The shirt off your Batiuk

After teasing Bull with a free t-shirt on Tuesday, the EMU crew finally gets around to giving it to him in today’s strip. Bull is smart enough to thank them on behalf of the class, because there is no way the class is thanking these two shmucks after being belittled all week, not even for the free t-shirts (that they apparently have yet to receive). The EMU football jersey worn by a young, shaggy-haired Bull in the title panel bears a remarkable resemblance to the SMU jerseys from the same era. Coincidence? Maybe, but the football program that received the “death penalty” seems very Westview-appropriate.

Thanks for putting up with me for the past two weeks, you all make the comics page that much better. The great beckoningchasm takes the reins tomorrow.

One last Emo bit, presumably about what Becky and John Howard plan on doing when they finally escape Westview:
I was staying in Florida at a motel called The Three Palms, run by an older couple… one of whom was missing a hand.
– Emo Philips


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

22 responses to “The shirt off your Batiuk

  1. SpacemanSpiff85

    This would be normal comic strip humor if it was in any other strip than this. It’s just so weird when Batiuk tries to do these dumb jokes lately, given how grim and bitter this strip is. Just look at how old and decrepit Bull looks. Seriously, in that first panel he looks like he should be in the nursing home with Funky’s dad. And he’s probably in his early fifties.

  2. “At our school, you can expect sneering contempt, weak wordplay, and a complete lack of faith in your ability to succeed. So you should feel right at home!”

  3. Nathan Obral

    EMU? More like EM-F-U.

  4. Nathan Obral

    That shot of Bull in the last panel… a slovenly, decrepit oaf who openly hates his job and the students he “teaches” being called a flightless bird, all the while beaming with the typical Westview Stroke Smirk as the non-punchline is not delivered… you can’t read this garbage unironically.

  5. Epicus Doomus

    Man that’s a long way to go for such a bad gag. What a peculiar arc, he spends a week painting these EMU people as being a bunch of assholes, now today Bull is beaming with EMU pride. So does EMU suck or what? This story is actually more ambiguous now than when it began. Thank God it’s finally over though, now let’s never speak of EMU again.

  6. SpacemanSpiff85

    “Go to EMU and you can end up right back where you are now! Like, literally in the very same classroom! Pretty neat, huh?”

  7. Jimmy

    OOOHHHH, OK, I get it now. Eastern Midwest University is an acronym for emu. Oh, how could I have missed it before? Thanks for spelling it out for me, Mr. Batiuk.

  8. SpacemanSpiff85

    In case anyone wanted fresh reason to detest Batiuk-
    The newest entry on his blog is about his new book, “Roses in December-A Story of Love and Alzheimer’s”. Which on its own is bad, since he’s obviously trying to recapture the “Lisa’s Story” “magic”. But the worst part is when he says, while describing it:
    “Every now and then certain work in a comic strip will rise above the rest and stake its claim to being something more enduring.”
    I am 100% positive he pictures himself hitting a grand slam every day he writes his silly strips. He probably thought he won the World Series when he came up with EMU.

  9. HAnzMFG

    Oddly enough, the Emo joke today seems like the kind of humor Batiuk could aspire to, if he could just put in the effort.

  10. Gyre

    Epicus, I’d think that he was trying to get back to the old goofiness, but it’s not out there enough to be that.

    I think this was trying to be a PSA. And like most PSA’s, it’s intentions are noble but it doesn’t see how to deliver the message.

  11. Epicus Doomus

    SpacemanSpiff85: I think the blog page is the only one anyone at Batom Inc. knows how to update on a regular basis. That home page group shot features characters that haven’t been mentioned in ages. I continue to be amazed by how there’s no comprehensive FW fan site featuring archives and character trees and etc. There’s not even a shitty one, in fact. As hard to believe as it may seem, I think THIS is the most comprehensive FW fan site, as mind-blowing as that is.

  12. “Yep. You’re all a bunch of dodos!”

  13. And the writing gets worse, and worse! Do you guys suppose that Tom is doing this on purpose? Or does he just have horrible editors? Or both?

  14. What an incentive. Study hard and you too can be the inept coach of a one-stoplight town’s poorly run football program. Meanwhile, if you go to a good school like Can’t State, you can become a bitter, delusional jerk who thinks that other teams should lose on purpose to make you feel better.

  15. DOlz

    @ComicTrek, Editors … TB don’t need no stinkin’ editors. King Features stopped assigning him editors years ago due the high turnover, induced insanity, and/or suicides.

  16. Hadda Mae Kapupe

    Yeah, BatWit. You sure showed that mean old Ohio State. You sure showed ’em.

    Meet Tommy ButtYuck, America’s version of Lynn Johnston. We’re all so fortunate that Tommy and Lynn still have comic strips so we can watch them take pathetic potshots at everyone who has “wronged” them over the years.

    Really sad, TomRonin.

  17. @Hadda Mae Kapupe: What’s really pathetic is that none of their victims are aware they’ve been slammed. Case in point: right now, there are any number of pensioners in Vancouver who’ve no idea that Lindy Ridgway is still sore about something that happened in kindergarten no matter how closely they follow Foob.

  18. Nathan Obral

    @Hadda Mae Kapupe: Lynn Johnston has better penmanship, and never really strayed off-model for any of her strip’s characters.

    By those alone, Funky Winkerbean is far worse than FOOB ever could have been. It’s a scary combination of FOOB’s post-2000 revenge potshots and 9CL’s overt political slams, loopy storylines, and blatant sexism.

  19. So, this entire week was created so that Bull could get a t-shirt. I almost feel like I should applaud.

    (I’m too tired to post the GIF of Charles Foster Kane.)

  20. Gyre

    Well, Epicus, out of curiosity I went over to that FW page and tried to see how many characters I could recognize by name or profession and relevance to the plot. From left to right, here goes.

    On the first one I see Bull, his wife, Les, I think that African American guy’s the principal, there’s the teacher who’s there to talk about climate change and school funding, no idea who the woman with the clipboard is, no idea who the woman in the flower dress is, no idea who the really old angry looking woman is, I think Pam and Jeff maybe, Dinkle and his wife maybe, John and whoever does music exactly the same as Dinkle, another old angry looking woman I don’t know, I think Cory, Summer, maybe Jessica and two dark haired girls I don’t know.

    On the second we’ve got a guy in a chef’s hat I don’t know, Cindy, Crazy, three people in the background behind everyone that I don’t know, old Montoni, Holly and a woman I don’t know, Funky, a man that I think is Darin, a girl I don’t know, a short man I don’t know, Les, John and on the far right a man I don’t know.

    So, what, fourteen characters who might be important but I have no recollection of. Checking this page’s character page I could narrow some of them down like Rana, Khan and Jinx, but others I still have no idea. And it’s sad that the site devoted to mocking the story is where I could find anything about the people in it.

  21. DOlz

    @Paul Jones, “Lynn Johnston has better penmanship, and never really strayed off-model for any of her strip’s characters.”

    For the main characters she was very good about it. However; I remember the story line where Kortney who worked at Ellie’s store and was comic relief began stealing from the store. She underwent a transformation from a normal looking person to Margret Hamilton’s, Wicked Witch of the West sans green makeup in short order. This happened repeatedly with characters that became bad.

  22. bad wolf

    Thanks to billytheskink and the crack SOSF Research Team for digging up the strip with the same punchline yesterday. Three years to repeat yourself actually isn’t that long by some examples at the Curmudgeons.

    @gyre: if you didn’t find it yet, the “cast” page at the official website has been down for a couple of years, but you can find it via the Wayback Machine. All the model sheets for the beginning of Act 3 are by now a little … dated.

    Well, i had no hopes for this week and sure wasn’t disappointed, but one last observation: If TB had really wanted to play up the difference between schools or just dig into college life, he could have had one of the former Westview students who went to EMU doing this visit. The big jock guy, or (better yet) Bull’s daughter–Jinx? The one who couldn’t do Jessica’s video? Have her attend her father’s alma mater and do something with that.

    Okay, one more. Isn’t the female EMU basically Funky’s trainer with glasses?