Let’s Table This Discussion

So today we get the strip that probably should have run Monday. The good news is that in today’s strip, Batty’s setting up an actual joke. The kitchen reno drags on with no end in sight (and remember: this all started out with a quote on a bathroom renovation and turned into a package deal; we don’t know if they’ve even started the bathroom). Funky dimly recalls that Rachel’s “studying to be a lawyer” and, in classic Funkman form, sees an opportunity to cadge some free legal advice. Funky doesn’t understand how adoption works? Isn’t his son Cory (like most other Westview millennials) an adoptee?


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

37 responses to “Let’s Table This Discussion

  1. Okay, I am very confused. Does Batiuk think that these contracted employers live in the house they’re converting? I would assume they go home at night and fret about returning to “that horrible place” but maybe they stay there while they work? I mean—argh?!

    • batgirl

      I was going to cut TB some slack here, since there’s a sort of a joke – contracting work taking so long that it seems like a permanent situation (we stripped our kitchen to studs and rebuilt, so yeah.) but then I thought – Funky runs a restaurant. He’s going to be at Montoni’s from dark to dark, every day. When does he even _see_ the contractors?
      I could see a joke about thinking he’d hired house-sitters (still wouldn’t be very funny) but the adoption thing involves too much working-out to click.

      • LTPFTR

        It might have worked better from the angle of contractors being there so long that they have squatter’s rights or having to get an eviction notice or something, but trust Batty to instead bring death into it.

  2. Epicus Doomus

    I thought the exact same thing…this should have been Monday’s strip. First you establish the premise, then you do the lazy contractor gags. Then again in BatYam’s defense, it does make less sense this way.

  3. Westview Radiology

    This strip has gone from laughingly bad to embarrassing to unreadable. If I didn’t read everyone’s witty comics or learn so much from what’s presented as related in depth topics I would mind scrub this awful funk verse away.

    • ComicBookHarriet

      It’s like being a Game of Thrones fan, except it NEVER was good in the first place.

  4. Rusty Shackleford

    Ah so yeah, it’s May in Ohio. Gotta bring the summer furniture out. We only have a few short months before the blizzards hit us again.

    Batty really is a national treasure. So glad the syndicate keeps paying him.

    Working people are imbeciles, but college educated cartoonists are kings among men.

  5. William Thompson

    Funky’s problems will be solved, late in July, when the contractors get a taste of Montoni’s pizza and suddenly agree to renovate the entire Funkhouse for a double-crust pizza with extra pepperoni. Then they’ll finish the work overnight.

    • ComicBookHarriet

      They eat a Montoni’s stuffed crust, and they’ll be renovating the bathroom overnight.

      And it’ll need a third reno come dawn.

  6. Sourbelly

    Nice panel 3 word zeppelin. Longest, wordiest punchline ever? And when I call it a punchline, I’m not in any way suggesting that it’s funny or clever. It just seems to fit the cadence of a punchline to a joke. (Perd Hapley reference for P&R fans.)

    • J.J. O'Malley

      Maybe “punchline” isn’t the right word to use when it comes to Battyuk’s attempts at humor. A punch is generally something sharp, quick, and precise, whereas today’s panel-three knee slapper overwhelms readers as it drones on towards its nonsensical conclusion (Since when does anyone HAVE to include a child, biological or adopted, in one’s will?). Might I suggest “pummel line” as a possible alternative?

      • Maxine of Arc

        Maybe “…we have to claim them as dependents!” or something might have worked.

  7. Banana Jr. 6000

    So Rachel’s a law student now? I have a bad feeling about this.

  8. Banana Jr. 6000

    This is twice in three days now that Batiuk has laughed at his own terrible joke. Look at that ear-to-ear grin on Wally’s face. You only see that kind of joy in Westview when Batiuk thinks he’s written a funny.

  9. billytheskink

    What a long strange academic journey it has been for Rachel, who was introduced in the 1990s as a college student working at Montoni’s. She’s gone from college student, to flirty waitress, to Montoni’s lifer, to single mother of Robbie/Billy, to 2nd wife of Wally, back to college student.

    First studying art teaching certification

    Then studying knowing the world’s worst immigration lawyer

    And now studying law! And we all give Summer a hard time for not graduating yet…

  10. Mr. A

    After long consideration, here are my thoughts on this strip:


  11. ComicBookHarriet

    There are a hundred better jokes to be had over contractors taking too long.
    Like, “I need to know how long they can be in my kitchen before I’d need an eviction notice to get rid of them.”

    • batgirl

      Even just trimming off the will part would improve it.
      I don’t know, could you make a ‘legally married’ gag for Ohio? I have no idea about the law in the US, but here if a couple live together for a year(? it used to be 5) they are legally married, and that would go for same-sex couples as well. But I’m guessing a gay marriage punchline would be way too edgy, anyways.

      • Hitorque

        You’re talking about “Common Law” marriage, which I think used to be six years here in Virginia…

        About 15 years ago the nutbars up in Richmond decided to ban gay marriage in the state constitution… One of the side effects of doing so was they wiped all the common law marriage protections off the books, even for heteros…

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          And about 10 years after that, Obergfell v Hodges happened.

        • Gerard Plourde

          Common law marriage has been outlawed in Ohio since 1991. Only seven states and DC still recognize it.

          But it does appear that TomBa mixed up that concept with the concept of equitable adoption, which some states recognize for purposes of determining beneficiaries of decedents. But, that said, a contractor returning daily for years to complete a job wouldn’t unify.

  12. Gerard Plourde

    When did Rachel finish her undergraduate degree? And where is she going to law school? I’ll assume that of the three accredited law schools in Northeastern Ohio it’s neither Cleveland State nor Case Western, which leaves University of Akron, conveniently close to TomBa’s home base. How is it that up to this moment TomBa never showed her graduation and never mentioned her career switch. Also, as recently as last fall’s Adeela vs. ICE arc, Rachel was still in college (thanks BTS for showing the strip introducing Amicus Breef).

  13. Charles

    I find it amusing that Batiuk has seemingly forgotten what discipline he had Rachel studying, since he has Funky talking as if her husband has done the same.

    “So THAT’S what she’s been doing this whole time!”

    Anyway, if the classroom that Rachel has been shown going to is supposed to be a law school classroom, holy crap does Batiuk not know anything about professional schools.

    • Gerard Plourde

      It also is clear that he has no idea how adoption works (or Ohio law regarding choice of beneficiaries in drafting a will for that matter).

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      One of the worst things about Lisa (and there are a lot) was how Batiuk just declared her a lawyer as if he was making her a fry cook. Really, this person:

      There’s no way in hell that mousy, unintelligent train wreck became a lawyer. Law school requires intellect, hard work, social skills, oratory, quick thinking, mental toughness, and other traits Lisa never displayed an ounce of. Not that people can’t change, but this would have won an Olympic gold medal in personal growth. To say nothing of her atrocious upbringing, or where she got the tuition money. Of course, we saw none of this happen.

      And now I bet the same thing is going to happen to Rachel. The Amicus Breef shitshow revealed that the cast needs a lawyer, and apparently she’s been selected. Even though her education so far has clearly been undergraduate, she has no shortage of time for Montoni’s and the Valentine Theater, we’ve never seen her crack a book, and she supposedly has a young child. Though to be fair, the kid may be in its 30s by now.

      • Charles

        Thing that’s so weird about his choosing of Rachel is that the dumb third generation has been out of high school long enough that he could bring one of them back as a law school grad. Guess it had to be Rachel because Funky had to talk to Wally about it, instead of, I don’t know, Linda or Cayla or Crazy or someone.

        Amazing that he’d contradict the story he’s already written because he’d simply rather not bring back any of his old characters to play the role he needs. And the weird thing is that from the looks of this punchline, it’s not even going to be a role. It’s just a throwaway aside. It’s entirely possible that Rachel’s law ambitions never once get brought up again.

        • Charles

          Thinking more about it, every kid Batiuk brings back is going to be a fucking teacher, except for Maddie, who’s going to work for Gross John or Funky, and Cory, who’s going to be the worthless asshole son who puts in two hours a day working for his dad’s business.

          Everyone else, they’re teachers or they’re gone.

  14. The Duck of Death

    The word balloon in the third panel is so huge I expect it to burst into flame while attempting to moor at Lakehurst, NJ.

    Brevity is the soul of wit, Batiuk.

    Maybe that’s why your work has neither soul nor wit.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      The lack of brevity is literally the problem here. It’s a simple joke: “the contractors have been in my house so long that they…” But Batiuk drags all these other needless details into it: a lawyer, Rachel being a law student, having to both adopt and inherit the workers, and forcing his prefered Batiukism “reno” down the audience’s throat again.

      And none of these details are right by themselves! Rachel’s not a law student that we know of. Most readers may not even know who Rachel is. A lawyer isn’t even necessary for the punchline. You can’t be forced to adopt people, especially when they’re grown adults. And if you do adopt a child, you’re not forced to put them in your will. On top of all that, Funky’s expression completely in panel 2 is completely different. And most annoyingly of all, the strip pretends to advance the plot but doesn’t. The first panel looks like there’s finally going to be some conflict over the renovation. but it’s just a forced setup for… that. It’s not even not funny.

      • Gerard Plourde

        Spot on on every count! The one constant in FW at this point is that it gives “Can You See What’s Wrong In This Picture?” serious competition in the error department.

  15. Hitorque

    As I noted yesterday, it’s astonishing just how out of touch Funkmeister is with the average workingman… You know, Funkmeister the middle class small business owner living his entire 64 years in a small middle class town in the heart of the quintessential middle class American state of Ohio…

    It’s funny because Rachel has been going to the local JuCo for a decade and neither Batiuk nor SOSF know what the hell her endgame is supposed to be…