Author Archives: spacemanspiff85

McArnolds=Hilarity

Oh, yay.  The “did they/didn’t they” romantic drama of our time is finally over, after one whole day of tension.  Thank you, Batiuk.  I thought for sure the rest of the week would be filled with horrible misunderstood phrases like “Les bought an extra-large!” where Cayla would assume Cindy meant condoms and the Official Tom Batiuk Lame Photo Album Flashback Panel would show it was an extra-large root beer.

And what is Caylay’s sigh of relief about?  She once commented wryly on Les crying out Lisa’s name during “intimate moments” with her, so I would think she’d have zero problem with Les being with someone else.

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A Night to Never, Ever Remember

Oh, yay. Just what this strip needed. Les Moore-centric sexual jealousy. It’s like Batiuk thought “Oh, so people don’t like Les? They’re tired of Lisa’s Story: The Movie: Redux? I’ll show them! I’ll have a woman fretting and worrying about Les sleeping with someone hotter than her! I’ll force everyone to think about Les Moore’s sex life! Finally, I will have my revenge on the world that wronged me! All will suffer!” And then he cackles for ten minutes.
This is dumb and bad on so many levels. If Cayla seriously thinks the most popular girl in school slept with Les, she’s out of her mind. I mean she obviously already is, since she’s sleeping with and married to Les, but this is a whole other level. Also, given his creepy obsession with high school and blonde high schoolers, I guarantee Les would introduce himself to everyone he meets by saying “I’m Les Moore! Cindy Summers once slept with me!”. And then probably bring it up in literally every conversation thereafter.

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By Popular Demand, It’s Moore Les!

Oh, yay. More Les and Mason and Lisa’s story. And what’s this twist? The womenfolk are wandering off into the darkness while their men handle the real business? Wow, Cayla’s talking a lot, I’m sure it’s funny and/or insightful. Oh, wait. She’s just saying Les is unsure about this? I had no idea. I think Batiuk should spend five more days repeating that point without adding any humor or advancing the “plot” a bit. What are the odds that’s exactly what’s going to happen?

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Sunday=Winkerbean Romance Day

So I guess Sundays are “Funky and Holly have a stretched out but harmless and slightly sweet moment together” day now. It could be a lot, lot, worse. Maybe that’s the point of all the Les strips, to make a typical boring strip seem okay by comparison. I’m guessing those are pages from Lisa’s Story Funky’s burning? I’m also extremely happy the punchline wasn’t about how if you get your news on a computer you can’t use that to start a fire.
Thanks for putting up with me for two weeks! BeckoningChasm takes over tomorrow. May God have mercy on his soul.

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Bench+Leaves=Double Symbolism

There are so many times I’d love to have an honest talk with Batiuk about this strip. Like this week’s story. Are we honestly supposed to feel bad for Les here? “Aw, poor Les, he got peer pressured into doing something he doesn’t want to do.”, or something? I mean, he’s an adult, if he’s already regretting it, he can say “Actually Mason, I don’t want to do this.”. Or he could, once again, act like an adult and accept it and make the best of it. Batiuk so often goes for “deep and conflicted” but hits “in need of intensive therapy” instead. I wonder how soon Les is going to hallucinate a talking blue cat?

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Aw, Poor Les. And Poor Mason, He Clearly Developed Face Cancer Between Panels 1 and 2.

Ugh, this is one of my least favorite parts of this strip. Something ostensibly good happens to someone (Les is getting paid money to make a movie out of their book, meaning there’s at least a chance a story he cares about will speak to people in a new medium, and at the very least more people will read the book, also MONEY, how does that not mean anything to a public school teacher with two daughters in their seventh year of college), and he reacts to it like he just sat on a turd and he’s too crushed with despair to do anything about it but moan.
Even if you want to look at it Les’s way, where he’s worried his beautiful story will be ruined (How exactly do you glamorize “woman dies of cancer”?), he has to just sit around like a wimp about the whole thing, like he’s still the nerd who had his lunch money robbed by Bull (since Batiuk is so clearly still obsessed with high school). Grow a spine and say no if it’s so painful, Les. Especially since you’ve been down this exact road before.  “Gosh, I guess three people who have no real role in my life thing I should do something I’m dreading, well okay, what can you do.”
I know Campbell’s idea of the Hero’s Journey can be cliché often, but it’s worlds better than the Batiuk Method. Here’s some famous tales, as redone by Tom Batiuk;
The Aeneid-Aeneas loses his home of Troy, then sits in the ashes of his home until he dies from lung cancer.
Paradise Lost-Lucifer is cast from heaven, then spends eternity laying where he fell moaning “Why me?”.
Star Wars-Luke whines about the droid he bought blowing up, shrugs and just figures that’s how life is and goes home without doing anything about it.
The Lord of the Rings-Frodo hands over the One Ring to the first Ringwraith because clearly he wants it, and it’s a long walk, and he tried his best, but sometimes things just don’t work out, but he does plan to go home and write a bestseller about it.

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Universal Dullifier

Wow, if Holly uses her one line for the year to endorse Lisa’s Story Done Right, then it must be real important to her. I mean, yeah, her story might be interesting too, since it’s a story of raising a kid by yourself, overcoming cancer, and finding love again and remarrying, but this is all about Lisa.
Actually Holly’s story is way better than Lisa’s, to be honest. Lisa’s story is “Lisa got cancer and died”. Holly’s is about overcoming something horrible and finding new life. Which really does sound like it would make a much, much better movie. I really don’t get what’s so important or inspiring about “a fairly unlikeable woman gets cancer and dies from it” where everyone thinks it would just be amazing movie and cultural touchstone, but whatever, it’s all Lisa Lisa Lisa. Lisa. Lisa.

Can someone please explain what the deal is with Montoni’s and coffee?  Cindy and Mason don’t have coffee so it’s not breakfast time, and I don’t think Montoni’s even serves breakfast anymore.  I’d say the majority of what Cindy and Funky do there is carry around a carafe.  I think it’s just Batiuk’s way of showing “hey, these people are in a restaurant” without actually showing any real work.  Really though, “Let’s go to the pizzeria for some coffee” sounds kind of gross to me.

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