Once again, we’ve shed every member of the “official” Funky Winkerbean cast, and replaced them with losers. Look at those faces in panel one. The dialogue in today’s strip is completely irrelevant–these people are talking about how the Funkyverse has crushed them.
Much as we make fun of Tom Batiuk’s artwork, this image–
–is perfect. This is the face and the stance of a man who not only hates what he does for a living, he hates himself for doing it. This man has seen every bubble of his soul popped cruelly in front of his eyes, and he hates himself for not turning away. Just put one foot in front of the other for another couple of hours, man, he thinks, then let the endrunkening commence.
This man, on the other hand–
–this man doesn’t hate himself. Oh, if you asked him he would say he sure does, but this is the face of a man who has had all emotion crushed out of him–like an Amazing Mister Sponge that’s been twisted in the hundred evil hands of the evil Doctor Centipede, to borrow an image. He wishes he could hate himself; at least he would feel something then. So what if I don’t have the energy to get out of my chair, he thinks, it just means my body will be found here tomorrow rather than weeks later in my apartment. And that’s the best I can hope for. Open casket, before I start to decompose. Yeah, that’s my only goal now.
The boredom and depression are now the only friends these men have, now that it has fully sunk in what this new job entails–ginning up enthusiasm for changing the “The Amazing Mister Sponge” from 1940’s Captain Marvel to the 21st century Batman. White Shirt Man hopes, if that’s the right word, for a fatal paper cut. Glasses Man fears the future so hard all he can do is repeat his punishment, as the only reality he will ever know.
Moments after panel one was drawn, White Shirt Man succeeded in casting off this veil of drears; his replacement, Cardboard Cut Out Man, looks up to the task. Glasses Man perks up at the idea of getting the internet to do his work for him, holding back the knowledge that casting off this task will only make the oncoming ones to follow even worse. Later, alone, the tears will come. They always do.