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Folks, it’s Friday and it’s your FINAL reminder that Conor Lastowka and I will be putting on a special version of the Internet Read Aloud show at SF Sketchfest tomorrow, Saturday, January 18, featuring Bill Corbett of MST3K/Rifftrax, Laser Malena-Webber of the Doubleclicks, standup Natasha Muse, and more!

Tickets are limited so buy some now!

And now … it’s time for your COTW:

“Look, kudos to Dick Tracy. The bad guy said a line that doesn’t actually make any sense (without ice powers), his henchman called him on it, and he admits he’s having trouble coming up with a better one. That sort of thing should happen all the time. Maybe Bruce Wayne can afford to spend twelve hours a day practicing witty repartee, but for everyone else, this would be much more realistic.” –pachoo

Your runners up are also very funny!

“So, whoever is doing art for Mort Walker’s Beetle Bailey these days is pondering what a U.S. Army base is like. ‘Uh … shovels? Maybe a water tower?’” –Handsome Harry Backstayge, Idol of a Million Other Women

Unplanned nap? At MY age? It’s pretty much a REGULAR thing! Unfortunately, that’s the only REGULAR thing about my metabolism these days! Sorry about your COUCH! But the stain isn’t THAT much uglier than that zombieskin GRAY anyway!” –Probably the Real Shrug, But Only Josh and Uncle Lumpy Know for Sure (Well, I suppose I, Shrug, do as well, but — oh NO! What a GIVEAWAY!)

“Iris asks whether there’s a cure, and the doctor replies that ‘your symptoms can improve a great deal.’ What does that mean? Her symptoms are that she’s gaining weight and losing her hair. ‘You’re going to die, but you’ll be thin as a rail, and your hair will really shine!!!’” –seismic-2

“Damn, Zak’s doctor is so dignified that his gray hair has gray streaks.” –TheDiva

“Thanks, Josh, for reminding us that this is Thyroid Awareness Month. Because I wasn’t being aware of my thyroid. Now I am. I can feel it pulsing in my neck, releasing triiodothyronine and thyroxine. Another lump of weak flesh that makes up this all-too frail sack of water and meat that I call myself. I was trying to forget, but now I’m aware.” –Voshkod

“Reading all of that makes me want to tell Mason to shut the fuck up already, so I have no doubt he’ll be able to portray Les.” –nescio

“I’m glad we’re taking a lengthy period to settle down and talk through this nearly-shocking circumstance. The very possibility that an adult woman might have consumed some alcoholic beverages and taken a nap… goodness, my hands just won’t stop shaking! Thank heavens this horror didn’t really happen in this fictional story!” –jroggs

“A backwards baseball cap?! What a fresh look! It’ll go great with other things the young people of our generation have discovered for the first time ever, like videogames, yo-yos, pizza, skateboards, the environment, and music our parents don’t enjoy.” –BigTed

“Oh, my father was fine, but that fine cedar bench … we’ll never get her back.” –pugfuggly

Quiet! I’m thinking! Specifically, I’m wondering how we’re carrying on this conversation despite all the gunfire taking place inside this enclosed space!” –JJ48

“#oscarsstillprettywhitebutdon’tworrybecauseweaddedablackreplacementwife” –Scratchy Scrotum LXIX

“The prospect of a larger share in the divorce settlement has gotten Cayla’ s attention.” –Foodar

“The eyes are the window to the soul. This salesclerk has no pupils. If you were wondering what kind of person would up-sell a senile old lady into using her heart pill money for organic birdseed, the answer is right there.” –Tonya

“Look out, Tildy! Rex has got his murderin’ — I mean mercy! — I mean corresponding to actuarial tables!gloves on.” –pastordan

“‘Thereabouts. Yes.‘ Also the answer Rex gives, when asked whether he got his training at Harvard Medical School.” –Just John

Remember, if you want to buy ads on this site and get a shoutout in these metaposts, head on over to my BuySellAds page! If you never want to see banner ads on this site, and get cool comment-editing features to boot, for a mere three dollars a month you can become a Comics Curmudgeon Supporter! If you just want to give me money directly, you can put some scratch in my tip jar, or back me on Patreon! Thanks to all for your support and readership!

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Beetle Bailey, 1/17/20

Congrats to Beetle Bailey on more or less understanding an aspect of modern life! Just a few little corrections:

  • The term you’re sort of botching is “social media star,” though honestly what you’d really want to say is “influencer.”
  • Despite the fact that King Features has 1,067 Instagram followers, Beetle, even with three times that many, would be several orders of magnitude away from being a true influencer.
  • Instagram wouldn’t really be Beetle’s platform, anyway; where he’d do gangbusters would be with his own ASMR YouTube channel.

Rex Morgan, M.D., 1/17/20

Finally, Rex sees an opportunity to nail down exactly how old his wife is, something he’s been trying to figure out without just breaking down and asking her directly for years now. But June’s not going to let him get out of it this easily.

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Mark Trail, 1/16/20

DRAMATIC MUSIC STING!!!!!! Much like Captain Ahab of literary fame, Dr. Camel has been on a single-minded mission of bloody vengeance ever since one of nature’s magnificent, savage creatures took his leg. And, sure, you’d think Mark or someone else would’ve noticed that Harvey has a prosthesis as they hiked together for miles through the foothills of the Himalayas, though maybe technology has advanced far enough that it isn’t really noticeable, making its revelation at this narratively opportune moment possible, or maybe Mark is so free of ableism that he noticed but didn’t find the fact remarkable so it never got worked into the strip’s narrative, who can say, but the point is that we now know how this is going to end: with Harvey’s corpse lashed to the yeti’s massive body, his arm seeming to beckon others to follow, and Genie, Mingma, and Pemba eagerly pursuing the monster into the forest while only Mark remains behind to write the tale, Ishmael-like, except unlike Ishmael he’ll be writing it for a glossy magazine with a fancy New York HQ, which will recompense him handsomely for his troubles.

Crankshaft, 1/16/20

Over in Crankshaft, we’re in the midst of a storyline where Ed and Lillian are in competition to see who can get more birds at their feeder, and today is the day we learn just how seriously Lillian takes this whole thing, since she’s clearly willing to sacrifice everything to win. Although perhaps she aims for a double victory: to escape by means of sweet death the unending sorrow of life in the Funkyverse, leaving Crankshaft, still alive and suffering, to watch the birds flock to his neighbor’s yard instead of his.

Crock, 1/16/20

We all know, of course, that Crock is in a twilight of endless reruns, and I have to assume that the same economic pressures that encourage syndicates to just rerun outdated comics instead of paying for new ones also preclude hiring much by way of editorial staff to supervise said reruns; perhaps the publication of old Crocks is entirely automated — I’m visualizing a robot arm pulling paper copies of strips out of a filing cabinet at random here. But let me gently suggest that it would be worth it to have someone to give these strips a once-over before they go out, if only to ensure that you don’t publish one where a punchline about some seemingly futuristic technology has now, a decade or two it was written, just become a straightforward description of a thing people do all the time.

Family Circus, 1/16/20

The Family Circus knows how to keep up with modern technology without much effort, simply replacing the earlier punchlines that ran with this panel (“See? I photocopied her” and “See? I bedoubled her once and then again, with the aid of my master, the Devil”) with something slightly more up-to-date.

Funky Winkerbean, 1/16/20

Oh, now I get why Les was withholding his emotional approval from this project: he was waiting for someone to explain that he could have more unearned praise heaped upon him, in the form of major awards, if it went forward! It’s a good thing that Mason doesn’t think the Oscars are a joke anymore, or, conversely, that he believes so firmly that they’re a joke that he thinks Lisa’s Story can win one, because it’s a sad story about a regular lady who died of cancer.