Archive: Gil Thorp

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Pluggers, 12/12/17

Fine, I’ll admit it, I’m not ashamed: I learned something from Pluggers today, because I didn’t just stare at it uncomprehendingly in dull horror and say “what gibbering madness is this?” before moving on to Piranha Club. In fact, I discovered that, according to this retrospective 2016 article in the Michgan-based Jackson News, beard-growing contests for the Bicentennial were a thing, confirmed by this 1996 post on the alt.culture.us.1970s usenet group where someone in Alabama remembers similar informal beard-growing competitions. Side note: isn’t it crazy that that 1996 post is closer in time to the Bicentennial than it is to today, but I can’t remember 1976 because I was a toddler and it was decades ago but I remember 1996 very well because I was an adult and it was very recent? Funny how this world works! Ha ha! Anyway, my point is that yes, “Bicentennial beards” were a real thing, with millions of American growing huge beards to honor our founding fathers, who were, to a man, clean-shaven. The ’70s were wild, guys.

Mary Worth, 12/12/17

It seems Wilbur called Iris at breakfast time to try to make dinner plans with her, which I guess explains the robe, and somehow I find it extremely hilarious that Zak is over there enjoying some delicious, healthy All Bran to start his day after an evening of vigorous and mutually enjoyable sex stuff. Not sure if he’s thinking “Dag, this is what happens when you sleep over at an older lady’s house, she doesn’t have any Cocoa Pebbles or anything,” or if it’s more “You know what, I’m a successful businessman now, I’ve cut my formerly flowing locks, so maybe it really is time for me to start pooping on a regular schedule.”

Gil Thorp, 12/12/17

Oh, uh, this Gil Thorp storyline is still happening, huh? Well, just to catch you up, Uncle Gary really wants to Rick Soto to have a concussion, so that Rick will be forced to quit football forever and dedicate himself full-time to becoming a YouTube singing sensation. Unfortunately for this not-at-all insane scheme, multiple doctors have now insisted that Rick hasn’t been concussed even a little! Still, I have a feeling this isn’t the end of it: the skull we catch a glimpse of in the background of panel three is definitely of some kind of early hominin, possibly Homo erectus or an Australopithecine, meaning that this doctor is used to dealing with specimens with much more robust crania than our poor Rick and her advice is suspect.

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Beetle Bailey, 11/10/17

Today definitely represents a high point in the 67-year-long failure to pass the Bechdel Test that is Beetle Bailey. The joke (“joke”) requires another woman with whom Private Blips can cattily gossip about Miss Buxley. Too bad there aren’t female characters available! Apparently it wasn’t considered realistic for her to be chatting with Mrs. Halftrack, Sgt. Lugg, or Sgt. Lugg’s cat [the following name came instantly to mind, despite my inability to remember, say, how old any of my nieces or nephews are] Bella, so the Walker-Browne Amalgamated Humor Industries LLC creative team just summoned a raven-haired doppelgänger out of the ether for her.

Gil Thorp, 11/10/17

Wow, Rick’s thousand-mile stare in the final panel is something. In an instant, he sees his life flickering ahead of him: his fame on message boards and Facebook groups frequented by elderly war vets will inevitably lead to a tour of VFW halls around the country, endless staring into seas of rheumy eyes as excited to hear patriotic ditties as they are suspicious of his shaggy-haired youthfulness. He’s going to be singing the national anthem a lot. Maybe “God Bless America,” too, if he’s feeling a little crazy. But he and Francis Scott Key are going to be locked in an intimate, suffocating embrace for years to come.

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Gil Thorp, 11/9/17

I’ve decided to settle in and just genuinely enjoy this Gil Thorp plot, which seems to ask us to unironically believe that Uncle Gary’s quest to make Rick Soto a viral singing sensation (a) could work and (b) would change his life if it does. After a vigorous astroturfing campaign got Rick the coveted anthem spot, Uncle Gary is swinging into action, bringing together video editors and social media experts to create the seemingly perfect organic explosion of worldwide interest in Rick Soto’s patriotic pipes. Look at Gary in the control center in panel two, with his bluetooth earpiece and mid-grade laptop! And in panel three … well, if grandpas of all people are watching Rick’s videos, can a Grammy award for Most Patriotic YouTube be far behind?

Spider-Man, 11/9/17

Man, I get it, the life a celebrity is exhausting, travelling between glamorous cities and promoting your films and what not. Sometimes you just want to go visit your old family friend, a dangerous lizard-mutant, and sun yourself on a rock in his terrarium, away from the probing eyes of the press, you know?

Rex Morgan, M.D., 11/9/17

Buck’s ex is of course violent, abusive, and delusional, and trying to separate him from his new, healthier relationship is a classic abuser move, but in panel three we get to see just how delusional she is. Like … does she think selling comic book panels on eBay is how a guy like Buck can woo a lady? That’s … that’s not how anything works, man.

Mary Worth, 11/9/17

[Not shown: four panels of Iris saying, “No, it’s too late in the evening, coffee will keep me up all night,” and Zak winking at her in increasingly exaggerated fashion and saying “No, not coffee, but, you know … coffee.”]