Epicus Doomus
May 25, 2012 at 3:55 am
…The big “surprise” will be, as always, staggeringly lame and instantly forgettable…

Shocker, huh? Elevating the two gay teens to prom royalty would have required drawing them again and maybe even giving them names or another line or two of dialogue. So much safer to have the kids bestow the honor on Mr. Nate and Mrs. No First Name Green.

April 11, 2012 at 12:04 am
…this guy [Batiuk] can’t draw “walking,” can he?

He’s not the best at depicting people expressing excitement, either (remember “bespectacled blue shirt khaki guy” at the basketball playdowns?). Summer and Keisha show proper decorum (probably relieved that they weren’t elected as the royal couple). But some of the Westview teens exert themselves so hard to demonstrate their approval as to risk injury. Maddie (wearing that #*@%in’ hat) shimmies awkwardly and offers a cracked grin. Cory may be a delinquent but he’s no homophobe; he thrusts up a thumb and smiles with his bottom teeth. Rana actually seems to be having a hearty laugh at the Greens’ expense for some reason, while Big Mac is just all like durr-hurr-hurr. But I think it’s Touchdown Guy in the blue tux who best expresses the joy that all of us are feeling…this arc is finally concluded.

Phew! Gay prom wore me out! I’ve asked David O to
step in and take over the reins for a week…enjoy!




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0 responses to “Coro-Nate-tion

  1. Chyron HR

    Did you boojums and snarks ever stop to think about how important this validation is for the oppressed high school principal community? HUH?

  2. Sgt. Saunders

    What’s with Summers teeth? She looks like she went to a 50’s era costume shop and got the Tojo Teeth. All she needs now is that godawful hat that Maddie wears and Rana’s glasses. Ah so!! I thought we fixed your wagon at Iwo!

  3. Sgt. Saunders

    Another double post, but STOP THE PRESSES! What is that on Summer’s chest – (a) a random line; (b) a chest hair; or (c) CLEAVAGE!?! awwww, Ssistah, fetch my smellin’salts, Ah think Ah’m gettin’ th’ vapors….

  4. Jim C

    Mrs. Nate Green has a name: Mrs. Nate Green.

    Rana is pointing and laughing, because this is all part of the senior prank: pointing is the signal to drop the sheep’s blood from the ceiling on to Mr. and Mrs. Principal Nate Green.

    Maddie bears an uncanny resemblance to Edvard Munch’s figure in Der Schrei der Natur.

  5. What is up with Maddie’s leg? I had no idea that was Rana.

  6. So, in the end, what has this arc been all about? Not about exploring the issue of gay equality. Not about examining the psychology underlying homophobia. Not about changing paradigms, and how younger and future generations will hopefully come to regard same sex relationships as normal just as we now accept interracial relationships. And it certainly hasn’t been about examining the feelings, hopes, and humanity of its gay characters. No, what this arc has been about is the noble, wiser elder (the author’s mouthpiece, by his own admission) imparting his wisdom onto the masses, who then honor and esteem him as he richly deserves. This is the hugest case of artistic onanism I have ever witnessed in this strip, and that’s saying something.

    Fuck you, Batiuk. Fuck. You.

  7. Epicus Doomus

    Sure, Nate invoked the immutable law of the handbook and saved the day, but what did Mrs. Nate do to merit all the applause? She had like one line of dialog and all she did was express her wild (by FW standards) state of arousal. This thing was just loaded to the rafters with characters no one knows, cares about or will ever see again (including my new fav character, Possibly Gay Hand). Which is still better than Summer & Les, but still.

    Hopefully this also marks the end of the puff-pieces and various interviews about the f*cking SSC arc because boy, is that whole thing beyond tiresome. You’d think this moronic arc was some kind of taboo-shattering, mind-blowing, cutting-edge renegade comic strip statement featuring SSCs bumping and grinding like it was ten-cent beer night at The Anvil instead of a boring bunch of tripe about a comical old battleaxe and a seldom-seen high school principal. The whole thing was about as risky as a two-dollar show bet on the favorite in a horse race. If the government ever cracked down on triteness, those interviews would be downright illegal.

  8. Flummoxicated

    Not only is this “plot twist” about as far from 1/4″ from reality, but the people in the background are too. That guy must be well over three feet wide, and Maddie looks like she’s melting.

    “Wow, Principal Green! You read from the school handbook! It didn’t specifically forbid same sex couples from attending prom, and that really taught us all something about tolerance! So we voted you prom king! Because – ”

    “Wait. We have gay couples here in Westview? Where? I don’t see any!”

    “Hey, you’re right, I don’t see any gay couples either. Huh. Well, the important thing is that Principal Green says we should all be tolerant, so we voted him Prom King. Yay!”

  9. Jeffcoat Wayne

    Gay couple? What gay couple?

  10. Jeffcoat Wayne

    Congratulations, Mrs. Nate Green! It must be quite an honor to have received all those votes despite the fact that no one in the entire world knew of your existence before this week. You should think about becoming Ron Paul’s campaign manager in 2016.

    I’ll say this for Batiuk — he has the best agent in the world. To get this much press coverage without actually having to address such an explosive topic is one of the most remarkable feats I’ve ever seen. Though I still think this entire arc was just a scam so he could name-drop “Lisa’s Story”, in case anyone forgot those millions of extra copies are still available at regular price.

  11. sourbelly

    “Mrs. Nate Green”? Wow. I’m going to call that “retrosexual.”

    With Principal Nate Green’s victory, Tom Batiuk has elected himself Prom King by Proxy. Congrats, Tom!

  12. On the bright side, the story did have a happy ending! I thought TB would’ve had Roberta lynch the gay couple.

  13. Andrew

    …How does this arc suck? Let me count the ways:

    1. Gay Couple that starts this whole mess doesn’t appear EVER AGAIN after sparking it, save an alternate universe illustration that displays how bland and uninteresting, and the only other gay characters “shown” are two guys hiding behind cardboard displays just so Bautik can have something to milk later.

    2. Antagonists that are given no explanation or motivation to be against gay relationships other than “HUBUBEUBEUBBEUEH, GAYS?! THIS MUST NOT STAND!” who apparently all feel personally attached to the prom, being led by an established jerky character that was pulled out of the woodwork just for this strip, whose only retribution is a “shut up” from her husband that appearnently solves everything along with…

    3. The principal becoming the big time hero just for stating that the school handbook doesn’t condone gay relationships to a crowd consisting mostly of students who were already going to show support for them, and then being worshiped at the prom like how some readers are expecting Bautik to be by his followers and peers.

    4. An occasional claim that this arc’s conflict would be between the beliefs of the snobby stuborn old people and the enlightened tolerant young people being ended by an idealistic grown up who’s sorta been among the secondary cast for some time who appearently gets all the credit.

    I detest this arc. At least Lisa’s death, for all its jumps in real-life logic and overplay of drama, stayed to the path of Lisa being portrayed as the focus of everything and watching Les take it all in. This story started in one direction and ended in a wildly different one entirely I didn’t see or understand coming. If Bautik gets treatment similar to how he got treated for the Lisa affair, I’m going to lose faith in our society’s judgement of drama.

    Tom, just because you keep thinking you’re pushing boundaries by putting this kind of storytelling in a newspaper comic strip, doesn’t mean you can go off making lackluster tales like this. Forget this arc and move on to something else. And get out of your True Art is Angsty pit while you’re at it.

  14. Jpett

    On a brighter note, it’s nice to see former heavyweight champ, George Foreman standing in as Keisha’s date.

  15. Riff Chick

    I was going to say something but I think you could just re-read TheDiva’s comment and know that those words and ideas have my full support.

  16. O.B. Dan

    This storyline sets new bars for bad endings and social issues skirted without really addressing them at all, a double-header sweep for Batiuk. I mean, really, this story totally sucked.

    Sometimes, “And they lived happily ever after while dodging yet an0ther social bullet” just does not work.

    On top of Batiuk’s truly crap;y ending, we have some of his worst artwork ever, all displayed in one panel. What happened to Maddie’s head and face? And what’s the deal with her legs? And why on earth is she wearing a jumpsuit to the prom? A jumpsuit? Really, Bats?

    What’s with all that purple? Supposed to be some way of celebrating the gay unnamed couple (who, I believe, were expected to be named prom royalty).

    And can Sum’ Mo’ possibly look any frumpier?

  17. O.B. Dan

    In that last panel, as an added bous, are my top three contenders for “hand behind the rock” – Sum’ Mo’, Jinx, an dMaddie, in that order, with the Big Dumb Jock, Pencil-neck Girl With The Tilted Head, and Rana, who without the magic of Tom-Time, could never hope to be a senior with the rest of this class.

  18. billytheskink

    You know, most people who want to get elected prom king are enrolled as high school students. Most campaign by asking their friends to ask their other friends to vote for them. Maybe they hang up signs, if that’s how things are done at that school. Most people who want to get elected prom king don’t campaign by turning a character in their nationally syndicated comic strip into a personal mouthpiece and simply mention that something controversial exists and acting like it’s some real big deal. TB is not most people.

    Sorry, TB, but Midview High isn’t going to elect you prom king no matter what you do. Kudos for sneaking Napoleon Dynamite under Nate’s nose in panel 2, though.

  19. $$$Westview Oncologist$$$$$

    Yah, to celebrate this strike againts homophobia everywhere were going to nominate as king and queen Principal Nate “By the Book” Green and his current underage booty call.

  20. professor fate

    I’m speechless. He’s manged to do everything wrong except garner publicity. That he did very well. As his story telling ability reaches a new low – he reaches new heights in self promotion. Actually if the strip was ANYTHING like the strip he describes to reporters it wouldn’t NEED the constant drum banging he’s been doing lately.
    And oh yes to echo the general mood: Fuck you Batiuk.

  21. Helskor

    Hmm, no visible male dates for Summer or Maddie in panel two. Is this Batiuk’s subtle sign that one of them belongs to The Gay Talking Hand?

    Given Batiuk’s penchant for disembodied limbs, I think I’ve found his favorite Oliver Stone movie:

    “Jon Lansdale is a comic book artist [!!] who loses his right hand in a car accident[!!!]. The hand was not found at the scene of the accident, but it soon returns by itself to follow Jon around, and murder those who anger him.”

  22. Beanie Wanker

    Oh I’m not surprised in the slightest. After all, to any group of high school teenagers, nobody’s cooler than… the Principal. Right?

    Mad raging props once again to BatPhart for knowing precisely how kids think and act. Most of us would have THOUGHT during Cradle Robber Nate’s speech most of the kids would have been tuned out and thinking about something else. But Tommeh recognized that EACH AND EVERY student cared So Very Deeply that gays could come to the prom.

    Wow. Miles and miles from Ahia, I can still smell the horseshit.

  23. Sgt. Saunders

    I scoff, scoff at the impudent naysayers! Just wait until the unnamed, random, non-entity gay sex couple gets cancer. Then TB will Tell The Tale!! YASSUH!

  24. Merry Pookster

    Whatta megalomaniac

    This is meadia worthy….oh that was CBS wasn’t it?
    Like to how FOX would spin this?

    …oh that comment about Fuck You Tom Batiku?
    And the Horse you rode in on!!

  25. John

    “And now, we bring you a special report, an interview with Nate Green, principal of Westview High!”


    “So, how did this incident explore the difference between adult and teen attitudes towards sexual orientation, again?”

    “Well, I proved that volunteer grandmothers are innately evil, because they just kind of ARE. Oh, and that henpecked husbands need to man up after four decades of never uttering a peep. Oh, and that teens are selfish and evil!”

    “Yeah, um, except for students Summer Moore and Jinx…Jinx, none of them seemed to care about anything at all.”

    “Yeah, teens are just so awful! How I hate them.”

    “And even the best Summer could come up with to show support was cutting class…”

    “I think I’ve proven that breaking the rules is WRONG. Just keep your head down and obey THE RULES, and everyone will be fine.”

    “Um, that’s assuming the rules never change, or are always ethical and right.”

    “Do I need to pull out the Student Handbook and start reciting again?!?”


    (Much later)

    “So, how did the interview do in the ratings?”

    “Well, we lost out to Channel 9’s SMALL WONDER marathon. Again.”

    “Dammit! Next time I’m just going to run that story about how an all pizza diet has caused premature aging among the middle aged men in town.”

  26. John

    It’s interesting, I keep thinking back to that “For Better or For Worse” storyline back in the 90s. It was inspired by Lynn Johnston’s (then) real life brother-in-law, so for the most part she was gentle and considerate in her depiction of Lawrence. Other than a couple of false notes, it went down fairly well.

    While critics note that Lawrence faded from prominence soon after, I point out that the same thing happened to -every- childhood friend of Mike and Liz not named “Anthony” or “Deanna”. Basically, from their twenties onward, every childhood friend of the elder Patterson sibs were retconned into being “Friends of the Family”, who existed mostly to pop up and provide free favors for the entire Patterson clan from time to time, whenever Lynn was feeling lazy and wanted to prove that the Pattersons were the most Wonderful Family Ever without working.

    I suspect such will be the case with “The Gay Couple”…if Act IV ever happens, Striped Shirt and Turtle Man will pop up to Save the Sports Program or some such because they remembered Nate’s Moving Speech ™

  27. Sean D.

    Nice to see I’m not the only one to notice the couple that launched this “storyline” are nowhere to be seen in (what I assume is) its final strip. Perhaps Roberta grabbed them and has them tied up in the boiler room with a bomb set to…wait, that’d be the FW/Dick Tracy crossover.

    Not sure if I should give TB credit for being just self-aware enough to go with the obvious “Gay Couple Named Prom Royalty” ending or wonder if he went this direction so he only has to avoid giving a name to ONE member of the winning couple.

  28. Señor Tortilla

    How…what the funk? For one, high schoolers don’t vote for Prom K&Q at the prom, it’s usually weeks before. I mean, voting the gay teens as K&Q (or K&K) would’ve been a bit unrealistic as well, you’d have to have both a really progressive school and a really progressive student body to pull that off (allowing them entry to Prom =/= voting them in). Usually, as someone said above, it is usually a football player and his hot girlfriend (I admit, I was jealous when one of my best male friends, a varsity football player, started dating one of my best female friends, a varsity cheerleader, and they might’ve won accolades at a Homecoming or Prom, but I forgot)–I think my school ended up voting a Mormon who played in the band.

    But seriously, the Principal?

  29. bad wolf

    Well, this wasn’t the lamest and most contrived thing i read this month, but that’s only because i’ve been following Luann also.

  30. Jeffcoat Wayne

    Does Nate get any special duties as “Prom King”… or is it just another meaningless title used around Westview High, like “Principal”?

  31. Beanie Wanker

    As Prom King, Nate gets to trade his 30 year old wife in on an 18 year old one. The nameless Missus Nate, as Prom Queen, gets to become White like Cayla.

    Anyone wanna take a bet on something? I say next time Mrs Nate appears, Bat Hack goes all Fishstick Annie on her and draws her as a 60 year old – chicken neck, double chin, saggy boobs and all.

  32. Sean D,

    Bad Wolf, will you be attending San Diego Comic-Con this year? Not only is TB on the special guest list, but Lynn Johnston and Greg Evans are as well. I don’t know if the con is going to put them all together on a panel or not. Somehow I doubt Hall H could contain the group-snark that would generate.

  33. BeckoningChasm

    Hi, newbie here. I just wanted to point out that whoever it is in the green hat isn’t wearing a jump-suit–it looks like a one-piece dress with a slit in the skirt section.

    And I have to note that all the couples appear strictly segregated by race–which would seem to put a crimp in Batiuk’s “progressive” viewpoint.

  34. bad wolf

    Sean D–sadly my SDCC days are behind me, it being far too expensive/crowded/far away now. But let’s hope someone from the boards here attends if there is a panel; it could be full of amazing insights! FBOW, FB, and Luann…. diminishing returns to be sure. (Wow, just checked Wikipedia–i had no idea all three are the same age!)

    If you haven’t read it, Shaenon Garrity’s “Why I hate Anthony” was a real seminal criticism of FBOW that set me down the road to snarker. It and FW had many similar promises and failings.

  35. TL/DR but I did skim some bits and it looks like an amusing read…
    Why I Hate Anthony
    by Shaenon K. Garrity

  36. Sean D,

    Bad Wolf (and group) – I make no promises as my SDCC schedule may be pretty full, but if they do a group panel I’ll try to get in and take notes. The creator of the “Wee Pals” strip (Morrie Turner) is a special guest as well. Perhaps he could explain to them how to be socially relevant AND entertaining.

  37. Jimmy

    I took a few days off from reading the strip to get 1/4 closer to reality. I picked up here and…seriously?! This is how the arc ends?!

  38. BeckoningChasm

    Batiuk isn’t using his space very well. If he’d really tried, he could have squeezed Les’s face in the far right of the last panel just so he could smug the place up.