Author Archives: Epicus Doomus

The Ego And The Idiot

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Or you could just TELL US what Funky forgot. Geez Louise, this one is glacially-paced even by FW throwaway arc standards. Maybe we’ll get lucky and it’ll turn out to be his tax return and the IRS will arrest him and shutter Montoni’s forever, prompting a town-wide recession and eventual riot in which Les Moore is killed by a vicious mob of unemployed pizza-starved goons. I mean I doubt it, but you gotta have hope. But alas, it’s probably just be something incomprehensibly stupid like it always is.

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Fuggetaboudit

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Hey now, forgetting things was Bull’s shtick. And it didn’t end well, in case you’ve already forgotten like most of FW’s readership has. Anyway, the mind reels at the possibilities here. Well, “reels” might be too strong a word, it’s really more like a disinterested creaking of sorts. Like with every FW story, he really could have condensed this a bit but that horse escaped the barn many decades ago, along with the jokes.

Coming tomorrow: Funky suddenly remembers what he forgot and the strip ends with a silent panel showing Tony’s skeletal remains in the basement storeroom, complete with fingernail claw marks on the locked door. Across the land, stunned FW readers ask in unison “who the hell is Tony?”.

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Do You Believe In Life After High School?

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Repeating the premise over and over always makes it funnier. Repeating the premise over and over always makes it funnier. See? There’s probably no cheaper dialog than “I can’t believe…”. “I can’t believe you knew Turtle Thompson!”…”I can’t believe how that guardrail just crumbled!”…”I can’t believe it’s been twelve years plus maybe ten more since Lisa died!”…a simple time-killing tactic courtesy of a simple time-killing man. If this was any other “writer” on the planet, the idea that he could get six full days out of this premise would really strain credulity. But here? Not so much.

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Locked And Bloated

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Well you definitely won’t laugh,

Or be entertained

Reading this thing is rotting my brain

Tom Batiuk is coming to town….

As always special thanks to TFH, the real brains behind this nutty operation! If you only knew what’s involved in making fun of this dopey comic strip…

It’s an extremely rare Sunday-into-Monday arc this week. He only saves those for the really groundbreaking stories. The idea well must have been running pretty dry when he dreamed this one up. I’m (sigh) roughly the same age as (sigh) Funky is supposed to be and I think about high school once a year, if that, on average. But Funky is still having gross sweaty fevered dreams about something he hasn’t done in thirty-five years, even though he has way, way, way more than enough post-high school trauma to draw nightmare fodder from. Perhaps he’ll decide enough is enough and drive his car off a cliff, although we’ve all seen his car and it seems unlikely that it’d go fast enough to do much damage. Still, though, it might be pretty amusing anyway.

In my decrepit 1980s-era high school, the first thing we did on the first day back was kick the locker door at the bottom, after which it’d just open with a kick and a pull. They weren’t exactly top-of-the-line lockers. The convenience far outweighed the lack of security. That’s what the gym lockers were for, as they were these big iron prison-issue things. People (ahem, cough cough Tom Batiuk) like to look back nostalgically and pretend everything was “better” way back then but in reality we were all surrounded by junk. Everything was really crappy and cheap and don’t let any cartoonists tell you otherwise.

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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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