Misty Gun Metal-Colored Memories, Of The Way The Gun Was

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Yes, a heavy, pointy toy made of gun steel…this will surely end well.

“What’s this, dad?”

“It’s a spaceship forged from the steel from the gun used to MURDER YOUR GRANDPA!”

“WHEEEE! The spaceship is flying, daddy! It’s flying! It’s flying…OWWWWW! MY EYE!”

One day, sometime in the future, a new SoSF commenter will read a comment about the time Jessica had the gun used to kill her father (John Darling) melted down and cast into a toy rocket ship based on a Phil Holt sketch, and they’ll think “LOL yeah right, like THAT happened”. Like the time Les started climbing Kilimanjaro, stopped, came home, helped Funky name a car, then went back and finished the climb, AND rescued a wayward cat. Or the time he spent an entire week on squirrels. Truth is way stranger than fiction in the Funkyverse.

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Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

82 responses to “Misty Gun Metal-Colored Memories, Of The Way The Gun Was

  1. RudimentaryLathe?

    I don’t want to attempt a comment on the narrative because I literally might vomit to death, so I’m just gonna say that the angle of Duhrin’s arm/hand in P2 is not physically possible.

  2. William Thompson

    That toy looks like it contains more metal than the gun did. Or is it merely as hollow as this story?

  3. That panel 1 image of Dillhole strutting his stuff is unforgivable.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      God, they’re just so proud of themselves, aren’t they? They made an empty symbolic gesture no one will ever be in a position to appreciate, except their own child who will be traumatized when he learns what it is. These are sick, sick, sick people.

  4. Y. Knott

    Clearly, Tom Batiuk’s mental processes have devolved to the point where he has no idea how tasteless and repugnant this arc is. Of course, seeing as he came up with the ‘hilarious’ rape-y Mort Winkerbean arc of a few months back, this is perhaps no longer surprising.

    Clearly, Chuck Ayers desperately needs this gig; maybe for the money, or maybe he just really, really needs to keep busy on something — anything — it doesn’t matter! Only working makes the voices stop!

    Clearly, no-one at King Features edits — or even so much as glances at — these strips before posting them. “Hey, no-one even reads comics anymore … why should we be the exception?”

    Clearly, someone at Kent State must be working feverishly to halt the ongoing publication of The Complete Funky Winkerbean before we get to this point in the strip…

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      Could it be a form of penitence for Mr. Ayers?

      Ye shall work on *Funky Winkerbean* until the end of thy days, and the sweat of thy brow will furnish beverages for AA meetings in all cities, towns and villages in the Buckeye State.

      Selah, selah.

  5. Epicus Doomus

    Skyler was conceived, born and raised in Westview, so of course he’d be into 1950s era sci-fi type stuff, like, for example, metal spaceships that look somewhat like a futuristic Studebaker. I have to admit, though, that the way BatYarn worked that seemingly inconsequential spaceship drawing back into the story was just amazing. Now we just need to find out what happened to the mug.

  6. William Thompson

    This is Funky Winkerbean. No way is that metal done creating terrible memories.

  7. billytheskink

    “You’ve taken something terrible… something that carried terrible memories… and turned it into a toy!”

    Yes, a terrible toy that carries terrible memories. We’re never gonna hear Jess’ mom’s opinion of this oversized paperweight, but we should. Also, I still think it looks like a toucan’s Darth Vader mask.

    • Epicus Doomus

      Think about how this story unfolded. Jessica just happened to see some old JD reruns on Channel One, then, not knowing what else to do, she wandered down to AK, where Chester just happened to know a JD collector. She visited this collector, and while doing so her husband happened upon the murder gun, which Mitchell happened to acquire years before. Then Mitchell somewhat disinterestedly gave Jessica the gun. Not knowing what else to do with it, she carried it home.

      THEN, for the first time in the story, she instantly made a snap decision to melt the gun down and turn it into a toy. No hesitation, no “what do we do with this thing?”, she immediately knew exactly what she wanted to do. Seems kind of, you know, incongruous, let’s say.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        Jessica happened to see some old John Darling re-runs on Channel One, because the station’s password to all their content was stolen in a $1,000 ransomware attack, and this was the only content they owned. Meanwhile, a major Hollywood movie star who was in Westview for his wife’s high school reunion stopped in Centerville and decided to buy an old movie theater (which had already been sold to someone else and converted to a strip club) so he can show “films, not movies” on some 1974 projector.

        This shit is too stupid for words.

  8. Green Luthor

    Although I know it’s not what Batiuk intended, Boy Lisa’s dialogue sounds like it should be delivered with passive/aggressive sarcasm. “You’ve taken something terrible… something that carried terrible memories… and turned it into a toy! WTF were you even thinking, this is insane!”

    (I also can’t help but note that Boy Lisa is saying that Jessica Darling Whose Father John Darling Was Murdered But They Can’t Find The Murder Weapon did all that, even though he’s the one who actually did all the work. I mean, I know misplaced credit is a hallmark of this comic, but still…) (Though again, if he’s trying to distance himself from this lunacy, it kinda makes sense.)

  9. be ware of eve hill

    The scary thing is that Batiuk wrote this schlock LAST YEAR! (allegedly)

    How much has Batiuk’s mental acuity declined since last year? Is he running around downtown Medina wearing a cape and pretending to fly? Is he wearing a tinfoil hat and claiming to be invisible? Does he have an imaginary best friend named “Pulitzer”?

    What is he working on now? I can’t wait.

    ———–
    The King Features content editorial process.
    KFS: What are you working on now, Tom?
    Batiuk: Stuff.
    KFS: Wow. Sounds great, Tom. Keep up the great work.

    • Y. Knott

      In complete agreement. Except I think the King Features content editorial process is closer to:

      KFS: “Funky Winkerbean”? Huh. Is that one of ours? Welp, can’t be worse than “Six Chix”… (Shrugs, hits “post”.)

      • be ware of eve hill

        Especially Tuesday chick. Is that what is supposed to pass for female humor nowadays?

        Tuesday Chick: I have a terrible self-image and I’m always depressed. My life sucks. Ha ha.

        I always read Tuesday Chick when I feel the need to be depressed. /s

        Help me out here. Am I missing something?

        • ComicBookHarriet

          So it’s a retread of Cathy?

          • be ware of eve hill

            I never thought of it that way, but now that you mention it. Tuesday Chick is a goth version of Cathy.

            Neither character has a nose! Dun dun dun!

            I’ve never been a fan of Cathy either. She’s whiny, insufferable, utterly annoying, pathetic and pitiful. I have no idea how that comic lasted so long. The same jokes were recycled for over thirty years. Oh, look, Cathy is trying to find a bathing suit that fits. How many times have we seen that? 200? 300? What may have been funny in the 1980s became annoying by the 2000s. The comic had nothing new to offer after the first decade.

            Cathy even stole Bill the Cat’s catchphrase. Ack!

        • TimP

          Not to go too off topic, but the only part of Six Chix that was reliably great was Ann Telnaes and I don’t think she’s produced anything for the strip in years.

          • LTPFTR

            She’s doing editorial cartoons and animations for the Washington Post, so she probably doesn’t have to mess around with 6C anymore.

    • Dood

      Does anyone else recall the time a few years back when a King Features publicist was tasked with saying something positive about the author and the best she could come up with was, “He’s really earnest!”?

      • be ware of eve hill

        No “He’s a talented writer”? No “He’s a humorous guy”? No “He’s a nice man”? The best they could say was, “He’s really earnest!”? 😂

        Tom Batiuk, earnest? Batty hasn’t been earnest in years.

        Do you remember where you read that? I’d love to see it.

        • Dood

          I want to say it was discussed here or referenced here. It might have come from a Twitter exchange or something like that.

          Billy might remember more details about this.

          • be ware of eve hill

            It was probably Tea Fougner, twitter handle Tea Berry-Blue. She’s the Editorial Director of Comics at King Features. I remember she called Tom “an incredibly nice man” in a tweet.

            Yeah, an incredibly “nice man” who sues at the drop of a hat, including the syndicate he worked for. He killed off John Darling, so the syndicate couldn’t do anything with the strip (not that they wanted to). A thin-skinned man who can’t tolerate any criticism and only engages fans who kiss his ring. He’s a nice guy when you meet his narrow criteria. What a sweetheart.

            I bet on Halloween night, Batiuk calls the cops on the neighborhood kids on instead of giving candy.

  10. none

    “You’ve taken something terrible … something that carried terrible memories … and turned it into a toy! A toy that will be in this house! And we’ll see it every day! So we’ll have a persistent constant reminder of something terrible every day of our lives! Forever!”

    By the way, what happened to his hand in P1? Did his flesh meld with one of the keys there, or what?

  11. be ware of eve hill

    Creating a model out of clay to create a mold for a steel spaceship? Fine for an art project, I guess, but it seems silly to go through all that effort to make a toy.

    Join the 21st century, Batiuk. Ever heard of CAD and 3D printers? Skyler’s new toy spaceship could be made out of lightweight plastic rather than steel. Faster and a hell of a lot easier too.

    But merely creating a toy from Phil’s drawing is not really the point of the exercise, was it? That’s not the ham-fisted point Jessica and Darin (and Batiuk) wanted to make. Take that, you mean old gun.
    Jessica and Darin: We done a good thing. Ain’t we great?

    After all the time, effort and expense I’d love to see Skyler to show no interest whatsoever in this new “toy”.
    Skyler: I wanted a football.

    Of course, Skyler is going to think it is the bestest toy ever made. Because Tom Batiuk said so. Ugh. 😩

    • sorialpromise

      1. Bwoeh, I was concerned that I was imagining your best husky [I attribute the huskiness to your extra 10 inches in height] Chenoweth voice, so I went cold turkey from FW for a couple of days. But I came back tonight…AND THERE IT WAS! But only when YOU do the FW characters. (It is good to know that I was not imagining the voice!) It is so different from the CBH voice. Hers is a soft, frail, dainty, delicate Charles Bronson voice. Like in “Once Upon a Time in the West.” (But in the mandatory Princess Leia outfit.)
      2. Skylar may enjoy the toy. It has a drop down torpedo barrel and a rotating 6 torpedo cylinder.

      • be ware of eve hill

        1.
        My voice is hard to describe. Not too high. Not too low. I think I have trouble singing hymns because I don’t know which part to take. The best way to describe voice is “nothing special”.

        Kristen Chenowith has a charming childlike quality to her voice. Is there a smidgen of a Texas twang?

        Soft, frail, dainty, delicate Charles Bronson voice. 😂
        For some reason, I’m imagining CBH grabbing you by the shirt, pulling you face-to-face and threatening to skin you with a potato peeler.

        2.
        Clever. Love it.

        • sorialpromise

          And now you know why I avoid all potato peelers with a passion!

          • sorialpromise

            Eve, for all you know, I may have been describing CBH’s voice completely 💯% accurately. If I am wrong, may she deny it 💯 times.
            But if I am right, you must send me a CD of you singing 25 of your favorite hymns.

          • be ware of eve hill

            But if I am right, you must send me a CD of you singing 25 of your favorite hymns.

            Just find a Florence Foster Jenkins CD.

          • sorialpromise

            There are CD’s available of FFJ. perhaps you would prefer a different CD of someone you would enjoy hearing on the smallest of chances if I lose?

        • Anonymous Sparrow

          Chenoweth is from Oklahoma, so I think there’s more “Sooner” in her speech than “Lone Star” in her lilt.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      The story always goes where Batiuk wants it to go, especially when it makes no sense. So of course Skyler will thibk it’s the greatest thing ever. And have absolutely no resentment or mistrust of his absentee parents.

      • be ware of eve hill

        As you pointed out the other day, poor Skyler must be grateful for any attention he receives from his parents. He must wake up in the morning wondering to whom he’ll be foisted off.

        Where was Skyler during the Mitchell Knox visit? Spending time with Uncle Phil and Uncle Flash? Too bad Mindy and Mopey Pete were unavailable.

        Question du Jour: Have we ever read anything about Skyler attending school? How old is the rascal now?

  12. J.J. O'Malley

    Gee whiz, just what every 21st-Century Child Whose Age is Somewhere Between Toddler and 3rd Grader wants to play with: a one-color, gunmetal gray solid lead spaceship with no doors, windows, canopies, or moving parts and that doesn’t go with any of his action figures (not that they can fit in it anyway).

    At this moment in the Holy Land, the prophet Isaiah must be doing 360s in his tomb over what’s been done to verse 4 of chapter 2 in his book.

  13. ComicBookHarriet

    This is terrible. So terrible that multiple uses of the word terrible were necessary.

    I love it.

    If you’re wondering if this is a sign Batty has lost it, I think the jury is still out. I mean, remember that this is the man who had a ghost call Les on a courtesy phone in an airport, and once has Les Moore being aggressively seduced by his own depression.




    • hitorque

      1. Wait a minute here…

      God help me, Lester’s self-doubts and imposter syndrome and mopey lack of self-esteem being manifested into a evilly seductive woman is actually a pretty deft and creative twist from Batiuk…? Yeah, it’s kinda “9 Dickweed Lane-ish” but Lester periodically having a metaphorical flirtation or “affair” with this strange (but familiar) “other woman” and his wife being the counterweight and the “good angel” of Lester’s subconscious is… INTRIGUING!! Because it tells us something about Lester’s psyche and adds DEPTH TO HIS CHARACTER and makes me want to read more! It’s the fucking TALKING CAT that’s nonsensical and stupid!! Sorry, it just pains me to see what Batiuk is capable of when he puts his mind to it. He caught a tiny spark of creative brilliance in a bottle and tossed it away without ever recognizing it.

      2. FFS, why is the art so choppy?

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        Act III Batiuk would never allow Les to doubt himself. Les must be 100% correct about all things at all times. He would also never let Les realize that the things he sees are just manifestations of his own insecurities. If he did, maybe Les wouldn’t be on his 25th year of mourning Lisa, seeing her face in every object he comes into contact with.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        re #2, this stuff is clipped from microfiche that was scanned onto the internet, so in a lot of cases there will be the horrible blob blur effect.

  14. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    Ah crap. There’s a clog in the torso chute!
    Another comment in moderation purgatory.

  15. Paul Jones

    What really irritates is that we all know what his response to being told that this is tasteless, stupid, insane and repulsive is to caterwaul about being bullied by what Lynn Johnston called “fungus people snarker-trolls in basements.”

  16. ComicTrek

    I’m even more speechless than before. This is — direful.

  17. The Duck of Death

    “Our menorah? Yes, I know it’s rather ugly, but it was made from melted-down barbed wire from Auschwitz. That’s what makes it so delightful.”

    I don’t think P. Batty has the remotest idea how deranged he sounds.

  18. Hitorque

    1. So… Did Jess tell her mom that she took the revolver that killed her husband and crafted it into a fucking toy??

    1a. Darren and Jess are stockpiling so much bad karma with this stunt, keeping this cursed weapon in their home.

    2. Bravo well done, douchebag… You didn’t even get it painted or detailed so all you have is a bulbous gray mass…

    • Paul Jones

      Jessica can only see so far as Jessica. It isn’t going to occur to her that her mother would have a problem with the thing that turned her into a widow and when the obvious is pointed out to her, we’re going to get all kinds of simpering noise that makes her look even stupider.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        No one in this strip can see past themselves, or ever thinks of anybody’s feelings but their own. Look at Les. Look at Funky. Look at Dinkle. Look at Linda. Look at these two assholes and their crappy homemade toy, for the child they otherwise horribly neglect.

    • gleeb

      He’s a komix artist, so I was assuming he’s going to paint it himself.

  19. Gerard Plourde

    This is definitely a macabre twist on TomBa’s usual modus operandi of having an arc end through his loss of interest. He’s somehow completely clueless concerning the actual reactions human beings would have if confronted with the situation he presented.

    I can conceive that smelting the weapon to make some kind of memorial is possible, combing steel from the World Trade Center to make a navy warship, for example.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_New_York_(LPD-21)

    Maybe Darin and Jessica could have recast it into the shape of a studio microphone and had it added to John Darling’s grave.

    Or they could have taken it to be melted down to alleviate some of the grief that Jessica and her Mom would experience from having that object reappear in their lives.

    My reaction to TomBa’s solution – Inconceivable! (And unlike Vizzini, I think the use of that word is fully appropriate here.)

    • The Duck of Death

      A navy warship is a serious, deadly tool to defend the country from attack, so the symbolism is totally different.

      This would be the equivalent of melting down a piece of collapsed girder to make a cast fire truck for little Johnny, whose daddy went off to work on Sept 11 and never came home.

      The very idea is unspeakably sick and ghastly. What the hell is wrong with Batty? The man’s mind is a cobwebbed catacomb stuffed with death relics to be used in bizarre rituals.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        It’s like Batiuk is trying to mimic that idea, but he gets the details and tone completely wrong. And pigeonholes it into his sick little world of death relics.

      • Gerard Plourde

        Agree completely that the symbolism of USS New York is the direct opposite of what TomBa has done here.

        I have no idea what goes on inside his head.

      • Charles

        What the hell is wrong with Batty?

        His stories honestly remind me of the stories my narcissist brother used to write when he was a young teenager. They were filled with all kinds of weird shit, plenty of “things don’t work like that” and “people wouldn’t respond to the situation like that” and “yeah, that’s creepy as shit, don’t show this to anyone”. And while my brother was writing this terrible crap, he thought he and his stories were fucking brilliant.

        Of course, my brother was 13-15 and eventually grew out of that dumb, appalling stage of his life. Batiuk has no similar excuse.

  20. PrezGAR

    I was afraid that, since 5here hasn’t been anything depressingly morbid in a while, Batty would have Skyler wake up in the middle of the night and find the gun, which surprisingly had one bullet left n it, and we have our first character death since Bull.

  21. Dood

    In a universe where it took Durwood weeks to open a letter, isn’t it remarkable how he crafted a clay model, then located a pattern-making shop and a foundry that would melt a firearm off the street and turn it into a final one-off molded product in just a few days time? Can you imagine the real-world expense of this sort of venture? Man, things must be slow in the Rust Belt.

    Add this arc to the stupid and distasteful bin.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      I want to know how they used the modeling clay as an actual die to pour the molten metal into. My understanding is that dies need to be a little more substantial than thst.

      • firedmyass

        The normal method of casting such a sculpture would be to make a silicone mold of the fragile original. Then use that to cast a version of it wax, which would then be coated in a form pf plaster.

        Then that plaster would be heated to melt out the wax, leaving a void to be filled with the molten metal (usually bronze).

        This would take considerable time and expense. Not to mention finding a foundry willing to melt down a fucking murder weapon to do so.

        • The Duck of Death

          Boy Lisa: “Hi, I have a clay model. I’d like this gun melted down and cast into this shape.”

          Foundry Guy: “No problem. I’ll toss it in with our next batch of carbon steel and –”

          Boy Lisa: “No. It needs to be melted in a fresh, clean crucible so no other steel is mixed in.”

          Foundry Guy: “Sure. We’ve got tons of spare crucibles lying around. I’ll need some documentation on that gun — registration, proof of ownership.”

          Boy Lisa: “It was used to mur– uh, I mean, I can’t tell you. I can’t tell you who owns it officially, how I got it, or what it’s been used for.”

          Foundry Guy: “Sounds good. I love a mystery! Here’s a receipt showing we took possession of the gun to melt it down. Come by tomorrow and we’ll have your model.”

    • Epicus Doomus

      And, after having no plan at all for weeks on end, suddenly they conceive and execute a plan perfectly. Who ARE these people?

  22. Count of Tower Grove

    This is worse than when Skylark whined about that dinosaur he got for Christmas a few years ago.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      I hope he tells his parents to shove that toy up their asses. It’s an extremely selfish gift: it’s from a drawing Durwood cajoled his co-worker into doing (something that annoys professional artists); it’s based on the assumption that Skyler assigns a huge amount of value to this cheap act; it’s really just Durwood and Messica making their own statement; it’s yet another attempt to force crappy 50s sci-fi onto a child; and it’s likely to traumatize the child once he understands what it is. And the transparency of this gesture will be obvious, considering how little they care about the child’s needs otherwise. It is AWFUL.

  23. “You’ve taken something terrible…something that carried terrible memories…and turned it into A TOY!
    “A TOY with hidden sharp edges and a heft like a cast-iron doorstop!
    “A TOY unsuitable for a child!”

    In six months it’ll be in Darin’s collectibles case.

  24. hitorque

    Krankenschaaften:

    1. By “roll up our sleeves and get to work,” my dude naturally means “fuck all over the theater in a variety of ways”… He and the wifey are starting to lose subscribers to their OnlyFans channel and they need some hot new content…

    2. What the hell would Krankenschaaften be celebrating for? All he did was eavesdrop and butt in on everyone’s conversation for two weeks.

    3. Masone Jarre: “I’m gonna buy this crumbling bankrupt old-timey movie theater in the middle of nowhere, Ohio and we’ll show obscure old-timey movies even the MST3K crowd won’t give a shit about, and it’ll the most original, greatest, coolest thing to happen in the history of Western Civilization!! We’re going to be on the cutting edge of Grassroots Geekdom!!”

    Sex-Addicted Crankshaft Couple: “We’re grateful to be managing daily operations at the Valentine again, Mr. Jarre, but since all we know how to do is fuck and the entire theater still stinks like sex, we want to avoid the mistakes which led to bankruptcy last time and could use a little guidance… What’s our business strategy going to be this time around? Are we going to put on any special events or film festivals? How many employees will we be budgeted to hire, and at what hourly rate? What about advertising — Are we allowed to use your name? Are you making any regular celebrity visits to draw patrons in the near future? Hopefully you might bring some of your other Hollywood friends along?? And your publicist will be the one reaching out to all the local/national media and TV networks, right? And what about infrastructure upgrades, because we need a ton of them to bring the building up to code! Not to mention the dry-rotted wood, mold, fire hazards, urine stains, leaky lead pipes, asbestos polyester seats vermin, etc… Oh, and we need to fly in an old-timey specialist to repair and replace parts on the old-timey 16 mm projector since you never checked your hipster nerd boner long enough to see if it actually fucking worked! And then we need your assistance in applying for a liquor license with the Ohio Department of Commerce — Actually, you’ll be filling out and submitting the application yourself since you’re ‘sole proprietor’ of the Valentine and don’t forget the non-refundable $5,000 application fee! And then there’s the-

    Masone Jarre: “GOD DAMN IT THE HELL FUCK SHIT PISS TITS BALLS I SCRATCHED OUT THE SONOFABITCHIN’ CHECK ALREADY SO TAKE CARE OF IT YOURSELVES AND QUIT TRYING TO BURDEN ME WITH USELESS DETAILS!! I’M A BUSY MAN WHAT DO YOU YOKELS WANT FROM ME? DEAL WITH THIS SHIT YOURSELVES AND SORT IT OUT ALREADY! JUST SHOW SOME RANDOM OLD-TIMEY MOVIES AND EVERYTHING ELSE WILL FALL INTO PLACE! YOU CAN MAKE MONEY, YOU CAN LOSE MONEY, I GIVE LESS THAN A RAT’S ASS BECAUSE I’M BORED WITH THIS… I’M DRIVING BACK TO MALIBU SO DON’T CALL ME DON’T TEXT ME DON’T E-MAIL ME, NOTHING!!”

    • J.J. O'Malley

      “Okay, let’s rolling up our sleeves and start looking for that Super 8 print of ‘The Phantom Empire’ that we stashed in the projection room closet, so we can be ready for our Grand Re-Opening Night!”

      Or (and mind you I’m just spitballing here) maybe first you two could roll up your sleeves, pick up your phones, and call up the gang at Channel One, the TV station that–just a month or so ago–was good enough to hire you back after you left to fail at running a repertoire movie theatre the first time, and give them the courtesy of telling them you’re quitting yet again so you can fail at running a repertoire movie theatre yet again!

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        Yeah really. What a couple of ingrates, taking their old jobs back with sweetheart deals and then quitting agaon s month later.

    • The Duck of Death

      The Valentine in Toledo (which looks nothing like Batiuk’s Valentine) started out as a live theater, so perhaps the Centerville Valentine did too. That means there should still be a stage behind the screen.

      Since Mork and Mindy or whatever their names are can’t seem to stop rutting in this theater like boars in heat, might as well put it on the stage and charge admission.

      Gross.

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      To which T.S. Eliot, looking to his poem “Burnt Norton,” would write:

      Go, go, go, said the bird: human kind Cannot bear very much reality.

      Not even a quarter inch away from it.

      I first saw those words in a story in Harlan Ellison’s *Dangerous Visions,* which has an introduction from none other than Isaac Asimov.

      “As funkies to winkerbean physical therapists are we to the Batiuks/they baffle us for their sport…”

    • be ware of eve hill

      Here’s hoping Masone Jarre does to Centerville what Robert Redford did to Park City, Utah. Park City was our favorite place to ski until Redford fucked it up with his idiotic film festival. Why couldn’t the asshole have picked overpriced Aspen?

      • be ware of eve hill

        Whoa. Where did that come from? Who wrote that? 😂

        I think the OP is rubbing off on me. Let’s call it the “hitorque Effect”. 🤟

  25. The best part is that when they tell Grandma, she’s going to start crying and saying things like “OH MY GOD I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU DID THIS!!!!”

  26. William Thompson

    My guess du jour on how this flustercluck ends? Seven Sunday panels of Skylark in space, making zoom-zoom noises while he plays with his rocketship, with his parents beaming in approval over what a good and miraculous thing they’ve done. The last panel shows the ghost of John Darling smiling in approval of it all.

    Bast preserve us, let me be wrong about the ghost. The last time we saw a ghost in this strip, the guy came back from the dead.

    • The Duck of Death

      I dunno. We saw Ghost Tony Montoni last Christmastime and we still don’t know whether he’s dead, alive, or astral projecting from the Retirement Dimension.

      So theoretically he could be, like Generalissimo Francisco Franco, still dead.

  27. Maxine of Arc

    They never reacted to the gun’s appearance as if it were something terrible that carried terrible memories. They didn’t take so much as a strip to process any emotions that might have been associated with it. They didn’t talk to Jessica’s mother about it. They barely acted like it was any different than the station coffee cup.

  28. The Duck of Death

    I just had a horrible thought. What if today isn’t the last we see of this 3-lb steel projectile? What if he finds a way to work it into a future arc in some inutterably ridiculous, yet bland, way?

    Jessica DWFJDWM heaves it at an intruder and saves the family? Derwood carries it to work and it stops a bullet from a mugger? It saves Skyler’s life when he’s about to be carried away by a giant hawk but someone tosses him the thing and it makes him just a little too heavy for the hawk to carry?

    It’s hard to imagine Puff Batty will let go this idea of swords into plowshares after just one measly arc. I just know he thinks it’s Pulitzer gold.

    • Anonymous Sparrow

      Ah, thank you.

      For reminding me of Edwin O’Connor’s *Benjy,* in which a little boy wished that any wonderful things that would happen to him would also happen to his beloved Mummy.

      Enormous birds (perhaps hawks of the future…hey, AK, isn’t that a good title for a comic-book?) carry them both off.

      If you ever get to make a wish from a Fairy Godfather (I think O’Connor knew Johnson’s *Barnaby.* Toot fini is French for “Roger Dodger”), make it so that any wonderful things that might happen to you happen instead to both of your parents…and then rush off to Smiles, Pennsylvania and move in with Daddy Ballou and Sid the Airedale!

      Good coffee for Benjy is scarcely brown at all.

  29. ian'sdrunkenbeard

    I was listening to a very eclectic playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLD87A5E7E95B04EE6

    This song came up with some cool spaceships in it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oz8DcoAA-7U&list=PLD87A5E7E95B04EE6&index=50

    Spaceships, again with the spaceships. Is it coincidence, or a sinister plot?