Link To Today’s Thinly-Disguised Attempt To Run Out The Clock

My God this is just repellent. The “frisky old coots” trope, some faux-ribald dialog straight from the “Three’s Company” outtake reel and that disturbing close-up, it’s a master class in classic FW hackery. Fifty year old Funky can barely tie his shoes anymore but the ninety year old Cliff and his ninety year old girlfriend Vera are flitting all over Hollywood like two kids in love, both of them sharp as tacks and full of vitality. I guess taking a six decade sabbatical from everything keeps you fresh for the homestretch. It’s all about as believable as anything else that happens in this unbelievably dumb comic strip.

Morty’s advanced Alzheimer’s disease turns him from a near vegetable to a chain smoking, trombone-playing horndog. Bull’s declining motor skills are played for laughs as he trips and spills human remains all over himself. Marianne’s wildly impulsive suicide attempt is smirked away as being no big deal. And now an agoraphobic elderly man is suddenly a full-time actor and man-about-town, sweeping his old flame off her feet. If cancer was even half as zany as mental illnesses are “Lisa’s Story” would have been optioned into a Will Ferrell flick years ago.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

19 responses to “No

  1. billytheskink

    Cliff? Hey, Cliff! Peyton Manning is on the phone for you. Sez he wants his forehead back…

  2. spacemanspiff85

    Nobody asks another person “was it good for you?” after they finish eating. They especially don’t do with their face inches away.

  3. Epicus Doomus

    What are the odds that two ninety-year olds who both took a sixty year sabbatical from one another after a torrid love affair in their twenties would still be healthy enough to walk around Hollywood, eat solid food AND exchange wry flirty banter? Let me get out the ol’ “reality-to-FW” conversion chart, let’s see…carry the five, divide by 3.14…OK. In “reality” the odds came out to “infinity against” but the odds in the Funkyverse are only 2-1. That sounds about right.

  4. Gerard Plourde

    If we’re going with the fantasy that the Brown Derby is still open, will we be seeing Cary Grant or Lucille Ball in a booth adjoining these nonagenarians? Or maybe John Darling interviewing Lisa Moore. That’s about as plausible as anything else that’s happened in the last couple of weeks.

  5. Tom Batiuk knows that his regular cast is toxic. No one wants to see them or read about them. But he has to make that 50th. So he throws in new characters…but like the scorpion, he doesn’t know how to create non-toxic characters. In his attempts to create something likeable–and he does try this, just to give him credit–he doesn’t know how to follow through. The new characters become just as loathsome–and toxic–as the regular cast, And he has to start again. The problem, as always, is that damned Pulitzer nomination. “Okay, I need fun characters…but I need award nominations, too, so there has to be a depressing miasma over everything. So, I have an old actor and actress–this could be fun! But…probably not nominatable…okay, let’s cut out the fun part. They’re old, terrible people who sat in dank rooms, hating the world. That’ll get me nominations! Nominations are more important than entertainment, anyway.”

  6. Epicus Doomus

    BC: The fact that he seems to seriously believe he’s good at doing “love stories” doesn’t help either and we have the Pulitzer nominated “Lisa’s Story” to thank for that. I find it fascinating how he can take a tiny kernel of an idea (an old-timey actor named Cliff Anger) and inflate it exponentially into something far less than the original kernel itself. It’s “bigger” but it’s less, paradoxically enough. “Cliff Anger” was a mildly groan-worthy little pun, he could have referenced it a few times here or there for smirks and been done with it. But he just couldn’t resist the urge to flesh it out even while knowing he’d never actually go anywhere with it. Or maybe he really believes THIS character will be the one without a dumb continuity-ignoring back story then loses interest really quickly, which is an equally troubling theory.

  7. BC,ED: What makes things even worse is that he will not shut up about the tawdry nonsense popular culture that appeals to his junk heart. Batom Comics, Starbuck Jones, that stupid bandbox, irritating old serials, that clapped-out old movie theatre…..if it’s obsolete, stupid and unappealing, you can bet we’ll be lectured about how cool it is and how dim we are for having taste.

  8. Rusty Shackleford

    Lisa’s Story, a tale of sloppy seconds.

    Gotta win an award, do something edgy, yeah cancer, I will show her withering away–but she will still be a preachy know it all, she will even preach from beyond the grave, her infinite wisdom. Yeah, that Pulitzer is mine, that will feel so good. Now all those critics will have to shut up, cause I got a Pulitzer.

  9. Huh, the Korean BBQ in the strip mall that now stands on the Brown Derby site is oddly commmitted to preserving the look of its predecessor.

  10. The only adequate explanation I have for what’s happening this week is that Cliff and Vera are part of a Black Mirror style virtual reality simulation, but in reality they only exist as flash drives in a gigantic supercomputer somewhere.

  11. If TB is hellbent on cramming these characters down our throat, isn’t he obligated to start filling in the details of those missing 60 years??

  12. And why isn’t an actor who lived in anonymity for 60 years after the Red Scare and is now acting again a much bigger story than what’s been reported so far? Cliffe has to be the one of the last surviving people from that era with any direct firsthand knowledge – Why aren’t historians and biographers lined up around the block?


    Whatever the fuck happened to Frankie??!! You know? The “villain” of the strip?? The guy that Batiuk keeps trying to make into Satan Incarnate? Is there going to be any retribution to him?? Did he get caught? Does he finally have money to make a dirty bomb or something? Did he finally collect all the Starbucks Jones decoder rings and is now all powerful???!! What’s going on with him???!!

    Oh, no….. we have to watch old people sexual innuendo for a week. Thank you, Batiuk. Thank you, so fucking much!!!

  14. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    Grunt. Plop.

  15. spacemanspiff85

    Paul Jones:
    The absolute worst thing about Batiuk’s nostalgia obsession is that he doesn’t do anything with it. He things it’s enough just to mention things like old comics or movie serials or old theaters without doing anything interesting with them or exploring what makes those things worthwhile. Starbuck Jones is the perfect example of this. He’s created this fictional space hero, like the ones he loved as a kid. But he’s never actually shown him doing anything, he just uses him for dumb covers and makes the entire strip revolve around him. I’ve said before that I’d actually like to read an actual Starbuck Jones story, rather than a story about Starbuck Jones comics or movies, but that would require Batiuk to put more effort into this strip than he’s obviously willing to do. He puts more effort into a single one of his rambling blog posts about the Flash than he has into this strip since Summer graduated and disappeared. He’s more of a commenter on comics than an actual creator of them. Which is sad, since he’s repeatedly made it clear he thinks commenters are the scum of the earth.

  16. This must mean that we’re all Jolly Jonah declaring “Batiuk: dilettante or boomerang bigot?”

  17. The Dreamer

    How long has this Starbuck Jones movie been in production? seems like its been more than a year and they are still shooting and not even in post-production? Gone With the Wind took less time to make!