Yeah, so that Scapegoat football team that, back on picture day, their coach suggested would not only lose but would be reduced to unidentifiable corpses? Today they are “one game away from the conference championship.” You’d think a reality-based comic strip that depicts contemporary issues affecting young adults blah blah blah would get some mileage from the story of a historically losing football team fighting its way to the top. But this “comic” strip’s really about the way these teachers utterly despise the student body.
Jim, rotten, hateful, possibly psychotic Jim, who, like Les, couldn’t give a shit about football or any sports, only brought up the team’s success to launch another slam against the kids (does Jim have kids? Or a wife? Never been explored). Bull accepts the backhanded compliment of his coaching ability. Les, who like Bull, is himself a product of this “lousy gene pool” Jim’s talking about, smirks appreciatively.
22 responses to “Gene-ius”
Or maybe the “gene pool” overcame their fat mentally defective loser of a coach, you ever consider that, Klabinchnik? The sneering contempt the WHS faculty has for the students is just unreal. And look at Dickface, the Great Author and all-around font of knowledge, smirking snidely at Jim’s stupid remark. What a detestable dick.
This is surprisingly hateful. Les and Bull both had kids go through the Westview schools. Surprisingly self-aware, too.
The part of Bull Bushka is being portrayed today by Rush Limbaugh.
Why was Bull preparing for the championship game if they’re not even in it yet?
Is Bull supposed to be Les’s substitute or something these days??? Seriously! If it isn’t one clogging up the strip’s week, it’s the other.
“Ha ha, boy do I sure hate teenagers!”
“Me too! Teenagers are the worst!”
There’s your “thought-provoking and sensitive manner” for you, right there.
He is right, though: the gene pool in Westview must be exceptionally lousy, filled with smirking, depressive losers who can look forward to exciting careers in either the pizza or comic book industries.
Coach Kaz need to pop in with a curt “Ease Up, Friend!” for ol’ Jimbo there.
Naturally, without a single word of dialogue, Les is there to smirk. He really ought to have his picture in the dictionary under the definition for “punchable.”
As for panel two…that is not the face of someone who is drinking coffee. That’s the face of someone who is drinking pure grain alcohol. “Somehow, I’ve got a success in my career. That is not permitted to anyone other than Les. I’ll probably end up dead in a week for offending the Westview Gods. Guess it’s time to catch up on my drinking!”
So, who’s most punchable in this? That teacher-guy, whatever his name is, who just insulted the team as people, Bull for his face in panel 2 or Les for his face without even saying anything in panel 3?
Triumphing over lousy genetics is true but not in a way these smug drips realize. The Bushka family is populated with horrid people, Les seems genetically incapable of understanding human behaviour and Jim appears to be en route to becoming an Ent.
There… there is something—seriously—wrong with Tom Batiuk. Could be his mind, could just be his talent. Seriously. Wrong.
Look, if at long last, the poor old sod has lost his mind, then I retract all my snark. But if he’s serious, if this is intentional—wow.
Because a gene pool joke is beneath contempt. If Tom Batiuk is in full possession of his faculties, then to hell with him. To hell with him, for being the worst cartoonist in history.
This fiction isn’t just bad; it’s toxic. It’s not sensitive; it’s not thoughtful; it’s not cute; it’s not funny; it’s not poignant; it’s not Pulitzer-worthy; it’s not just bad. It’s evil. It’s harmful. It has no place in what’s left of our newspapers. It has to stop.
You know, I’ve been reading a book by Ron Suskind, an actual winner of the Pulitzer Prize. The writing is direct, moving, and heartfelt. In short, it is everything that Tom Batiuk’s oeuvre is not.
I’ve had a lot of fun poking at FW, but there are men and women out there with real talent, whose work we could be enjoying. I’m serious when I state that maybe Tom Batiuk isn’t worth our time any more.
Still, the minds I’ve met here, I truly value. We have a mutual interest in shaming the banal likes of Batiuk’s work. We could well move on to something more positive.
Am I seriously giving up the FW snark? No, it’s fun, and TB needs to be criticized. But follow me on Good Reads. Let’s get into some good writing whilst we excoriate the Bulwer-Lytton of our times.
I think that a Batiuk is necessary in this world. We need someone heartless and arrogant like him whom we can despise with a clear conscience so we know how not to live and think.
“Jim, did you notice that many of my players are black, but none of us are? What is it you’re trying to say?”
Bull stepped up to coach girl’s JV and then Varsity basketball when the coach quit abruptly before the season, rehabbed his star basketball player after injury, gave Fishstick Annie a fulfilling purpose in life, won the state basketball championship, stepped up to coach football out of apparent necessity, managed to field a full team in a poor economic climate despite having no winning tradition and being forced to institute a pay-to-play system to cover costs, dealt deftly with the bully Wedgeman, turned trenchcoat-wearing Jarrod and band/mascot-nerd Owen into football heroes, and stands on the verge of an unprecedented accomplishment for Westview High football.
Kablichnik openly insults his students and parents, gravely insults the genetic makeup of the same as well as that of two of his co-workers who were both Westview students and parents, get’s hammered on the school district’s dime, and then has the gall to attack Westview voters with all of the bile and bitterness he can muster when they refuse to pass another school levy.
Bull has somehow (mostly off-panel) managed to break Westview’s losing culture in athletics. Jim continues to cultivate losing cultures in his lab.
Point 1: Hey look at that mark on Bull’s face in panel 2! An new character will be making an appearance: Skin Cancer!!!
Point 2 : How much more appropriate would panel 2 be if Bull was holding a beer mug?
Whenever TB decides to invoke his old satirical, cynical pre-Lisa Act I humor it flops miserably. And that’s his fault, he’s the one who decided to “get serious” and “tackle real-life issues”. Now when he tries to be satirical the “jokes” just lie there with a bad smell. And meanwhile, his “stories” go nowhere either.
The beer mug comment made me wonder if any FW character has ever consumed a beer on-panel (for all I know, Battic may have personal drawings of the whole cast engaging in drunken, naked beer orgies over by the gazebo, stuck to the walls of his “private space” with dried Tandoori chicken sauce). Now, I know Wallace was strung out on wine and Funkadelic dared fate with a “vodka and orange”. But I recall no beer. There’s a pizza joint central to the franchise, and still no beer. And if anyone could use a beer, it’s these schmucks.
On a different note, and I always seem to come around to arguing that Battic sees men’s high school athletes as beneath contempt, as repeatedly manifest through his teacher characters. Here, Mr. stereotypical weird-o science teacher (there’s another cliché) cracks wise with one of the most hateful comments ever to grace Westview airspace. “Yes, these so-called football club members are defective on a genetic level and are, as such, laughable in my eyes. Ha-Ha.” All the while Les smugly concurs, and Bull, himself a former Westview athlete, apparently just puffs up his jowls at the comment. Obviously, he too is genetically defective, and therefore incapable of a snappy retort, or even so simple-minded that he just doesn’t understand a word Jim says. I’ll probably have the opportunity to revisit this issue time and time again, but for now, today’s episode stand out as a true stinker.
Question for you all, from a response I got about the gene thing on Comics Kingdom. Is he referring to the students or Bull when he talks about genes? And does it make it better or worse?
Gad what a repulsive, well not even sure you can call it a joke. Anyway the author seems inches away from demanding manditory sterlization of the inferior breeds… it’s all rather ugly.
Thing that always amazes me is how relentlessly negative the teachers are. There aren’t any students that these guys are friends with, or respect, or whose potential they’re excited about. There’s no “wow, she’s going to be a great writer” or “he really has a talent for public speaking” or “I’m excited to see how good a baseball player he’ll be when he’s a senior”, or an artist who’s so good they’ve given her four hallways to cover with her artistry. This happened literally every year in my school, where the students liked the teachers and the teachers liked them back and there really was an excitement about the potential of students (some more than others). We never see any positivity coming from these guys at all. It’s always that the kids suck and we should hate them.
I’m not including the one exception to this rule, the Mary-Sue daughter of the special snowflake, who was so special that her coach acknowledged right in front of his own daughter that he wished Summer was his daughter instead. He had known her all her life so it wasn’t really a teacher/student relationship, and he really didn’t seem to be too interested in developing her anyway, rather just reaping the rewards of her inherent specialness.
@oddnoc Well said!