Saturday Night Feeble

Link to today’s strip.

Saturday’s strip was not available for preview, but it’s a safe bet we’re going to get more of Cindy’s desire to do a documentary on Butter Brickel.  It seems Batiuk has a nostalgia fever and he’s going to cough it all over this strip come hell or high water.

As Cindy said the other day, “It’s a story that still resonates today!” and I couldn’t agree more.  The past few years have seen dozens and dozens of “Judge them in the press” stories, and the internet allow these things to spread with frightening speed, while the truth (as Mark Twain observed) is still getting on its pants.

Which is why it’s odd that Batiuk chose to tell this story about a pretty much long-forgotten comedian of the silent film era.  There are many more examples that might appeal to “contemporary young people.”  The cynic in me says, this way he can fudge the details as much as he wants, and no one will call him on them.  The other reason would be that anything that happened in recent years would have partisans on both sides, and favoring one side might lead to controversy…which Batiuk courts only in the most superficial manner.

There is also the matter of his very intense, narrowly focused nostalgia.  The past few years have seen a very strange parade of things that seem to be going further back in time–from silver age comic books, to old movie serials, and now to silent comedies.  I wonder if he’s casting backward because the things he used to value are becoming less and less satisfying.

Speaking of less and less satisfying, let’s enjoy the first strip of June!


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

19 responses to “Saturday Night Feeble

  1. billytheskink

    Hahahaha, that’s a good one Jess.

    Wait, what HAS Jess been working on is SoCal that she is still slumming with Cindy behind a workstation? And does Cindy really need Jess for this documentary? The subject is dead and so are practically all of his contemporaries. 97% of this thing is going to be (probably public domain) archival footage and narration from Cliff and some pompous, boring film historians.

    • Epicus Doomus

      Where is this workstation even located? Does Jessica work at Buddyblog now? Since when? Why couldn’t Jessica move back to Ohio with her family and fly out to California as needed? BatYak ignores this, which is all well and good, but then why deliberately draw attention to it like this? Doing a strip about Jessica (ugh) missing Boy Lisa sort of loses its impact when no one knows why they’re apart in the first place.

      The really alarming thing about this is how he hasn’t even gotten to the Brickel stuff yet, which will no doubt feature plenty of silent strips with Cindy poring over old newspapers and probably a few comic books too, as Batom Comics no doubt once issued a promotional comic book handed out at The Valentine when Brickwit’s movie premiered and the only known surviving copy belongs to Chester The Chiseler.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Yeah, most jobs today can be done from anywhere. I’m on an engineering team. We have teammates all over the U.S.

        Batty’s never heard of Google Docs or WebEx.

        • The fact that Cindy has to fly to Ohio to pick up some DVDs tells me, yes, there are great many things that Batiuk has not heard of.

          To be fair, though, he’s probably trying to make the strip a little more dynamic. “Trying” being the operating word.

    • Charles

      Thing is, Jessica would be a contract employee. She wouldn’t be “working for” Cindy. She’d be hired on when her alleged expertise was required for the individual project. Christ, this would be the case even back when virtually every single person in the workforce wasn’t a contract employee in order to avoid paying benefits.

      Nobody hires someone to sit around and do nothing. Excepting Comics Kingdom, I guess.

  2. The Nelson Puppet

    Let me guess…Cindy and Jess will do the Butt Brick documentary. Les will write the Butt Brick book. Darin and Pete will do the Butt Brick graphic novel. Mason will star in the Butt Brick movie, premiere to be held in Westview. At least Batiuk is keeping everyone employed in the Funkyverse.

  3. Epicus Doomus

    Good fortune finally smiles down upon Jessica, as her inexplicably leaving her family behind and staying in California for no apparent reason at long last pays off with another plum camera-pointing gig. Good for her and kudos to BatHack for once again capturing a scene from a totally realistic marriage and depicting a strong sensible female character who makes decisions we can all relate to, like opting to ditch your family and live on the other side of the country just in case someone happens to ask you to film another documentary.

    Great post BC. I mean we all already know that he’ll find some inconceivably stupid and boring way for Cindy to absolve Butters Bridget and clear his name and any resemblance to any real Hollywood scandals of yore will be deftly avoided in the most boring way possible. It’s his bread and butter, no pun intended. My guess: tramp steamer ticket stubs.

    And that weird narrowly-focused nostalgia of his seems to be going backwards in time now. First it was comic books from the 1970s (the original Starbuck Jones). Then it was movie serials of the 1940s. Now it’s silent film stars of the 1920s. Next it’ll be famous daguerreotypers from the 1890s and Boy Lisa’s inability to find a quality quill pen.

  4. ComicTrek

    Jessica’s face in that first panel is the face of someone who could NOT care less about working on another documentary! At least, not anyone else’s. But isn’t that supposed to be her job or something?

  5. Hm, I thought Jessica already agreed to work on this thing, several weeks ago. I seem to remember something about “I recognize that hunger” or whatever. But here I go, expecting continuity.

    • Gerard Plourde

      That was my thought too. This looks like an overlooked strip from the April 9 through14 arc, since in the April 11 strip Jessica is Skyping Darin with the news that she and Cindy are headed to Westview to do research and the May 6 Sunday strip has the LA and Westview crowd together in Montoni’s. Did his free comic book arc throw him off?

  6. Paul Jones

    The real problem is that Jessica is probably too passive to do anything about the false dilemma willed upon her. It’s how no one can do anything to Ed Crankshaft that isn’t frowning in impotent rage.

  7. Max Power

    Thanks to Jess’ weary annoyance for breaking up what would have otherwise been an insufferable two-day smug-arthon.

    • The Nelson Puppet

      Which comic strip features the most smirking? Sally Forth, or Funky Winkerbean? It’s a close call.

  8. Rusty Shackleford

    Nice commentary BC. I agree, Batty knows he cannot deal with contemporary topics accurately. Take this documentary garbage. If you wanted to update it, the story would be about how Cindy is pissed that some young girl from Westview has millions of YouTube followers and Cindy has none.

    Of course, Batty would be aghast that someone on YouTube could be famous and make money. If it isn’t the traditional media he grew up with, it’s not real.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Or how about Montoni’s millennial grandson returns to Westview and opens a gourmet pizza shop and micro brewery in the gentrifying part of town.

      The ideas are endless. But no, let’s wallow in the past so Batty can trot out all the trivial details via awkward dialog.