Ah, the weariest season of the year is all-year-round in Westview. I’ve never seen a parade of miserable, hateful creatures such as this strip sports.
I can’t imagine writing this kind of stuff year after year; no wonder Tom Batiuk prefers to wallow in old comic books. It’s probably why he puts the least amount of thought possible into this strip, because who wants to think about these people any more than he has to? At least the Flash has clear heroes and villains, rather than the doomed naysayers that populate this “comic” strip. No wonder it’s so badly run, as no one wants to run it.
No character is ever happy in this strip, because they know if they are (like Adeela getting her driver’s license) then they are going to be immediately (and improbably) thrown into a hellish prison. Or forced to wrap Christmas presents. There, I imagine Tom Batiuk thinks, that’ll learn ’em.
26 responses to “Nothing Is Ever “Done””
Today’s gift wrappee is Summer from the Future, come back in time to warn herself and Keisha never to get married, worry about having family around for the holidays, or ever connect with another human being, isn’t she?
The fact that this lady is figuring on buying a wrap-able gift for her mailman might be a clue as to why her husband is not being particularly helpful with the Christmas shopping…
Imagine if dairies still did home delivery.
Christmas…just another joyless slog to endure and hopefully survive with one’s health and sanity somewhat intact, if you’re lucky. Maybe you’ll keel over while jogging, maybe you’ll drive through a guardrail and plunge off a cliff, maybe your senile mom will throw away your priceless Silver Age comic books or maybe you’ll just suffer in weary-eyed exhaustion until the burden is finally and mercifully over, at least until the next boulder gets dropped on your aching broken shoulders. Either way, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from your pals in the Funkyverse!
I want to ask this lady, “do you even like your family?”
Everything in this world is just a duty that has to be done. It never serves any greater purpose, like showing your love for someone. Gotta buy gifts. Gotta wrap them. Gotta give the babysitter as much effort as the husband, children, and parents. Because it’s Christmas and those are the rituals you must perform.
Same thing with everything else in this universe, from the band candy sale to the stupid pizza box monster. Nobody enjoys it, nobody derives any benefit from it, but it has to be done every year. And cannot be questioned.
It’s like watching people trapped in a cult. One of the ways cults control members is to put them through an endless string of pointless rituals. This heightens their commitment, provides free services to the cult, and sucks away any time they might spend on something other than the cult. And people in this situation have have that dead-eyed look we so so much in Westview.
If you have extended family at Christmas have a lottery for the adults. The babysitter? Who shops for the fucking babysitter? Crisp dollars is what a babysitter wants.
You could just tell your husband, as one adult to another, that he needs to help with the gift shopping. Despite what sitcoms have taught us, “men don’t/can’t shop” is not an ironclad law of the universe.
That being said, as I am myself in the middle of stressing over my Christmas shopping, I find this strip…somewhat relatable? What does that mean? Do I have to hand in my beady-eyed nitpicker card?
No, it happens to all of us every five or ten years or thereabouts. The cure is to start reading Act III again from the beginning. By the time you get to this week you’ll barely be able to relate to anything at all, at least for a while.
“Just wrap my presents, butthead.”
Ugh, I hate when someone is playing the martyr.
It would be all right if they were actual martyrs. Just imagine Shopping Lady as Joan of Arc and Batiuk as St. Sebastian.
BC, your post today reminded me of Darrin saying he was happy seconds before getting the phone call that his father had had a stroke. The god of Westview enjoys tormenting his characters more than a middle schooler playing SIMS.
The evidence mounts that this strip should have run in Summer’s and Keisha’s senior year of high school.
Let’s start with the fact that much of this shopping is now done online. Also, the babysitter and letter carrier would probably be the recipients of gift cards. The neighbors and aunts and uncles could probably be given some kind of food assortment from the likes of Harry and David.
I don’t want to even start gong down the rabbit hole of the useless husband who won’t help.
I think what bothers me about this strip is the implied heteronormativity. The customer just assumes Keisha will inevitably have a husband. And her own family is apparently devoid of any non-traditional relationships, or even single parents. This doesn’t just look like an old strip from 2004; the attitudes are very frozen in the past as well.
In line with your point, I’m wondering how the guy in the elf hat in the top banner will fit in. Is he going to be introduced to become a potential boyfriend? (Or, more likely, just a random one-shot appearance).
The answer will surprise you!
Given the quality of the artwork this week, I have to believe that the “guy” is Summer. The hat matches.
It’s just another comic crossover. That’s Jughead and he’s angry because Montoni’s doesn’t serve burgers.
The part of Whiney Shopper today will be played by Tommy Wiseau.
Could this be any more sexist? Yeah, yeah we get it, men are schlepps who never do anything to help out the poor downtrodden women. Hmm, guess, myself and even most men I know are nowhere near that, but hey, don’t let that stop you Batty boy from trying to score a cheap laugh at our expense.
Yep. But I wouldn’t mind Batty doing a dumb dad arc featuring Les.
I can see the end of that arc now: Les apologizes to Summer for not being as good a parent as Lisa was, because Lisa is the yardstick by which all other things must be measured.
I’ve noticed that Les’ beatification of Dead Saint Lisa hasn’t inspired him to become a better person in any way.
He’s done a few already, where Les was portrayed as being adorable because he didn’t know how to cook despite being a single parent for over a decade. I’m pretty sure Summer and/or Cayla was the one discussing it on at least one occasion.
And today Summer is the smart one, because she seems to have abandoned the booth entirely.
Aside from this arc being much better suited to students just graduating from high school than from college (and by the by shouldn’t they be going for internships and what not or looking at grad school?) and the weak sauce that are the gags here. I fee obligated to point out that art work is especially hideous.