Archive: Pluggers

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Pluggers, 3/4/18

A plugger knows he’s on a restricted diet when his dog’s food starts to look appetizing, when he looks at his dog’s food and thinks, “This is how I’m supposed to eat, not with a fork and knife, not off of a plate, not wearing clothes, not living in a house.” A plugger knows the restrictions come from a decision he made long ago, when he had to choose to remain as he was or to become something different, something that was supposed to be better. A plugger doesn’t think about that decision very much any more. But sometimes he can’t help it.

Blondie, 3/4/18

Today’s Blondie, in which two icons of 20th century American pop-culture masculinity aggressively urge the protagonist to stuff himself with food until he can’t eat another bite, gives me a horrifying glimpse of who this strip is actually “for.”

Rex Morgan, M.D., 3/4/18

Justin’s regurgatory cycle is the most interesting thing to happen in Rex Morgan, M.D., in months, so I guess I’ll just settle in and enjoy it for as long as it keeps happening. Can’t wait to see all the variations! “That’s our Justin!” [audience laughter] [everyone is splattered with vomit]

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Shoe, 3/1/18

I can imagine a couple possible genesises (geneses?) for this strip that are vaguely interesting as backstory. For example, this could be an instance of a huffy “look what these DEGENERATE LIBERALS are teaching OUR INNOCENT CHILDREN in GOVERNMENT SCHOOLS.” On the other hand, the fact that Shoe is full of bird-people might mean that the “polly”-“parrot” joke is meant to be understood in that context, and this is a shoutout to Shoe’s hardcore base of bird-o-sexual perverts who will be pleasuring themselves tonight to a vision of getting double-teamed by two brightly colored birds who can mimic human speech, including erotic talk.

Sadly, though, my actual assumption is that this strip has the exact same origin story as every other Shoe strip with the loose structure of “a teacher asks Skyler a question that he responds to ‘humorously’”: it’s an excuse to shoehorn in a joke or a bit of wordplay someone thought up, or maybe heard from somewhere else, and that’s it. Skyler’s expression of profound self-loathing in panel three is a chilling reminder of how everyone involved in the production of this strip feels about it, and themselves.

Mary Worth, 3/1/18

Mary Worth is of course a master of the fine points of etiquette, so I guess roast chicken is the official meal for letting your boyfriend know his friend tried to rape you!

Pluggers, 3/1/18

Pluggers’ bodies are breaking down so gradually that, when they do eventually die, it’s gonna take a while for anyone to notice.

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Hagar the Horrible, 2/27/18

The central conceit of Hagar the Horrible is that it takes the classic American sitcom husband-wife dynamic and transposes it onto a family living in Viking-age Norway. So the conflicts between Hagar and Helga all revolve around the sort of things that would be at home in America in 1975: he spends too much time at the bar, he doesn’t like her mother, he’s a slob, etc. But tellingly, what they don’t fight about is his role as the leader of a band of opportunistic raiders and thieves, who leave a trail of corpses across Europe in their quest for plunder. Look at her little smile as he heads to the door to cleave the salesman’s skull with a single blow of his axe, then put him out of his misery by stabbing him in the throat. She doesn’t like it when he leaves chicken bones on the floor, but she’s never minded all the killing.

Gil Thorp, 2/27/18

So Marty Moon has reacted to his admonishment at the hands of teens by choosing to … hyper-pronounce Jorge Padilla’s name, as in this classic SNL sketch, and take advantage of getting to actually say a Latino’s name on the air by slipping in sponsored content for a local Mexican restaurant. I’m not sure what’s funnier: that he’s doing this to antagonize his young woke adversaries, or because he thinks he’s being respectful.

Mark Trail, 2/27/18

“Anybody break a neck or get permanently paralyzed? Any compound fractures, with femurs protruding horrifically from flesh? Tissues sliced so deep that the scarring will be permanent? Massive blood loss? Traumatic brain injury? C’mon, throw us a bone here, sheriff.”

Pluggers, 2/27/18

You can tell this is a “classic” Pluggers because the kid still knows what a radio is.

Six Chix, 2/27/18

What if an old person … had a mom??? You crazy for this one, Six Chix!