If I Should Die Before I Wake

Glad Easter tidings, everyone! For the most part, Sunday-only newspaper subscribers who read Funky Winkerbean have been missing out on the Atomic Comics saga. In the month just ended, instead of advancing the Pete and Darin arc, Sunday strips have alternated between out-of-season football gags and one-offs involving the aging titular character. Whom we visit again today in what will either turn out to be one of TB’s red herrings (it really is “just heartburn”) or the beginning of the Very Specialest Very Special Funky Winkerbean Arc Ever. Don’t forget, Batiuk’s killed off a title character once before, though John Darling wasn’t the cash cow that Funky has turned out to be over forty plus years.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

33 responses to “If I Should Die Before I Wake

  1. Oh, please, please. Make it so. Not a trip to the ER but to the morgue. And not a happy dream.

  2. I’ve always had the feeling that Les Moore, uh, I mean Tom Batiuk–would love to have Funky die, though to be honest, I’d expect something more agonizing.
    Still, whatever shuts this strip down sooner is OK with me.

  3. Chyron HR

    Sorry, guys, but just because you read it on March 31 doesn’t mean it’s not the strip for April 1.

    • Gerard Plourde

      That kind of trolling would fit with The Author’s general disdain for his readers (Although it’s likely he knows that his most consistent followers are his critics).

  4. Gerard Plourde

    What an uplifting script for Easter Sunday. Is he planning to have Funky rise after three days?

  5. Oddly enough, the full moon in the last panel does coincide with the current blue moon!

  6. erdmann

    Awww, look at Flunky’s face in the penultimate panel. It seems in death he has found the peace and contentment that always eluded him in life. Alas, it will not last. Soon, his spirit will be pressed back into service in Batiuk’s new strip, “Atomic Comics.” There, Flunky will stand beside the shade of Phil Holt, watching over Peat and Deadwood and listening as the ghost of Saint Dead Lisa gushes about how pleased she is that her bio-son is working on comics that don’t rely on unnecessary deaths.

    Seriously though, if this is supposed to be his idea of an April Fool’s gag, I hope when he suddenly sits up and shouts “April Fool!” on Monday Holly is so shocked she busts a bedside lamp over his head without thinking.

  7. countoftowergrove

    Baking soda works everytime.

  8. gleeb

    Folks, Batiuk pranked you, more’s the pity. I could do without pompous, bad-pizza-making, neglectful father Funky Winkerbean.

    • gleeb

      And I know without a doubt that Tom Batiuk is reading this comment thread, so let’s tell him just how we really feel about his creations. Tom, no one else on Earth cares about Starbuck Jones. Even fewer people care about the other fictional creations of your fictional comic book publishing company.

    • gleeb

      But that was a good April fool. Good on you, mate.

  9. bobanero

    Bravo, TFH!! Happy Jesus Fools Day!!

  10. redsnifit

    It looks like Funky’s inedible pizza has finally killed a man, and it’s only fitting that it’s the (ostensible) chef himself.

  11. billytheskink

    Now he’s finally really gonna wake up from wrecking that PT Cruiser.

  12. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    I hope I never hear the word “funky” again, unless it’s preceded by the words “get down, get”.

  13. spacemanspiff85

    I figure either Batiuk will never refer to this again, or Funky caught Dinkle’s hearing loss. Or maybe he just didn’t feel like answering Holly.
    Honestly, I can see tomorrow’s strip just being Funky asking “What?” and Holly responding “Never mind”.

  14. Charles

    Nicely done. It’s rather amusing that the only thing in the strip that gave me pause was the inconsistent lettering. The reused panels from prior comics, the continuity screwups, the jump cuts that made no sense, the poorly-sized dialogue balloons, hell, THE POSSIBLE DEATH OF THE TITLE CHARACTER… all were plausible, absurdly enough.

    As for today’s comic. When it’s a woman you’re referring to, Mopey, she’s “blonde”, only men are “blond”, and whatever entertainment I took from this comic came from the notion that the woman didn’t give a damn about a thing Mopey said and just grabbed some random arrangement that she had sitting around to get him out of there.

  15. 1) The real strip is “Rooking dumb kids in love never gets old.”

    2) Given his known hatred for the name “Funky Winkerbean” and how he thinks it’s why his strip isn’t more successful, Batiuk tends to lose sight of the fact that he didn’t actually have to use the name for his BMOC stereotype.

  16. Double Sided Scooby Snack

    Meanwhile, because it’s 1955 in Batty’s pointy little bald elderly head, Baggy Eyes stops off at the florist before his big date with Mindeeee.

    BatTrope, don’t forget to have her clutch her hands to her ample bosom and gush, “For MEEEEE???”

    Another tribute to some Real Guy who Batty offered to portray in his comic strip.

    • bobanero

      To be fair, if Pete’s been in town with Durwood for a solid week and is just now getting around to going to see Mindy, he’d fucking better be bringing flowers.

  17. Smirks 'R Us

    Nicely done @TFH! I stand in line. I read the above strip last night on my phone and would loved to have seen my face when I looked at the comics section this morning and realized what you had done. Totally got me and I’m happy to admit it. Laughed harder than I have at anything in the real strip in many, many years.

    • Gerard Plourde

      It was a masterful piece of parody. Like many others, I was completely taken in. The Author’s March 30 blog post reprinting a segment of one of his intros claiming that he was energized by the idea of tampering with a successful formula and his March 31 reprint of a John Darling strip where Darling is interviewing his future killer, Plantman, provided a perfect set-up for believability.

  18. Well done! This strip I enjoyed…the other? Not so much. Again, well done.

    • Jimmy

      I also went back and compared the two. A lot more happening in the TFH version, and it’s more compelling.

  19. I shoulda known it’d be impossible to pull off an April Fools’ gag on such a bunch of beady-eyed nitpickers! Thanks for the kind words. Here’s the real strip, I promise! For the record, “Richards Flowers and Gifts” is a Real Place in (Kent,) Ohio.

    • Gerard Plourde

      If The Author had done a modicum of research, he would have seen the following on the Richards Flowers web site:

      “Our shop will always be closed on the following holidays: Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.”

    • Epicus Doomus

      “Cash cow”…I just caught that detail. Nicely done!

  20. erdmann

    Great job on the prank! If a certain writer/cartoonist put that much effort into the real strip we wouldn’t have nearly as much to snark about.

  21. Epicus Doomus

    Classic, way better than the “real” strip, which features even more Pete & Mindy sappery.

  22. spacemanspiff85

    One of my least favorite things . . .

  23. spacemanspiff85

    . . . about Funky Winkerbean is the way Batiuk splits up one sentence over multiple panels for no reason.