So your Haiku is stuck somewhere between Chipmunks and early Springsteen…

Hip hip hip hip hip
Today's strip more of the same
It just never ends

Chipmunks to Springsteen
Crazy's music tastes cover

Only now Crazy?
How hip did you feel during
The last 40 years?!

"You can become hip,
Just listen to new music"
- Captain Funkvious

Funky's bald advice
Somehow smartest thing in years
In this comic strip

Funky's silhouette
Recognizably human
Crazy's, not so much

Listening to this
No wonder no customers
Are at Montoni's

Make it stop make it
Stop make it stop make it stop
Make it stop oh please


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

54 responses to “So your Haiku is stuck somewhere between Chipmunks and early Springsteen…

  1. KMD

    Wait…..what? Crazy Harry and Funky graduated high school in 1988, right? When I think of early Springsteen, I think of “Greetings from Asbury Park,” “The Wild, the Innocent and the E Street Shuffle” and “Born to Run.” Maybe “Darkness on the Edge of Town.” All of those albums came out between 1973 and 1978. I simply don’t see Crazy Harry getting into “Nebraska.” So Crazy Harry never listened to music from his high school years? Really? Not buying it, especially if he thought he was cool and hip, a point he has been driving home to Funky and the bored audience all week. TB isn’t talking about a guy born in 1970 who graduated high school–he’s talking about himself. Surprise, surprise.

    • KMD

      Quick edit. TB isn’t talking about a guy born in 1970 who graduated high school in 1988–he’s talking about himself. Surprise, surprise.

    • Y. Knott

      As Springsteen has been a recording artist for almost 50 years now, I suppose anything up to about 1988’s Tunnel Of Love could be considered “early Springsteen”. I mean, that’s still within the first third of his recording career…..


      Tomorrow’s hip wordplay odds chart:

      Hip replacement (5-to-4)
      Hip hip hooray (2-to-1)
      Hip joint (5-to-2)
      Shoot from the hip (3-to-1)
      Hip flask (4-to-1)
      Hip huggers (7-to-1)
      Hips don’t lie (40-to-1)
      Hip cancer (even)

      • batgirl

        I would like to place a small sum on “hip joint” being used to describe Montoni’s.
        Granted, it is perilously close to an actual pun.

        • Y. Knott

          I like your betting strategy: “What’s the worst ALMOST-pun Batiuk could make?” Good luck!

      • The Duck of Death

        Dark horse: Hipnosis
        Scratched: Hippocratic Oath

    • ComicBookHarriet

      I feel like when we got the second time skip, that the graduation date of the Funky crew got pushed back a bit. It’s Simpsons logic. No matter what year it is, it is current year. The time skip didn’t jump them into the future, it altered the past.

      • hitorque

        I always wondered what the hell that intro was about… I thought it was someone trying to be too artsy for their own good, like most of the guest animators for Simpsons Intros…

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        The Simpsons will still be active 8,500 years from now? That checks out.

        • Did the Simpsons show exist in Futurama? If not, they missed a golden opportunity.

          • Banana Jr. 6000

            Yes and no. In an early episode, Fry found some Bart Simpson dolls in a giant ball of space garbage from his time. So The Simpsons did exist in Futurama, but not in the 30th century.

  2. RudimentaryLathe?

    Jeez, last week it was Bob Dylan, now it’s Springsteen. Right now Paul Simon and Billy Joel are probably squabbling over who has to go next, while Lou Reed cackles from the beyond: Haha, show all the contempt for the audience you want, you’ll never troll like I did!

  3. Epicus Doomus

    So Crazy…who has three kids, mind you…completely slept on ALL the popular music of the last FOUR DECADES. He bought “Born To Run”, then he completely checked out, to the point where he doesn’t even recognize immensely popular genres. Uh sure, Tom, that seems, uh, plausible.

    And enough with “hip” already. This isn’t Dobie Gillisbean, ya know. Anyone who refers to “getting your hip back” isn’t going to do you much good in that regard, trust me.

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      If this were “Dobie Gillisbean,” would Maynard G. Krebsklinghorn be the hardest-working man in town?

      Or would it simply be a case of the “G.” in his name standing
      for something other than “Walter,” good buddy?

      Like “Sweatwater,” for instance.

  4. J.J. O'Malley

    Well, the anachronisms of Old Man Klinghorn being into “early Springsteen” have already been dealt with, so let’s look at the other end of his “hipness” spectrum, “Alvin and the Chipmunks.” Seriously? When, exactly, were the Chipmunks considered “hip”? They had two novelty hits in 1958, an animated series in the early ’60s (presumably before Harry’s retconned birth), and a revival cartoon in the mid-’80s (when Harry would have been in high school). At no point were Alvin, Simon, and Theodore really hip, except maybe to a grad-school audience. And thanks to those unsettling CGI/live-action movies of the past 20 years, they can’t even be considered “retro-hip.” How many more times can Batiuk swing for the “hip” fences and miss?

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      How many more times can Batiuk swing for the “hip” fences and miss? Today’s Thursday, so twice. Three times if it’s a particularly bad Sunday strip.

    • I do remember listening to the Alvin and the Chipmunks Christmas album on our Motorola console stereo in the living room when I was in 2nd grade in the mid 60s. Even then it wasn’t really hip any more. I was more into the Everly Brothers “Bird Dog” and Johnny Cash’s “Boy Named Sue”.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      Hey, at least Alvin and the Chipmunks got made into a Hollywood feature movie. Unlike another comic property I could name.

  5. William Thompson

    Their “hip” musical interests are two of the most popular formats of the past half-century or so? No wonder these characters are so boring.

  6. billytheskink

    I still can’t get over Crazy’s silhouette in panel 2. If I had no context of him and his weird Act III hair crest, I’d think Ayers had made a character out of a Rorschach test inkblot.

  7. Sourbelly

    I guess switching from pizza and coffee (mmm-mmm good!) to pizza and iced tea is slight pivot toward hipness.

    Just two more days of “hip” puns. We’ve survived far worse, and will again in the near future, I’m sure.

  8. The Dreamer

    So I wonder if Funky will loan Harry his Kanye West and Travis Scott CDs 🙂

  9. The Duck of Death

    Okay, so Harry immerses himself in currently popular music. I don’t know why, because he doesn’t even seem to interact with his own offspring, let alone any other young people. But okay. Imagine the conversation:

    “Oh, I’m hip, baby. I’m hip. I dig The Weeknd, Olivia Rodrigo, Nicki Minaj, Doja Cat, Dua Lipa. I’m hip to the jive. Groovy stuff, man, groovy. Can you dig it?”

    It’s possibly the funniest concept Batiuk has been adjacent to in years.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      There’s a great Spongebob Squarepants cartoon with this plot. Mr. Krabs is feeling old, and wants to hang out with Spongebob and Patrick to feel young again. This doesn’t work, because Spongebob and Patrick are huge dorks. The ending…. has to be seen to be believed.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        I remember that episode! Had a great song at the beginning. Could apply to almost any Funky character at this point.

        • Banana Jr. 6000

          I’d forgotten that part! But man, that’s FUNNY. It’s the commitment that sells it. It sounds like a real oldies song, but the lyrics are hilariously mean.

          It’s one of the many things Tom Batiuk does wrong. When he has a good idea, he runs away from it instead of committing to it. An old person wanting to be “hip” again is a fun idea, and many good stories have been built from it. TB is just going to do “hip” puns for a week and move to another comic book story.

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      Let us now quote Mr. McGree, from “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School”:

      I’m hep, Daddy-o. I’m into the Ramones.

      I regret that I have only one life to give for rock and roll!

      Hey, guys, you know, people say that your music is loud and destructive and lethal to mice; but, I think you’re the Beethovens of our time

  10. Hitorque

    So this bullshit never had anything to do with being cool or whatever (not that Harold was ever “cool” in his lifetime in the first place)… It’s just a vehicle for Batiuk to squeeze out as many “hip” puns he can think of…

  11. J.J. O’Malley: “[L]et’s look at the other end of his ‘hipness’ spectrum, ‘Alvin and the Chipmunks.’ Seriously? When, exactly, were the Chipmunks considered ‘hip’?

    Circa ’62…

    • The Duck of Death

      I’d actually love it if Crazy Harry decided that no one has ever been as “hip” as the beatniks (arguably true, since previous generations were more likely “hep” or “solid” and subsequent generations “cool”) — and he just went all in for the beatnik thing. I see him with a beret, a cigarette, sunglasses, constant finger snaps, bongo poetry, and of course reefer and booze.

      Next week: Harry smashes the jukebox, declaring it “strictly from squaresville, daddy-o,” and replaces it with a Crosley playing Miles, ‘Trane, and Bird. Thursday: Ruby Lith and Faux-Lee and Kirby visit from Atomik Comix, declaring the music selection “a bit too modern and avant-garde.” “What’s wrong with Rudy Vallee? Now THERE was a MAN! Rrrrowwwr!”

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        It’d be great if Harry did… anything. Any implementation of this plan could be fun to watch. But in Funky Winkerbean, the exposition is the entire story. They’ll just make hip puns at each other for the rest of the week, and then never speak of it again.

        • The Duck of Death

          Of course, it goes without saying that

          a) nothing fun will happen (corollary: actually, nothing at all will happen)


          b) all characters will change ages, histories, and traits as necessary to serve bottom-basement, tired puns.

          It makes you really admire a strip like the Lockhorns, unironically. Whoever writes that has to reject a lot of jokes that occur to them because the traits of the Lockhorns never change. They wouldn’t make Leroy a captain of industry or turn Loretta into a gourmet cook just to serve one single lousy day’s gag. They either have to pitch the gag and dig deeper, or somehow turn it around to make it work with the established characters.

          But Batiuk and his Pulitzer nomination have no such scruples.

          • Banana Jr. 6000


            c) no conflict will ever occur

            There will never be a story where Funky tries to help Harry become hip and it fails, because Harry might… have an emotion. And Funky Winkerbean can’t have that. Everyone must be smirky and detached and in complete agreement at all times.

            And you’re right about Tom Batiuk’s lack of scruples. He has no concept of rejecting any idea that pops into his scary little head. His worst offense was that godawful baseball integration story in Crankshaft. Of course he gushes on his blog about what a great creative process it was, and how it got nominated for the New Hampshire Left-Handed Bookbinders Award for Most Progressive Historical Sports Story In A Daily Comic Strip or some shit like that.

      • be ware of eve hill

        Anytime I see the word beatnik, I automatically think of the Popeye cartoon below. It has become part of a cherished childhood memory. Not because it was good, but because it was so remarkably awful. King Features Syndicate produced the cartoon short. You may make of that what you will.

        On Sunday mornings, my brothers and I would watch a program on one of the local TV channels titled ‘Popeye Theater.’ Most of the Popeye shorts were of the vastly superior black & white ones by Max Fleischer. At least one of the cartoon shorts would be by Kings Features Syndicate. Those were so terrible Bluto changed his name to ‘Brutus.’

        One such KFS Popeye cartoon was ‘Coffee House.’ The synopsis is Hip episode with a square Popeye who goes to the title location and tries to recapture Olive’s affection from beatnik Brutus. This episode was so cringe-worthy that my brothers and I mocked it all morning. We were snapping our fingers, saying “Cool. Cool.”, and calling each other “Squaresville” and “Daddy-o.” We were still going at it after we arrived for Sunday church service. I noticed one of my church friends leaning on the announcements table, laughing at us. She had seen the same episode. She and I did the beatnik routine all the way through Sunday school. During the church service, I would glance over in her direction. If she noticed me, I would pretend to snap my fingers and mouth, “Cool. Cool.” I guess I’ve always been a snarker.

  12. Banana Jr. 6000

    Tom Batiuk is so out of touch, he can’t even write a story about an out-of-touch person.

  13. Banana Jr. 6000

    If Hobbes said during a game of Calvinball that the score was “Early Springsteen to Alvin and the Chipmunks”, that would been legit funny.

  14. Dood

    Is Funky off-gassing in the last panel?

  15. Jimmy

    He better not drag the Tragically Hip into this arc.

  16. be ware of eve hill

    Is it just me or does the “pepperoni” on Crazy Harry’s pizza seem to be moving? 🤢

  17. AngusMac

    I think it makes perfect sense that Harry and Funky know nothing of modern music as Westview’s sole radio station plays only Bach Fugues 24/7 to prepare its listeners to be ready for the grim hand of Baitiuk to strike them down at anytime to service a horrible pun.

  18. robertodobbs

    Born to Run came out in ’75 so that means Crazy is ignorant of the last 47 years of music. And what are “hip exercises?” Who does “hip exercises?” How is that a joke? Where’s the joke here?

    • The Duck of Death

      Once again, I must do the unsavory: defend Tom Batiuk. Well, not really. The whole damn strip is gibberish, slice it how you will.

      However, hip exercises are a thing that you do if you have hip problems or are rehabbing from orthopedic surgery. They’re usually a form of physical therapy. To be fair, it’s usually your hip joint you’re working, not your ‘hip’ per se.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        ‘Hip exercises” is a joke a bot would write. It finds two meanings of the word hip, and applies them more or less correctly. But it misses the mark, because it’s not within most people’s experience. It’s too obscure and specialized. It just confuses the listener.

        • The Duck of Death

          No argument there. Obscure, forced, and dispiritingly unfunny.

          Just pedantically responding to the question about whether hip exercises exist.

          FW readers who happen to be orthopedic surgeons or physical therapists might get it. “HA! It’s like Funky is telling Crazy to strengthen his ileopsoas tendon with a series of progressive exercises using a Theraband! But instead he’s telling him to listen to music…..?

          ….that’s not funny. Wonder what’s going on in Mary Worth today.”

  19. The Duck of Death

    “Hmm… ‘current’ music, you say? I’ve got just the thing!”

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      “Circuit” is another great 80s song that’s been sadly forgotten. Kind of has a They Might Be Giants feel.

    • Suicide Squirrel

      ‘High Voltage’ by AC/DC.

      Here Harry. Bite into this electrical cable.

  20. The Duck of Death

    “Or did you mean ‘currant’ music?”

  21. Chester the Dog

    Wait ’til they start using Debby Boone as a reference point.

    • batgirl

      Nah, she’s a girl. Remember Harry getting all bent out of shape because the music algorithm had suggested a female artist to him (I thiiiink it was Buffy Ste-Marie? Anyway, someone who had performed with Led Zep members).

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      The Rock-o-meter from “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School”:

      The Rock-o-meter: [in ascending order of loudness] Muzak – Pat Boone – Debbie Boone – Donny & Marie – Kansas – Peter Frampton – Foreigner – Jethro Tull – Led Zeppelin – Ted Nugent – Rolling Stones – The Who – Ramones

      For what it’s worth, Debby Boone sings Rodgers & Hart songs very well.

  22. Suicide Squirrel

    “Okay… so your hip is stuck somewhere between Alvin and the Chipmunks and early Springsteen…”

    Huh? What the heck does this even mean? Play your Springsteen LPs at 45 RPM?

    Sorry, Funky I think your head is stuck up your…