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Marvin, 8/15/18

I honestly neither expect nor require Marvin, a legacy syndicated newspaper comic strip about a baby who poops a lot, to be up-to-date on current fashion trends, but I do think it’s a little awkward that in its attempt to depict a modern-day hipster they’ve overshot and given him a fashy, the haircut beloved by your more upscale white supremacists these days. Since Miller is the third most common surname for Jews in the United States, it certainly gives a very different reading to “they may not even let you in”!

Spider-Man, 8/15/18

Oh, Kingpin, you think you’re going to be some kind of bad-ass real estate criminal, but you’ve got a lot to learn about branding! The sort of hipster “pioneers” you want to attract in your moves to gentrify Chinatown will be positively thrilled to live above the alley where MJ Parker’s first husband was brutally murdered by a Chinese gang. Then, five years later, once MJ has been married to a fellow celebrity more suited to her current lifestyle, you jack up the rent by $1,000 a month and then the finance industry people move in.

Mary Worth, 8/15/18

This is definitely one way for Tommy to gently explain to Brandy that he has no plans to put out any time soon.

Pluggers, 8/15/18

Sure, it makes sense that Branson, Missouri, is ground zero for the plugger orgy scene, but I for one could’ve gone my whole life in happy ignorance of this fact.

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Spider-Man, 8/14/18

Oh heck yes, Kingpin’s back! You might remember this beefy supervillain from his previous appearance in Newspaper Spider-Man, where he changed the face of evil scientific research techniques with his hit management guide, Faster! Work Faster! and then fled in an adorably tiny submarine as his evil scheme collapsed. Anyway, he’s joined forces with Golden Claw for a superstar teamup, and the techniques he’s learning as an equal partner in a criminal enterprise will inform his next book, Murder By Committee: How To Get Buy-In From All Stakeholders For Brutal Gangland Killings.

Dick Tracy, 8/14/18

You ever think about how silly Liz feels talking awkwardly into her wrist genie just sitting around police HQ, when there’s a perfectly good landline phone right there on her desk? Probably not half as silly as Dick feels having to fill out all the damn paperwork the liberals say he needs to deal with every time he kills someone, but Liz’s irritation is a lot more justified.

Blondie, 8/14/18

Man, I wish this were a Sunday strip so we could really get deep into those napping-related security questions, you know? Like, ten is actually quite a lot! I know this strip generally satisfies itself with goofy fake brand names so probably they’d start off just being about how much he loves SleepLyfe® Pillows or whatever, but I really want to get in to the contours of Dagwood’s dreamscape, and I feel like by question six or seven he’d have no choice but to get real and discuss why he prefers sleep’s temporary annihilation of self to spending time with his friends and family.

Gil Thorp, 8/14/18

So it turns out that this year instead of doing a wacky summer storyline, Gil Thorp is doing a storyline about Gil doing some golf coaching. It also turns out that the only thing duller than watching other people play golf is watching someone explain to other people how to play golf.

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Shoe, 8/13/18

As near as I can tell, “My wife doesn’t understand me” is a set phrase that, whether it was ever used in real life or not, is generally understood in fiction to be the opening line of a man talking to someone with whom he’s looking to cheat on his wife. (The funny pages’ beloved Hagar the Horrible has used it in exactly that way, for instance.) But while it’s certainly possible that Senator Belfrey is trying to hit on this extremely put-upon bartender, he’s generally been depicted in this strip as grotesquely heterosexual, so I guess we’re meant to understand that he’s not deploying this phrase with ulterior motives in mind, but is genuinely trying to unburden himself and talk about the real emotional void in this life right now with a man he considers a friend. And that’s great, not only because I like to see depictions of people working through their issues in a thoughtful and constructive way, but also because otherwise he’d be trying to fuck this guy’s dog, or his liver.

Mark Trail, 8/13/18

Guys, I genuinely cannot tell you what the hell’s happening in Mark Trail right now, but it involves Rusty and Mara going to join a tour group at some other temple that’s not the same temple as the creepy and mysterious temple they were at earlier, and then trying and failing to get Becky’s attention. (This is just a side note, but, real talk: I have no idea who Becky is.) Anyway, I’m kind of in awe of today’s strip, which is dedicated entirely to Red-Hot It’s Weird That Becky Couldn’t Hear Us Action, and I hope it’s a setup for a plot where Rusty and Mara have been transported to some spirit realm by the evil forces residing in one or more of these temples, and that they are fated to drift as insubstantial shades through the world, seeing but not being seen, but probably Becky just couldn’t hear them for some reason that’s never going to be explained adequately.