The Winters Of Les’ Discontent

Now we’re getting to it in today’s strip! Finally!

“It” being Les trying to undermine specific elements of Masone’s Lisa’s Story passion project for no explained reason. And boy is Masone going to give Les EVERY opportunity to sabotage the project, inviting dragging him into practically every element that TB thinks exists in the film-making process. It’s a good thing Les has all of those unused personal days

Also, what is Les’ problem here exactly? He doesn’t want Lisa to be played by an attractive and successful actress? Frankly, Marianne Winters seems like a fine choice to play late Act II Lisa based on looks at least. She’s for certain sure a dead ringer for the bewigged Lisa we saw during much of that first bout with breast cancer in 1999.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

43 responses to “The Winters Of Les’ Discontent

  1. William Thompson

    “Look, Les, Lisa can’t play herself. I contacted all the usual evil witches–Sarah Morgan, Mary Worth, yo mamma–but none of them would summon her.”

  2. William Thompson

    “What’s the problem, Les? She’s vapid, mindlessly cheerful and lacks a personality. Put her in a brunette wig and she’ll be a dead ringer for Lisa–sorry, Les!”

  3. Epicus Doomus

    BatYak’s bizarre wish-fulfillment fantasy kicks into overdrive today, as his faithful avatar is given complete and total veto power over any and all aspects of the cancer movie. You can tell it’s a fantasy as no one has mentioned money yet, which is the only thing they’d be discussing in “real life”.

    I assume that everyone saw the Marianne Winters thing coming, as it was just so painfully obvious. I can’t wait for the one where Les falls to pieces after seeing Marianne in her Lisa bob-cut wig, that’s gonna be a real hoot.

    • William Thompson

      We can hope he’ll mistake her for Lisa’s ghost and beg forgiveness for murdering her.

    • Charles

      He really has given Les his own pet Hollywood star, who makes even fewer demands on Les than a damn dog does. At least you have to feed and walk a dog. Mason just gives Les money to indulge in his bullshit fetish over his dead wife.

      Thing that kills me about this is how Mason, despite no doubt spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on this thing, if not more, will demand less deference than all these Westview assholes do from a barista at The Beanstalk because they paid five bucks for a damn coffee. At no point will Mason asset himself, despite the fact that it’s his money at stake. Does he really think Les has a better idea of how movies work than him? Les wrote a damn scene of Lisa looking at cancer pamphlets, for Christ’s sake.

      It’s also pretty clear that Batiuk has never actually met a really rich person in his life. If Mason’s as successful as Batiuk tries to portray him, he’s used to calling the shots in his life. He’s used to having people defer to him and he’s used to having his decisions respected. He’s not going to put up money and then let someone else come in and tell him how to better spend it, especially when that person exhibits no expertise whatsoever. Hell, if he’s going to defer to Les on everything, what the hell even attracted him to this thing in the first place?

      “I think the emotional core of the entire story rests in this one scene. This is the most significant moment of the entire movie. I can’t wait to act out this scene.”
      “Sorry, it didn’t happen like that in real life, so I don’t want it in the movie.”
      “The scene you wrote makes you look like a unprincipled whiner, and it ends with a wet fart of a moment.”

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Well a person like that certainly won’t listen to some two bit writer who has no experience making movies and working in Hollywood.

        Batty also thinks it’s warm beach weather year round. But nights at this time of year can be quite cold and typically in the mid forties. Certainly not shorts weather. Hope they get that fire going soon, but good luck with that as it also tends to rain this time of year so the logs are probably soaked.

  4. William Thompson

    We’ll discover Les’ problem when he sees the filming of her first love scene with Mason Jarre. I hope Les is tied down and forced to watch it through many, many takes.

  5. Les once again demonstrates that he is composed of pure human excrement.

  6. Gerard Plourde

    In the real world Les’ behavior would be a red flag for serious unresolved issues. Lisa has been dead for over two decades. Les has remarried. (Although that relationship is decidedly weird.)

    Could this obsession with control mirror TomBa’s own need to maintain total control of his strip?

  7. Doghouse Reilly

    Well, at least it was nice of Mason to take Les and not-Lisa outside for a nice January oceanside bonfire, but why are they pestering that poor old lady who was sitting on the beach by herse…what’s that? That’s Cindy? Where the heck was she all week!? Was she hiding out on the beach hoping not to be seen until Les and not-Lisa went back to Ohio?

  8. billytheskink

    Les should be much more opposed to having Mason play him, given that Mason looks rather unlike him… and rather like Durwood. Y’know, Lisa’s “bio-son” via “bio-dad” Frankie who is “bio”-nothing to Les…

    Weird. Maybe he thinks Marianne looks more like Summer?

  9. Banana Jr. 6000

    This is such a massive frontal assault of awfulness that I feel paralyzed to comment on it. When I try to write the sentence “Mason is promising Les powers he wouldn’t even have himself”, I can feel myself thinking OH GOD YOU’RE ACTUALLY TREATING THIS LIKE A REAL MOVIE. As if commenting on that one aspect would be giving a free pass to everything else that’s wrong with this Russian nesting doll of stupid.

    I feel like I can’t even say that without adding “and this production is completely unviable, and a real Hollywood star would send someone to pick people up from the airport instead of doing it themselves, and this conversation would have just been a phone call anyway, and it would have ended last Tuesday, and Les has already sabotaged this project once, and Mason would realize he’s an unpleasable jerk who will object to everything, and the director’s first act would be getting rid of Les, and suddenly being on the California beach at night with Cindy inexplicably there now looks like a porno setup, and…” Every idiocy is built on another idiocy, and by the time I’m done listing half of them, I’m questioning what I’m doing with my spare time.

    I wouldn’t even know how to explain my FW hatedom to somebody. How do you compress everything wrong with this strip into casual conversation? The writing is sub-fanfic levels of incompetent, the characters are detestable, every plot is wish fulfillment for the author, the author is 70 years old and acts 15, the relationships are cringe-inducing, and by now I’m being asked to give it a rest. And there’s so much more I haven’t gotten to.

    There are other bad things, but you can quickly explain why. You practically need a dissertation to explain this. It is a masterpiece of terrible.

    • Count of Tower Grove

      Indeed. I invite you to comment like this some Sunday at CK, where you will inevitably get the reply of “if you hate this strip so much, why do you read it?” That’s like flies on honey for the commentariat and bumps the commentary to Mary Worth levels.

  10. Epicus Doomus

    I am assuming that the gag here is that in Les’ opinion no one is worthy of playing his dead wife in a LS movie. Which is not only remarkably unfunny, but requires the reader to be familiar with Dick Facey’s entire back story to even be a gag at all. A casual (LOL) FW reader might check this one out and think “boy he sure hates that Marianne person” but that’s not it at all and I know this because (sigh) I am indeed familiar with Dick Facey’s entire back story, a fact that both disgusts and sickens me.

    What I’m saying here is that merely understanding this gag fills me with a contempt I can’t even begin to describe. I truly wish I was capable of looking at today’s strip and briefly shrugging in confusion, but I know too much. The endless passive-aggressive low-key self-congratulatory back-patting, the constant preening about the one memorable story he’s written in fifteen years, the way he uses that vile bearded comma-eyed avatar of his to pimp his old book (actually a collection of previously published comic strips and not a real book at all), I know all about it. This arc is going to bring back a lot of very unpleasant memories, I can tell you that much.

    • billytheskink

      Lisa could be an off-screen character in the movie, like Harriet Dinkle was until late Act II FW. More screen time for Les, then. That should satisfy him.

      And Marianne Winters is freed up to play Holly, or the doctor who told Lisa that radiology mixed up her scans, or one of the hipster/pickpockets who robbed Les when he went to New York to spread Lisa’s ashes…

      • William Thompson

        If Les has his way the movie will be filmed in one shot: him sitting on Lisa’s Bench and reminiscing about his tragic experiences. The only challenge will be editing it down to a mere two and a half hours.

  11. Paul Jones

    And once again, we contrast the fact that Les/Tom needs to jealously guard the ‘integrity’ of his work with the fact that it’s an integrity of being unwatchable garbage.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      That’s another thing. Who the hell is Tom Batiuk, via his avatar Les Moore, to complain about an illness story being done “right”? Funky Winkerbean wipes its ass with illness stories. Batiuk hands out diseases like candy, and doesn’t remember who has them half the time, like Dinkle’s deafness. The CTE arc was an incoherent, insulting fiasco, created only to trick people into paying attention so he could promote Lisa’s Story (on sale now!) some more, and stump for awards.

      But come on, Tom, give us yet another day of Les throwing a tantrum that his unremarkable 15-years-dead wife isn’t being treated with Kim Il-Sung levels of reverence. Which he demands with all the gravitas and dignity of four-year-old Skyler saying “clothes aren’t presents!”

      This comic strip is VILE.

  12. comicbookharriet

    Why is Lisa labeled a ‘wig’? I thought the term was ‘beard’.

  13. William Thompson

    If Marianne Winters hears that Les hates her, will she try to commit suicide again? Will she need advice on how to get it right? Can she make it a murder-suicide with Les?

  14. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    “If you don’t like Marianne Winters, who do you suggest?”
    “Well, there’s this girl in my sophomore drama class…”

  15. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    “If you don’t like Marianne Winters, who would you suggest?”
    “Well, there’s this girl in my sophomore drama class…”

  16. Charles

    On more than one occasion, Mason has suggested that he isn’t actually going to produce this thing himself, that he’s going to be looking for people to finance this movie.

    It’s just one part of how incredibly stupid this whole thing is, but the moment any potential producer hears about how much power Mason would be giving this dickhead amateur in the production, that’s when the meeting ends with Mason getting nothing. This would be especially so once they hear about the last time Les tried to get Lisa’s Story made. No one puts up a lot of money when they know they won’t have any say in how it’s spent.

  17. Count of Tower Grove


  18. Hannibal's Lectern

    A long time ago, and apparently in a galaxy far, far away… didn’t Masoné specifically say that in order to avoid a repeat of the “Lust for Lisa” fiasco, he didn’t want Les intimately involved with every detail of the production? I don’t have access to the archives, so I can’t verify for sure, but I’m pretty sure I remember that at the very beginning of the “Lust for Lisa–the Reboot” arc.

    • billytheskink

      Masone told Les that he wouldn’t be writing the screenplay back in October, though he did not give a reason. I think “not giving a reason” is going to be a recurring thing in this story arc.

  19. Don’t you have any actresses with cancer?

  20. Professor Fate

    Les is just such an utter tool.
    Honestly the only real reason I can think of for Mason to be giving Les that much power over the film is that he already knows its going to be a cats level disaster and he wants someone to blame.

  21. bayoustu

    I’m beginning to worry about my state of mind… twice this week, two separate, crudely drawn images of a fictional character cause me to fly into an uncontrollable fit of rage and loathing- slumpy Les declaring: “That’s what Lisa said about her chemo.” And now angry, petulant child Les stating: “I don’t like that.” How could these meaningless squiggles affect me so?! Please tell me I’m not the only one who feels this way!!

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      No, I was just thinking the same thing. I went to work in a bad mood today because of a drawing.

    • Professor Fate

      No you’re not. Les is the most loathsome character in comics today and you combine his never ending obsession creepy worship of the death of his first wife (and his never ending ways to try and make a buck out of it); his undeserved contempt for the students he teaches (we never see any of his students coming back and thanking him for inspiring a love of literature in them or anything) his caddish treatment of his second wife; his whining about things the rest of us take in their stride; and his demand that he be treated like some sort of special genius because his wife died. You take all that and combine that with the Author’s insistence that Les is to be admired (this is aside from his self important flogging of this strip) and it’s hard not to feel a white hot rage.

  22. The Dreamer

    How is Mason, in his 50’s, going to credibly play Les in his 20’s (act one of Lisa’s Story)? I guess Cindy can play herself as she has never aged from those early strips

    • Double Sided Scooby Snack

      Movie Darren is in his 50’s??? When we first met him, he was a callow, quivering youth, apparently in his mid-20s.

      Oh that’s right. The only thing consistent about this comic strip is its shittiness. (See also “Cayla.”)

  23. The Dreamer

    Les wants to hold out for Reese Witherspoon to play Lisa 🙂

  24. Double Sided Scooby Snack

    “I want Maryanne Summers Winters the movie actress to play Lisa!”

    “I don’t like that. Maryanne Summers Winters the movie actress is extremely perky and cute. Lisa was really skanky as a teenager. As an adult, she looked better, but basically looked like a dood. Maryanne is way too pretty. I’m going for realism. The actors should be no more attractive than the real people they’re portraying!”

    “Umm… Les… I’M playing YOU………”

    “And your so-called ‘point’ is what??”

  25. The Dreamer

    Although given that Mason has hinted at budget problems hr may be about to ask Led, ‘if we can’t afford Marianne, would Lindsay Lohan as Lisa be OK? Hey these days she’ll work for SAG minimum!