Archive: Judge Parker

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Gil Thorp, 2/24/17

Today’s Gil Thorp doesn’t necessarily offer a thematically unified big laugh, but is full of little hilarious details that come together to show why I love this strip so much:

  • The Freezy Bomb Boys couldn’t wait to shower or change after practice before bursting into Coach Thorp’s office with their latest half-baked theory
  • Coach Thorp apparently thinks Inspector Gadget is a good go-to insulting reference when it comes to amateur detective work, even when said detectives are not, in the poetic words of the Wikipedia article on the subject, “clumsy, dim-witted cyborgs”
  • Coach Thorp has misremembered Inspector Gadget’s name, and thus may have forgotten much else about him, like the fact that he’s a cyborg, and has to be smugly corrected by Coach Kaz
  • Coach Kaz is wearing a black shirt and white tie like he’s the keyboardist for a middlingly derivative 80s new wave band
  • This whole thing hinges on Aaron’s basketball ability being tied to … his mother’s pay schedule, maybe?
  • Final planel: BAM, a classic Gil Thorp smash cut to something semi-comprehensible happening somewhere else, in this case Aaron and Molly nuzzling at a rave, where NOTHING ELSE MATTERS

Anyway! I very much look forward to this all being resolved in a wholly unrealistic fashion soon, and then the Mudlarks subsequently failing to make the playoffs.

Funky Winkerbean, 2/24/17

Do you guys think that the cop in panel two is meant to be expressing genuine love for Montoni’s, or that he’s just being extremely sarcastic as he writes Funky a ticket he definitely deserves? It’s hard to tell with this strip. I mean, either would be good, because both involve Funky being humiliated, but I feel like I want to better understand the texture of the schadenfreude I’m experiencing here.

Judge Parker, 2/24/17

Shoutout to this Judge Parker flashback for doing a pretty good job of depicting Abbey and Neddy in the Harold LeDoux era. I find the third panel pretty puzzling, though. The kids have already been let go! How are the kidnappers going to do anything with them? Unless … I was right, and “Sophie” really is a replicant replacement? As are the other supposedly free children? And this is the first step towards replacing the entire universe of Judge Parker with a better, cleaner race of beings, i.e., cyborgs? That still doesn’t seem like much of a money-making scheme, to be honest.

Mark Trail, 2/24/17

I’m not sure how often customs agents in foreign countries ask Americans travelling to America what their purpose for traveling to America is, but it sure gives Chris “Dirty” “Smith” a chance to answer in a Transparently Evil fashion! It’s not going to be very “sporting” when Mark punches Dirty’s eyepatch right off, but he’s going to have to learn the limits of his hunting abilities himself, I guess.

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Mary Worth and Judge Parker, 2/15/17

It’s interesting to me that the stereotypical, cartoonish drawing of tears has them coming out of the outer corners of your eyes, when human anatomy ensures that they’re much more likely to come out by our noses in real life. That’s how we know that Iris, with her messy, confusing motivations and emotions, is fully, gloriously human, and “Sophie” actually died in that car wreck and had her brain implanted into an android duplicate by her mysterious kidnapper. Her mysterious kidnapper who … she is maybe talking about today, for the first time? Her programming is malfunctioning!

Funky Winkerbean, 2/15/17

Haha, so, yesterday I joked about how the DMV was going to murder Funky, but today it’s like … it’s going to happen, and he wants them to do it. He’s egging them on. Last week he made his peace with death and now he wants it over with. This is suicide by cop, except it’s suicide by low-level bureaucrat and awful, awful wordplay.

Family Circus, 2/15/17

OH NO JEFFY KILLED A BUSINESS MAN AND RITUALLY STRIPPED HIM OF HIS SACRED GARMENTS TO GAIN HIS TOTEMIC POWER

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Dick Tracy, 2/7/17

If ’00s Dick Tracy was a continuing exploration of how many insanely violent ways a newspaper comic strip could kill off its villains, ’10s Dick Tracy is a long-running experiment in how far up the asshole of obscure comics history a newspaper comic strip can get, which is … not better? It’s different, anyway. Let us remind you that the “Moon Maid” in the current run of the strip is actually some genetically modified and mind-wiped gangster’s daughter, and so while the Tracy family has taken her in, she isn’t really Dick’s son’s wife, leaving her free to flirt shamelessly with hunky crossover star The Spirit. The Tracys’ guest is regaling everyone with the plot of a comic book from 1952, because why not, and while his words say “of course we didn’t visit the dark side of the moon where Moon Valley [the home of Moon Maid’s Lunarian people] is,” the knowing expression he’s giving the reader says “of course we did visit the dark side of the moon, where I learned the sexual techniques that bring the most pleasure to the inhabitants of Moon Valley!” Or, uh, maybe it’s just me? Maybe it’s just me.

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, 2/7/17

Look, Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, you came into your current phase of existence in the 1930s when your original concept, about a ne’er-do-well horse-racing aficionado, lost its lustre and the decision was made to pivot into the then-lucrative realm of making fun of hillbillies, and ever since then, that’s been your shtick. If you wanted to, say, shift the tone and start exploring real issues of poverty in isolated rural communities, or maybe have your characters provide an outsider’s perspective on mainstream American urban and suburban life, then I think we’d all accept it and actually be pretty impressed. But don’t think you can just wedge in whatever generic jokes you’ve got rattling around in your head, à la “What’s the deal with energy drinks?” Leave those to other, non-hillbilly-based comic strips. Yours is a higher, or at least more specific, calling.

Dennis the Menace, 2/7/17

So, who’s the real menace here? The innocent child, who, like more and more of us young and old, occasionally enjoys eating traditional breakfast foods like pancakes or scrambled eggs in the evening? Or his mother, who’s asking this question having clearly already prepared the meal, presumably as part of her plan to reply to whatever he says with “tough shit, kid, you’re getting whatever’s in this casserole dish”?

Judge Parker, 2/7/17

“She’s a qualified mental health professional, with a speciality in adolescents and trauma! I’m … honestly surprised this hasn’t occurred to you already?”