Author Archives: ComicBookHarriet

Not a Yacht of Space.

Link to today’s strip

As luxurious as Masone’s sailboat looks with just two people standing in it, I doubt its going to be so posh when he crams another five people on the darn thing. Judging by the artwork it couldn’t be more than twelve feet across. Where are they all going to sleep?

They better hope that Jeff asphyxiates in that cave, or they’re going to have to put up with the old guy staggering over the prone bodies on the floor to the tiny cabin toilet every 30 minutes all night long. My advice, put him on the deck and tell him to take a leak over the railing.

Les is giving Marianne some serious side eye in panel three. In a more ambitious strip, or maybe Act II, I would agree with the commenters that suggest we’re about to rock that yacht with a little post rescue adultery. But remember this is Les, in Act III, and the deepest form of intimacy he can show another person is to reminisce about Lisa with them. It’s how he bonded with Masone. It’s how he proposed to his purported second wife on his cancer bench, confirming to Cayla and everyone watching that he sees Cayla as a appendix to the beautiful story of his relationship with Lisa.

And she still married him. Sometimes I think we pity CauCayla too much. She worked at Westview high for years with him. She knew what she was getting into marrying the sad sack. I’m going to give her the agency that Batiuk doesn’t, she married Les for his house and money because their daughters got along. She got money for her daughter’s college, and when Les dies of mopey artist syndrome she gets it all. She’s not sad he’s emotionally distant, she’s relieved.

You go girl!

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Radio For Help Ranch.

Link to today’s strip

Decided to wait until tonight strip dropped, and holy cow is this strip going to be confusing to all but the most informed and astute Winkerbean readers.

Most of the readership are going to wonder who this little kid is, and why he knows anything about The Phantom Empire, and why he’s wandering through Bronson canyon with an elderly unrelated man.

And how long has Jeff been standing outside the cave muttering to himself about Murania? When he first approached the cave last Thursday there was no fire in sight. That fire has snuck up on him faster than The Thunder Riders. I wonder if the old coot has a cell phone?

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All is Vanity

Link to today’s strip

Yes. Please Mason. Go back to clogging up traffic, making things more difficult for fire and rescue, just so you can have all your friends together for your fun bonfire boat party. Mindy and Pete presumably know about the fire, call them to let them know they’re welcome to your BYOB yacht club and let them evacuate themselves.

Of course, this is Pete, he’s probably been evacuating all over himself for the last couple hours.

Nice vanity plate on Masone’s circa 2004 SUV. I guess it really would be the best way to go incognito around LA if you’re a mega famous Hollywood heartthrob. No one would believe that the star of the mega blockbuster Rise of the Zeton Warriors would be both that cheap AND that egotistical.

Who do you guys figure might die in this arc? Cindy? Jff? Masone? Or will Marianne attempt to drown herself after being stuck for hours alone on a boat with Les? Even if she tries, I’m sure a life affirming quote from Kurt Cobain or Sylvia Plath could put her back on track.

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How the Other Half Burns.

Link to today’s strip

First of all, YOU CRAZY COMMENTERS! I haven’t seen our comments section this lively since Bull pulled an Aldo Kelrast off Nobottom Road. You make it incredibly difficult for me to find something to say that hasn’t been said, but I bear that cross gladly.

Second, when I saw yesterday’s strip I knew that our personal Winkerpedia, BillyTheSkink, would be able to provide the deets, and he did. Thanks Billy! He gave a great breakdown of The Great Montoni’s fire of ’97 yesterday, so if you didn’t read his comments, go back and take a look. The most important details seem to be:

1.) Wally Winkerbean saved both Lisa and Les from the fire when he crawled through the smoke to wake them up.

2.) The fire was arson and was probably started by a guy called Plantman who was attempting to destroy evidence of the murder of Jess’ father, John Darling, who was murdered.

3.)Les ran back into the apartment to retrieve a floppy disk containing his research and draft for ‘Fallen Star,’ a book about Jess’ father, John Darling, who was murdered.

4.) Les did not save Lisa.

5.) Crazy Harry committed mail fraud for insurance purposes.

6.) Les is a selfish prick who has forgotten that he didn’t save Lisa.

Yesterday’s juxtaposition of past and present made sense; young Les ‘saving’ Lisa versus old Les extra bonus saving pretend Lisa. Today’s series of panels make it a little more difficult to parse out the symbolism.

But today seems to show that while Les and Lisa were poor newlyweds devastated by losing their crappy apartment along with nearly everything except each other, Masone and Cindy are rich and so don’t really care about one of their houses getting torched. They’re gonna go to their fancy boat, sail out into the bay, and sit on the deck sipping wine. It’ll be a fun date night to watch the plebs flailing and drowning in the shallows, trapped between waves and flames, like the peasants of Pompeii.

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Carry On Baggage.

Link to today’s strip

Wow, Les has really manned up in the last couple decades. He’s gone from passively handing his standing wife off at the door to another manlier man, to bridal carrying his wife’s avatar over the threshold at a brisk jog; effortlessly hauling all 110 lbs of Hollywood starlet in his arms with the wiry strength natural to a fifty year old English teacher.

Just kidding. This is the dumbest attempt at trying to make something look more dramatic I’ve seen in this strip. Unless Marianne fell down the stairs off panel, she should be perfectly capable of walking out the door. What is this strip trying to convey? The weakness of Marianne, or Les’ overprotective instincts? An excuse for an upskirt shot? We don’t know what the situation was like in the house, or how the women were reacting to it. Apparently the sight of fire turned them into whimpering passive objects unable to move or think without the firm touch of a man guiding them.

They must have lost the car Marianne drove in one of the THREE CARPORTS this McMansion is rocking.

Seriously, what happened to this car? Is it a self driving car? Did it drive itself away from this nonsense? Good for it.

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Mad Masone: Beyond Blunderdome

Link to today’s strip

Sorry for the late post, today’s strip was not available for preview, but I
was already up late bingeing cartoons, so decided to wait around for the exciting next installment of Twin Boobs: Fire Drive Through Me. But the darn strip refused to drop. And when it finally did, it’s just two panels of ridiculous action. DOES ANYONE EVEN CARE ABOUT THE LAWS OF CONVECTION? The reason cars can drive through fire in the movies is that the type of incendiaries they use are meant to burn up quickly.

But it’s just another strip of MEN BEING MANLY, BY SAVING THEIR HELPLESS WIMMENFOLK, FROM FIRE BAAAAAAAD.

A single story, or even two, of a brave Les running down the street screaming, “USA! USA!” would be fine, if it was balanced out by some feminine heroics. Can anyone think of an instance? Because all I’m thinking of is Lisa giving Les a ghostly phone call from beyond the grave to warn him not to get on a plane that didn’t end up crashing anyway. So basically she saved him a couple hours sitting on a plane that refuses to leave the gate. HEROIC.

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Through the Fire and the Flames We Carry On

Link to today’s strip

I know it makes me look like a slacker to keep using other people’s comments. But you people keep predicting the plot before it even happens. Case in point, our resident Batuikstorian BillyTheSkink has downloaded so much Funky Winkerbean trivia directly into his prodigious brain that he can see the future before it happens.

You know, except for the glaring flaws of this fire somehow being viewable from a defunct watchtower, and Point Dume being an impossible origin point for a fire of this magnitude, this thing is playing out pretty much identical to the Woolsey Fire of 2018. It burning the similar places, and seems of a similar size.

That fire burned 1600 homes in Malibu and the surrounding hills, including the homes of stars like Gerard Butler and Miley Cyrus’, but miraculously only three people died. One was an old man who was trapped in his home and didn’t get the warning to evacuate.

And the other two people BURNED TO DEATH IN THEIR CAR.

A second source said Anthony Baklayan and his elderly mother, both disoriented by thick smoke and approaching flames, tried to follow a fire truck they believed was headed to safety but was instead on its way to try and save a home. The pair realized their mistake and tried to turn around in the driveway of the canyon residence, where their car became engulfed in flames, the source said. Their bodies were discovered hours later.

Batiuk has been following the Woolsey fire so closely up to this point. Is it too much to hope that he’s going to copy this little detail too?

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In The Hot Seat.

Link to today’s strip whenever it appears

Comic Book Harriet reporting from the scene of the missing previews. Literally sweating bullets over trying to come up with something that hasn’t been said already by the hordes of commenters, or, as Batiuk likes to call us, ‘Beady-Eyed Nitpickers’.

Seeing a bunch of fresh names in the comments section lately brings a smile to my heart. Hate reading crappy comics is one of life’s greatest pleasures, like music, or fine wine, meant to be shared with like-minded connoisseurs. I don’t know if you people are coming back to watch the world burn, or have just found the place, but the you’re stoking the fire with some pretty hot fuel for thought.

Such as.

I hope everyone will give SpacemanSpiff85 a massive round of internet points for putting up with almost an entire shift of no previews. He was able to transmogrify something out of nothing, which is the exact opposite of what Tom usually accomplishes.

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Cosmic Comic Coda.

Today’s strip is up. And looks like when Batiuk released poor Burchett from his prison of half smirks, beady eyes, and morphing noses, he still retained his skills for comics covers. Anyone know when exactly Ayers took back over? There’s a some tea hiding behind the scenes that I’d like spilled.

Pretty exciting cover. Especially since apparently all these Stardusters can breathe in space.

Welp. I’m outta here. The ever talented and insightful Beckoning Chasm is taking over the pilot’s seat. If anyone can make beautiful snark out of the depressing malaise of a two dimensional universe slowly decaying through entropy, it’s our resident abstract artist.

 

 

 

 

If anyone can truly understand the twisted psyche of Tom Batiuk, it’s a man capable of painting something like this and calling it, “Sleep”

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Poor Prospects

Link to today’s strip

Min completes you Petey? The first time Mindy had a comics idea, it was for a kid side-kick you found so repellent you tried to erase him from your field of vision.

But, really, in the right hands a comic about blue collar space miners/treasure seekers running into adventures could be a fun, character driven, romp. I’m picturing a cross between Firefly and Farscape with a dash of Justice League International. IN THE RIGHT HANDS. With Atomik Komikxs ‘Stardusters’ we’re more likely to get something like this goofy idiot from Episode 30 of Lost in Space.

Still, whatever nightmare sideways strip we’re getting tomorrow, it has to be better than the underground comics ‘Stardusters‘ that came out in 1991. I found someone reviewing issue 3 of the series. It’s like if a Jack Chick tract fell into the creepy BDSM scene and was expecting a visit from Chris Hansen.

So the bar for ‘Stardusters’ as a concept has already gone as low as it can go. But it’s also gone as high as it can go. Because the GI Joe character Starduster is a stone cold jetpacking badass from the circus who juggles live grenades.

So I guess what I’m saying is that GI Joe comics from 80’s were pretty great. And you should read those instead.

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