Luckily, The Other 1% Are Already Dead!

Link To Today’s Thing.

No one can go from maudlin to goofy quite like the BatTom can. In this week’s installment of “The Most Annoying Man In The World”, it seems that Les (who up to this point has done nothing but mope and complain) has forgotten to book a venue for the thirty-seventh-and-a-half (or whatever) class reunion, which means the entire class will despise him EVEN MORE, as unlikely as that seems. Nice work there, dingus. What a dick.

Now longtime FW readers already know what this means. When there’s an event in need of a venue, it usually means it’s Montoni’s to the rescue. After all, what other local venue even exists? So let’s take a look at the tote board and examine the “where will the WHS reunion be held?” odds, shall we?

Montoni’s – even. By far the most likely outcome, plus Funky and Holly won’t have to walk too far. And pizza!

WHS – 5-1. Les (Cayla too) does, after all, work there. He could probably finagle some sort of deal with Principal Nate and hold the reunion at WHS itself, which would be pretty weird, but definitely plausible. And sepia-toned gym rope flashbacks!

Les’ house – 10-1. Seems sort of implausible, but not totally out of the question. And it could rain!

Gazebo Park – 50-1. I suppose it’s possible and there’s the possibility of rain and maybe even lightning (aka “hilarity”), but still. I just don’t see it.

Komix Korner – 200-1. Lord knows there’s enough room, as all John would have to do is kick Owen and Alex out for a few hours. But it’s pretty unlikely, unless they go for some sort of comic book-themed reunion. Which is never totally out of the question. But I just can’t see that thundering herd making it up that staircase, not even single-file.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

38 responses to “Luckily, The Other 1% Are Already Dead!

  1. SpacemanSpiff85

    So I wonder if Les is going to specify “class reunion” in every single one of his speech balloons this week. Seems that way, so far.
    I am actually happy to see Les again this week. As much as I hate him, I do not get tired of seeing him looking and feeling like an idiot. The only problem is this is inevitably all going to work out perfectly for him. His having the Class Reunion at Montoni’s will probably save Funky from bankruptcy, and the reunion itself will consist of nothing but Les’s classmates praising him for being a genius, an excellent reunion planner, and the world’s greatest lover.

  2. Epicus Doomus

    Note that because he already established the premise on Sunday, he’s already able to flog it on Monday instead of the usual Tuesday re-hash. Talk about a time saver!

    “All the halls in town…”, eh? Now THAT is funny.

  3. sgtsaunders

    This no-class reunion is headed for Montoni’s as sure as the tide goes in and out with no miscommunication. We can always hope for another psychotic fit from Les in that Lisa may call on the phone and warn him away from Montoni’s like she tried to do with that airplane.

  4. My money is on Lisa grave. After all, they’re already turning this into a Lisa necrofest.

    And since when was it Les responsibility to reserves a place for the reunion? Batiuk made no mention of it in the strip. And today’s strips makes it appear to be that the reunion is soon. Shouldn’t somebody have decided upon a location months ago. This makes no sense.

  5. Epicus Doomus



    “Spanky, it’s me, darling. Tell Funky NOT to turn on that pizza oven!”


    “Oh my God Funky, that gas leak might have killed us all!”

    (Moon-faced Lisa above, smiling over all)

  6. Nathan Obral

    Even Garfield is taking a look at Batom® and thinking to himself, “Wow. There’s no way that I could be THAT lazy.”

    Today’s strip isn’t worthy of running in the Brunswick High School student newspaper, let alone be nationally syndicated through King Features Syndicate.

  7. You know, the Montoni’s thing is so obvious that I think Tom Batiuk has to be toying with us. He’ll pull out some previously unknown location at the last minute.

  8. SpacemanSpiff85

    I also think it’s hilarious that Les whined and moaned about every single task he had to do for this reunion (and he ended up doing nothing, as far as I can tell), but Cayla was somehow able to check “all the halls in town” on her smartphone while her moron husband sat there with the “dear in headlights” face.

  9. That’s the first thing Les has said right this entire debacle.

  10. Guest Page Turner Author

    It just doesn’t even make sense. The music, the invitations, the wailing wall were all set up. There was even a Facebook page set up for this event.

    But there was no location involved?

  11. A HREF

    Given the premise of the Funkyverse, it is perfectly understandable that Les would forget to book a site–after all he forgets that he married Cayla and Cayla forgets she’s black and Pete forgets his last name.

    Maybe Lisa will have pre-recorded a VHS on where the looming reunion will be.

  12. Nathan Obral

    I’m pretty sure the Wailing Wall for Dead St. Lisa the Cancer Chew Toy who Was Cremated is a fixture in Mary Sue’s living room… and in every other living room in Westview.

  13. Why should Batiuk care about a little thing called plausibility when he can make Les look like a hang-dog nitwit who needs a spotter to brea…..I mean “sympathetic lead who’ll appeal to everyone.”

  14. Rusty Shackleford

    Les gets a mysterious call: the bench Les, the bench.
    Les: Who is this?

    The bench, the bench…remember the leaves falling..

    That’s it, we can have the reunion by the old Gazebo. Dinkles Alzheimer’s Memorial Concert band will provide the entertainment and the guests can all touch the scared bench of Lisa…I hear it grants miracles to those who believe.

  15. bigd1992

    I love it when Cayla gets her passive aggressive jabs in on Les.

  16. Rembrandt36

    Wouldn’t it be great if TomBat has seen the poll and is sweating because it IS at Montoni’s?

  17. Jim in Wisc.

    I’ve been thinking Montoni’s all along. But, something about today’s strip just made me think it’s going to be an outdoor event held on the extensive land holdings of the lavish Casa de Moore Estate.

  18. Jim in Wisc.

    Seriously, though, I’ve been involved in planning more than a few events (awards banquets, fundraisers, etc.), and the date of the event was always determined by the availability of a suitable venue. Thus, the first thing that was always done was a book a space. This premise is beyond idiotic.

  19. Professor Fate

    Sense this makes not. It’s like ‘I’ve booked you a book signing.” “where” “Oh dear I forgot.”

  20. It might be interesting, if I had any time on my hands, to look at the weekly story arcs over the past year of FW, and chart just how many of them are totally pointless and irrelevant to advancing the FW story.


    Graduations?? How many high schools could there be in effing Westview?? ..

    Weddings?? – Easy. All Les has to do is tell them Lisa’s story. That should end the wedding right then and there.

  22. billytheskink

    Montoni’s odds are totally fair, but I’m putting my money on Les’ house. I’m convinced that TB has been waiting for an opportunity to repeat that “Taj-Moore-Hal” pun.

  23. John

    Les: “I can’t believe I forgot to hire a caterer for the reunion as well!”

    Cayla: “The catering services, supermarkets, and restaurants in town are all booked u-….BWA-HA-HA-HA! *mmmk* S-sorry. So, how quickly can they sweep the floors at Montoni’s?”

    Les: “….*….I get the feeling you’re not taking my pain seriously.”

    Cayla: “Oh, I’m sorry, today is one of the days you want to interact meaningfully with me? Wouldn’t you rather be alone with Lisa, your wife who died of cancer?”

    Les: “Heck yes I wou-…I mean, I really care about you a lot and need you and stuff, Su…Li…*…what’s your name again?”

    Cayla: “Me? I’m the Easter Bunny. I’m off to buy some plastic grass.”


    Les: “….I thought Easter was a couple months ago?!?”

  24. Rusty Shackleford

    Was looking at “Lisa’s story” on Amazon. The first review–five star, of course–is from someone who knows Batom!

  25. Gg83

    “Everyone is going to blame me! Just because it’s entirely my fault! How unfair is that?”

  26. Jimmy

    A couple of you are on to something. Mary Sue hosts a permanent Lisa Shrine. She has Les come over to her house early, dressed in Lisa wig.

    “It was you all along, Les. You ARE The Perfect Man. I didn’t see it at the time, but I’ve longed for you since we left Westview High School.

    “Let me be your Lisa!”

  27. captaincab

    Catching up. Man, that strip from last week shamelessly shoehorning in (more like violently elbow-jabbing its way in) Lisa’s Story just makes me cringe. Like other commenters said, who grieves that fervently and obsessively decades later? And why would the townspeople enable that type of obsessive woe-is-me attitude on a regular basis by bringing it up themselves regularly? It also makes Les marrying Cayla all the more despicable and pointless.

    @Nathan Obral:

    Per that pic from last week you posted, our local Barnes and Noble doesn’t have Lisa’s Story, let alone Crankshaft. The comic strip shelf is filled with things like Calvin and Hobbes, Bloom County, Peanuts, The Far Side, Foxtrot, ya know, real classics people want to buy and actually read? Hey Mr. Snide “It’s called writing,” try this on for size: “It’s called timelessness.” Something your strip doesn’t have.

    Also, the Bloom County volumes are one of the best sellers on an otherwise slow moving shelf, used to be at least five volumes and three of them have sold and at least one had to be restocked. Fortunately I was able to get all five Bloom County volumes in an ebay auction back around March for just a little over $100, total steal and one was signed by Berke Breathed himself.

    sgt saunders: “We can always hope for another psychotic fit from Les in that Lisa may call on the phone and warn him away from Montoni’s like she tried to do with that airplane.”

    What is this in reference to? Did Ghost Lisa actually try calling Les? haha

  28. Epicus Doomus

    captaincab: Yes, she actually did. Les was returning from his book-launch tour. He was skulking around the airport annoying everyone when he received a phone call on the white courtesy phone. It was Lisa, warning him not to board his flight. He reacted angrily as he thought it was a sick joke (going as far as to call her “sicko”). Then, incredibly, it turned out that his plane’s engine was about to fall off. Then, just like in “real life”, they threw everyone on to another plane they had lying around and yadda yadda yadda he came home. Sometimes being blessed with a good memory is a curse, as in this case.

  29. @captaincab — yes, Dead Lisa phoned Les From The Grave to keep him off a doomed aircraft.

    It’s always perplexing when author avatar Les screws up in a way that is objectively stupid. Has Tom Batiuk himself erred in such an egregious manner? Or is he just trying to make Les an “endearing goofus,” and missing, as he always does, by a country mile?

    And what is this Les character supposed to be now? Still the likable loser from the 1970s, or brilliant auteur too pure for Hollywood, yet the successful author of Lisa’s Story: One More Shoe to Go and of Jess’s Father, John Darling, Who Was Murdered Whilst Being Jess’s Eternally Barbie-Loving Father?

  30. captaincab

    @ Epicus Doomus and oddnoc:

    WOW, Does someone have copies of those strips? Must have been during thr three to four years I stopped reading. I need to see that with my own eyes. So “Ghost Lisa” is not just a sarcastic tag we give her and not just an awkward hallucination on a bench, I am floored.

  31. Lost Summer

    So the lack of a venue went over all the heads of the crack reunion committee?

  32. The “Lisa calls the white courtesy phone from beyond the grave” arc was the singular event that drove me to find SoSF originally. It was simply inconceivable to me that TB would so flippantly introduce such a supernatural act in a comic strip that was otherwise claimed to be semi-grounded in reality. Of course earlier that year he had also flippantly introduced the concept of time travel when a comatose Funky went back in time and advised his teenaged self to purchase and preserve Starbuck Jones #1 (I believe this was the singular event that drove Chris Sims to begin his month’s most depressing FW series).

  33. Epicus Doomus

    captaincab: My best guess is Xmas-ish in 2010 or maybe 2011. It was all part of the gigantic super book-launch tour mega-arc that spanned many months (or at least it seemed that way) and it led right into the original “Lisa’s Story” screenplay arc which also featured Ghost Lisa. He made out with Ghost Lisa too during one (gak) unforgettable New Year’s Eve strip. That was during the period where Cayla and Susan Smith were both pursuing (ick) Les. It was a nauseating stretch. I think Summer’s knee exploded during that run too.

    Bobanero: And the “Funky time travels” arc was totally ignored during last year’s huge SJ mega-arc. It was like it never happened. But sadly, it did.

    Lost Summer: Welcome! I was wondering about that too. What did the invites say?

  34. billytheskink

    Unfortunately, the “Lisa calls in a bomb threat to Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport (or possibly LAX) from beyond the grave” happened back before the SOSF crew began archiving strips. Those were the salad days of having access to every FW strip in Act III simply by changing the date in the Comics Kingdom web address of a strip. We naively thought that would last forever, I guess. Alas, all we have left of Crazy’s other children are fading memories of red hair and sweaters.

    Fortunately, or perhaps still unfortunately, for those who did not get to read those strips, Chris Sims’ Funkywatch covered the whole spectacle as the #1 and #2 most depressing FW strips of December 2010.

    The cherry on top of all of this lunacy, however, happened a couple of weeks later, at Funky’s New Year’s Eve party

  35. captaincab


    “Those were the salad days of having access to every FW strip in Act III simply by changing the date in the Comics Kingdom web address of a strip.”

    I remember back in 2003/04 changing the date manually the same way on the Seattle PI hosted comics page (which used to be in a nice, simple accessible format without tacky side ads before Comics Kingdom took over, they also used to run the full art version of the Mutts Sundays, now there’s Kings Feature comic that deserves much wider distribution, WHY don’t more newspapers purchase it??). I was able to go all the back to at least 2000 or whenever it was when Funky hit bottom before his divorce, Lisa’s pregnancy and Harry meeting a then very hot Donna who revealed she was his Space Invaders high score rival who he thought he was a boy (now that’s an example of how the strip could be fun back in the day and as an arcade aficionado I loved that bit).

    Thanks to all who answered my questions about Ghost Lisa’s phone call to Les and for the the link to Chris Sim’s page. Look at Cayla in those New Year’s Eve strips: clearly african american with small dredlocks to now, a slighty tan, caucasian looking woman with straight hair, how insulting. I mean, you forget sometimes and it’s jarring when you’re reminded of how Batiuk gradually whitewashed both her physical features and appearance. And I remember now reading about the Funky time travel several months ago and seeing a few examples, wow.

  36. Epicus Doomus

    captaincab: Also bear in mind that the Funky time-travel arc began while he was returning from dropping his father off at Bedside Manor. He stopped off at a bar and almost relapsed over a “vodka and orange”, then came the car accident.

    I’ve always thought it was strange that there isn’t a real online archive of every available FW strip, as it would seem to me that the internet and long-running comic strips would be perfect together. Just like how there isn’t a legit FW fansite anywhere online either. You’d figured that SOMEONE, somewhere, would eventually come out of the woodwork but nope. And it isn’t like he’s releasing them all in book form either, which would at least be a reasonable excuse.

    Man that was a harrowing run from late 2010 into early 2011. It was an all-out Les assault, week after galling week, for months on end. And everywhere he went, everyone he was forced to deal with just didn’t understand him, his book or his unending sorrow. It was brutal. At the time he was still milking the Lisa crap for all it was worth, too. And as I recall, it wasn’t very well received here at SoSF.

  37. Charles

    Ganeff has an archive for FW that extends somewhere into 2011, so it has the strips in question. Here’s the first one:

    Although it is inexplicably broken up by seasonal postcard of Tony Montoni, and the airport sequence of Les’ trip started on Saturday for some reason. In fact, I might be willing to believe that someone inadvertently swapped Saturday’s and Monday’s strips, but they are labeled as such in the strips themselves.

    Anyway, I was always amused at how Lisa didn’t call in the bomb threat until Les ignored her and got on the plane, suggesting that she had no problem letting an entire plane full of non-Leslies go down right before Christmas despite having the option to stop it. I also liked the almost-certainly-inadvertent-on-Batiuk’s-part revelation that this sequence had on Les’s earlier Lisa delusions. (ie. it comes from his egotism, not from a genuine mental illness) I also liked how Batiuk seems to think that if your flight gets cancelled right before Christmas, you’d just be able to get on a later flight that night, especially when you’re a colossal dick to the staff like Les was.

    I didn’t like how he had us go through more than a few days with Summer where it appeared that Les had been killed in a plane crash. He shouldn’t tease us like that. This was before it became starkly evident that nothing bad would ever happen to Les that he wouldn’t be able to take advantage of.

  38. captaincab

    @Epicus Doomus

    I think the fact there’s no official online archive coupled with how long it took just to get a few proper sequential collections just demonstrates how little interest let alone awareness there is regarding the strip. It’s just a non-starter publically. Like I have said before, King Features should drop dead weight like Funky and pour more money into selling vibrant and better properties like Mutts to a wider audience. William Randolph Hearst used to love George Herriman’s masterpiece Krazy Kat so much he would praise it loudly and publically. I don’t think he’d feel the same way about strips now like Hagar the Horrible, Hi and Lois and especially FW. He’d probably be scrambling to have his dynasty as far away from it it as possible.

    Now if we could just get the collective magical epiphany which somehow caused so many editors and paper owners to all of a sudden say, “Uh hey, For Better or For Worse is really dull and of poor quality now, maybe we should replace it with something fresher” to somehow fall upon FW, can you imagine how wonderful that would be?