Ruined in What Way?

Link to today’s strip.

Other than taking place at Montoni’s, I don’t see how “date night” has been “ruined” in any way.  Unless the BMV was hundreds of miles away, Wally and Adeela should have gotten back well before any form of “night” started to fall.  Perhaps, once back at Montoni’s,  Adeela talked and talked forever about how awesome it is to have a driver’s license (which I would not put past any character in this strip), but it should still be late afternoon at most.

And even if she was excited about her achievement, she knows that Wally’s generosity put him on thin ice with Rachel; a decent person would have said “Wally, thank you for your help, enjoy your date tonight!”

I’ll grant you that decent people are not found anywhere in this strip, but it would have been the right thing to do under any circumstances.

Not to mention, prior to the test, “Say, Wally, are you sure you can do this?  Isn’t tonight your date night?”  Of course, we would have missed the last two scintillating weeks, but….

Oh!  I’ve got it–there was another Time Jump, though only a few hours this time!  Sure, that’s it!

And the kicker is, Wally and Rachel are right there at Montoni’s, where (for some reason) they wanted to end up anyway.  What’s to stop their “date night” now, other than Batiuk’s fear some lightheartedness will detract from his serious “talking about driving” arc?  Rachel looks as puzzled as I am.  Well, she looks like she’s rethinking this whole “Wally” thing, but close enough.

And Batiuk’s plugging of Crankshaft is definitely irksome.  I’m surprised Adeela didn’t follow up with “Is there a convenient link a person could click on to learn more about this Crankshaft?  Thank you!”

31 Comments

Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

31 responses to “Ruined in What Way?

  1. Epicus Doomus

    And as I always say, f*ck Crankshaft, f*ck Centerville and f*ck comics page monopolies. What the hell is wrong with these imbeciles? Does he even bother to re-read the word balloons after he packs them full of this drivel?

  2. William Thompson

    “Ah, I see! He is like my country’s famed caravaneer, Camil bin-Humpin. But do you have a musician to rival our beloved march composer, al-Cadence?”

  3. Captain Gladys Stoatpamphlet

    This is terrible.

    1. It’s pathetic that TB can’t come up with unique gags for his two comics. Telling one Crankshaft joke in FW bad enough, but twice in one week? And this time from a character who doesn’t even know Crankshaft. How much does Wally talk about Crankshaft that Rachel can spoof him?

    2. This one doesn’t even make sense. The last one, while a malaprop, was logically sound. This one is jibberish. What farm? She might as well say “As Crankshaft used to say ‘Purple monkey dishwasher’.”

    3. No harm? It didn’t seem that way last week.

    • Mr. A

      I guess chickens live on a farm?

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      Even in today’s strip, Rachel immediately goes from psychotic anger to way too forgiving. This strip can’t even flow a story from one panel to the next! Just so we can have another episode of Shit My Old Bus Driver Says. Oh, and so the strip can avoid any conflict whatsoever. Lord know you don’t want THAT in a story.

  4. Olive McSweeney, LLC

    Now the window looks like it says “pis”.

  5. J.J. O'Malley

    You know, if Wally had just said “Sorry I let our ‘date night’ slip my mind, Rach…” in panel one, it would had at least made some sense. Any jokes in panel two wouldn’t have been any “funnier,” but it would have made some sense. Pity they couldn’t have worked a “John Darling” reference in today’s nail-biter while they were at it.

    Also: Total number of strips depicting this arc to date: 11.
    Total number of Montoni’s customers: 0.

  6. SeaCountry

    Is Crankshaft about to enter the story somehow? Because otherwise, the repeated mentions of him don’t make any sense.

    I also don’t see why that date night can’t happen.

    • billytheskink

      “Remember that cranky bus driver guy?” is a much-hated recurring bit in Funky Winkerbean. He never enters the story when this happens (except in flashback), people who can’t even remember his name just stand around and reminisce about him for no conceivable reason.




    • billytheskink

      “Remember that cranky bus driver guy?” is a much-hated recurring bit in Funky Winkerbean. He never enters the story when this happens (except in flashback), people who can’t even remember his name just stand around and reminisce about him for no conceivable reason.

      • Epicus Doomus

        It’s so obnoxiously self-serving, in a way even worse than the endless “Lisa’s Story” promos he does. It’s hard to believe “Crankshaft” has been around for over thirty years. I don’t see how that’s even possible.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      That was my thought too. Maybe he is preparing us for Crankshaft’s big kill. A nice nursing home bit packed with misery.

      Too bad he is too lazy to update his strips, he could really milk covid and kill off everyone!

  7. Barnaby Scones

    If these people had a brain cell among them, they’d realize they could send out Adeela to deliver them a pizza right there at Montoni’s. Problem solved. Smirks all around.

  8. Professor Harlan Grankle

    “Crankshaft was a character all right. A one-dimensional, annoying character created by a spiteful egomaniac.”

  9. Gerard Plourde

    Does this forechadow a visit to Bedside Manor by Mindy and Pete? Or am I expecting too much planning on TomBa’s part?

  10. Banana Jr. 6000

    Rachel’s expression in the first panel is just perfect. She looks like Ren, waiting for Stimpy to finish being stupid before slapping him into outer space with a trout. Even the other women have faces like “oh, shit, this is serious.”

    This week’s arc should have been that panel repeated over and over, and a thought balloon of Rachel working through her feelings:

    “It’s bad enough that Big Spender here’s idea of special date night was fucking Montoni’s, but then he stands me up for it. Jesus H. Christ, why did I marry this moron? When did he become a goddam driving instructor anyway? Really, his idea of solving our delivery problems is giving Little Miss Taliban a license? They both shit their pants in terror if an alarm clock goes off. And where’s his fucking dog? Does he not need that anymore? I’m married to this guy, why the fuck does everyone else know what he’s doing but I don’t? After all the night terrors and shit I put up with? And fuck you too, Cory. ‘They’ve been going out together every day.’ Tee hee, motherfucker. I should tell Les you stole that money, so he ties you to a chair and whines until you commit suicide to make it stop. Oh God, he’s still talking. And he hasn’t even noticed how pissed off I am. I’m so mad I can’t even hear words anymore. He sounds like Charlie Brown’s teacher. Ugh, why couldn’t I have been the little red-haired girl? At least she had some dignity. And Charlie Brown’s psychiatric help is a lot more affordable. Or Liz the veteranarian. I’d give Jon Arbuckle at least a 20% chance of finding my g-spot, unlike John McCain here. I can’t even dump him, because he’s a decorated war vet and this whole town would hate me for it. And I ain’t gonna find anyone better at Kent State-Westview Campus, aka the former Borders Bookstore. Ugh, please just give me cancer already.”

  11. billytheskink

    Rachel has much more of a reason to remember Crankshaft than Wally, who began high school 4 years after Crankshaft left Westview, but not as a bus driver. Unlike Wally, Rachel actually shared some panels with Crankshaft, bowling against the Centerville school bus drivers in a tournament that Funky flashed back to 5 years ago.

    Crankshaft also spent one Christmas season at Rachel’s decades-long employer Montoni’s playing Santa Claus, so she may well have encountered him there too.

    • Gerard Plourde

      To miss those obvious and fairly recent Act III tie-ins is amazing. It again raises the question whether there’s some medical reason for his slip-ups or whether he’s just burned out and marking time to reach the 50th anniversary.

    • batgirl

      A pistol, Harry? Sure you didn’t mean another word with the same first syllable?
      Also, what the hell is wrong with Westview that a bus driver from another school district has established Disney-level ownership of lame wordplay?

  12. Charles

    How desultory must your life be if in this situation, the first thing that comes to mind is some idiotic malapropism from the guy who drove the bus at your husband’s high school 30 years ago?

    “Yes, yes, oddly, a lot of my conversations with my husband concern Crankshaft. We talk about him more than we talk about our marriage, actually.”

  13. Rusty Shackleford

    Wow what a week. Adeela is still getting kudos for passing her driver’s test. She gets her license same day while over in Crankshaft, Ed is still gathering items to take to the BMV for his “enhanced” driver’s license. (By the way Batty it is called a compliant driver’s license in Ohio..and the requirements really aren’t that onerous.).

    Over on Mary Worth former drug dealer Tommy expresses his love of stocking shelves and old man Saul explains the geography of Goleta. Inspiring stuff.

  14. Maxine of Arc

    How old is Adeela supposed to be again? She’s drawn like a 65-year-old babushka.

  15. Professor Fate

    So were they gong to have date night in the afternoon?
    And is Crankshaft Westville’s Will Rodgers? Everybody seems to quote him. Which does make some sense, he’s a horrible human being and a role model for everybody in the town.

    • J.J. O'Malley

      Well, Battyuk never met a tiresome, unworkable pun that he didn’t like. If only Wiley Post were around to take TB on a celebratory 50th anniversary plane ride.