To Be or Not to Be: That is the (Trick) Question

Grab Bag Week: High School Hijinks Edition continues, and yes, dear reader, today’s strip is the source of that oh-so-punchable Les face in this week’s banner. That’s the expression Les wears when he’s doing what he does best: being a smug, superior dick to his students. Owen’s right, Les, for once: that was a trick question. Doesn’t the fact that nobody, nobody in his class is able to answer this question say more about the teacher than the students?



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31 responses to “To Be or Not to Be: That is the (Trick) Question

  1. John

    Les: “Next question: What color was George Washington’s white horse? Anyone? Nobody? The answer is white. Hmph! I guess there WERE some children left behi-”

    Owen: “What does that have to do with Shakespe-”

    Les: “Quiet, you pedantic, hidebound literalist!”

    Owen: “….*….”

    Les: “If you evil, stupid, cheating, internet-loving BRATS are done WASTING MY TIME, here’s the next question: What’s big, red, and eats rocks? Anyone?”

    Cody: “….uh…a big red rock-eater?”

    Les: “TRICK QUESTION! The it was actually a GREEN rock eater!”

    Cody: “You can paint green rocks red.”

    Les: “Silence, fool!”

  2. Rusty

    It’s been noted before, but Les teaches English as if it’s a trivia contest.

  3. Epicus Doomus

    Look at the attention he puts into drawing the dick with ears. The perfectly-rendered smirk, the eyebrows cocked just so, the Paulie Walnuts grey wings in his hair…he clearly adores drawing that smug, obnoxious asshole and takes real pride in capturing the asshole’s obnoxious smugness. Look at him, sneering with glee like he dreamed up that dusty old fossil of a gag himself or something. Such a dick.

    WHEN does Les say anything about “trick questions”? Is there a panel missing here today? Since when do things happen “off-screen” in f*cking comic strips? And how does Owen, the most disinterested student at WHS, end up anchoring the school’s morning newscast? FW has really been testing the limits of my patience this week with its unrelenting brand of lazy awfulness.

  4. Okay, so Les (presumably off-panel) tells his students this will be a trick question, and then asks them a question where the answer seems obvious. The students, being told that this was a trick question, refuse to provide the obvious response, thinking this would be rising to the bait. So Les can act like a smug dick when he says no really, he was lying about the trick question bit, the obvious response was the correct one and don’t they all look stupid now?

    Jesus Christ, I hate this character so much.

  5. “The trick question was the fact that–”

    No, Les. The fact was not a question. The fact that you mentioned a question was not the question you were referring to. You have been demoted to student. Hand your degree over to Cowen there and have a seat in the back.

  6. sourbelly

    And Les’ students learned exactly what from this exercise in assholery?

    “Doesn’t the fact that nobody, nobody in his class is able to answer this question say more about the teacher than the students?”

    I think it says more about our esteemed “auteur.”

    Also, Les’ hair is looking more and more like an alternate Jacksonville Jaguar helmet. Cease and desist!

  7. J.R. Clark


  8. BeckoningChasm

    Trick question? More like dick question, amirite?

  9. Merry Pookster

    Teacher: What type of gas is in a neon light?
    Owen: I don’t know
    Teacher: Well let me put it this way, who is buried in Grants tomb?
    So Owen….again what type of gas in in a neon light?
    Owen: Grant?

  10. Beanie Wanker

    Yellow shirt? Check! Dickhead smirk? Check! Cheesy goatee? Check! Receding hairline? Dopey specs? Check and check! Clunky dialog? You betcha!

    And BatSchmuck phones another one in.

    I usually frown upon school violence, but if one of those kids jumped to his feet and punched Les in the face, that would not really be a problem. Nobody would mind.

  11. Beanie Wanker

    And really? Would any teacher let a kid wear a dopey hat in his class? Really? Maddie… Owen… If you need a hat as a trademark to make yourself seem interesting, you’re probably not very interesting with or without the hat.

  12. Jeffcoat Wayne

    Exactly how much time does Les think passed between Panels 1 and 2? Because to my eye, it looks like Dickhead never shuts his mouth long enough to let anyone attempt to answer the question. I guess the real “trick” is to be able to think over Les’s constant yapping.

  13. Sgt Saunders

    No one bothers to answer because they’re all heard the same tired rap hundreds of times before and no one wants to dignify such an asinine question with an answer. It’s a resounding, silent, fuck you, Mr. Moore… Hey Les, here’s a trick question. What’s French for douche?

  14. Beanie Wanker

    Goatee Boy comes home with his nose bandaged and glasses repaired with tape.

    Crayola: “Did you ask another one of your dickhead questions again??”

  15. billytheskink

    Poetic license
    Just renewed, using it on
    bad comic haikus

    School levy failure
    Do you need explanation?
    Today’s panel 3

    Actual answer
    To smug Les’ “trick” question
    Is Edward de Vere

    Les’ yello shirt
    Hundred fifty six topics
    More than Crazy H

    Kids in Les’ class
    Are much, much more engaged
    Than I would be there

  16. Beanie Wanker

    Asking trick questions
    Just to embarrass students.
    Punch me very hard.

  17. A HREF

    It is a fact that, as others have observed, Batuik must have blank word balloons then it is the fact that he must fill them in later. It is the fact that there is no other way he can explain the fact that there is such clunky dialogue. It is the fact that I want to punch Les. Also it is the fact that Act III Les looks nothing like Act I or Act II Les. Other than the fact that they are both white and wear glasses. It is a fact that I guess Funky, Bull and countless others don’t look the same either. And it is the fact that I don’t mean simple aging. It is the fact that all you have to do is compare mousy ugly Act I Lisa to Lisa of Act II or even Saint Lisa Our Lady of Ghostly Make-out Sessions and Videotapes of Act III.

  18. Louder

    And this ahole had two women fight over him? He actually married one of them? Life in hell, truly a life in hell….

  19. Jeffcoat Wayne

    Hey Les, here’s a real trick question: Who’s the lead singer of Elvin Bishop’s “Fooled Around and Fell in Love”?

    Here’s another: Fred Fairgood has a long-lost daughter. Explain that shit in under 500 words.

  20. Helskor

    I initially read Les’s second word balloon as “Nobody! The answer was William Shakespeare,” which would have been as semi-demi-hemi-entertainingly nonsensical as Tuesday’s strip.

  21. Chyron HR

    So… Batiuk had a stroke, right? And now he’s writing gibberish?

  22. Flummoxicated

    For all his claims that he visits the local high school regularly to “keep in touch with what the young kids are into,” it’s pretty clear that Batiuk has never actually sat in on an English class. How wonderful that he gets to choose when to be realistic and gritty and when to be funny – and he fails miserably at either option.

  23. $$$Westview Oncologist$$$

    Is less secretly using his classroom as an audition tape for a game show host?

  24. bad wolf

    Les, Les, Les. This is how I’ll always remember you.

  25. “Are you so sure that wasn’t a trick question, Mr. Moore? After all, anti-Stratfordians have several interesting theories, including my favorite which states–”
    “Anti-whoosits? Stop interrupting my imparting of wisdom with your newfangled teen slang! What is that, some Internet gibberish?”
    “Well, I did find a very enlightening article on the subject at the Oxford University web–”
    “SILENCE, stupid ignorant teenager! Your superior is talking!”

  26. Charles

    The other kids should throw offal or something at Owen for rising to Douchey Les’s bait. Imagine how awkward it would have been for Les to ask such a stupid question and get no response whatsoever, because everyone knows it’s stupid and nobody gives a shit what he’s talking about anyway.

    But no, Owen ruined it, suggesting that they were all there puzzling away and playing Les’s asshole game, which, of course, they lose because Les is just so much better than them.

    Still waiting for Les to actually teach them something besides English Lit Trivia, btw.

    Great snarking today. I’d say more, but I would not be able to add anything, nor would I be able to state it so well.

  27. Señor Tortilla

    The TV border got a bit screwed up because the layering didn’t work like I wanted to, but I wanted to take a shot at Les again. Unfortunately, the effect wasn’t as good as it could’ve been.

  28. Duane

    I watched a documentary on Charles Manson recently and the girls that followed him. Lisa, Susan, Crayola….perhaps Les is also a psychopath that can get otherwise normal and happy women to follow him.

  29. Jim C

    Who wrote William Shakespeare’s Hamlet? According to IMDB, it was Kenneth Branagh.

    That’s what Les meant, right? Otherwise, he would have asked, “Who wrote Hamlet?”

  30. Not only is Les a troll, but he is a moron. Many people HAVE questioned whether or not Shakespeare wrote the plays. Mark Twain, for example, thought Sir Francis bacon had written the plays. Malcolm X thought Kings James had written them.

    One would think that Les, who once dressed as the Bard on Halloween, would know this stuff.