Archive: Dick Tracy

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Dick Tracy, 1/12/24

Yeah, yeah, blah blah blah, Tess is a private investigator and her agency deals with different aspects of the same shadowy underworld that her husband fights against and now it may cost her life, but get a load of panel two, which contains the most ominous and noir instance of someone taking a piping hot loaf of bread out of the oven in the history of baking. Dick knows that no matter how delicious fresh bread is and how satisfying and surprisingly easy it is to make it in your own home, the human heart is inherently rotten and no society can ever be free of the crime and corruption that only violence wielded in the name of the state can keep at bay.

Gil Thorp, 1/12/24

Now that Coach Hernandez has been tamed into friendship with Gil, we need a new bad guy, at least for this basketball season. Should it be this guy, a basketball coach with a perm? Yes, absolutely, 100%. Even during the brief heyday of perms on men in the ’80s, an NBA coach getting a perm was a pretty automatic indication that he was leaning into his role as a sinister villain. A bepermèd high school coach? In the year of our lord 2024? This guy’s a monster, a maniac. You’re making a deal with the devil, Howard!

Dennis the Menace, 1/12/24

Dennis dropping random malapropisms Family Circus-style is the weakest of menacing weaksauce, but it gets even weaker when those “malapropisms” are actually real words that people use in everyday life. I guess some people, such as the current creative team behind the legacy newspaper comic strip Dennis the Menace, had the privilege of not growing up in Buffalo, New York, and so the sort of weather conditions we endured several times a year sounds like something only a child could come up with in their wildest fatasies. Hope you enjoy heading out to the links in Palm Springs any time of year after sending this kind of bullshit to your editors! (Yes, I live in Southern California too, but I haven’t forgotten my roots.)

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Dick Tracy, 1/8/24

“Wait,” you’re probably thinking, “Why is that any better? Why is getting back at Dick Tracy by killing his wife somehow easier or less dangerous than killing Tracy himself?” Oh, so you think Tess Trueheart doesn’t have anything else going on other than being married to Dick Tracy that would merit someone putting a price on her head? Sexist much???? I don’t know what that might be, but I’m sure we’re going to find out! In the final panel, Rikki Mortis is relieved to learn that today’s Dick Tracy does in fact pass the Bechdel Test.

Hi and Lois, 1/8/24

It wasn’t till today that I realized that I take the zany antics in Beetle Bailey in stride but think of its sister strip Hi and Lois as being more “realistic” for whatever reason. If General Halftrack were erotically snuggling his golf bag I wouldn’t blink an eye, but in this strip, it feels like we’re seeing the end of a long and elaborate passive-aggressive argument that has led to Hi embarking on an extremely ill-advised bit that he can’t back out of now.

Six Chix, 1/8/24

Wouldn’t it be great if one of your party guests showed up with a bag full of neatly cubed human flesh? That’s what the syndicated newspaper comic strip Six Chix would have you believe, anyway.

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Rex Morgan, M.D., 1/7/24

Oh my goodness, Rene’s reign of grifting terror is finally at an end, stopped once and for all by the deliberate and heroic efforts of our protagonists some random guy hitting him with a car. Remember, in the Morganverse, a pedestrian getting run over results not in death but in selective amnesia, so I look forward to seeing how his personality gets rebuilt better than before, possibly with the help of the Lyle Ollman’s patented Mirakle Method™.

Curtis, 1/7/24

A longtime and beloved Curtis bit is that Curtis enjoys cracking wise about the elaborate hats worn by the ladies in his congregation. Part of the bit is that Barry, despite enjoying the quips, always begs him to stop, and today we finally learn why: having angered the Church leadership with their antics, the brothers have now been excommunicated, expelled from the community and forever cut off from God’s grace. Look for a future strip where Derek and “Onion” ask Curtis “Hey, ‘Wimp-kins,’ why the long face?” and he replies “Think’st thou that I, who saw the face of God and tasted the eternal joys of heaven, am not tormented with ten thousand hells in being deprived of everlasting bliss?”

Daddy Daze, 1/7/24

We’re all on the same page about the Daddy Daze baby’s “ba”s actually just being nonsense babble and the Daddy Daze daddy is working out his own interior emotional turmoil when he projects meaning on to them, right? I think today’s strip neatly illustrates the process: something deep the Daddy Daze daddy’s half-awake mind has conjured up a truly nightmarish body horror scenario, which he puts into the mouth of his son, and then his higher consciousness works to transmute this grotesque image into something much more pedestrian: an anxious metaphor about the imposter syndrome that he assumes all adults share. The way he has to speak all this aloud really drives home the fact that he’s got the worst recorded case of bicameral mind since the Bronze Age.

Dick Tracy, 1/7/24

Look, I get that Dick Tracy is at least 15 to 20 percent old timey pop culture references by volume, but I feel like naming two characters after the actors who played the Second and Third Doctors on Doctor Who but you add a letter to one of the names and also don’t make the characters look anything like them is less of an “old timey pop culture reference” and more “ah shit ah shit I need to come up with a couple names for people for this storyline, uh uh uh uh uh”.

Dennis the Menace, 1/7/24

Pretty sure that “a little dehydrated” is the euphemism publicists use describe their celebrity clients who are obviously drunk or high in public, so Dennis’s little game here is the least of the menace on display.

Family Circus, 1/7/24

Don’t be sad, Mr. Snowman! That hot chocolate would hollow you out from the inside within seconds, leaving you to die screaming on the kitchen floor! You’re better off alone outside!