Process of Elimination

In a rare, lucid moment, Crazy Harry realizes that it’s unwise to leave laying around a helmet that makes you instantly pass out when you wear it. Donna’s already decided to discard it, which she proceeds to do, most carelessly. With only one day between today’s strip and what will likely be a random Sunday standalone gag, it’s a safe bet we’ll see someone happen along and pick that helmet out of the trash…unless they’re too grossed out when they spot the used condom laying next to it.



Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

25 responses to “Process of Elimination

  1. William Thompson

    This strip would work a lot better as a Sunday offering. That would give Donna the chance to return to the past, grab the 1980 incarnation of the helmet, throw it in the trash and cause this whole arc to vanish in a paradox.

  2. billytheskink

    Clearly Donna never wore one of those old ecology buttons…

  3. Epicus Doomus

    Dear Mother Of God, that is an absolutely grotesque little detail, regardless of whatever it was supposed to be. Anyhow, it’s very Batiukian how the helmet is both a nostalgic relic of Donna and Harry’s glorious youth and a completely meaningless piece of junk, all at the same time. It’s been the center of the story for a month, and it ends with it being unceremoniously dumped in the trash. It’s everything, yet it’s nothing.

  4. Sourbelly

    I’m starting to truly admire Ayers’ lack of effort. It’s totally righteous, given the dogshit material he has to work with.

    Panel 1: Donna’s minimalist face.
    Panel 2: Donna’s T-Rex arms

    And there’s my minimalist review for today.

    • Y. Knott

      Yup. I’ll defend Ayers all day on this issue. He is putting in far more effort (i.e., any effort at all) than the material he’s been given to work with deserves.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      I do get the feeling that Ayers puts passive-aggressive little details into the artwork. Because there’s just nothing else that can be, unless we’re supposed to believe it’s an old bicycle tire. Maybe Ayers watched The Blues Brothers recently.

      • Gerard Plourde

        “ the used condom laying next to it”

        There really is no other thing that I can think of that it resembles. Its prominent placement in the panel is interesting too.

  5. Ray

    Yep… reservoir tip and all.

  6. Hannibal’s Lectern

    Prediction: tomorrow will feature no dialogue (Tom’s writing at its finest), just three panels of the trash can. In the first two, the helmet just sits there. In the third, it’s gone, replaced by a “BLIP” sound effect.

    Time travel story cliché 76b.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Were you looking at tomorrow’s strip?

    • Epicus Doomus

      If I told you it’s even dumber than that, would you believe me? I know you would.

    • William Thompson

      You mean he can’t even bother with cliche 76c (a time traveler appears from the future and grabs it, exclaiming “My old twonky!”)? Yeah, working his way that far down the list would be too much for Batiuk.

  7. Banana Jr. 6000

    Again, what even happened here? They were all in the room when Harry had his time travel trip. The art showed him getting up from the floor with the helmet on, The workings of the helmet aren’t a mystery when everyone saw it happen! But that’s what Batiuk wants, so that’s where the story going, with no regard to its own exposition.

  8. Perhaps the conclusion of this arc should be one of two things:

    1. Crazy reports to work at the Komix Korner and sees the comic book that he left on the park bench framed and hanging on the wall.

    2. Crazy reports to work at the Komix Korner to find that it is now owned by Chester Hagglemore, and we learn that DSH is the guy who lives in the mansion and owns Atomic Comix.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      In my version of the story: Harry successfully takes the comic book to the future.. but leaving it on the bench for John to find is what created the good future Harry was already living in. Keeping it for himself gets him the money he wanted, but turns his life into a Pottersville-like hellscape.

      In this future, comic books become so insanely valuable that only the super-rich can afford them. Chester Hagglemore benefits the most, and is obsessed with owning every comic book in Westview. Harry has to sell the book to him, gaining him a fortune, but he has nothing to spend it on. Because he was the only one in Westview with money, Chester also started Montoni’s instead of Funky, and refused to spend his comic book money to get that dumb video game. So The Eliminator was never created and Harry never met and married Donna. Atomik Komix and Komix Korner were never started, so there was no place to hire Harry when he lost his postal job. Starbuck Jones never found an audience because no one could afford to read it, so no movie was ever made. No one has any comic books they can sell to raise money, so Westview suffers from massive poverty, unemployment, and depression. The high school music program folded because no one has any money to buy Dinkle’s products. Harry is shown by his guardian angel Phil Holt that he has preserve the future by leaving the precious comic book in 1980.

      That could have been fun.

  9. Banana Jr. 6000

    With not much else to talk about, let’s dive into this week’s The Flash comic book review. It’s a showcase of TB’s hilariously bad writing.

    I know what you’re thinking… this is one shocking Flash cover. No, I’m not talking about seeing the Flash making out with the Golden Glider aka Lisa Snart. I’m talking about the sticker shock of seeing that DC was now charging 60 cents for their comic books.

    What kind of rude prick starts a conversation by telling me what I’m thinking, and then tells me I’m thinking wrong?

    I realize that in the age where a current issue of The Flash sets you back $3.99, 60 cents seems like quite a bargain

    I don’t spend a lot of my time pondering the prices of things that cost less than a bag of Doritos. If I want one, I just buy it. To the extent I do ponder it, the well-understood concept of inflation accounts for most of the difference between what things cost in 1981 and what they do now.

    if comic books were still 10 cents, $3.99 would probably buy me the entire DC line for this month

    That’s less than 40 comic books. Even at $3.99 each, that’s only $160. Not a huge expenditure.

    (Don’t try that in your comic shop BTW).

    What? Why not? Don’t they WANT to sell me comic books? Isn’t that their job?

    as Stan would say: “Before you think you happened onto an economics lecture, let’s get back to seeing what the Flash is up to in this issue!” (Stan always used a lot of exclamation points).

    He used one?

    So the story opens with Barry finally revealing to his dad dad? that he’s the Flash

    That’s not how you do a strikethrough joke. The idea is that you started to say something, but changed it to something else. Usually something more polite or neutral. Just adding a question mark to the same word doesn’t enhance the meaning, and doesn’t make the meta-joke about what you changed your mind from. This also isn’t how editing marks work anyway. If you want to convey to the reader that something is ambiguous, you can just tell them that.

    Except that we know that his dad isn’t really his dad. He’s Roscoe Dillon aka the Top!


    Okay, I let that slip didn’t I?

    I don’t know, did you? You went from “dad” to “dad?” to telling us it’s not his dad to saying we already know it’s not his dad to acting like you shouldn’t have told us it’s not his dad. Your writing is so bad you can’t even spoil endings coherently. It’s not that hard!

    The Top inhabiting Dr. Allen’s body is impossible (and) The Top is dead. However, we’re three hundred and two issues into this project, so nothing should really surprise us anymore.

    No, but your re-tellings are so bizarre that they could make it surprising.

    (This) leaves us with some questions yet to be answered. How does the Top pull off the trick of taking over bodies? And what happens to the person who was the previous inhabitant of that body? And why does the Top look so old and say that the Flash killed him (accidentally) in the prime of his youth?

    You just said “nothing should surprise us”, so why do these things surprise you? If you want to say “it’s a kid’s comic book and the writing doesn’t have to make perfect sense,” fine, say that. Don’t half-say it and then take the opposite position in the next sentence.

    why does the captured Golden Glider tell the Flash to enjoy the triumph of catching her while he can?

    Because it’s a standard thing comic book villains say when they get caught. You’re reading way too much in here.

    The editor Mike Barr says in the letter col

    Define at first use. You also never told us who “Stan” was.

    that everything wraps in the next issue

    So why did you wonder what “enjoy catching me while you can” meant? Whatever it is, it’s not going to be too long of a story, and the editor wasn’t worried about keeping it secret even then. You could have just said this, and skipped the phony-baloney cliffhanger.

    so it appears that we’ll all find out together in the next Flash Friday.

    Will we? I’m sure you’ll have a lot to say about it, but whether or not I’ll understand what happened is an open question.

  10. Charles

    Batiuk can claim it’s from a different source all he wants, but that helmet’s definitely a non-green-painted Martian helmet from Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. Perhaps his inspiration was inspired by that.

    Anyway, I’m sure we’re going to get some preening, comic book-adjacent story in the future about climate change and how terrible all the people in the world are for letting it get this far and being indifferent to it and everything, and yet not one word will be mentioned about the overflowing trash from the Klinghorns’ bin. It’s so bad that they’re violating the rules that the sanitation company has regarding their bins. What the hell is that family doing that’s producing that much trash over one pickup cycle?

    • robertodobbs

      Wow I haven’t thought about SCCM in a long time; it was an MST3K favorite of mine. Worse than the supposedly “worst” movie Plan 9 from Outer Space. But the worst of all time film hands down was “Monster a Go Go” from ’65.

      • Gerard Plourde

        Haven’t you ever seen “Manos: The Hands of Fate”? At least SCCM has a plot. Manos makes TomBa’s plots look Shakespearian.