Remind Me of My Failures, Bull, For Eternity

Link to today’s strip.

It’s hard to tell because of Tom Batiuk’s typically tin-earred dialogue, but it sounds to me as if Coach Stropp told Bull, “Look, if you can’t get into the end zone while I’m coaching you, can you at least carry my ashes across the goal line, so I can have some sense of what if feels like?  By the way, ‘ashes’ implies that I am dead and cremated, so it’s nothing you have to do today.”

I think the real focus of Mr. Batiuk’s energy is in panel two.  Bull pushes the switch, there’s a satisfying “THUNK” sound, and Linda looks pleased that Bull was able to accomplish something on his own.  The reader can see exactly what happened without it being spelled out.  The transition between panel one’s silhouette and panel two’s illumination is handled well, with the characters in the same position from the same angle.  This tells me that when he cares, Tom Batiuk can draw something that works.  Too bad he doesn’t care more often.

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14 Comments

Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

14 responses to “Remind Me of My Failures, Bull, For Eternity

  1. Epicus Doomus

    A: “Thunk”
    Q: Name something BanTom didn’t do when writing this arc.

  2. billytheskink

    Cameo by Cayla’s original hair in panel 2.

  3. Epicus Doomus

    So when is this taking place? Les said his goodbyes, Bull went into the locker room for the last time and now, moments later, everyone is gone and all the lights are already off? That’s weird.

  4. spacemanspiff85

    Sadly, thanks to the Classic CTE, bull’s forgotten that The End Zone is the name of the strip club outside of town that Stropp spent every weekend at.

  5. Jimmy

    It takes about 15 minutes for light banks to generally warm up. So, given poetic license and 1/4 inch from reality as mitigating factors, it would be 5 minutes at a minimum here.

  6. spacemanspiff85

    @Jimmy:
    I was thinking those lights can’t be cheap to run. Really seems like Bull could’ve done this at the end of the game. Or heck, maybe mention and honor Stropp in his stupid speech.

  7. I can’t help but think that while Bull does this stupid and mawkish thing, the people at Big Walnut are enjoying deep dish CHICAGO pizza.

  8. Chyron HR

    “Why would Coach Stropp ask you to wait until you’re retiring to carry out his last request?”
    “He didn’t, I just never bothered to do it before.”

  9. ComicTrek

    Yet another example of a moment that’s supposed to be “thought provoking” and ends up stale and creepy. Ooh, an urn. Ashes. Yes, because Coach Stropp died. Of cancer. Thank you for reminding us, lest we forget what this strip has pretty much been about since 2006.

    On a different note, I guess this would make for some pretty funny parodic material. I want to see a “Funky CreepierCreepier”!

  10. Gerard Plourde

    I’m guessing that Coach Stropp made this request when he was dying and Bull was on staff at Westview. But it is odd that he’d want his ashes kept in the locker room for years before having them scattered. And the lack of family to be on hand for it is puzzling.

  11. $$$WESTVIEW ONCOLOGIST$$$

    So Jock Stropp’s last dying request was to revisit his last and greatest failure. Even in death, you can’t escape the misery of the Funkyverse.

  12. billytheskink

    For reference, this is the entire in-strip depiction of Coach Stropp’s final game.

    Yes, that’s Cindy playing sports reporter for the local news.
    If the Scapegoats were stopped just short of the goal line on one drive, it would not have mattered. Note that Westview high school students were terrible at taping up signs even back in 1996.

  13. Panel three suggests that Bull is planning to carry Jacque Strappé’s urn the length of the field before scattering it in the far end zone. This allows for two more days of hilarity as his “CTE Classic™” kicks in:

    Friday: somewhere around the fifty-yard line, Bull forgets his mission and wonders what he’s doing in the middle of a football field with a gigantic ashtray.

    Saturday: Bull has a sudden, inexplicable fit of rage and smashes the urn on the one-yard line, leaving Strappé forever short of the end zone.

    Now THAT’S depicting contemporary issues affecting young adults in a thought-provoking and sensitive manner!

  14. $$$WESTVIEW ONCOLOGIST$$$

    Crankshaft

    So her revenge is to have Crankshaft stabbed to death by a JD. Well played, ma’am. Well played.