R.I.P., Funkman

So ends the epic OMEA 2021 Signfest (I hope). This is an awkward strip. I guess the first two panels are designed to be redundant in case the newspaper cuts them off, but having Harry ask if Funky is nervous about the surgery (and naming the type of surgery again) right after he’s told Funky isn’t looking forward to it is just awkward. Fear of death as a punchline is also awkward but totally normal for this strip. It’s funny how whenever something bad happens to Les or Lisa it’s portrayed as high tragedy, but with Funky it’s always for a lame joke or making fun of him.
Funky giving away all of his clothes is funny to me, only because I assume his wardrobe is 99% Montoni’s t-shirts and aprons.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

26 responses to “R.I.P., Funkman

  1. William Thompson

    Hang onto your clothes, Funky! With all the grease in them, you can wear them and save a bundle on fuel for your cremation!

  2. Lord Flatulence

    But he’s not giving away his comic books!

  3. J.J. O'Malley

    Yeah, the top panels in a lot of Sunday strips are usually unconnected “throwaway” jokes or a “pre-hash” of what follows, so that papers which carry the two-tier format get their money’s worth. Little do these papers know that, in the case of FW, ALL the jokes are throwaways.

    As far as today’s “punchline,” why does Dolly (which I’d like to propose as shorthand for “Doughy Holly”) feel the need to specify that Funky is giving away his wardrobe in his will? It’s a will; in almost every case the person is giving away EVERYTHING they own, unless they plan to be buried with it. Why not mention who’ll get the Funkster’s interest in northern Ohio’s most forgettable pizzeria/coffee shop? Oh, well; at least this time Harry is apparently enjoying a nice, cold soft drink, the perfect beverage for Ohio in January.


  4. Gerard Plourde

    Most cataract surgery is currently performed under local anesthetic in a surgical center rather than a hospital, so more it’s analogous to root canal than to major surgery. Does Funky revise his will and give away his possessions for oral surgery too?

    • Count of Those Grove

      Indeed. A couple of months ago I had a dental implant surgery under conditions were similar to both my cataract surgeries. The major difference was they wheeled me in for the cataracts.

  5. Banana Jr. 6000

    This is a visual joke. The only way it would ever be funny is if we got to see it:

    Instead Tom Batiuk tells us something that happened off-screen. And it takes him seven panels and four Montoni’s logos to get there.

  6. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    It’s worse than Holly thinks.

  7. The Dreamer

    So Funky has made out a new will? This could be the new arc as we find out to whom he is leaving Montonis and the secret Montonis pizza recipe. Best guess is that he has decided that if he leaves Montonis to either Cory or Wally (who will both want it) that they will ruin the business. So Funky has decided to leave his pizza empire to best friend Les. This eventually Funky dies and Les retires from Westview (replaced in the english dept faculty by Summer) to take over Montonis. Them Les leaves Cayla and he moves back into the apartment over the restaurant where he used to live with Lisa. Hoping she comes back….

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      That’s a good point. Funky’s will, and the contents of it, should be plot-relevant. But it’s used as a prop for a stupid joke.

  8. William Thompson

    The punchline to this joke is that now Funky will be able to see Les Moore with total clarity. He’ll die from fright.

  9. billytheskink

    As much as I would like to see Funky’s will executed, it will have to get in line behind Les and Dinkle.

  10. Mr. A

    Geez, and I thought last week’s Sunday strip had awkward repetition at the start of the second row.

    Are there really a significant number of newspapers that throw away half the panels? It’s bad enough that artists have to create Sunday strips that are 25 percent disposable, but 50 percent?

    • Mr. A

      Follow-up question: if Batiuk is worried that the papers only have room for 50% of his Sunday strip, then why does he sometimes do those “tip of the Funky felt tip” strips that can’t be conveniently subdivided?

    • Years ago, some Sunday comics would have three rows of panels, with the first panel in the top row being a title card. Newspapers with limited comic space would trim off this top row and just write the title and author in a plain headline font.

      Typically the top row would have a self-contained gag, which may or may not have anything to do with what followed beneath. It might not even have the same characters.

      I seem to recall “BC” doing this, and I’m sure other strips did as well.

      • J.J. O'Malley

        According to Grandpa Wikipedia, those self-contained toons were known as “topper strips” and were prevalent in the first half of the 20th century. “Krazy Kat,” “Hawkshaw the Detective” and “Little Iodine” were among the toppers that eventually became strips in their own right. Even the ’70s underground fave “The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers” continued the tradition with “Fat Freddy’s Cat.”

        Just imagine if Battyuk had the room and gave us topper strips like “Mason Jarre, Movie Starre” or “Atomic Comix Comics.” Oh, what possibilities!

  11. Epicus Doomus

    His clothes? That’ll cost him a cool hundred to replace, or in his case, significantly upgrade.

  12. Dood

    “Does this mean your playground is open?”

  13. Banana Jr. 6000

    This whole strip just raises questions. Where’s Funky? Why isn’t he at Montoni’s to explain this himself? What does going in for cataract surgery have to do with giving away his clothes? Who’d want them? Remaking his will is just a normal thing to do when you’re over 65.

    And again, we should see this, not be told it by Holly! If Funky is needlessly worried about a routine surgery, show him being a worrywart, like Charlie Brown and Opus. I guess the strip thinks it did that already, but it would be a strong way to return from the needless OMEA arc. Tom Batiuk really shows a lack of respect for his own world sometimes.

  14. It’s weird. I get my comics from the comics kingdom web site (indirectly via seattlepi.com, since it also includes pluggers and Gil Thorp), and all the Sunday strips include the throwaway panels at the top, EXCEPT for Funky Winkerbean (and possibly Crankshaft). I didn’t really notice until I saw today’s Sunday FW strip linked from this site. It wasn’t long ago that all of the Sunday strips on Comics Kingdom (at least the free site) were missing the throwaway panels, except for FW, which used to include the throwaway panels.

  15. Rusty Shackleford

    Well the OMEA virtual conference started yesterday and wow, there is an actual presentation that references the cloud. Batty is 1/4 inch away from reality.

    How did he know they were doing this presentation one year ago? Hmmm.


  16. Hitorque

    Just to reiterate, if Funkmaster Flex made it to the ripe age of 65 without ever having to go under the knife for anything, he should be on his knees endlessly thanking whatever imaginary comic book God he prays to…

  17. Banana Jr. 6000: This whole strip just raises questions. Where’s Funky? Why isn’t he at Montoni’s to explain this himself?…we should see this, not be told it by Holly!

    Compare the faces in panel 1 and panel 3…Holly could be Funky in drag!

  18. Westview Radiology

    I’ll play editor here. PANEL 1 “Funky‘s having the surgery this week?”
    PANEL 3 “Is he nervous?”