Funky Winkerbean, a strip that only addresses the most current and topical of issues. Bringing us hot takes on the cultural debates that shape our world today. The ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, restored and conserved in the 80’s.
And Funky has to be one of those weird romantic hipsters that preferred the ceiling dark and dirty as the original sin it portrays. Not that he’s really alone. Go online and you will find entire cabals of passionate folk nitpicking the way they cleaned that ceiling, and they will never NEVER stop. Because there’s a genuine debate over if the ‘one solvent solves all’ approach of stripping the ceiling of anything that wasn’t painted on when the plaster was still wet erased details that our favorite pizza-loving, sewer-dwelling, turtle went back and put in there, rather than just erasing the heavy handed touch ups of early restorers.
There are others who thought that aggressively cleaning the ceiling at all was wrong. Some objects: furniture, coins, leather, firearms; collect a patina over the years that collectors consider a sin to remove, no matter how much time and oxidation have changed the appearance of the object. The ceiling as it was before showed its age, showed the hands of time and the hands of hundreds of tiny touchups by dozens of different humans through the centuries. It had accumulated a story. Who were we to erase that history?
But on the other hand, a painting is a statement by the artist. Mikey boy painted that ceiling to put into the physical world something in his mind and heart he had decided to say. If we had allowed time and grime and 18th century hands to obscure that work, we were changing the message of a man who could no longer speak for himself.
And Mikey was one odd duck, and not a guy we should ever talk over. The best story in the Sistine Chapel, one some of you might have heard, is actually on The Last Judgement wall fresco. It’s said that when Pope Paul III and some of his retinue were previewing the not complete work, the Pope’s Master of Ceremonies, Biago da Cesena, complained about all the naked people, saying the equivalent of ‘this doesn’t belong in a church, but in a bathhouse’.
Michelangelo heard this and, (In the words of my tour guide from my visit) ‘painted that man in the darkest corner of Hell, right above the door, where everyone would see him when exiting.’
A little bit of a prickly reaction. Kinda petty. Kinda vindictive. Sounds a little like something Tom would do.
But then again, Tom hardly has the artistic chops to back up his bluster. He’s no Michelangelo, a man so talented that, when poor Biago complained, all the Pope could say was, “I have no jurisdiction over Hell.”
15 responses to “Colorful Opinions”
In the Funkyverse you lose even when you win. “Better eyesight? Feh, what there to see anyway, amirite? These colors…they’re just too vivid. I prefer duller, hazier, more muted tones. And all these sunny 75 degree days…meh, gimme overcast skies any day of the week. Less chance of cancer that way! Oh, will you look at this? I just won the lottery. Great, now I have to deal with accountants and the IRS…just what I need”.
Alas, it appears that Happy Funky was just a fleeting thing and he’s already slid right back into full-throttle sad-sackery. Oh well, it was somewhat pleasant while it lasted. Sure was strange, though.
With that beard of his, I can only picture Les as Satan, but not as endearing.
Les actually has lessons with Satan on how to be more evil. I don’t know what Les charges him for them, though.
(borrowed from Emo Philips, sorry Emo)
Les is paid in story ideas for Crankshaft.
Les is no Mitch Miller.
Speaking of the Sistine Chapel, today’s strip is just like that Charlton Heston/Rex Harrison movie, “The Agony and the Ecstasy”…just minus the ecstasy.
And we’re back to the recurring theme that the old thing was undoubtedly better. TomBa must be that person standing athwart the road to progress shouting “Stop!”
Yes, I have conversations like this all the time.
Jesus H. Christ.
I think the joke here is supposed to be that Funky isn’t using the Sistine Chapel as a metaphor for his vision. I think he means “my vision is a lot better, like an art restoration, but I happen to prefer unrestored art.” As if this is a casual note one would insert into an unrelated conversation.
The problem is that this strip made a joke with this same structure yesterday, and he was talking about his eye! If a character in an alleged “funny” comic strip says “A is like B”, and then says something about B, he’s really talking about A. “My eye drops are like waterboarding my eyes, and one eye has already confessed.” He used the same joke structure two days in a row and meant two different things!
My interpretation could be wrong, of course. But the straightforward reading makes even less sense. It contradicts panel one’s “brighter colors” and last Sunday’s punchline “like turning on the windshield wipers!” Today’s strip, if read straightforwardly, is saying that Funky preferred his uncorrected vision. Which we just saw from his point of view:
And to top it all off, here’s the latest Funkyblog entry:
It’s been a while since climate damage has afforded us with a hike worthy snow pack in these parts. So I’ve been taking advantage of it to do some hiking and writing through the woods and fields.
The man thinks he’s Robert Frost. And WTF is “climate damage”? Batiuk can’t write a paragraph without some baffling combination of words or tones!
He is pissed because after the big snow around Christmas, we had nothing but sun and above average temperatures in January, not the daily blinding snowstorms he portrays in his crappy strip.
Ah yes, climate damage. Whatever.
I recall that debate. I understand where Fungy’s coming from. As one critic noted, Fungy now sees the world as cartoony.
Hey Batiuk, some people prefer comic books to be printed on really cheap paper, with the color printing badly aligned over the images. They say it’s much more “authentic” that way.
Thank you for that interesting insight, CBH. I am entirely too ignorant when it comes to the Sistine Chapel, so you’ve piqued my interest to learn more.
So, I won’t disparage FW today. It gave me joy and educated me in a secondary way.
I’m just impressed Funkmaster Flex even knows about the Sistine Chapel
You can thank his planned advertising campaign for Montoni’s: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/16747829841287985/visual-search/?x=16&y=10&w=530&h=273.96363636363634&cropSource=6