is what briefly brightens the terrible darkness within him.

Funky Winkerbean, 1/24/20

“So, yeah, I didn’t fuck Les back in the day, but every year as I get older and less desirable, I have to ask myself, ‘Would I now?’ So far, every year the answer’s been a solid no, thank God. Uh, no offense.”