To The Bore-a-torium! And Step On It!


Real impressive snowplow there, Pulitzer (nominated once fifteen years ago, did not win) Boy. That thing looks like a death trap. Given the five months of total whiteout blizzard conditions in that town, you’d think they’d have a few real trucks. And why is Cayla screaming? Les is going to totally ruin his $1500 car by plowing through that snowbank. And for what? Christmas jazz played by elderly dementia patients? Bah, humbug, I say. Cayla’s reaction is all out of proportion to what’s actually happening here, which is a whole lot of nothing.

Great Moments In FW Arc Recap History

March 1-7, 2020
Dinkle shares with Becky that he has been reading a book about squirrels.

The instantly forgotten, one week, totally random arcs, now those were the real challenge. Anyone can snark on Bull dying or Marianne getting cancer while playing Lisa in a movie, but the arcs like these, those were the ones that put you to the test. By Wednesday you’re totally out of squirrel and/or nut puns, but there’s a post to do, and you gotta come up with something. And it’s tough, because Becky and Dinkle are still talking about squirrels. Every SoSF guest host, and the regular commenters too, know exactly what I mean. Sometimes it was like he was daring us to just give up and stop reading the strip altogether.


Filed under Son of Stuck Funky

109 responses to “To The Bore-a-torium! And Step On It!

  1. My early Christmas present to you all:

  2. Also, it’s a bit maddening to realize that all those punchable Les faces weren’t drawn by Batiuk, but by Chuck Ayers. I mean, what is a Les-Hater to do?

    • ComicBookHarriet

      Maybe Ayers made them punchable because he hates Les too.

      And Batiuk inked it. He confirmed each of those lines with his black pen. He thought to himself, “Yes, this is an appropriate facial expression for my hero and avatar. Good job, Chuck.”

  3. Nice to see another forgotten character (Keisha?) make an appearance. The million dollar question – Do these people have any idea where Summer is, and do they even care?

    • Cheesy-kun

      This is why I was asking about cell phones in this strip. Summer’s staying at Les & Cayla’s house, Keisha is visiting (?), and they just up and left for the concert without confirming Summer’s whereabouts? Les did not call to ask if they should pick her up somewhere?

      A lot of nothing made possible through a convoluted series of non-step.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        “Uh, yeah, Dad. No, no need to pick me up on the way any more I caught a ride to Centerview. I’ll meet you there.”

        “With who? Yeah, I’m in a van with Mort Winkerbean and–”

        “Dad? Dad? Are you screaming? Why do I need to get out of the van? What’s wrong with vans?”

        • The Duck of Death

          More like,

          “Hello, Dad — I’m freezing out here by the old pool. As long as you guys are heading for the concert, can you pick me up?…. Hello?…. Hello, are you there?”

          “Who is this? Lisa? Lisa! Lisa, is that you!? Lisa, are you calling to warn me that the brake line is cut? Are you coming back to me, Lisa?”

          “….Dad, no. Dad, it’s me, Summer.”

          “But Lisa, it’s winter!”

          “Dad. It’s me, your daughter, Summer.”


          “No, it’s not Lisa. It’s — Dad? Dad?”

          [CALL ENDED]

  4. William Thompson

    Is that a rare Keshia sighting in the car’s rear seat? And how is Les supposed to follow that bus? That plow isn’t tossing a light cloud of snow aside. It’s shoving a mass of compacted snow and ice to the curb. You can expect a blockage at least a foot high at the driveway entrance, and you’re not driving that Tonka Toy over it.

    Except, uh, that’s not the sort of snowplow used to clear streets. Yes, there are plowing attachments like that for pick-up trucks, but they’re generally suitable for clearing driveway–and with slow, careful driving. You don’t see them speeding along streets. They’re too light for heavy-duty work like that. That’s for dump-truck sized vehicles that, usually, spread salt and sand behind them.

    And, Les Moore. Can’t he hurry up and die?

  5. Andrew

    No surprise who’ll be driving that bus, I’m sure…. granted, over in Crankshaft (which we’re in sync with of course) we last saw Ed still snoozing through his garage-loft Santa community service, he would not only have to wake up quickly, but also find some reason to use a school bus on a snowy evening. Or maybe it’s one of his coworkers.

    It’s still rather droll to see everyone apparently rushing to see this church concert. I don’t care how meme-funny that cat was, why are people everywhere rushing to see this thing? Even in Crankshaft the news of this performance is concerned a slow news day affair. I can’t believe this is how it’s ending (or at least this week anyway)

    • Gerard Plourde

      Just saw that you made the same observation

    • Epicus Doomus

      Westview’s local music scene is so hapless that literally ANY live music is cause for complete mass hysteria. It’s like Westview is stuck in (another) weird time warp, where popular music simply doesn’t exist, at least not as we understand it. Going to see a bunch of elderly dementia patients playing jazzy Christmas music is just about as cool as it gets in Westview, which probably explains why all the kids in that town are so morose and annoying.

      If you moved to Westview and started a band that did Loverboy covers, you’d be like a god in that town. You’d be the “wild rocker guy”, and when you strutted into Montoni’s to pick up your order, everyone would pensively wait to see what totally outrageous rock and roll thing you’d say next.

      • Anonymous Sparrow

        Never forget that an early Loverboy song is called “D.O.A.”

        Why won’t she see me?
        She’s not looking well
        Some girls just like to push their luck until they wind up

        Pay attention, Summer Moore.

    • Green Luthor

      Wait… wasn’t Ed supposedly sleeping because of the rum balls, implying he was drunk off his ass to the point he couldn’t stay conscious? (Yeah, I know, that’s not how rum balls work. “That’s not how ____ works” is one of Batiuks’ mottos.) Ed getting completely hammered and then driving in a snowstorm? If Lillian is going in the bus with him, she better not be too attached (pun somewhat intended) to any of her arms.

      (I really should stop getting my hopes up, I know the reality is going to be far less entertaining than this.)

      • William Thompson

        “Ed is drunk on rumballs” seems like one more piece of the puzzle. His careless driving contributes to an accident which kills all the Funkyverse characters Batiuk has come to hate. But he’s not in trouble for DUI. His skillful handling of the bus saves the orphans and widows he’s taking to the concert, so he’s not tested for alcohol and is in fact celebrated as a hero.

        Except, of course, Batiuk has already forgot about the drunk bit. But who can resist dreaming up pleasant ways to kill any of these characters?

        • William Thompson

          Oh, man. I just looked at Crankshat. Ed will be a passenger on the bus–and it’s the same bus that drove past the Taj Moore-hall, preceded by the same plow. Is the time-bubblebath effect for real? Is Hardly a genuine Timemop? Will Schrodinger’s squirrel go nuts straightening this out?

          • Anonymous Sparrow

            Thank you for reminding me of “squirrels to the nuts,” which figures delightfully in Ernst Lubitsch’s “Cluny Brown.” (Peter Bogdanovich references it in “She’s Funny that Way” from 2014.)

            If the Valentine ever had a Lubitsch retrospective, I might pay it a visit.

    • J.J. O'Malley

      Well, thanks to today’s “time-synched” CS strip, we now know that (SPOILER ALERT!) it’s botched brownie baker Lena driving the school bus, with Whatsisname and Whatshername inside (soon to be joined by Ed, P*m and J*ff, Lillian the Lizard, and the Grandy Twins) and the other Whatsisname driving the school snowplow. Yup, that seems like a perfectly legit use of school vehicles.

      You know, it was never more clear until this week how totally starved for anything that even pretends to be “entertainment” the residents of Centreville and Westview, Ohio must be. Amazing how the Christmas Eve “Phantom Empire” marathon at the re-opened Valentine isn’t drawing the customers. Also, do the Midwich Cuckoo girls even have parents? “What’s that, kids? An elderly woman is taking you to a nighttime church concert during a raging blizzard? Okay, I’ll leave a key under the doormat for whenever you get home!”

      The frightening thing is, there must be another, wrap-it-all-up storyline next week after this Sunday’s St. Spire-set “Jazz Messiah” climax…mustn’t there?

      • ComicBookHarriet

        In answer to one of your many valid questions.

        Yes, the doublemint twins have parents. Don’t know if they’ve ever gotten names, (or if the twins have gotten surnames.) They’ve shown up rarely. Once they invited Lillian to Thanksgiving.

        The parents even made an appearance in FW when the mom was enrolling them, and again during the floor sweepings of 2018’s Funk You It’s January!

        It seems like it’s the creepy Shining twins themselves that can’t get enough of the Cranky n’ Lillian neighborhood.

        • The Duck of Death

          I’ve said it before — Jim Davis is 10x the artist Ayers is, and has maintained a decent standard on Crankshaft despite having to illustrate hot garbage year after year. He’s quite versatile too, as a peek at his web site will show.

          What I’m getting at is that it’s no accident that Lillian looks like a psychotic murderer in P2 of the last strip CBH posted. Davis knows exactly what he’s doing, bless him.

          • ComicBookHarriet

            I will step up to defend was Ayers was capable of in the past. He’s really slipped in the last few years, (understandable given his age perhaps)

            Ayers always put more care into the art in Crankshaft, and it shows.

          • It’s not Jim Davis, is it? That’s the Garfielf guy I think.

          • The Duck of Death

            D’OH! You’re right, it’s Dan Davis. I wrote a comment mentioning Jim Davis and then there was a clog in the torso chute of my brain. Leroy!

          • be ware of eve hill

            Respectfully disagree. Look how flat everything appears in today’s Crankshaft.

            The characters on the bus look like Fathead™ stickers applied to the windshield. Ditto for Andy driving the snowplow. Cranky, Pm and Jff in the first panel resemble the Frosty the Snowman yard decoration my neighbor painted on particle board.

            I won’t argue that Dan Davis is a talented artist. He is. Please compare his artwork from 2018 to his current efforts. It appears Dan is suffering from the same case of whogivesashitanymoreitis that Ayers is.

            Dan Davis: *sigh* I’m not paid enough to draw this sh*t.

          • The Duck of Death

            I certainly agree that he most likely has a case of whogivesashititis, but he has kept his work professional, vs the fire-at-the-wax-museum melting faces and wild inconsistencies from panel to panel that we see from Ayers. Or crazy gaffes like that time when Ruby Lith had a hovering, detached forearm she used to play her 78s.

            We can agree to disagree on who is the better artist. But I hope you will agree that the pubic-hair upholstery that Davis furnishes Centerville with is really the perfect decor for that town and its loathesome inhabitants.

          • be ware of eve hill

            That being said, the colorist for today’s Funky Winkerbean should be banned from the business. Cayla’s hair color is bleeding into the screentone of the windshield.

            I wonder if the colorist is Batiuk. Sending out a sloppily colored strip most definitely fits his current modus operandi.

          • be ware of eve hill

            Ah, yes. The human skin upholstered couch from the Ed Gein collection.

        • The real question is, will the grade school aged Emily and Amelia get to meet the high school aged Emily and Amelia?

          • Andrew

            Wait until they touch hands with each other and invoke the Blinovitch Limitation Effect, blowing up the universe (or at least whatever building they’re in)

          • No, you’re confusing “The Day of the Daleks” with “Mawdryn Undead” and I sound like someone from Westview, don’t I? Argh.

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      Yeah, why are they all rushing to a music concert when they could be at home reading comic books?

    • Andrew

      I like that occasionally my comments get edited with links/visual aids, though now it looks like I linked a comic that answered my own musings, heh.

  6. The Dreamer

    why did Summer need to hitchhike to Centerville when Les, Cayla and Keisha are all going there? She’s crammed in the van getting groped by Morty for no good reason

    • erdmann

      Remember that granddaughter who’s destined to write Summer’s biography? Now we know identity of her granddaddy.

  7. Gerard Plourde

    While I think it’s likely that Crankshft is driving the bus in FW, as of his Wednesday strip he was still sleeping in Lillian’s bookstore while Phil the Forecaster was predicting snowmageddon.

  8. billytheskink

    Follow the school bus? To the school? Les hates the school, so I guess that’s not so bad.

    The Dinkle-Lefty squirrel week was peak Act III randomness. It was so crazy we remember it pretty well and so boring that there was hardly anything we could say about it, then or now.

    • ComicBookHarriet

      One thing we could say about it now…

      It was the first week in Act III when a crew cut custodian had a weird focus on him.

      He showed up in the background or foreground of four of those six nutty days.

      So. Tinfoil time. In 2018/2019, when Batiuk was preparing these strips, was he laying the work for TIME MOP? Or was his memory just jogged a few years after working on The Complete FW Volume 3 (published 2014) wherein Harley first appeared?

      • Epicus Doomus

        You’ve done it again, Harriet. Maybe I chose that one subconsciously. Or maybe unconsciously. Sure is weird, though, because I honestly had no idea. The squirrel arc mainly stood out to me as a great example of how achingly stupid FW can be sometimes. You read through the recaps and you find dozens and dozens of moronic, pointless arcs just like this one. Although the squirrel one was indeed pretty freaking stupid.

      • Hannibal’s Lectern

        At least ten years before Batty got interested in squirrels and their nuts, “Frazz” ran a similar strip. But that strip made the point (which makes more evolutionary sense) that while each individual squirrel only finds about a quarter of the nuts it buries, squirrels are also pretty good at finding nuts other squirrels buried, so the squirrel community has a pretty good overall rate of nut finding.

        Another fun squirrel fact: when you see two squirrels “playing” (chasing each other up and down and around a tree, dancing and swatting at each other), you’re actually superimposing human “play” behavior on something that’s deadly serious for the squirrels: you’re watching two males trying claw each other’s nuts off. And if you see a squirrel that’s fat and lazy and calm, well… he’s the one who lost the game.

        How might we apply this to “FW”?

    • William Thompson

      IIRC, someone pointed out that squirrels were very good at remembering where they buried acorns. Certainly much better than Batiuk is at remembering where he buried his jokes.

    • Cheesy-kun

      Yes, why would a school bus be on its way to an evening concert at a church? Has it been established that the district provides transportation for kids (?) to this event in a different city?

  9. robertodobbs

    Why all of the Zip-a-Tone in today’s strip?

  10. Green Luthor

    I get that Batiuk wants the whole cast at St. Spire’s. I have no idea why, nor why it needs to happen in a blizzard, but I assume he really does have something planned. But why do we need to see EVERY SINGLE character going there? (Even putting aside the question of why some of these characters would even bother going at all. That, I don’t know that Batiuk plans on explaining.)

    Today’s strip is COMPLETELY superfluous. The Moore-ons could have been at Montoni’s with Funky, and left with them. Or Funky could have been on the phone saying “Okay, we’ll meet you there, Loser… I mean, Les.” But, nope, we gotta see the entire population of Westview heading off for Centerview one by one, with no idea why it’s so important they go at all. (I mean, in that weather? I’m staying home, that’s for damn sure.)

    And honestly, even all that wouldn’t seem quite so bad under normal circumstances. It’d still be annoying as hell, but in a way we’ve come to expect. But… it’s the penultimate week, and you’re padding out the story? THIS is how you want to spend even one of your last nine strips, doing absolutely nothing? (And after last week, where you padded out the time even worse?)

    Tom, you could have cut some of these strips and given us the Pizza Monster. WHY COULDN’T YOU GIVE US THE PIZZA MONSTER?

    (On the other hand, if everyone gets to St. Spire’s only to be gunned down by Zanzibar The Talking Murder Chimp, all will be forgiven.) (Sorry, went on a bit of a rant there, didn’t I?)

  11. The Duck of Death

    Les isn’t gonna get far when he’s riding on a rim in the left rear.

    And what is that to the left of the bus and the plow? Is it a cliff? It can’t be the ground, because there’s no snow on it. Does Les live on Nobottom road?

    • KMD

      The mad dash to the concert continues so everyone can see a bunch of seniors shuffle around and play Christmas standards. I wonder if Crazy Harry will demand to know if the music is hip.

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Crankshaft is even dumber. A school snowplow? I’ve never known a school to own their own plow. Cheaper to just contract that out.

      • Hannibal’s Lectern

        I think our school district, which comprises two high schools, two middle schools and several elementary schools, might own one pickup truck with a plow, just to assure the buses can get out if there’s a mid-day snowstorm (you can’t always trust a guy you contract). But we are a big district (~3500-4000 students between the two high schools), so we can afford such things. Have we ever been told the population of Worstview?

        • ComicBookHarriet

          Back in Act II we get this strip, indicating that at the time enrollment at WHS was 1200.

          Early Westview has lots of locations based on Elyria, OH. Which has a pop of about 50k that has shrunk by a several thousand since the 80’s. Later Westview is largely drawn from Medina, OH, with a pop of about 25K. Though Medina’s pop has nearly doubled in the last couple decades as it becomes a bedroom community.

          However big Westview is, Centerview is bigger.

  12. The Duck of Death

    Actual normal human beings of planet Earth:

    Forecaster: “Stay off the roads tonight if you possibly can, folks. Dangerous white-out conditions make it unsafe to drive.”

    Jazz Messiah ticketholders: “We’d better skip the show. Even if we get there safely, we may not be able to get back home.”

    Jazz Messiah organizers: “We’ll have to cancel the show. We can’t in good conscience ask people to drive in a white-out blizzard.”

    Crankerbeaniverse denizens:

    “WHEEE! A huge, raging blizzard! The weatherman said to hurry out to the show at St Spires! Everybody jump in your Yugos and get out on the road!”

    • Banana Jr. 6000

      There’s a decent joke in this I don’t think Batiuk even realized. Dinkle didn’t even consider cancelling or rescheduling the show. Which is perfectly consistent with his character, and it could have easily been framed as a joke. “Harry, is the concert still on tonight?” as Dinkle appears in frame with heavy winter gear on and band instruments under each arm to load the van.

      • The Duck of Death

        It’s not just A joke, it’s THE joke. The Ur-Joke from which all of the Funkiverse sprang, damn that joke to hell.

        “Dinkle makes people perform/rehearse in crazy conditions/at crazy times!” He’s trotted it out even when it made no sense. Nonagenarians up at 2 AM to rehearse for Sunday services? The band leader of the Rose Parade getting sidecoached? Yes, all this and more.

        But when the Storm of the Century descends upon Northeast Ohio, not a peep.

  13. ComicBookHarriet

    I actually was at the helm for Squirrel Week 2020, and remember it being pretty fun. Mostly because it was so stupid and pointless I felt like I could get away with talking about anything.

    And it gave me a squirrel fact that I won’t ever forget. That Ohio state used to accept squirrel pelts as tax payment.

    • Cheesy-kun

      Squirrel pelts? Damnitall, Batiuk, how could you NOT work that into a story? I bet not even Mark Trail would talk about squirrel pelt currency.

      Anyway, the committee accepts this a candidate for “Best FW-Adjacent Fact” award. We encourage you to abandon good sense and hurry out in the blizzard to see if you’ve won b/c you can be damn sure no TB-related event is going to demean him by being held online.

      Winners will be recognized in the endnotes to the forthcoming” History of Time, the Universe, and Westview: My Life as a Saint’s Daughter.”

      • ComicBookHarriet

        If I do rush out in the blizzard we’re having right now, I will be sure to follow a large, heavy, long vehicle with multiple blind spots, preferably one that is often operated by semi-retirees. It will be much safer, in these slick and low visibility conditions, to tailgate a multi-ton transport.

        • Y. Knott

          May I humbly suggest that instead, you wake up and find it was all some sort of crazy dream?

        • Cheesy-kun

          Don’t share this with the other nominees, but coming to the awards committee in way that recreates a strip would greatly increase your chances of winning. Especially if you were in an accident on the way and one of your passengers- or car- was diagnosed with cancer enroute.

        • Hannibal’s Lectern

          You might be surprised to discover just how capable school buses are. I have seen them plod their way through snow that had the all-wheel-drive crowd spinning into the ditch, and I have ridden retired school buses to and from river access points in the Ozarks and the Grand Canyon in retired school buses on “roads” that were as rough as any of the rapids we went through. They’re slow and ungainly, but they seem to go places (twice a day, five days a week, nine months out of the year) that I’d have second thoughts about going in a Jeep or on my dirtbike.

          And a surprising number of our school bus drivers are retirees. Maybe older folks are more tolerant of the way the little darlings behave (or deaf enough to not hear them). Or just desperate for income.

        • be ware of eve hill

          Not to mention, as J.J. O’Malley noted above, today’s Crankshaft featured Lena driving that bus. What’s up with that? She’s the manager of the bus barn, not a driver.

          I wonder if she’s as bad at driving as she is at baking and bowling?

          • Lena is canonically grossly incompetent at everything she attempts to do, be it making coffee, baking cookies, bowling, or anything else. The fact that we’re seeing her at the wheel means that something horrific is about to happen, or maybe Crankshaft will awake from his rum ball induced stupor to wrest the wheel from her and save the day.

      • ComicBookHarriet

        Squirrel Article…for all your squirrel related factoid needs.

        The Squirrel Cult continues. Ave Sciuridae, glandulae plena.

        • Cheesy-kun

          And just like that, CBH has given us all a wonderful Christmas gift. Thank you! That’s. Awesome.

          • Gerard Plourde

            And reported in a news source that is local for TomBa, no less.

            I stand in awe of CBH’s research skills.

        • Anonymous Sparrow

          Iron Man is invincible…

          Thor is mighty…

          Spider-Man is amazing…


          Only Squirrel Girl is unbeatable!

    • sorialpromise

      Squirrels are everywhere! 🐿️🐿️🐿️
      I write books. So far, 3 of them are children’s stories. This is how I describe my style:
      🔻Surreal writing upon the canvas of children’s books in a medium of whimsy.🔺
      In my 3rd book, “All God’s Pedelkees have Tales”, the bunny, Mr. LongEars spends several years studying North American Apes. His reputation is ruined, when the attendees at a science conference expose the apes as squirrels. Darn squirrels. 🐿️🐿️🐿️
      But in my 4th book that I am writing now, “Dachshund Family Mysteries”, the correct grouping of squirrels is identified:
      “BlackJack Jason, the ice pirate, said under his breath, “Well, at least I know a bunch of squirrels are called a Guantanamo of squirrels.” A mystery solved. 🐿️🐿️🐿️

  14. I… think Batiuk thinks he’s going for a heartwarming all-the-lovable-goofballs-come-together-in-a-church-on-a-snowy-Christmas-night sort of thing for his ending.

    Which might have worked, if indeed any of the characters had in fact been lovable. Or goofballs. Or anything but a bunch of soul-sucking self-pity machines.

    • Maxine of Arc

      Or if this snowstorm were being depicted as anything other than a blizzard that should have canceled the whole thing or at the minimum inspired most normal people to stay home.

      Personally I can’t wait to see how long it is before Lisa finds a way to show up in Crankshaft.

      • To be sure, having a more natural in-story reason for it to happen would help, too. It’d make you feel that the author was at least making an effort, y’know?

  15. The Dreamer

    This is all about the final ever Sunday panel in a couple of days TomBat is probably doing a one big panel scene with the whole cast at St Spires waving goodbye and saying ‘Merry Christmas and Thanks to our loyal readers for 50 years! ‘ or something like that No big plot twist or anything

    • The Duck of Death

      I’ll be pleasantly surprised if he thanks his readers at any point. From his perspective, he’s the one bestowing his works of genius upon us; we should be thanking him.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        To be fair, he does thank readers in his interviews, though in his usual non-self-aware way. In the most recent article it was “(I want to) thank my readers for coming along on this journey. Without their support, this wouldn’t have happened.” It presumes a non-ironic fanbase for FW still exists. I think 99.99% of them exited the journey long ago.

        • Green Luthor

          “I want to thank my readers for coming along on this journey. I want to, but I won’t, because if more of you were buying my books maybe the syndicate wouldn’t’ve dropped me. So screw all y’all. Also, be sure to follow Crankshaft at its new home! You ungrateful sacks of crap.”

          • Banana Jr. 6000

            It’s like Batiuk knows he’s supposed to say things like that about his readers. But he doesn’t really mean it, or even know how to.

  16. Paul Jones

    The idiot in the helmet mentions the time ripple smoothing out so the cast can rejoin the human race. This must mean that Westview is destroyed and Summer is the only one to catalog what was lost. She’ll do so as part of the cast of Crankshaft.

  17. The Duck of Death

    A random school bus on the road on any given evening is probably returning to the depot, not heading for some performance.

  18. The Duck of Death

    The strange, slack dullness of Puffy’s social media continues. No tweets since Dec. 5. You’d think at least he’d link to his strips daily, wouldn’t you? Or maybe link to his blog? Wouldn’t you think he’d have something to say about his strip ending after 50 years?

    Speaking of his blog, that’s weird too. His last entries were a 75-year-old Superman cover with a few short words and a John Darling strip.

    (The 1947 Action Comics cover showed Superman merrily trying to shove Santa down a chimney. Batty said of it, “Christmas covers like this were always fun to see.” This is the same guy who lost his shit over the 1966 Batman show being too silly and not taking his precious DC characters seriously enough.)

    • Rusty Shackleford

      Batty sure has an axe to grind about that Batman show. I’m sure his wife whispers to their dinner guests: “Don’t talk about that Batman show”

  19. Banana Jr. 6000

    So Funky Winkerbean and Crankshaft have identical scenes, right down to the robin’s egg blue Yugo, but the characters do different things. How did that scene even happen?

    In FW, Les had to have been driving ahead of the snow plow for the car to be in that position. There are no tracks indicating he pulled off the road to let them by. Is his car stuck? If it is, “follow the snow plow” isn’t going to help. As others have said, Cayla’s way too excited about the arrival of something that would have been obvious to them. And has a very low top speed, meaning following it will get them to the concert just in time for Valentine’s Day.

    Crankshaft makes even less sense. They’re just going to leave the car by the side of the road? Are they going to a concert or fleeing for their lives? Why is Crankshaft still in his Santa outfit? Why does Lillian look so chipper? Why is the plow a different color in both places? Why can’t they see each other if they’re in the same place relative to each other?

    • The Duck of Death

      [waving arm slowly, expansively] Nudging, my dear boy. Nudging. Now sit back, relax, and let the tale unfold. It’s called writing.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        Well, somebody’s definitely been nudging me to not close my HTML tags properly.

        • be ware of eve hill

          Been there. Done that.

          Too bad this commenting platform doesn’t have “Text Formatting for Dummies” tools like Disqus.

    • Hannibal’s Lectern

      I think these are supposed to be two separate events in different places at different times. Two different outcomes, too:

      In FW, Les attempts to follow the bus, but immediately gets his car stuck, all four wheels comically dangling in the air, as he attempts to back over the ridge of snow created by the plow going by. Note that Ayers thoughtfully draws the plow blade angled to push all the snow into Les’s driveway. Less, Caucayla, and (who was that in the back again) die of exposure in the car because Les, hearing that St. Spires was hosting “The Ascension of Blessed Dead St. Lisa,” assumed it was a real event (rather than one of Mor[t]on’s jazz improvisations) and left his house keys, wallet, and all other worldly possessions behind.

      In Crankshat, Jff, Pmm and company seem to be flagging down the bus and getting aboard, so they will make it to St. Spires… where they will be trapped by the blizzard and freeze to death when the heat goes out.

      In other words, a happy ending.

      • Banana Jr. 6000

        I surmised out later they’re both supposed to be backing out of their own driveways. Even though there’s no sign of a house (like a mailbox), or any surrounding houses, in either image.

  20. The flu has been raging through our house so I’ve missed a day or four of SOSF, so apologies if someone already made this comment. What are the chances that everyone’s driving at night through a blizzard because they think a cat’s going to be playing an organ?

  21. The Duck of Death

    I hope everyone is girding their loins for the inevitable, infuriating contrivance that will bring the Atomik Komix crew to St Spires. If we’re (un)lucky, perhaps the Komix Korner Krew can hitch a ride with them.

    • Hannibal’s Lectern

      No doubt in my mind that the “FW” characters will turn up in (and eventually take over) “Crankshat.” The only question is whether Batty will cull the characters he’s come to hate (in particular the strip’s namesake), or eventually succumb to temptation and bring them over for a good heapin’ helpin’ of abuse.

    • William Thompson

      Can that Flash treadmill be set to catapult speed?

  22. LTPFTR

    I realize that locations in the Funkiverse are ridiculously mutable even by comic strip geography standards, but aren’t St. Spires and the school bus barn both located in Centerville? So why would Lena and the gang be passing the Moore Manse on their way to the concert?

  23. The Duck of Death

    Smart money here is on the FW crew muscling in on the Crankshaft strip. But what if Andrews-McMeel, unlike King Features, has editors? How will they feel if Crankshaft turns into “The Adventures of the Westview Gang, Now in Centerville”?

    Imagine you signed a contract to distribute “The Lockhorns,” only to find that the writer wanted to focus on the wacky hijinx of the Lockhorns’ marriage counselor. Or “Garfield,” only to realize that Jim Davis was determined to shift the focus to Jon’s work life and let the cat thing sort of fade away. It’d seem like a bit of a bait-and-switch, wouldn’t it?