How Great Dinkle Art

This is just kind of sad, to me at least. Haha, the church choir ruined the worship service because they were so excited to see Dinkle on a small screen. And I really don’t understand how Dinkle’s whole schtick can be that he’s basically a slavedriver but still somehow everyone loves him so much they’re thinking about him in the middle of singing a hymn. At this point I won’t be surprised when this church is renamed Saint Dinkle’s.
And I’ve probably said it before, but whenever I look at an individual comic strip I assume someone is probably reading it for the first time, especially when it’s a Sunday strip. Unless you read this strip obsessively (and if you do, odds are you’re a commenter here), you would have zero clue what’s going on, who “he” is, or why this is supposed to be funny. Honestly, without any context most people would just assume that this is supposed to be some kind of joke about technology becoming so prevalent even a church choir is distracted by it. Not that actually having the context improves things . . .



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

52 responses to “How Great Dinkle Art

  1. Epicus Doomus

    It’s one of the most vexing things about FW. If you don’t read it every day, you’ll have no idea what’s happening, yet there’s no continuity at all and the timeline of events is always nebulous, at best. So basically he writes the strips for a handful of obsessive readers, who he frequently disregards. He won’t write a strip that “anyone” could immediately understand and he won’t cater to the die-hards either. So who is this for, exactly? I don’t think he even knows.

    • Sourbelly

      I don’t think even he cares. He’s a delicate genius, “too beautiful for this world.”

      • Epicus Doomus

        That’s one of the main things that keeps me coming back…I genuinely don’t know if FW is totally on the level or all just kind of a scam. There’s lots of evidence that supports either hypothesis, but it doesn’t completely prove anything either way. Maybe this really is the best he can do, or maybe he’s been brazenly phoning it on for years, I just can’t tell. And both conclusions open a whole raft of new questions.

        • Y. Knott

          There’s no reason both can’t be true. Brazenly phoning it in may actually be the best he can do.

          • Epicus Doomus

            And that’s true too, a possibility that’s even weirder than the other two. Maybe he thinks he’s SUPPOSED to be phoning it in, in which case he’s actually something of a master craftsman/savant who’s mastered an art form previously unknown to man. It’s not out of the realm of possibility.

  2. Y. Knott

    Yes, it’s sad and more than a little pathetic. Also, I guess this church holds its services on Saturday mornings?

    Elsewhere in the congregation, is the miserable-looking blond kid miserable because for some reason he has the number 4 tattooed on his cheek? Or is the tattoo punishment for being openly miserable, instead of just smirkmoping around like everyone else?

    • Gerard Plourde

      For Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and High Church Episcopalians, January 1 is a religious feast day. For Catholics, attendance at Mass would ordinarily be obligatory, but because it falls on a Saturday in 2022, the requirement is waived. (Another time TomBa’s failure to research has shown up.)

    • J.J. O'Malley

      Nu, so St. Spires is a synagogue? Oy gevalt!

      Or maybe it’s a Seventh Day Adventist congregation? Do they even have saints?

      Is this Saturday? Did the choir biddies really to a person have to watch the parade live and literally wouldn’t know better than to stop in the middle of a song (Gosh, we all know how scatter-brained the ladies can be, amiright)?

      Or is this Sunday, and it never occurred to the choral crones to meet at someone’s house yesterday and watch the fakakta parade as it was being broadcast?

      Regardless, the whole arc made zero sense and showed what a sparkling “I can do whatever the hell I want to get my ‘hero’ spotlighted, logic be damned!” attitude Batiuk has decided to adopt as he marches us down Perdition Road (nowhere near Colorado Boulevard) toward this strip’s golden anniversary.

  3. vince

    what’s odder, that he didn’t bother finding out what day of the week the 1st was this year, or he didn’t bother to research to find out that the rose parade is never held on a Sunday (they move it to Monday in that case).

    • Phil

      Except – why would it be odd? If months ago, an editor or assistant had pointed out these crucial facts, would he have changed anything? That seems unlikely.

  4. Sourbelly

    I guess this is Dinkhole’s “I’m more popular than Jesus” moment.

  5. Banana Jr. 6000

    This is practically the biblical definition of worshipping a false god.

  6. be ware of eve hill

    The congregation is singing “How Great Thou Art” when Dinkle appears on TV?

    Gawd, not very subtle are you, Batty?

    I think Batty has a man-crush on Dinkle.
    Batty: When I grow up I wanna be just like Dinkle! 🙄

  7. be ware of eve hill

    The Bingo the cat video must have been a real windfall. I don’t think I’ve seen the choir wear the same robes twice.

    How about spending some of the money on the poor or fixing up the church?

    • batgirl

      The gospel of the TBverse is not the gospel of Works. The troubles of others exist only to remind the central characters how their own troubles compare, not as something they could do anything about.
      How often have we seen a central character see someone else in grief or pain, only for that central character to turn away without actually helping?
      Neighbours cooked for Lisa/Les during her illness – but Les ignored Bull during his illness. Neighbours helped Crankshaft with his stupid tree burning – but Crankshaft let Mary eat her Thanksgiving dinner alone and went to enjoy his own family meal. Les let Lisa abandon treatment, and abdicated his own responsibility for his little daughter* so that he could suffer nobly and visibly.
      *too bad TB never established Les or Lisa’s parents, aside from her dad (in one strip?) or Les could have dropped Summer off on them and thence down the memory hole, and TB wouldn’t have had to do the time skip.

  8. God? God is a piker compared to Dinkle. That’s Batiuk’s attitude, anyway.

    It just seems so sad that this cartoonist is jumping up and down, happily yelling “They’re paying attention to me! They’re paying attention to me!

    • Y. Knott

      And what’s even sadder … they’re not.

      The actual real-life “parade arc” — wherein a delusional comic strip artist continually writes and posts about his upcoming parade triumph, only to be COMPLETELY unmentioned and thoroughly ignored in absolutely every possible respect by every single parade broadcaster — is one of the most pathetic things I’ve ever witnessed.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Yeah I watched the parade. There was no mention of him or his strip. I could have sworn I saw Batty sitting on the float though, but I really couldn’t get a good look.

        Which is good because this was not about him!

        • Rusty Shackleford

          And over at Comics Kingdom, the first panel is not shown unless you click to enlarge the strip. So most readers will not see the float either save for the blurry one shown in a later panel.

          This is odd because they show the full strip for Mary Worth even if you don’t enlarge it.

        • Gerard Plourde

          The people at the front of the float were directors, teachers and musicians being honored by the foundation. I couldn’t see the group seated on the back of the float, so it’s entirely possible TomBa was there.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            Well if it was him, we will see pictures on his website soon.

          • Banana Jr. 6000

            Or TB will just forget to ever mention it on his website again, just like he memory-holes all of his attention-whoring schemes when they don’t materialize like he wanted.

  9. Banana Jr. 6000

    And once again we see the No Internet Allowed rule in full force. Yesterday I was able to pull up the clip of the real Rose Parade entry, and cue up the band directors’ appearance, hours after it happened.

    I would quip that the Funkyverse hasn’t embraced VCRs yet, but it’s shoved the Dead Lisa tapes and Bull’s high school football tapes down our throats for decades. Video tapes of one’s own past are practically fetish objects in Westview. So why can’t these cackling hens record Dinkle’s precious two-second parade appearance and watch it later somehow?

  10. The Dreamer

    New Years Day, The Tournament of Roses Parade, is on *Saturday* this year Yet back at the church its a packed *Sunday* service where they are watching?! Unless this isnt a church but a Synagogue…

    • Hitorque

      I have no doubt they waited a day just so they could interrupt service and make a big spectacle of themselves in front of a crowd… Because pointing at your TV when you’re home alone with nobody else around doesn’t have the same bite…

  11. Hitorque

    1. Sacrilege… I told y’all from the start that Batiuk would eventually forget this is supposed to be a House of God and everything was going to be all about Harold LeRoy Dinkle, God’s gift to the music profession.

    2. I’d be offended if this was a real church, but this whole setup is just a facade for The Big Dink to display his musical genius for his adoring public… This is nothing but a concert hall venue with props and costumes to make suckers think it’s a church.

    2a. I’m just disappointed the “pastor” didn’t think to cancel services today so all the congregants could ‘worship’ The Big Dink from the comfort of home, or at least have the courtesy to set up the Jumbotron so everyone could watch…

    3. It’s funny because these silly bints in the choir can’t easily be seen by everyone else so they could literally get away doing anything up in the loft when they aren’t singing — Be on their smartphones, watch TV, play cards, practice tai chi, whatever. The only commandment they have to follow is THOU SHALT HAVE AN IOTA OF COMMON SENSE DISCRETION AND NOT CALL ATTENTION TO YOURSELVES! and these idiots couldn’t even do that!

    4. It’s funny because neither the pastor nor the congregation will have the stones to call them out on this bullshittery, and because this isn’t a real church there’s no board of deacons to keep everyone in line…

    4a. It’s ironic because this appalling lack of discipline and basic decorum from the St. Spires Choir is directly the fault of Harold LeRoy Dinkle, the self-annointed “greatest band director who ever lived” in the very comic strip Batiuk thinks is honoring him. But always remember this is the Funkyverse and “accountability” is an alien word…

  12. Dood

    What would have happened yesterday if one of the actual marching band directors in the band directors’ marching band had refused to wear the required attire and instead wore one of their school’s uniforms? Just wondering.

    Dinkle, the martinet nonconformist.

    • The Duck of Death

      A few months ago, I saw a silent film called “The Last Laugh.” It’s a German film about an old doorman who takes great pride in the over-the-top uniform he wears at his job at a very grand hotel. He marches home to his tenement hovel and all the folks in the impoverished neighborhood ooh and aah at the magnificence of the ropes, epaulets, shiny buttons, etc. He gets fired, and worst of all, he no longer has his uniform, the only thing that gave him any pride or sense of identity. He begins a downward spiral, with nothing more to give his life meaning.

      It’s a very German thing, the idea that an impressive uniform in itself makes its wearer worthy of respect. Come to think of it, “Dinkle” is a German name… no wonder Dinkle wouldn’t remove his uniform no matter how much it messed up the rest of the marchers.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      We saw that on the 27th (hat tip to TFHackett):

      This is the same guy who led the Sewell Foundation band. His name appeared in an on-screen graphic in the parade footage I shared yesterday. But he was portrayed positively in the strip. In fact he said “I’m sure you’ll rise to the occasion,” which Dinkle disagreed with, making them practice more. Because that’s Dinkle’s solution to everything.

  13. Hannibal's Lectern

    I prefer not to speculate that St. Spires had a Saturday service, or the choir is watching a replay of the parade. I prefer to take BatYam at his word: it is Sunday, and the parade is still going on. Why not? It seems to have started around Thursday, and only made it as far as the first turn as of yesterday. I take this to mean that Dinkle, having grossly violated the First and possibly Second Commandments, has received his reward (or, more accurately, his just desserts), and will be marching in this parade… forever.

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      You are now leaving the Twilight Zone! Be sure to have a look at the Night Gallery before going home.

  14. Don

    It probably is Saturday; even Batiuk would know that the Rose Parade has never, ever, ever, evereverever, EVER, did I mention ever, “ever” been on a Sunday, and the NFL has nothing to do with this as the tradition predates the NFL, and possibly even college football as well; The Version I Heard Was, the parade predates cars, and somebody was afraid that the parade would spook the horses attached to the wagons parked outside of churches.

  15. Merry Pookster

    Traditonally, The Rose Parade is never held on a Sunday. 2023 it will be on Jan. 2nd.

  16. Perfect Tommy

    Churches are for worshipping Dinkle!

  17. The Duck of Death

    You know, I don’t recall ever once having seen anyone say exactly what it is that they love so much about Dinkle. Not even one sentence. For example:

    “He’s a slavedriver, but he taught me never to settle for less than my best.”

    “The more he forced us to rehearse, the better we got. I learned from that that it’s effort, not talent, that produces results.”

    “I complained when we had to march in rain and snow, but that lesson — the show must go on, no matter what — really served me well in my adult life.”

    Not a peep. Do any of you recall a single testimony to exactly what makes Dinkle “The World’s Greatest”?

    • Hannibal's Lectern

      Remember that “great” can mean “really really good” (as in the sense of “great leader”) or just “really really big” (as in the sense of “great plains”). Obviously, the latter meaning is intended when referring to Dinkle–or at least when referring to his ego.

      • J.J. O'Malley

        As John Hurt’s Ollivander said in the first “Harry Potter” film, “He Who Must Not Be Named did great things! Terrible, yes, but great!” Not that I’m comparing Dinkle to Voldemort, of course; Voldemort was interesting.

  18. Hannibal's Lectern

    I am now back from church, which leads me to some thoughts about how Battocks could have made a good–or at least plausible–Sunday strip featuring Dinkle, the church choir, and the Rose Parade. Our church (Methodist) has a big music program (it is said that the two things Methodists do better than any other church are sing and eat), and so I wondered… what would we do if our choir director had been in the Rose Parade yesterday? My guess: the pastor would have mentioned it in the prayers of the people, treating it as a blessing for which we should be thankful. And, stretching church etiquette just a little, I could imagine the “closing music” (the performance that comes after the benediction and is not technically a part of the service) being a replay of the parade performance on the projection/big-screen video system that’s a part of many churches today. Or, to possibly make it a little amusing, no video screen and so… “every other Sunday, we tell you to silence your phones and put them away during the service, but today… for our closing music, please scan the QR code that’s printed in today’s bulletin…”

    It occurs to me that this whole “Dinkle in the Rose Parade” thing is another example of Batty’s “premise, not story” rule. He put Dinkle in the parade. He had the church choir watch. What more is he supposed to do?

    • The Duck of Death

      That perfectly describes his style. Premise, not story. As I pointed out yesterday, Batiuk’s idea was: Dinkle marches in the Rose Parade. His execution was: Dinkle marches, thinking, “Here I am marching in the Rose Parade.” Done!

    • J.J. O'Malley

      I know it’s almost time for Monday’s FW offering (I can hardly wait!), but I was just thinking about what would have made sense for a Sunday strip wrapping up Dinkle’s SoCal sojourn. Start out with a toss-away look at Harry in the parade, and then cut away to four or five vignettes of the folks in his sphere of influence (daughter Halle and her family, Becky and DSH John, Holly and Funky at home or in Montoni’s, the St. Spire’s old biddies, and maybe the Bedside Manorisms) watching him live on their TVs or computers while the lyrics to “76 Trombones” play above them. Simple, covers all the bases, and I daresay better than today’s mid-service madness. Not to toot my own horn (or sax), but If I could do this in a couple of minutes, why couldn’t Batiuk?

  19. Tom Batiuk is the James Nguyen of the comics page.

    • ComicBookHarriet

      I think, when you look, from far away, that the Dinkle looks like a great band director. I think he looks like a 100 million dollar band director.

      • Anonymous Sparrow

        How about this?

        “From 30 feet away she looked like a lot of class. From 10 feet away she looked like something made up to be seen from 30 feet away.”

        ― Raymond Chandler, The High Window

    • J.J. O'Malley

      “Dinkledemic: Shock and Terror.”

  20. Another point that has been glossed over – The Rose Parade route is 5 1/2 miles long. Are we to believe that Dinkle, who is at least 80 years old as near as I can tell, is merrily marching 5 1/2 miles while playing a saxaphone? Shouldn’t they have the older band directors on the float?

    • be ware of eve hill

      A commenter in another forum pointed out that Dinkle is not wearing a neck strap to support the weight of the instrument.

      An alto saxophone weighs a little more than 4 lbs.

      That sax is going to get mighty heavy after the first quarter mile.

    • batgirl

      There was one elderly gent seated on the front of the float, where the others were standing. He was the only one who definitely looked like a senior citizen – the others looked middle-aged.

  21. Suicide Squirrel

    Comics Kingdom appears to be down. At least for the last hour or so.

    I guess the non-ironic ‘Funky Winkerbean’ fans will have to come here for their Dinkle worship.

    “Oh my, I’m getting the vapors. You should see what they’re saying about our beloved Harry Dinkle!”

    • Suicide Squirrel

      Figures. I make a post about the CK being down and it’s instantly back up.

      The universe never stops trying to make me look like a fool.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        Now you know how Tom Batiuk feels.

        • Suicide Squirrel

          Nah, I get the impression Batyuk thinks he’s one of the greatest things ever to hit the comics page. He sees himself in the company of Charles Schultz and Bill Watterson.

          Batyuk: “Bill Watterson and Berke Breathed were a couple of quitters. They didn’t have my dedication.”

        • Suicide Squirrel

          Batyuk: “Charles Schultz never thought about aging his characters. I was the first one to come up with that idea.”

          Batyuk: “If they let me into the comic book industry I would have been the next Will Eisner.”