Con Job

Link To Today’s Strip

Good ol’ Morty Winkerbean…BatWards’ worst retcon job ever. Those of you with short memories might not recall the “Funky puts his dementia-stricken father in a nursing home” arc of whatever year that was (2010, maybe 2011?) or how it led to Funky’s near-fatal car wreck or how that arc birthed (sigh) the Starbuck Jones phenomenon. Back then (and until he started smoking cigarettes several years later) Mort was gone, as in all the way. He’d show up on Father’s Day, Funky would wheel him around, he’d mutter a little and that was that.

Fast-forward to mid-2018 and that very same Morton is as sharp as the point on BatNard’s head and twice as witty. Hatching feel-good schemes, cutting records and performing live (only a few years after learning to play the trombone, mind you) AND he’s online too! Why, a reader who didn’t know any better might assume that this “Mort” fella is a brand new character but nope, he’s the same guy who was reduced to drool-cup status a few short (actually extremely long and tedious) years ago.

So I guess what I’m saying here is that BatWrite wasted years and years creating his little stories and creating a fictional universe that not only never went anywhere, it actually grabbed itself by the tail and ate itself. And I didn’t even mention how Crankshaft is somehow way older in FW than he is in his own strip, which is something I’m not even going to comment on as I don’t read “Crankshaft” and never will.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

19 responses to “Con Job

  1. And I admit I used to like Connie. I mean, really, how can you not like a drummer chick? But the way she’s drawn today! Eegads! It’s like Jessica in Roger Rabbit…I’m not bad- I’m just drawn that way.

  2. spacemanspiff85

    As dreary and depressing as this strip is, all the characters should view Mort’s turn around as a miracle.
    Also, that first panel looks like it should be in a brochure on sexual harassment that nursing homes hand out to their residents.

  3. I imagine the thinking goes something like this: “Hey, I’ll put Funky’s father in the strip…and he’ll have Alzheimer’s and Funky’ll have to put him a nursing home! Wow, that’s a lot of pathos…which means a lot of awards!”
    [Several years, none of them featuring awards, pass]
    “Hell, who’s this? Funky’s dad? I bet he’ll be useful for comic-book-themed arcs.”

    • Epicus Doomus

      Frisky old coot arcs too. Six years ago Morty was a complete vegetable and now he’s a trombone virtuoso, master eavesdropper and notorious flirt, more full of life and vigor than Funky himself. He’s the anti-Lisa, a FW character who positively thrived after receiving a terminal diagnosis. Funky should write a book about it just to spite Les.

      • timbuys

        Oh Funky writing that book would be so sweet and, of course, will never happen. Even if it did, his book tours would just be occasions for the Writer to visit misery on his secondary avatar while also deriding what fans attend to him these days.

  4. billytheskink

    If you subscribe to the incredibly lame theory that everything in this strip that has happened since Funky’s car wreck is just him dreaming and that he is still actually in a coma (no one subscribes to this theory, by the way, but why not throw it out there), then Morton’s miraculous return to lucidity that just happened to occur shortly after the car wreck is a definite arrow in your quiver.

    Remarkably, the alternative to this dream theory, that TB simply forget or doesn’t care how he wrote the character a few months or years ago, is even more lame. And both cases are equally sad. Either Funky is dreaming that good things happen to everybody but him or Funky is living in a reality where good things happen to everybody but him.

  5. Charles

    “Hey! Want to do something fun?? Let’s us, a pair of retirees in a nursing home, spend an UNGODLY amount of money on a collection of out of date seed catalogs to give to the shithead invalid down the hall who never talks to anyone!”
    “Great idea! We’re not spending enough of our dwindling retirement funds on this nursing home anyway!”
    “Ah, my son pays all my bills!”
    “Even better!”

    You guys sure that Mort’s as lucid as you think?

    • Epicus Doomus

      I wondered about this too. Mort’s been in Bedside Manor for around seven years, one has to wonder how he has the funds available to splurge on catalog collections for other residents he barely knows.

  6. Charles

    BTW, I love how Chester is propping up his company by selling personal assets. Add corporate funding restrictions to the long list of things Batiuk doesn’t understand. Intermingling personal and corporate funds is a really, REALLY bad idea, especially when your corporation needs money because it wasn’t adequately funded in the first place.

  7. Wasting sympathy on a disgusting and ungrateful slob like Ed Crankshaft is not fun.

    • spacemanspiff85

      You know what would be funny? If they buy the catalogs, and then just toss them all on top of Crankshaft. And then because he’s old and decrepit and everyone hates him, that’s the end of Crankshaft.

    • Hannibal's Lectern

      Given how Mort looks like he recently had an operation to exchange his nose with… well, another droopy organ… I’m not sure he’s proposing anything involving old Bean’s End catalogs.

  8. Gerard Plourde

    I’m not sure what he’s aiming for here. There’s no suspense since we can see the outcome a mile away, unless he’s inserting a trick ending like Mort bringing the collection into Crankshaft’s room and then having Keesterman (the guy whose mailbox Crankshaft regularly destroyed) feed them page by page into a shredder. No chance of that though. Batiuk finds Crankshaft’s misanthropic behavior amusing and charming.

  9. Hannibal's Lectern

    Hey, SOMEBODY had to say it.

  10. gleeb

    You don’t read Crankshaft? What does this storyline look like to you? What was your first impression when the catalog business started? Because there was a very long week in Crankshaft setting this damn thing up, and I want to know how sudden and contrived it looks to someone who doesn’t read the ‘shaft.

  11. We all thought that at Les’ wedding, he would dance smilingly with ghost Lisa while Cayla beamed her approval–to the point where I’m positive Batiuk thought, “They’ve figured it out, damn it! I can’t run that now!” And we got a week of the Faigoods driving Darrin around old neighborhoods. (Old neighborhoods he should have been familiar with anyway, being their son and all.)

    Now that we’ve figured out Mort’s scheme, I wonder if anything got thwarted and we’ll get a week of Les and Funky running starting Monday.

    It would be the only source of amusement this strip has provided in a while.

    • Double Sided Scooby Snack

      Maybe Goatee Boy will fuck Dead Saint Lisa in front of Cayla, as she beams her approval. I’ll bet Lisa would like that.

      That was my theory too. Batty scrapped some monumentally maudlin Lisa action from the Les-Cayla wedding fiasco, and jerked abruptly to another arc, obviously cutting away from the wedding suspiciously early. This, after a predicted Lisa Visitation was flamed to a crisp in multiple discussion sites. Batty should have been a big boy about it by just running his original same episodes.

      • Double Sided Scooby Snack

        Gaarrgghh. That was supposed to “original DAMN episodes.” I’ll learn to type one day.