S.S. Skyler

Link to today’s strip

An artist can’t really draw horses that don’t look like donkeys. That’s today’s joke, and that’s just about all there is to today’s strip, apart from the fact that Skyler is already going bald. That seems to happen super early to just about everyone in this strip, but even by that standard Skyler seems pretty young.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

45 responses to “S.S. Skyler

  1. William Thompson

    And Batiuk’s characters all end up looking like jackasses.

  2. Epicus Doomus

    Oh, cool, some wry comic book factory banter between the rarely-seen Flash Fordmail and Phil (Used To Be Dead) Holt. First Rolanda, now this delightful surprise. Why, perhaps someday he’ll do an entire arc about Flash and Phil. Imagine the potential there!

    I think I see what’s going on here. Jessica is looking for some John Darling (her father) memorabilia, so instead of calling or just asking while he was working at AK, Boy Lisa loaded up the family and took a needless drive over to his comic book mill, where one of those sub-cretinous imbeciles will have a line of some sort of John Darling (Jessica’s father) swag. I would assume it’ll probably be some amoral, greasy, scummy collector, or maybe just Chester. Either or. Gee, I wonder if she’ll get the memorabilia or not? Sigh.

  3. Banana Jr. 6000

    So Phil Holt can’t draw horses? Well, that’s interesting. How the hell was he going to work on Prince Valiant then? Seems like a skill he’d need for that gig.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      I just realized something. Phil Holt’s drawing that was supposedly used in Prince Valiant had a horse in it. Here’s the real strip it was based on:

      Only the head is in view, but it’s definitely there.

      Wouldn’t this detail have been much more fun in that story? “I was going to become the lead artist for Prince Valiant, except for one thing.” Then won’t admit what it is, and is finally forced to say “I couldn’t draw horses.” Complete with a majestic pencil drawing of Val bravely charging into battle… riding on a badly drawn donkey.

      That could have been legit funny. And made the whole story worth telling.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        I mean… the horse head could defs be a mule instead!

        But yes… wouldn’t it have been clever for Batiuk to establish these characters with consistent histories and quirks before he just started haphazardly using them wherever, whenever, and however he felt like? Too bad, guess he was so busy breaking comic rules he accidently broke writing rules instead.

  4. RudimentaryLathe?

    Last December Skyler appeared to be about 4 years old physically and 2 years old mentally (even though the last-to-last time we saw him he looked & talked like a bratty 6 year old). Today he looks about 8 (though still barely verbal).
    I don’t think aging the characters is quite the flex Batiuk thinks it is.

    • none

      Flex? Nope, can’t. More like won’t. Why should he, really. Who’s going to make him? You? Us? Anyone? Hah.

      Flux? Plenty of that. Endless supply. Yesteryear weaves in and out. Everyone is an amoeba. The only shape that’s relevant is what’s needed for today’s strip.

  5. billytheskink

    Dropping his work to go off on a tangent at the first excuse? Phil is a great fit at Atomic Komix.

  6. Y. Knott

    Emergency! Emergency! Funky Winkerbean hasn’t actually had a comic book reference for over a week! Must deploy some Atomik Komix characters to ensure core mission is not compromised!

    Whew! That was the scene just one short day ago! But thanks to the good people at ComixAlert, another potentially disastrous Comix-related problem has been avoided!

    Remember, if you’re a comix artist whose core mission is to repeatedly chronicle the pointless but extremely specific nostalgic obsessions of one sad old man — and in the most boring, jumbled and continuity-averse way possible! — you can always count on ComixAlert to keep your comic on track! Current satisfied customers include Tom Batiuk of Funky Winkerbean fame, and Brooke McEldowney of 9 Chickweed Lane.

  7. Back to COMIX!!!!!!!

    Where we learn that Philled Hole is the shitty artist we always figured he was, and Phord Phairlane (or whatever he’s called this week) still has nothing interesting to say.

    I can’t wait to hear the devilish witticisms Chester Hagglemore has in store for us this week! Laffs ahoy!

    • Rusty Shackleford

      I’m so bored with this arc I went over to the original StuckFunky page to laugh at those ham fisted stories Batty was churning out during what he considers the strip’s golden age. Pulitzer worthy indeed!

  8. sorialpromise

    1) Considering it’s competition, today’s dialogue seems pretty natural. Smooth flow. Realistic. That will probably stop tomorrow.
    2) Flash’s comment (What is his last name again?) about Phil can’t draw horses, does happen. If you haven’t already, check out 1800’s Native American artist George Catlin. Magnificent! Except he couldn’t draw animals to save his life. But people? There was no one better. [I worked on an adolescent mental health hospital. I brought in a book of Catlin’s work. I showed the kids, and one started crying. Catlin had drawn a man holding a prayer board. She said, “My grandfather has that exact same board.”]
    3) I went to the FW Blog. What a mess. Useless menus. Two together upper right hand, both were blank. I found Batom Comics history part 9. No link to the first 8, if they exist. I went to the search, and typed Batom Comics. All I got was “no results found.”
    4) Personal note to be ware of eve hill:
    I am going to the Friday night session of my 50 year reunion. You are kinda responsible. But even better news: Thursday and Friday, Mrs. SP and I are having the grandkids over for their FIRST sleepover. We are so pumped!!! I hope your end of the month phone call went super.

  9. William Thompson

    Would a modern-day kid really ask for a drawing of “a spaceship”? Wouldn’t he be more likely to ask for a TIE Fighter, the Dark Aster or a Dragon capsule? If an artist had asked me that question when I was eight, I’d have said something like “a Vanguard rocket” or “Faith 7” or “a Block 2 Ranger.” I know I’d never have settled for whatever V-2 knockoff Skyler is likely to be shown.

  10. Charles

    I think Batiuk’s forgotten that Dorkin actually works at Atomik Komix; otherwise why would he be walking in with Jessica and that dumb kid while Phil and Flash are working? Bringing back Phil Holt from the dead and pairing him up with Flash to work at Atomik Komix really was about displacing Mopey and Dorkin as the creators, huh?

    Batiuk must really hate focusing on the lives of any of his characters under the age of 65.

    • Green Luthor

      Oh, please don’t call him “Dorkin”. There’s an actual comics creator named “Evan Dorkin”, and he’s way too awesome to be associated with anyone in this comic. (He’s the creator of the comic book “Milk & Cheese”, the adventures of a sentient carton of milk and wedge of cheese. Together, they… well, mostly get drunk a lot, watch terrible TV shows, and commit random acts of gratuitous violence. It’s not particularly deep, but it also never pretends to be. And it’s HILARIOUS.)

      • Charles

        Probably not going to matter, seeing as how now that Batiuk’s got Flash and Phil in place, we’re hardly ever going to see Dopey and Mopey again.

        He might remember to get Mopey married, but Dopey seems destined now to be a forever background character.

  11. Tom from Finland

    I wonder if Jessica will ask Phil to draw a ”memento” of John Darling, her father who was murdered or if she wants some instructions how to raise the dead.

    • Green Luthor

      “Okay, here’s the memorial picture of your dad, John Darling Who Was Murdered.”

      “Did… did you have to draw the exact moment he was being shot dead?”

  12. Anonymous Sparrow

    Maybe we’re supposed to think of the Silver Surfer.

    As Stan Lee tells it, while he was working on the Galactus Trilogy with Jack Kirby, he noticed a character on a surfboard flying through space. He asked Kirby who he was, and Kirby said that someone like Galactus wouldn’t just show up: he’d have a herald who’d scout out worlds for him to devour.

    Lee conceded the point but asked why the herald was on a surfboard.

    “Because,” said Kirby, “I’m tired of drawing spaceships all the time!”

    If Phil Holt’s horses look like donkeys, maybe he should have tried to adapt *Don Quixote.* He could have given us the definitive Dapple (Sancho Panza’s donkey), if a reprehensible Rocinante (Don Quixote’s horse)

  13. Dood

    The comics must flow.

  14. Banana Jr. 6000

    On Tuesday, we saw an old woman shed a wordless tear as she saw her long-ago murdered husband on television, an incident caused by a ransomware attack on a TV station. On Thursday, we’re back in the comic books bullpen. You almost have to admire Tom Batiuk’s efficiency at turning every single story into the things he wants to talk about.

  15. anneki

    The new Komix Korner blog is so, so bad, I assumed that my Chromebook was messing it up. Then my iPad couldn’t deal with it either. I’m starting to wonder if maybe the Komix Korner blog just sux. There are so many things wrong with it I may not remember them all.

    1. The top banner jumps around as you scroll down the page.
    2. The text runs over graphics in a way that’s hard to read.
    3. I’ve never gotten the spinner rack to spin — has anyone else? (There is an ILLUSTRATION of how to spin the rack which looks like it is supposed to *be* the spinning rack. Like, why wouldn’t anyone just put the instructions next to the thing itself? Oh, we can duplicate information needlessly and make the navigation more clumsy? Swell! )
    4. When you type in the search box, you get black text on a black background. Just great.

    On top of this, I just noticed that in the self-portrait of TB that dominates his “blog” page, he is holding the strip where Les talks to Lisa on her hospital bed about jumping in the leaves, the day before the mime/waiter shows up to take her to the underworld. Sigh. Just in case we might have forgotten why TB is famous and revered.

    “Komix Thoughts” — not so much a “blog,” as a “glob.” Similar to a blog, but with the elements rearranged to make a big mess.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      The “spinner racks” also have random images in them now, when it should show only the comic book covers.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      It works poorly on my iPad. I suspect Batty thinks it looks great on his antiquated desktop. Batty would never consider making it accessible to mobile devices.

      To be honest, I’m surprised he has an online presence at all.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      On top of everything you mention, Batiuk is now re-running old blog posts as new ones. Today and Tuesday’s posts were both seen on the old blog weeks ago. Their presence on the new site doesn’t mention they’re repeats.

    • As bad as Batiuk’s old site was, at least it was navigable. The new site’s a wreck. Here are a couple screenshots of the mobile experience:

      The top banner not only moves around as anneki noted above: it’s chopped off at either end. For some reason, there are two “hamburger” menus (☰), neither of which works. In the screenshot on the right, the image of the book cover forces the text into a column about six characters wide.

      The spinner rack on mobile doesn’t spin. It does work on desktop if you can spot the left and right arrows, which are black on a dark gray background. And there’s a stupid typo on one of the navigation buttons.

      The whole thing looks like it was designed by an amateur, without benefit of user testing or quality control.

      • sorialpromise

        Considering that we are the target audience for his blog, it sucks! There is search (sometimes), but on my iPhone it is only black and the letters do not show. I eventually figured it was working, I just could not see what I was typing. His website needs a major overhaul.

        • Rusty Shackleford

          Yep, this is what I was talking about above. It is unusable.

          He had his son or some friend from Luigi’s do the work as he is too cheap to pay for a proper website design.

          • Banana Jr. 6000

            I wonder why he even bothers. I suspect the syndicate makes him maintain one. Which he uses to blather about comic book covers, The Flash, 40-year-old John Darling strips, the lame photos he takes for stories, and things that stroke his ego, like the Rose Parade thing. Never says a word about ongoing stories, or anything a reader would want to know.

  16. Banana Jr. 6000

    Regarding the “Mason suddenly wants to buy the Valentine theater” arc running in Crankshaft:

    The empty building still has the Valentine name and movie theater adornments, even though it’s since been bought by someone else and used for a completely different purpose. If this is a “bring back the theater” story, shouldn’t we see it in its non-theater state for awhile? Before it can come back, doesn’t it have to be gone first? Wouldn’t it be a stronger narrative to see the shuttered, unadorned building before it is restored to its former glory?

    This is how extreme Batiuk’s conflict aversion is. He can’t destroy the theater, even when the story is about destroying the theater. Same as Lisa. Same as John Darling. He wants to beat you over the head with melodrama, but he can’t let what’s lost actually be lost for even a minute.

    • J.J. O'Malley

      Yeppers, investing in a failed rep cinema in a small Ohio town sure sounds like a fine place to put his “Starsux Jones” money…especially as this morning’s CS runs a day after the company behind Regal Cinemas announced it was filing for bankruptcy.

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Batty has zero understanding of basic economics. He probably thinks it is because of greed that the old theater is closed down. He never considers that most people have taken their dollars elsewhere and prefer to watch in the comfort of their own home. Ah but Batty prefers the theater experience and that is all that matters!

        Sure others like the experience too, but obviously their numbers are dwindling, hence why theaters aren’t making a lot of money these days. Don’t believe me Batty? Regal Cinemas filed for bankruptcy today.

    • sorialpromise

      I predict the new Valentine will set profit records. Masone will proudly display Les’s well-deserved Oscar. Masone will contribute all the profits and expenses spent at his cost and give it to the dead St. Lisa Charity. Les will win the Humanitarian Award.

  17. Maxine of Arc

    I don’t hate this strip in isolation. It’s kind of cute and uses established characters in a reasonable manner.

    However, the fact that we’ve gone from “memento of my murdered father, John Darling, my father who was murdered” directly to Atomik Komix fills me with dread and loathing in roughly equal measure.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      It would be fine, if these characters had any reason to be in the story. It’s more of Batiuk’s transactional storytelling.

      The Story Of The John Darling Memorabilia: First, Jessica saw an old tape of her father John Darling on TV. Then she decided she wanted some memorabilia or him. Then she called her mom, who said she didn’t keep any mementos because it’s too painful for her. Then they went to Atomix Komix, presumably to find a lead on acquiring the John Darling memorabilia.

      Tomorrow, Chester will give them the lead. Saturday, they’ll decide to pursue the lead. Monday, they’ll get in the car and drive to where the lead is. Tuesday, they’ll approach the front door. Wednesday, they’ll knock on the door. Thursday, someone will answer. Friday, Jessica and Durwood will say to that person “we’re looking for John Darling memorabilia.” Saturday, that person will do something cryptic, because we need a cliffhanger going into Week 3.

      Funky Winkerbean is like watching deleted scenes on a movie DVD. Because this is the stuff that gets deleted: banal conversations that don’t advance the story, reveal no information, serve no narrative purpose, and simply don’t need to be there.

      His book reports about The Flash are all like this too:

      A creation called Colonel Computron (a battlefield promotion by Bates there) escapes from the device and tries to turn WW into a digital image on a computer screen. He’s saved by the Flash who jumps in front of a blast intended for Willy and gets zapped into the computer instead. We get to see some nifty Infantino images of the Flash as a pixelated computer image, but, ever resourceful, Flash manages to escape by altering his impulse frequency. However, by that time Colonel Computron, like Elvis, has left the building. We’re left with an unresolved ending as the disgruntled mad genius breakfasts with his wife and the words “The end for now” appear in a caption box.

      This happened and then that happened and then this happened and then that happened. It’s just a rote list, punctuated only with Batiuk’s opinion of the creators.