Bake on Through to the Other Side

…is what I imagined Crazy Harry to be saying in today’s panel 1, because “baking” video cassettes is something I’d never heard of. Turns out that magnetic recording tape uses a glue, or “binder”, to hold the oxide particles to the tape. Over time, moisture can affect the binder and cause the tape to “shed” its magnetic coating. So baking the tape at low temperature for an extended period removes the moisture, improving playback quality while lessening possible wear and tear to the playback equipment.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

36 responses to “Bake on Through to the Other Side

  1. SpacemanSpiff85

    “Remember, Tom, comic strips generally have a joke, or at least a bit of drama and suspense to hold the reader’s attention.”
    “. . .”

  2. bad wolf

    “Remember, Crazy, these are Really Really Important! Why, without them, my father might have to talk to his wife, and i might have to start making actual decisions for myself based on my own experiences and judgement!”

  3. The Defender

    Generally speaking, I ignore the silly people who comment on this site. They have no effect on the daily joy I get from ‘Funky Winkerbean.’ However, even you cynics have to admit that this story is heading in an interesting direction. Also, I like these call-backs to the Lisa story. Again, despite your lame-o attempts at humor (?), you have to admit that Lisa’s Story was ‘Funky Winkerbean’s finest hour. (now go ahead, let’s hear that famous wit that’s so closely associated with this niche website. Come on — I’m waiting)

  4. “These are really, really important! Have you forgotten your place, Crazy Harry?”

    “No mistress mine, no I have not.”

    “Yet…yet, you suggest improvements!

    “No, mistress, no, of course I do not! I simply think of those non-converted, those unenlightened, those–”

    “And for those unworthy, you suggest that the laws, the rituals, be laid aside?”

    “No, dear sweet mistress, not at all, I merely thought, that for the doctrine to spread–”

    “YOU PRESUME TO KNOW TOO MUCH!! And your children shall be forfeit, for your presumption!”

    “Uh, well, um, you took them, yourself, a couple of years ago–”

    “SILENCE, FOOL! So, ah, what else you got?”

    “These Flash Gordon books with Jungle Jim toppers?”

    “They are MINE!”

    “Now, hang on just one dang minute here, mistress of all…”

  5. I’m actually surprised at Crazy Harry sounding like he knows what he’s talking about. Who would have thought that Tom Batiuk did some research on something not related to comic books?

    This alien pod that supposedly replaced Summer Moore while we weren’t looking reminds me of Kathy from “Track of the Moon Beast” with her outright lack of emotion. “Moon rock, oh wow.”

    Aaaaaaaaaaand no punchline.

  6. Epicus Doomus

    “Really really important”…LOL. That’s why they’ve been rotting away in a box for the last several years, eh Summer? I like how the Summer character is now completely defined by Lisa’s death, as is this entire stupid comic strip. And why is she entrusting these precious artifacts to Harry’s care? The guy’s already lost three children without a trace, I wouldn’t trust him with my VHS copy of Howard Stern’s “Butt Bongo Fiesta”.

  7. Rembrandt36

    Crazy’s baked all right.

  8. SpacemanSpiff85

    If they’re “really, really important”, maybe you shouldn’t have a guy named Crazy do them for free.

  9. Rembrandt36

    Generally speaking, I find the educated people who comment here on this site endearing. They have a loving, jovial effect on the daily joy I get from beating the hell out of the piece of shit that 3rd cycle ‘Funky Winkerbean’ has become. However, even the one troll here has to admit that this story is heading in an antique white drywall direction. Also, who else is sick of these call-backs to the Lisa story? All of us save one? Again, despite a troll’s lame-o attempts at biting humor (?), you have to admit that Lisa’s Story was ‘Funky Winkerbean’s jump the shark moment. (now go ahead, let’s hear that famous wit that’s so closely associated with the defender of Westview wit. Come on — we’re waiting)

  10. SpacemanSpiff85

    Funky Winkerbean was actually pretty good up until the Serious Lisa Stories started. It was a pretty abrupt shift.

  11. Rembrandt36

    @SpacemanSpiff85: Yeah, once she got pregnant it became “A very special episode of Funky Winkerbean.” Blech.

  12. The Defender

    I hope your happy, Rembrandt36, I’m responding to your trolling. Just because I am shocked by the ill-tempered comments here does not mean I’m less than human. This site is very unfriendly to anyone who doesn’t go along with the hive mind. Next you’ll be calling for a ban so that no one can challenge the ‘loving, jovial effect’ you get from bad-mouthing other people’s creativity. What a whiner, as your boy Donald Trump would say.

  13. billytheskink

    Kudos to TB for bringing up tape baking, which is totally a thing. Does Crazy have a lab oven? Because kitchen ovens are highly NOT recommended for this procedure…

    As Epicus pointed out, if these tapes are “really, really important”, as Summer claims, then why are they in such poor condition that Crazy would have to resort to baking them? Speaking as a Betamax enthusiast (no joke) who frequently watches videocassettes that pre-date the Lisa teen pregnancy story arc, the Lisa tapes should not have deteriorated to this point if they had been stored in a climate-controlled environment and played in a well-maintained VCR.

    So if the Lisa tapes, which are probably 18 years old in strip time, have deteriorated to the point that they might require baking to recover, it is for one of two reasons. Either they were stored in a place subject to extreme temperatures and humidity or they were played excessively. If it is the former, why would such important artifacts be stored in the elements? If it is the latter, why wasn’t this done YEARS ago?

  14. Guest Page Turner Author

    They are not that fucking old, they are from the 21st century!

    Oh, yes, the early 21st century when video tapes had already been obsolete.

    But Narcissist Lisa felt she had to fill a box with dozens of video tapes

    And cold hearted Summer has just kept these tapes sloppily in a cardboard box!


  15. I love Crazy Harry’s dead-eyed boredom in the second panel. “Gee, Summer, thank you SO MUCH for reminding me how important the BSD Lisa tapes are. It’s not like I’ve heard your father talk about that, oh I don’t know, every day for the past fourteen years….

    And if they’re so important, why isn’t Summer having this done by a professional? Is the care of the Holy Video Scripture truly less important than the Montoni’s Band Box?

  16. Epicus Doomus

    Please refrain from personal attacks and troll-baiting please. That’s what the CK site comment section is for. To those this doesn’t apply to, carry on. To others, a comic snark blog snark blog is an untapped market. Thank you.

  17. Jimmy

    I have to say, I really like the Crazy Harry artwork in panel 1. But he goes back to the dead eyes in panel 2. As for Summer, looks like the artist didn’t give a crap about drawing her today. She may as well be one of those faceless clip art drawings from a management seminar.

  18. I know! We’ll get Crazy Harry, the retired postman, to do the restoration. What could possibly go wrong?

  19. Epicus Doomus

    It is kind of funny how it’s a whole big box of tapes and not just one or two. That’s a lot of sage life advice, especially from a woman who MARRIED LES MOORE. It’s also pretty funny how Lisa went through the trouble of recording these secret videos then hid them in a spot so secure that no one found them for fifteen years. Never labeled the box, nothing. Pretty strange.

    And all that footage. By the end I would imagine she was doling out advice about where to get the best oil changes and her recipe for Les’ favorite salmon puffs, in an increasingly hoarse voice too. I mean if there are even as few as ten tapes there that’s a minimum of twenty hours of footage and possibly as much as sixty! That’s not just a touching video remembrance of her mother, it’s an advanced Lisa class.

  20. ComicTrek

    That last panel just sums it all up. In fact, Crazy’s expression, even if it wasn’t intended by the illustrator, makes it seem like he’s being deadpan and is actually really irritated about the whole thing. It’s as if he’s thinking “I know. I know how important Lisa is to everybody in this town. I’ve known for years and I’ve seen it ALL….”

  21. Ray

    Forgive me if I don’t have the timeline correct, but is that “Legacy Run” fiasco a fall event? If so i forsee an art-house showing of the newly digitized “Lisa Moore Advice-O-Rama” as an evening topper to that days events.

  22. I’m not sure what will happen. Will he succeed and thus unleash Saint Dead Lisa Dot Com or flame-broil the holy relics and thus leave Les and Summer completely rudderless?

    Also, has Batiuk forgotten that the point of tension is not to present two equally horrible outcomes?

  23. @Nathan Orbal: Batiuk also seems to love analog tape. Dinkle certainly has enough of it stored away so he can catch up on new shows like MASH and All In The Family.

  24. Rusty Shackleford

    @spacemanspiff. So true. FW was actually funny and enjoyable to read before it jumped the shark. Well, more like Batty gave his readers the finger and started chasing awards.

  25. A HREF


    Right there in Ohio! Locations in Cleveland, Cincinnati and Dayton.

    Your welcome.

  26. bad wolf

    @Ray: Yeah, I think it will happen in Sept or October, so it’s probably coming up right on the tail of this arc.

    If i have the timeline right Lisa died in 1997. I had some VCR tapes left over from around then that i finally threw out this summer without checking them, but they didn’t “look” bad.

    Summer’s age is beginning to get flexible, as she should be starting her senior year. Hey, i wonder how Keisha’s doing? Sorry, i digress.

  27. The main reason that Summer didn’t take the tapes to a professional is that TB would have to materialize a new character, so instead he takes an existing character and magically turns them into an expert in some field, in Crazy’s case with a lot of expensive equipment laying around. He did the same thing with having Bull moonlight as a professional physical therapist, as if these skills are things that can be picked up by just watching a few instructional youtube videos.

    It is kind of odd that when the bandbox broke down, TB did materialize a new character to perform the repair, and not just make Harry Dinkle an instant expert in bandbox mechanics. That leads me to believe that the bandbox repairman is a real person who TB was giving a nod to

  28. Professor Fate

    Troll has followed standard pattern and has gone from defending the strip to insulting the folks who post here. And the Defender thinks we have shallow lives. Yessh.
    Meantime – in the third panel it looks like Crazy’s meds have kicked in.


    Hey if the tapes are at risk of damage, blame Les for that! He’s probably worn them out masturbating to them each night instead of sleeping with his living wife! Come to think of it Darren probably does the same thing.. And probably Summer too once I think about it. I’m starting to see why these tapes are so important now.


    Defender..there is nothing stopping you from creating a pro-Funky Winkerbean website you know?

  31. Hannibal's Lectern

    The real reason Summer wants the tapes preserved is that in the very first one Dead St. Lisa Who Died Of Cancer says, “Summer, I’m so sorry you’re going to have to grow up with that sniveling, self-absorbed whiner Les as your ‘dad.’ I mean… sometimes, when I throw up, it’s not from the chemo. So I’ve recorded these tapes to give you what help I can to keep his self-pity from driving you to murdering him. Or worse–turning into him. Now that I think of it, if you find yourself turning into him, murder him. It’ll be better for all concerned…”

    On the subsequent tapes, DSLWDOC elaborates on the various ways she had considered extirpating Les.

  32. DOlz

    As I have learned from “Supernatural” sometimes a spirit binds itself to an object that was important to it life. For Lisa’s spirit to move on and leave this strip they need to salt the tapes and burn them NOW before she can bind to another form of media.

  33. Converting old VHS tapes to a digital source is a pain in the ass. You have to do it real time, at least with the equipment I had. Having a box of tapes dumped off on you? Why would this make Harry happy in the least?

  34. Tomorrow, Donna comes in with a tray. “Whew! I don’t know what you were baking, but they taste terrible! Anyway, I sliced them all up for you.” Because women, am I right?

  35. Rusty Shackleford

    And while Batty is just doing the bare minimum, running out the clock with stupid plots that go nowhere, Breathed is on a roll and today dishes out some Star Wars snark.

  36. The Dreamer

    I’ve got it! The plot line twist worthy of FW. Crazy is converting the tapes to digital and seeing Lisa brings back his old memories. It turns out that Crazy was having an affair with Lisa a year before Summer was born. He was secretly in love with Lisa. Seeing the Lisa tapes cause him to emotionally break down, remembeiing how Lisa dumped him when she didn’t have the heart to divorce Les, and he destroys the tapes out of spite. Later Crazy tells a distraught Lisa that he thinks he might be her real father. “I mean really Summer, you are a great athlete, do you really think you were Les Moore’s daughter?!”