Once upon a time there was a comic strip. This comic strip centered around daily life at a fictional Ohio high school. It featured a whole cast of zany high school characters, like the nerd, the cool kid, the bully and etc. While it wasn’t the most popular comic strip or anything, most readers found it to be somewhat amusing and perfectly acceptable.
Then the guy who wrote this comic strip got bored and decided to change the tone of the comic strip by centering it around “real life” issues, like the kind you and I face every day. He created a brand new character named Lisa who’d get into all sorts of melodramatic situations all the time. No one really liked this Lisa character but the comic strip writer LOVED her so he plowed ahead undaunted, placing his new character into ever-more implausible situations, like silly superhero weddings and post office terror bombings. The rest of the comic strip followed suit and suddenly ALL the characters were involved in these wild melodramatic situations. Car crashes, illnesses, wars, alcoholism…it was endless.
But it just wasn’t enough for the comic strip writer, so he decided to up the ante and REALLY draw attention to himself by giving the Lisa character cancer. For years and years his readers watched in horror as the Lisa character slowly withered and died in the most drawn-out and agonizing way imaginable. And everyone noticed…briefly…before going back to mostly ignoring the comic strip and the comic strip writer’s daffy antics.
Then after the Lisa character died the comic strip writer didn’t know what to do with himself or his comic strip. So he kept going back to his cancer story, again and again and again and again. The Lisa character appeared as a ghost, her husband began writing a book about her and soon the Lisa character was in the comic strip even more frequently than she was before she died. Everyone became annoyed or just plain bored by the endless contrivances he used to keep featuring the dead Lisa character. It finally reached a point where it became a parody of itself and everyone either started making fun of it or just stopped reading it altogether. The end.
Wow, that was easy. And I’m neither delicate OR a genius. Few things irk me more than LesTom’s incessant whining about the trials and tribulations of being a “writer”, as if either of them would know. No one put a gun to Dick Facey’s head and told him he had to write exclusively about his dead wife just like no one ever forced Batiuk to concoct his dopey little melodramatic piles of crap of in lieu of entertaining people with jokes. If BanTom is really struggling and stressing over “writing” a two week arc about some fat moron going to the DMV perhaps “writing” was a poor career choice. I mean hey, every SoSF guest host (and commenter) manages to find something funny to say about his idiotic comic strip every day and we have way, way less to work with than he does, as he theoretically could write about anything he likes but we’re stuck with FW.