Author Archives: Epicus Doomus

Where Do We Go From Here?

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Every SoSF guest host after thirteen days…

Not available for preview. Maybe the ponderous CTE arc continues, maybe it’s Les raking leaves or Funky fixing the band box or Roberta finally descending from the scissor lift…who the hell knows? But, and I hate to break it to you, I don’t think this is the Big One yet, folks. Nope, there’s more water to tread here, unless that NYT interview was some sort of elaborate troll. Sigh.

UPDATE: Wow, Bull DID find the car keys! A classic morbid Sunday FW strip. I thought we still had another week of stalling but nope. We’ve already seen next Sunday’s strip so what now? A week of no one knowing where Bull is? A week of Linda reading his suicide note word by painstaking word?

Coming on Monday: billytheskink takes over for what promises to be a monumental two week stint. Or it would have been, if the Great Pulitzer Nominee didn’t stupidly gak it all up. Nevertheless, you’ll be in great hands!

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And As I Logged Off The Chat It Occurred To Me, This Tale Is All About Me, It’s All About Poor Poor Me*

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* I like to finish what I start.

As usual, BatYam’s big mega-prestige arc so far has mostly consisted of a bunch of sad gags and time-killing tropes that sort of loosely circle around the premise in a wishy-washy orbit that kind of dulls the impact of the big emotional sledgehammer moment. And I really hate to drive this point into the ground yet again but to be honest, debilitating brain disorders in the Funkyverse quite frankly don’t seem all that bad. Like with Mort Winkerbean’s hilarious and nutty Alzheimer’s, the main CTE symptoms in the Funkyverse seem to consist of various zany blunders, goofy mishaps and a general sense of harmless bungling idiocy. Just speaking for myself here, but I’d have been thrilled if my dementia-stricken loved one had ordered a pizza, much less organized an entire pizza-delivery contest. Unfortunately though, she had the real kind.

One also has to wonder why Linda bothered joining a support group at all. She can’t accept support nor does she offer any, thus the whole thing seems kind of pointless. Again, we haven’t been given any indication as to why everyone, including his kids, has totally abandoned Bull, just that Linda is desperate and all alone. Like I just said above, the premise just sort of hangs there in this nebulous sad gag-filled haze. It honestly just makes Linda seem sort of hapless and whiny, which I don’t think he was going for here.

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My Spouse Lit A Fire Just The Other Day, Tried To Cook A Pizza In An Unusual Way*

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* Nope, not letting it go.

Linda reading Batiuk’s NYT interview.

“And then I asked my cognitively impaired husband for a bite. So he bit me! (rimshot)”. Apparently Linda’s online support group is all about one-upmanship and exchanging daffy anecdotes about who’s got it worse. Sounds real helpful. No wonder she’s so miserable all the time, even her “my husband is so cognitively impaired…” gags aren’t that good. Leave it to Linda to find the wryest support group on the internet. In any other support group she’d undoubtedly be the wryest by far, but not this one.

“Take my CTE-afflicted husband…please! Why did my CTE-afflicted husband cross the road? He doesn’t remember! But seriously folks, is this thing on?”

This weird mix of weak sad gags and unbearable human misery has always been FW’s stock in trade but man, it sure does take a terrible toll on the readers. Perhaps he feels that by zany-ing things up a little it’ll increase the dramatic impact when Bull dies. And maybe it would have, if he didn’t go and spoil the whole story for no good reason like an imbecile. But alas, we’ll never know.

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And The Laundry’s A Hassle And The Game Film Is Too But It’s Sure Nice Talking To You, Group, It’s Sure Nice Talking To You*

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* When I find a post title theme I like I stick with it, dammit.

Ooooh-fa. Yet another poorly-placed and totally unnecessary joke that just kills the Very Serious mood here. While endlessly doing laundry and watching old football games is somewhat disturbing behavior, it COULD be worse, you know. I mean why not have friends and neighbors drop off their laundry and slip it into Bull’s daily wash pile? Monetize it, Linda! And it’s not like he’s wagering on those old football games, he’s just watching them. And seriously, is that all that much different than what pre-CTE Bull would have done? Methinks not. Anyhow, Batiuk is once again just treading water here until the Big Payoff, which will apparently consist of Bull killing himself to spare his long-suffering wife the burden of unnecessary appliance repairs. This comic strip really goes to some dark, dark places sometimes.

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What I’d Really Like Linda Is To Borrow The Car Keys See Ya Later Can I Have Them Please?

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Hey, as much as I dislike FW I am a human being, dammit, with feelings and emotions like every other human being, dammit. I mean sure, I get it, Linda is struggling mightily with Bull’s declining cognitive function and his wild angry outbursts and it’s left her feeling distraught, helpless and alone. Man, this comic strip sure is a beam of sunshine, ain’t it?

But anyhow, what was I saying? Oh yeah, feelings and such. I mean as much as I’d like to sympathize with Linda’s plight, watching this play out with the melodrama followed by the inevitable sad little punchline is like being beaten with a big bag of pathos. The driving thing has already been covered, couldn’t he have found some other new way to emphasize Bull’s growing frustration and anger? I just wish something would HAPPEN already. I mean in the end it makes no difference, as The Great Author already ruined the story and all but still. Bull’s supposed to be “angry” all the time so let’s see some ANGER. Broken drywall, smashed trophies, Les getting the shit kicked out of him, anything but the same old car keys gag.

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Rage Against The Wry-ing Of The Light

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I suppose one could make the argument that this installment does actually move the story forward, albeit very slightly. I mean one COULD make that argument, but let’s be real here…no one will. Anyhow the real issue here is the incredibly annoying way that Linda feels compelled to make these dumb feeble jokes to punctuate everything she says. An “anger board of directors”…yeah, hilarious. Would their also be anger stockholders who receive quarterly anger dividends too? It’s supposed to be a Very Serious story yet BatYak just can’t holster the wry wordplay for even a day. I mean come on, no actual people speak (or type or think) like this. What’s next, a gag about Bull being “tackled for a memory loss”? (If he uses that one I will demand compensation). It’s interesting how he supposedly DOES have an editor yet no one ever stops him and says “hey, maybe tone down the wordplay a little and just do some plain old dialog for once”. Sigh.

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Fear And Self-Pity In Westview

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Uh, it’s called “moral support”, Linda. It “helps” you by connecting with others in similar situations. If the other people in the support group could magically help you, they probably would have already helped themselves too, thus they wouldn’t need a support group. See how that works?

Well, if you thought the Big Moment was coming anytime soon, guess again sucker, because it looks like we’re in for a week of typing. It’s typically Batiukian how Linda’s last-ditch Hail Mary plea to the NFL represented her last glimmer of hope, as in the Funkyverse it’s always something and it’s never, ever your fault. One thing I find baffling is how the entire town just totally deserted Bull after he retired. No one wanted to organize a fund raiser or help Linda mow the lawn? Could his multi-decade tenure as head sports coach and athletic director really have made THAT little of an impact? Wait…don’t answer that.

Coming tomorrow: FW at long last answers the question that’s been plaguing FW scholars since Darin found out the identity of his birth mother, that being is watching a FW character opening and reading mail more interesting, less interesting or equally as interesting as watching them type on a laptop computer?

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