Archive: Hi and Lois

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Rex Morgan, M.D., 3/27/20

My Uncle Bob is a bassist who currently plays in a blues band called Bottleneck Bob, but back in the late ’70s and early ’80s he was part of a New York new wave band with Demi Moore’s first husband called the Dates that played at CBGB a few times. Anyway, once in the late ’80s, after he had moved to San Francisco, we were visiting him and watching MTV and I declared that songs with drum machines “didn’t have any soul,” expecting it would be the sort of musical sentiment he would agree with, and he replied, “One thing about a drum machine is that it never misses rehearsal because it’s hungover.” What I’m trying to say is that I’m honestly impressed by how Rex Morgan, M.D.’s country roots country guitarist has found the least edgy reason to be glad to be rid of his drummer that I can possibly imagine.

Crankshaft, 3/27/20

Wow, this whole Crankshaft arc has been a real paean to the importance of the traditional media: That podcaster just asked Lillian a bunch of softball questions, while NPR’s hard-hitting reporter has immediately realized that Lillian is in fact the person who murdered all those people who came into her bookstore.

Hi and Lois, 3/27/20

Boy, this comic sure makes Dot and Ditto look like real pieces of shit who don’t care about their father’s love, doesn’t it?

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Gasoline Alley, 2/4/20

Gasoline Alley is in the middle of a story where Baleen the waitress has some sort of will-they-or-won’t-they thing going on with the short order cook, whose name is, uh … OK, look, I know I read the comics so you don’t have to or whatever, but I refuse to keep track of what the ancillary characters in Gasoline Alley are named, OK? I just … I only have so much brain space and I’ve apparently decided to dedicate a lot of it to an encyclopedic history of Mary Worth storylines so you can look it up yourself, I dunno. The point is that I guess the guys in panels one and two are supposed to be inspiring jealousy in our short order cook man, and maybe they’re supposed to be handsome? Possibly? The gentleman in panel two has a certain Carter-era Donald Sutherland charm, I have to admit, but the first guy is just kind of grimace-winking and it is not erotic or appealing, in my humble opinion.

Hi and Lois, 2/4/20

Hi and Lois is of course about 60% still stuck in the Mad Men era, aesthetically, which is kind of interesting for assessing the whole look of our receptionist here whose mild flirtation has sent Hi into such a sad, sad tizzy. Like, she could be a hip young thing circa 1961, or she could be doing a rockabilly revival look from the ’90s, or she could be from right now, when I think this aesthetic is making kind of a comeback! Lois’s subtle contempt is, of course, timeless.

Rex Morgan, M.D., 2/4/20

Ahhh! Andrzej is a wrestler! Or, as Aunt Tildy, an aficionado of the squared circle would put it, a rassler! This love connection is gonna happen, I just know it!

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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.