Autographical existentialism

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Where am I? plaintively asks Tom Batiuk’s autograph. ([modified] detail from panel 3)

You’re in a hell of your own creation, we could unfairly tell the autograph, but of course it’s not its fault, but its author’s. Because here it comes, what passes for denouement in Westview. But not today.

Today is mostly about Crazy Harry talking to the future (obese, naturellement) version of his wife, the 1980s’ The Eliminator, a video-game dude too good to beat, until he turned out to be a gamer chick.

Or something about Batiuk fishing for a “girl power” Pulitzer. I can’t quite be bothered to remember her name or the last time their putative children were mentioned in the strip. Because they’ve been erased from history as thoroughly as has Hulk Hogan.

Stay tuned for

  • Bull being stupid
  • The third shoe dropping


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

19 responses to “Autographical existentialism

  1. Nathan Obral

    If only Batiuk’s signature was intent on rebelling against Funky Winkerbean itself.

    As for Teen Crazy… well, Batiuk did manage to retcon Donna the Eliminator into a decent looking female in her initial appearance. It’s only the elapsed time between Acts II and III that Batiuk invoked the fat, frumpy and unappealing curse on Donna… which he refers to as “writing.”

  2. Sgt. Saunders

    Looks like we’re in for a week of Lisa bitchin’ about where’d she get to and then about Tuesday or so, Les will come out of his self-induced stupor long enough to weep and moan telling her the story through – Lisa’s Story – until he faintly hears her whispered cry – “the horror. The horror.” By Friday Lisa will be fading from view. Finally, Cayla steps from the shadows – “Missy Lisa, she daid.”

  3. Epicus Doomus

    At first I wasn’t sure which morbidly obese former classmate Harry was talking to, but then it all came back to me. They all tend to blend together into one huge indistinguishable mass, you know? Now maybe someone will mention their missing children…nah, ain’t gonna happen.

    “Where am I?” with the emphasis on the “I”…uh oh. Looks like someone is about to discover that they’re GOING TO DIE!!! Dun-dun-DUNNNNNN! Tears, pathos and most importantly, book (actually a collection of previously released comic strips in book form and NOT a real book at all) shilling time! I can’t wait.

  4. I was thinking, “Whoa, so Donna wore her cheerleader uniform all the time, yet somehow slipped in dressed as a boy and played video games.”

    Then I realized that Holly was the cheerleader, not Donna. I don’t know how I could have made such a mistake, given that all these characters are so richly drawn and so varied.

    Looking back, it seems Young Donna did not get into the time pool. I guess she gave her seat up so Lisa could ride.

  5. I’m going to defy convention and say that’s Holly refusing to believe she’s an obese lump married to that other obese lump.

  6. Nathan Obral

    If you were to put up Holly Winkerbean, Donna Klinghorn, Junebug, Mary Sue Whomever and Linda Bushka in a police lineup… well, aside from the floor collapsing beneath them, I wouldn’t be able to tell just who is who.

    It only makes Not-Lisa Cayla and Cindy the Self-Loathing Popular Person stick out like a bad “Where’s Waldo?” game.

  7. billytheskink

    In a pleasant and loving, if non-descript, foster home just outside of Ashtabula, Kerri and Jaime Thorp watch in horror as Tyler and Little Abbey fade from existence. Investigating their screams, the foster parents find that the Thorp siblings cannot remember what frightened them…

    Meanwhile, in a ratty apartment complex just off the Kent State University campus, Summer Moore finds a green military cap lying in the hallway. It seems strangely familiar, but Summer cannot put her finger on why…

  8. Epicus Doomus

    If you think about it, this apparent Lisa plot almost represents a close approximation of something nearly (gasp) happening in the strip. Very ambitious by Batiukian standards. Of course it could just go nowhere and vanish in a tiny puff of wry wordplay, never to be mentioned again. But this IS Lisa we’re talking about here, the character who propelled BanTom from being a mere obscure comic strip author to being a VERY SERIOUS obscure comic strip writer.

    Anything is possible when Lisa is around and I mean anything. He could go off on a month-long Lisa tear here that will leave you BEGGING for a week of Funky at the gym and everyone here knows I just don’t go around making absurd statements like that too often. If you’re not familiar with Lisa’s body of work, I’m very happy for you. Reading any Lisa arc was like going to a diner, ripping open all the little sweetener packets all at once, jamming the collected powder in your mouth and just holding it there for the day. Nauseating doesn’t even come close to describing Lisa. She’s the evil monster that unleashes BanTom’s worst tendencies and most annoying tropes. And let me tell you this: if she starts with that (ugh) “Spanky” shit I’m really going to lose it, as that’s my single most despised thing about FW.

  9. Jimmy

    When I really consider the implications coming, it makes me think Harry is really the worst person in this strip, He knew all along what would happen and still let this woman die of cancer.

  10. @Nathan Orbal: This need to assume that no matter what, most women mutate into frumpy lardasses who don’t really know anything seems to stem from that default misogyny of his.

    @Jimmy: As I said yesterday, they’ll all agree that Lisa must die miserably so that Durwood can live.

    Also, when you consider what’s really coming, you’re going to end up looking at Saint Still Alive Lisa and think “If she were not dead, I would kill her.”

  11. ComicTrek

    Ohhhh, boy. If that’s who I think it is, then we are in for some serious (har) and disturbing crap!

    Am I the only one here who never actually minded Saint Still Alive Lisa? (*gets shot*) No, I’m serious! This Saint Dead Lisa crap has been driven into the DUST (and then some!!!!), but I thought her living character was okay. Oh, yes, stupidity was definitely there in Act II, but at least the Westviewites weren’t a bunch of lumpy losers then. Or dead.

  12. Smirks 'R Us

    Young Harry: “so do we have kids?”

    Donna the Hut: (thinking deeply) “now that you mention it…”

  13. Jim in Wisc.

    Someone else has come through their own “time pool” to answer that question.

  14. Professor Fate

    Enter living Dead St. Lisa, pursued one hopes by a bear.

  15. I guess it’s “clever” that Harry and Donna are talking, otherwise Lisa would look at Donna and think, “Okay, so I grow up fat and dye my hair. I can live with that.”

  16. captaincab

    For an infinitely more enjoyable, better written and beautiful drawn time jump, don’t forget to check out the new Bloom County strips on Berke Breathed’s Facebook page. He posted the second Sunday strip yesterday which featured the return of the Purple Snorklewacker:

    Anyways, I made THIS post a month or two ago during the Band Box “saga” in response to one of Harry’s usual moronic statements, now it feels like I predicted today’s time travel conversation between he and Donna (ugh, can you imagine how horrifying it’d be to time travel as a hopeful teen and see how ugly and horribly aged your spouse will be someday? Meanwhile Mason-dependent Cindy still looks like she’s still in her 30s), here it is:

    Harry: “Too bad we all can’t bounce back like that!”

    Captain Cab from the not-so-distant-past posting on SF:

    “More like too bad seven years ago your creator couldn’t grasp the concept that realistically aged people in their early to mid 50s usually don’t look like they’re in their early 70s. Oh, poor Crazy. You used to be the very picture of flippant youth and vitality, almost magically playing a pizza in your locker like it was a record, doing silly little air guitar moves which you would eventually grow out of as your interest matured into learning to play a real musical instrument (oh wait…) and wearin’ ‘dat hat like nobody cared! Now thanks to your cruel creator, you’re a sad little man in your 50s yet you have aged oh so horribly beyond your years. Forced to work in a comic shop perched precariously atop your friend’s pizza shop after you were laid off by the post office and cheated out of your pension despite the fact in real life, most of your postal worker colleagues in a similar situation would have been able to retire early with enough pension to
    live out the rest of their years rather comfortably. Your wife, who used to be a lithe, blonde stunner on a motorcycle, stylishly upstaging you with her Space Invader scores, is now the fat, ugly and unappealing doppelganger of your best friend’s spouse. And let’s not forget to mention a daughter you no longer see despite the fact she had a joyous personality even to the point of eerily imitating your aforementioned traits of yesteryear, right down to her darling ‘lil cap. But it’s all been taken away, Crazy, all of it, and it’s all thanks to your cruel, joyless creator. Now all you can do is cultivate mentally depraved jealousy for an inanimate, barely animatronic promotional toy from the same pizza parlor your livelihood and that all of Westview depends on as a bald man who looks like Kearney from the Simpsons ominously smiles as you prepare to saunter back to the counter and ask for another cup of coffee since you can now barely afford to buy a
    slice of the pizza your buddy has made his living on. Crazy, since you are clearly no longer alive, then what more can I say other than fare thee well, and may a flight of little air guitar playing angels sing thee to thy rest.”

    And couldn’t help reply to this from Sunday:

    JerrytheMacGuy on July 26, 2015 at 5:03 pm
    Carl Barks (Uncle Scrooge, Donald Duck, Walt Disney’s Comics and Stories) may have been the best comic book writer and illustrator. His “Ducks” never had to rely on super powers to tell good stories or share memorable adventures with his readers. Fellow Barks fans George Lucas and Steven Spielberg learned a lot from the longtime Disney artist. You can see Bark’s influence in “Star Wars” and especially “Indiana Jones”

    Been a due hard Carl Barks Duck comic fan since I was 9 years old, 100% agreed. For a fascinating read which expounds in detail on Bark’s far reaching influence on other artists (the ducks even helped spawn manga and anime, no joke), check out this article:

  17. Merry Pookster

    Ahh.. the mystery voice behind the rock.

  18. Monotony

    “I used to be the kid who plays video games.”
    With a past tense construction that awkward, this is officially a time travel storyline!

  19. Guest Page Turner Author

    “Where are YOU?”

    Well, since you didn’t graduate from this high school, you’re not likely to be present at the current reunion.

    Plus, you died a while back.