March Backwards Right off a Cliff, Please

So Dinkle is commenting on how he’s only seen the parade while marching backwards as a director. Which is odd for two reasons. I don’t think he’s ever directed the Rose Parade, because if he had I can guarantee we would have heard a ton about it this week. And also, as many people have pointed out, this isn’t Dinkle’s first time in this parade. It might be that Batiuk thought “Marching in the parade for the third time, this time with all those other band directors was an amazing experience, Harriet” was too clunky even for him, but I’m guessing he just forgot.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

33 responses to “March Backwards Right off a Cliff, Please

  1. Epicus Doomus

    The thing that bothers me most here (aside from the fact that it’s running in the first place, of course) is how his hat isn’t down over his eyes anymore. That was Dinkle’s thing and without it he’s just another cackling old band director. If you’re gonna bring Dinkle back then do it right, dammit.

    • Dinkle worked much better when he was depicted as an over-the-top caricature of a maniacal band director. It was a huge mistake to try to depict him as a real human being, and this observation pretty much encapsulates the failure of Act II and above. These characters only work as over-the-top caricatures of typical High School characters. When he tried to age them into real people, not only didn’t it work, but the result has been beyond unreadable.

  2. More of this horrible, horrible man. He’s Tom Batiuk’s middle finger, thrust straight at us.

    (Les Moore is both middle fingers, in case you were wondering.)

  3. William Thompson

    I wish I drank, so I could blame a hangover for what I just saw.

  4. J.J. O'Malley

    Oh, no! They’re still in Pasadena! Not another week of Dinkle!

    I’m going to go outside now, sit down on a bench, and wait for tomorrow’s approaching snowstorm to envelop me in its freezing embrace.

    • Y. Knott

      Cheer up….after Dinkle is done with, it’ll be time to check in on Les!

      • gleeb

        I fear that Batiuk has nothing left for Les. It will be nothing but the horrible Atomik Komix zombies until he collapses into the Lake.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          Les’ last appearance ended with him being satisfied with the Lisa movie, not caring that it was a commercial failure, and learning to appreciate what he has. Realizing that there’s nothing left for Les to do would be a positive step. But it’s 50-50 that his next appearance will be in front of yet another crowd at yet another book signing droning about Lisa yet again, like none of that happened. After TB himself got bored with the whole endless, mindless epic, and abruptly burned down L.A. in the middle of it.

          The best thing FW could do in 2022 is NO. MORE. LISA. She’s been dead for 15 years now, 25 in-universe. It needs to stop.

          • Rusty Shackleford

            Now you’ve done it. Both Lisa and Les will be showing up soon!

          • I feel like there’s still a possibility that Lisa’s Story can become a cult classic of some sort. I can’t imagine TB just leaving the movie in a “failed” state.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      Only 84 days until Funky Winkerbean’s 50th Anniversary! You thought this arc was a massive ego wank, wait until the buildup for that starts.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        I can see all the puff pieces in the major newspapers. There goes 2022.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          I think the CTE arc might have poisoned the well for that. TB hyped it so much, and it was such an incoherent shitshow, that I doubt the New York Times is sitting on pins and needles waiting to write about the next development in the Funkyverse.

          Most of these stories will be obligatory, like the Today Show announcing some rando’s 100th birthday. The worst/laziest ones will quote TB himself, and let him ramble on about what a rich storytelling tapestry he weaves. Which he’ll get away with, because journalists are lazy as hell, and nobody’s ever going to read the strip to see if it delivers on these promises.

  5. Sourbelly

    It continues to blow my mind that we are supposed to LIKE this character. Unless Batdick is playing some sort of 5D chess with us.

  6. bayoustu

    I see that Harriet had time during the parade to have her hair dyed.

  7. Lord Flatulence

    Band directors do NOT march with the band. They stand on an elevated platform on the sideline. Further proof of Batyam’s ignorance.

    • Mela

      Our band directors did march in the parades, but not backwards. The drum majors did that as they were the ones actually directing the band, and I think they even turned around and marched forward when only the percussion was playing.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Yes, that is how I remember it from my band days. In some parades we would stop at a designated spot, turn to one side and perform for the crowd.

  8. gleeb

    Oh, Hell, because Old Man Hearst won’t tell me what’s wrong with this.
    To make my position clear, Harry Dinkle is a horrible character. Not only does he depict a horrible person, a person who tortured decades worth of students and that done without remorse but instead pride in marching them in the rain into ponds, and all during lightning storms,he is also depicted as a man who insists that this is what made him the best at what he does. He also sign on as an organist with no intention of plying the organ, takes over the church chorus when it suits him, but blinks at the sexual assault of choristers. And he will not stop toying with the high school band he resigned from leading because he went deaf.

    No, there is no need to add in the endless self-aggrandizement by trying to force his multi-volume autobiography on people, not to mention all the diseased and poisoned foodstuffs. There is no need to mention Claude Barlow. And there is no need to mention his public coercion of sexual favors from his wife because he acquired some damn cupcakes. I’m sure both the US and the Canadian authorities already know.

    And despite all that, Batton Thomas depicts everyone as loving him, or at least being too afraid to thwart him.

    So, yeah, that’s why Harry Dinkle stinks in my opinion. Why does he, in yours?

    (I adjusted “orhan” to “organ” in this. I have tried omitting “sucks” and “sexual assault”)

    • gleeb

      Oh, looking at it now, I think I missed the second use of “sexual” when referring to Dinkle insisting his wife owed him favors.

      • gleeb

        Yeah, that was it. Sorry for inflicting on this place something you can easily and probably did read in another place.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      My view is pretty much the same as yours. I would say that Dinkle didn’t actively co-opt the St. Spires job, but rather that Tom Batiuk did it for. Being the music director was an “oh, by the way” codicil of taking the organist job, which was all the excuse TB needed to write nothing but band director stories for Dinkle.

      Like all of TB’s Mary Sue characters (Les, Batton Thomas, Les, Atomik Komix, Les, John Howard, Les, Les, Les, and Les) the world enables and rewards Dinkle’s worst qualities at all times. Nobody ever tells them they need to stop abusing their band members, stop mourning their wife’s death already, stop droning on about their comic book buying experience in 1957 Akron, stop making lame and derivative #1 covers, or to they need to buy a shirt that has a collar and no Batman logo in it.

  9. Lord Flatulence

    Why does DInkle always talk out of the side of his mouth?

  10. The Duck of Death

    How do you square Harry marching backward with the FW plot, from the very end of 2017, in which Holly found out that Mort had cut a CD with Dinkle as director, and reminisced about her own Dinkle days?

    She revealed that Dinkle had forced the entire band to march backwards and play the music backwards when they marched in the Rose Parade. (1/4 inch from reality, folks.) On Dec 29, 2017, we got this graceful piece of exposition from Funky: “I can’t believe that your band director, Harry L. Dinkle, made you march backwards and play the music backwards in the Tournament of Roses Parade!”

    On December 31, Harry revealed to Harriet that he’d done it so he could replay “the film” backwards and it would show his band as the only ones marching and playing the right way, while every other band seemed to be marching backwards! Ha ha ha!

    There’s a serious musicology question here about how you would play music “backwards” so it sounds right when played forwards, but the more important question is: Did Harry march forwards when he forced his band to march backwards?

    • Dood

      A thousand times this.
      Clearly, continuity is for suckers.
      On a positive, we can check-off surviving Dinkle-the-dipshit’s smirk-take that’s been foreshadowed in the “Son of Stuck Funky” nameplate. I was dreading that one.

  11. be ware of eve hill

    Noooooo! 😱 Not a whole week of Dinkle reminiscing about the parade! Arrrggghhh!

    * whimper *… (weakly) please, Mr. Batiuk… have pity.

    Has Batty ever thought about the commercial applications for Funky Winkerbean? No pest strips? Ground-up as rat poison? A dietary aid (I lost my appetite)? A replacement for the syrup of ipecac? A libido reducer? A tool for interrogating prisoners? A form of punishment?

    Batty could be for the comic strip what George Washington Carver was for the peanut.

  12. be ware of eve hill

    Nice epaulets. You could land aircraft on them.

    Dinkle sure loves the military-looking uniform. So he can play Hitler.

    Westview band was having trouble, what a sad, sad story
    Needed a new leader to restore its former glory
    Where, Oh where was he? Where could that man be?
    We looked around and then we found
    The man for you and me.
    And now it’s..

    Parade time for Dinkle in Southern Cal
    Westview is happy and gay
    We’re marching to a faster pace
    Look out, here comes the world’s greatest!

    * Sung to the tune of ‘Springtime for Hitler’

    Parade time for Dinkle: A Gay Romp With Harry and wife at Pasadena

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      I was born a psycho mess
      and that is why they call me Les!

      Don’t be smart! Fail economics!
      Come and join Atomic Komix!

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      Achtung, baby!

      Not many people knew it, but the Dinkle was a terrific dancer.

      The Dinkle was kind, the Dinkle was good, the Dinkle was…ouch.

      (I’ll be unconscious for a while, Herr Liebkind.)

  13. Perfect Tommy

    I think Dinkle would make an excellent tour guide.
    And we’re walking people, we’re walking……..