Archive: Phantom

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The 2020 Comics Curmudgeon Summer Fundraiser has ended — thank you, generous readers!

Well, pretty much all the newspaper comics have caught up with social distancing, personal protective equipment, and the whole shebang. No more escape from reality for us!

Six Chix 9/12/20

In this Slylock Fox prequel, it is only the animals’ disciplined hygiene that protects them against the plague that wipes out careless, inconsiderate humanity.

Zits 9/12/20

It’s ironic: the cheerleaders conceal their hotness to ensure that only the hot survive. Also, those outfits look hot, though not in a hot way.

Sherman’s Lagoon 9/12/20

Too grim? Then let’s all come together as a nation to tell this chirpy usurper that the one and only NOAA mascot is always and forever Mark Trail.

Funky Winkerbean 9/12/20

Nah, he’s still right behind you.

Phantom, 9/12/20

Charles Darwin once inferred the existence of a moth with an 11-inch proboscis from an orchid with an 11-inch nectary. By that same principle of complementarity, I infer that the 22nd Phantom will be [trumpets] Heloise Walker. Well that and the fact that I’ve been ‘shipping her for this for fourteen years.

A legendary hero/ine must have a nemesis, and Kadia Sahara is clearly emerging as Heloise’s. Kadia has:

  • Terrorist DNA from her father, Eric THE NOMAD Sahara.
  • Profound Daddy issues — Eric tried to murder Heloise, her college BFF/roomie.
  • A complex backstory and relationship with the hero/ine — Heloise is Kadia’s BFF, but beat up her Dad and put him in Gitmo.
  • As Imara announces here, Kadia now has access to global resources and connections that allow her to usurp her father’s role and carry out his mission

A couple of details need to be worked out, not least of which is there are now TWO terrorist masterminds imprisoned by the Walkers: Chatu in Wambesiland and Eric THE NOMAD in Gitmo. But it’s easily resolved: The Elder Phantom frees them both to “let them settle it” or some such nonsense; they fight it out for control of the organization; Chatu wins (have you SEEN that guy?); Kadia sneaks up and kills him in her supervillainess-defining moment, and takes over. Then Kadia knocks off Elder Phantom, Heloise swears a blood oath, young Kit takes another bong hit, yadda yadda yadda. All hail Kadia, THE NEWMAD.

An earlier, incomplete version of this post appeared early yesterday morning because I scheduled it to the wrong date. That’s right, I literally forgot about 9/11.

— Uncle Lumpy, America’s Worst American

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Curtis, 9/5/20

Classic misdirection — the weed is under the mattress. And he probably smokes the banana peels, too.

Dennis the Menace, 9/5/20

Using his media platform to trash a hallowed American brand: pretty menacing! You can almost hear him growl, “You’re next, Sara Lee.”

9 Chickweed Lane, 9/5/20

In the sex-based economy of 9 Chickweed Lane, the unit of currency is the Boink. But after 12 years’ relentless overcopulation of the money supply, that currency has become utterly debased.

Funky Winkerbean, 9/5/20

And by, “the planet,” I mean, “whatever is in my field of vision right now.” [To self] “I wonder where people go when I turn my head.”

Judge Parker, 9/5/20

Still more useless word-gunk. If this Producer gig doesn’t work out, Ellen can get a job in Corporate HR anywhere in the World.

Phantom, 9/5/20

I am totally asking Aunt Lumpy’s stylist to give her some of that awesome sea-hair!

— Uncle Lumpy

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Judge Parker, 9/3/20

Oh c’mon people, this show should obviously and entirely be about April Bowers-Parker. Norton is comic relief, Godiva’s dead foot showed up in one frame, and her vengeance-crazed Austrian producer/druglord/CIA-stooge boyfriend didn’t even rate a name. Neddy? Two lines and a Supporting Cast credit as “Entitled Girl,” best case.

And don’t forget that Neddy and Ronnie rewrote the script to April’s specifications at gunpoint. April put “her truth … her life” in Neddy’s hands, demanded Neddy not disappoint her, and threatened murder if the studio made revisions to the script. So if this doesn’t turn out to be April’s story, Neddy’s gonna die, ’cause April’s nuts, yo. All in all, pretty terrific television!

But does any of this matter to Neddy? Nope. I wouldn’t even be surprised to see her set up a hit of her own, to stop more interesting people from stealing all that sweet attention.

Beetle Bailey, 9/3/20

I’m delighted to learn Mort Walker isn’t really dead, but alarmed that his human form is being eradicated line by line in some afterlife purgatorium while his creatures grin and wave.

Phantom, 9/3/20

One of my least favorite Spider-Man and Silver Age Superman tropes is the Secret Identity Crisis, as in: “Oh Jeez, somebody took a photo of me rescuing a bunch of Burmese kids and now they want to make a stamp out of the photo and when they postmark the stamp the O’s in “Rangoon” will frame my eyes like glasses and everybody will realize I’m Clark Kent!” But I think the Walkers have legitimate grounds for concern here. Kadia Sahara knows that Heloise’s Dad is a mysterious well-built guy who never shows his eyes, is good at heroics, and is in with Bangalla’s President. Mom Imara has seen — in and out of costume — a mysterious well-built guy who never shows his eyes, is good at heroics, and can be reached by mailing a letter to the Walkers. Connect the dots, Saharas!

And Walkers, change either that “Ghost Who Walks” tagline or your family name: “The Schwimmers” has a nice ring to it!

Hello, faithful readers! I’m letting Josh out of quarantine for a well-deserved break through Sunday the 13th; reach me at if you have any problems with the site.

— Uncle Lumpy