Archive: Family Circus

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Gil Thorp, 1/21/21

We’re now in the midst of what I call the “fun and games” section of a Gil Thorp storyline, where everyone’s zany character premises are given free reign to run wild before some inevitable conflict results. In the current case, we have newly minted PA announcer Vic Doucette getting drunk with power and arranging hot dog giveaways on his own initiative, and car fanatic Doug Guthrie continuing to be a fanatic about cars in any given context. Presumably these two are in for a fall soon enough, when Coach Thorp tells Vic that it’s all well and good for a nerd to offer supporting services to jocks but he needs to keep in mind that jocks are the reason we’re all here so let’s keep the focus on them and Doug gets caught up in a car-fucking scandal, respectively.

Crankshaft, 1/21/21

Oh, I didn’t talk about it here, but Crankshaft’s beloved Beans End catalog didn’t go out of business after all, but instead got absorbed by Buddyblog, the Funkyverse’s catch-all Internet company whose primary business seems to be demonstrating that the Internet in particular and young people in general are bad, actually. Anyway, remember how it used to be a whole big thing in this strip that Crankshaft overcame illiteracy as an older adult? Well, cut him some slack, Lillian, maybe he’s never going to read cozy mysteries for fun, just let him enjoy his damn gardening catalog in peace without judgement.

Family Circus, 1/21/21

You couldn’t pay enough to go look it up, but I’m willing to guess that this joke, slightly modified, has run in newspapers on quite a few January 21sts over the years, and while normally I would roll my eyes at yet another moronic Jeffyism, I have to say that it’s nice to see that, after a few violent hiccups, the hallowed ceremonies that surround the presidential transfer of power are proceeding as scheduled.

Mary Worth, 1/21/21

“It’s almost like she … doesn’t want to talk to me? But that can’t be right.”

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Crock, 1/13/21

I was going to go all in on “Why is it funny that this woman is a blacksmith,” but we all know the reason why it’s supposed to be funny: blacksmithery is not a traditional feminine job so can you even imagine going on a date with a woman who would engage in it? What would you even call her? A blacksmithrix? Haw haw! Anyway, that’s stupid, so instead I’m going to focus on something actually puzzling: the assertion that weekends are “the busiest time for blacksmiths.” I guess that’s when most Renn Faires are? Are we dealing with a universe where blacksmiths are a vital part of the everyday economy, making horseshoes and tools and such, or are we in a more modern environment where mass manufactured goods are omnipresent and easy to get, and the only people who go to blacksmiths are weirdos who are obsessed with swords? This is the Crock worldbuilding background that I have a million times more in interest in than I do in Poulet’s love life.

Crankshaft, 1/13/21

Hey, remember how Crankshaft can only feel tiny glimmers of joy and he isn’t going to be able to feel them again until he gets his beloved garden catalog? Well, bad news! Extremely devastating news, actually! Side note: It’s gotta be fun to live in a world where even when you receive extremely devastating news, the ironclad laws of the universe dictate that you have to wade through terrible sub-puns in order to learn the details.

Family Circus, 1/13/21

“How come I can’t kill people with my mind, it’s not fair

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Family Circus, 1/10/21

Ha ha, it’s funny because kids instinctively know that adults long ago lost their capacity for make believe and are trapped in the dull, grey prison of everyday life!

Crankshaft, 1/10/21

Ha ha, it’s funny because Crankshaft desperately needs to hold onto some small specific joy in life or else he gets terribly depressed!

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 1/10/21

Well, that got … too grim, probably! Anyway, let’s talk about horses. You wouldn’t know it now, but back before Snuffy Smith was ever dreamed up, Barney Google was a wildly popular media property, and that popularity was almost entirely driven by Spark Plug, Barney’s universally beloved horse, to the extent that for a while the strip was called Barney Google and Spark Plug. And yeah, it’s been a while — like, literally 99 years — but surely King Features Syndicate and Hearst Communications, the current owners of the Spark Plug intellectual property, can capture lightning in a bottle here again, right? Spark Plug may have had his day, but Li’l Sparky will be the character whose ancillary marketing products every child will be asking for this summer, probably! Kids like horses still, right? Horses and wordplay? Horses and … newspaper comic strips?