I prefer my wordplay with a pink center

Set-up: The story arc moves closer to a conclusion as Cindy’s tactic straight from the “Fletch School of Journalism” pays off – what with the fearless invasion of privacy and all.  Cindy, Mason, and Pete go face to face with the elusive Cliff ‘H’ Anger and a classic ‘Who are you? (Journalist-turned blogger) Who am I? (Unemployed star of stage and screen) Whats with the haircut? (Mark Davis’s hair stylist did it!) exchange that plays out with predictable Certified Grade A TB-word play.

Punchline: Meat jokes? Really?

Don’t encourage him, Mason – the dopey manchild to your left could have input on the script (assuming he doesn’t get the same Hollywood treatment as Les) and if you start to buy into his wordplay, this Starbuck Jones reboot will feature typical awkward zingers such as : “Done enough for you?” and “Take the Xaxian to the hold – don’t forget to grill!”  This straight to laserdisc video will move plenty of units…but I digress…

An unsophisticated plebe such as myself can’t do the calculus needed to estimate Cliff H Anger’s age..but I’ll set out variables for the SoSF faithful : 1) The serial was produced during the height of the cold war.  2) Cliff H. Anger was likely in his…20’s? 3) The current FW timeline is…today? Ten years ago? 4) If Cindy is Funky’s age…how old is Mason? 5) Should Cliff H. Anger really be living alone at his advanced age and why is he younger looking than Harry Dinkle?  6) Wait…what was the question?

In any event, we’re bound to see this play out in classic Westview custom: Cliff H. Anger will be offered a cameo role – giving him faint hope that he won’t have to sell memorabilia nobody wanted in the first place.  Now…keep in mind this role is being offered by the lead who, as far as we can tell, is neither the producer nor the casting director.  Cliff H. Anger will fly all the way out to Hollywood only to be told by some suit that there’s no place for him in the film…and he’ll travel back to New York City even deeper in debt.  Cute.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

29 responses to “I prefer my wordplay with a pink center

  1. Hm. Today’s strip tastes a little gamey.

  2. Poor Cliff, being forced to learn about Mason’s roles in B-movies that MST3K wouldn’t touch. “Dino Deer”? Yeah, totally sounds like the famous work of a high-profile actor. Really makes you wonder about the extent of Mason’s alleged fame! The clues may have been there all along, though. After all, this is a guy who was looking to star as Les in a direct-to-cable movie based on Lisa’s Story.

  3. Eh, the wordplay at the end isn’t bad…which, cynical me, suggests that it’s not original with TB. Further proof is in the title in panel two–I’m sorry, not even The Asylum or the SyFy Channel would touch that title.

    It makes me think Mason is sort of like Dean Cain, with d-movie after d-movie but without the hit TV series preceding them.

    Why is he going to play the lead in Starbuck Jones? It can’t be because, having introduced a character, Batiuk feels he should use that character. Too much–way too much–evidence to the contrary.

  4. Epicus Doomus

    “Dino Deer”??? That’s just terrible. His use of awful wordplay seems like more of an affliction now, like there’s simply nothing he can do about it. He must be a real blast at parties.

    So now what? Any likely or plausible scenario I can think of is just way, way too complicated and logical for FW. So I’m guessing he’ll spend a few weeks on the Anger asshole putting on his shoes and a jacket followed by several months of going down the stairs, capped off with a thrilling two week long arc where they hail a taxicab. And even THAT is ridiculously fast-paced by Batiukian standards.

  5. Epicus Doomus

    And great post today, StuckFunky! Ditto for all of this week’s guest posters too, a tip of the SoSF brimless rain hat to you all for a job well done! See how I worked that in there?

  6. SpacemanSpiff85

    Dino Deer sounds horribly lame to us. But I’d be shocked if we don’t see a sideways Sunday strip of a Dino Deer movie poster. And some rambling blog post of Batiuk talking about how Flash vs. the Dino Deer inspired him to write John Darling or something.

  7. Epicus Doomus

    SpacemanSpiff85: And another rambling blog post detailing the circumstances under which “Dino Deer” was written, likely involving a killer deadline and an obnoxious editor, no doubt.

    “Dino Deer”…part dinosaur, part deer! I guess he’d be a really large deer, or maybe a regular-sized deer with scales? And who did Mason play in the film, surely not Dino Deer, right? I would imagine they used GCI or something there.

    And I wonder if the producers of “Dino Deer” allowed Mason to just leave the production whenever he liked to go running off to Ohio and NYC to engage in all sorts of imbecilic buffoonery? Maybe it’s a special clause in his contract, like with Van Halen and the brown M&Ms.

  8. What kind of movie is “rare?” That’s what I want to know. Batiuk uses clunky dialogue to justify a punchline that was even older than the serial Cliff Anger appeared in.

  9. A big thank you to this week’s six guest authors! Voting will start at some point over the weekend and run for a couple few days. Meanwhile a sneak peak at the fabulous first and second prize!

  10. By the way–is today’s poster the original Stuck Funky, whose blog inspired our current one? Kind of like the Cliff Anger to our Mason Jarr?

    By the way, Epicus, the reason Van Halen had the “no brown M&Ms” clause in their contract wasn’t because they hated brown M&Ms…it was to prove that the contract had actually been read. If they got to the dressing room and there were brown M&Ms, they wondered what else they’d requested hadn’t been seen to.

  11. It was funnier when Statler and Waldorf did it. (I’m not sure if they did, but it sounds like their kind of wordplay, and they wouldn’t have looked like they were slowly dying while they said it.)

  12. Epicus Doomus

    BC: “Mr. Jarr shall have a private plane at his disposal for the duration of the project. Mr. Jarr reserves the right to use this private plane for any reason he pleases, any time he likes. Mr. Jarr will be permitted to be accompanied by any staff members of his choosing on an “as he pleases” basis for the duration of the project. Mr. Jarr also reserves the right to hire retired actors during the production as he sees fit, even on a whim.”

    This is approaching mega-arc territory, if it goes into next week uninterrupted that’s four straight. Watch, in October or November or something you’ll see some ridiculous puff-piece newspaper interview with BanTom and he’ll mention how he just did a whole big story about the old Hollywood stars of yore and how they’re kind of forgotten now. You’ll be reading it and thinking “WTF is he talking about, I don’t remember any such story” and suddenly you’ll realize he means this one. And oh how we’ll all laugh and laugh.

  13. And here we go with Batiuk continuing to display his smug ignorance of the world. There is probably a book or two about the really silly roles name actors had to do on the way up the ladder so dissing Mason for this seems cruel and stupid.

  14. HeyItsDave

    @Epicus Doomus – I’m pretty sure this story arc has a way to go before T-Bats moves on. He spent over a month on that stupid “antimatter brownies” arc over at Stankshaft. (I’ll bet he’ll be bitter when he doesn’t get a Hugo for that one.)

  15. Is “Dino Deer” supposed to be a joke title or a parody of something else? It makes zero sense. And Mason must have enjoyed some level of success in his career with the lifestyle he lives – unless maybe he’s an heir to the massive Cookie Jarr fortune. Certainly he would have a higher profile role in his portfolio that he could mention.

    Anyway, great job by all the contestants this week!! You really were able to make lemons out of lemonade (or something like that). I’ll be hard pressed to vote for one over the other. I considered throwing my hat in the ring, but I just don’t possess the necessary attention to detail or biting wit to man the helm. The best I can do is toss in a weak one-liner every couple of days.

  16. Gerard Plourde

    @Paul Jones –

    You’re right. And it’s not only on the way up that movie stars get cast in terrible movies. Basil Rathbone’s final movie was “Hillbillies in a Haunted House.”

  17. @TheDiva –

    “Why do we always come here
    It’s really quite a gyp
    It’s like a kind of torture
    To have to read the strip!”

  18. @TheDiva: the joke was also done better by Mighty Mouse (Ralph Bakshi’s reboot):

    (Joke appears at 6:35)

  19. Today’s splendid banter inspires a new spin-off strip:

  20. Stuckfunky

    It is indeed me. Long time no see, but I’m glad to see this community is still thriving.

    Anyway, Tom and I have a little treat in store for you this weekend but first I’m looking for a Web savvy reader for a volunteer project to do something that may or may not be time consuming. Email me if you’re interested.


  21. Spacemanspiff85

    I thought it might be Batiuk’s attempt at poking fun at Sharknado, but it’s more likely it’s something he came up with when he was seven and has thought was brilliant ever since.

  22. The wordplay would be pretty decent if it actually wasn’t out of context, linguistically speaking. Normal conversants wouldn’t use the word rare when they mean obscure or perhaps a cult fave. And this guy was a teacher? Of what, Malapropisms 101?

  23. @Gerard Ploude: As a beady-eyed nitpicker, I must point out that it was Hillbillys in a Haunted House.

  24. @dougputhoff and Fred: I know, right? The actual reels might be rare, or VHS copies might be rare, or the laserdisc might be rare, but it makes no sense to call the movie itself rare! It only convinces me further that the author couldn’t be arsed to give FIVE MINUTES of thought to the thing; instead the first vaguely-applicable pun that comes to mind is clumsily shoehorned in. Look, here’s a better punchline: Mason says, “It’s not half bad,” and Jerkface says, “It’s not half good either!” Yes, that is directly stolen from Statler and Waldorf, and it’s not a gut-buster, but at least it makes the minimum amount of sense.

  25. Epicus Doomus

    StuckFunky: We’re doing our best to keep the “let’s point and laugh at TB’s pitiful comic strip” flag flying. I just don’t like the idea of TomBan getting away with anything here and if we don’t pay attention, who will???

  26. Charles

    And Mason must have enjoyed some level of success in his career with the lifestyle he lives – unless maybe he’s an heir to the massive Cookie Jarr fortune. Certainly he would have a higher profile role in his portfolio that he could mention.

    I’d accept this whole thing if this was one of Mason’s bipolar episodes, and Pete, Darin and Cindy simply don’t know him well enough to recognize it. One of the most common ways bipolar disorder manifests itself is the sufferer following whatever idea comes to their mind, no matter how absurd or unreasonable, and they have no problem spending money they don’t have to make it happen. So Mason chartering a plane twice, to go to Ohio and New York with the barest of rationales would fit into this perfectly.

    The problem really is that no one else seems to think this is odd or extraordinary. So I’m left with the idea that Batiuk just thinks that anyone who’s been in a film, no matter how low-budget and unheralded, or anyone who works in Hollywood, for that matter, just has so much money that they can afford to follow whichever whim takes them. Like, every single guy you see on television has a mid eight-figure fortune at least.

  27. The Dreamer

    I see whats going to happen…Cliff Anger is going to turn out to be Crankshaft’s long lost brother– separated through adoption birth— Crankshaft is a Crank because he’s really an Anger! It runs in the family. Cliff Anger will move to Westview and eventually move to the other strip

  28. Charles

    Also, since when has Pete felt so comfortable in his friendship with the powerful famous actor Mason such that he can insult him and his work freely? One word from Mason and Pete’s out on the street, certainly in the case of this story.