Tag Archives: Anon-O-Characters

Clap on! Clap off!

Marianne does NOT look like someone who is willing to give away her Oscar in the first today’s strip. No, she’s looking at that Oscar the way most characters in this strip look at comic books.

The rest of this is as rote and pat as an Oscar acceptance speech can be, so let’s have some fun with another crowd shot of “famous” faces. Help me fill in the blanks and fix the mistakes where my corrective lenses deceived me.

  1. A replicant
  2. NO NECK JOE!
  3. Alana Haim deserves better seats than this
  4. Stanley Tucci on a ski trip
  5. David Duchovny’s face
  6. HAL 9000 putting on its best gold
  7. Debra Jo Rupp
  8. General U.S. Grant again
  9. A cumulonimbus cloud
  10. I don’t know, but her body language is appropriate
  11. David Duchovny’s hair
  12. Cousin It
  13. Beldar Conehead
  14. Hogarth Hughes
  15. Maria, from Sesame Street
  16. Cassidy’s sister, Alexus Kerr (see, I can do it too, TB)
  17. Yoko Ono
  18. Harold Lloyd (I mean, if Phil Holt is alive…)
  19. The Chinless Contessa
  20. Given her glare I’m guessing this is either Gretchen Gold or Cordelia Rama
  21. Burt Reynolds (again… Phil Holt)
  22. Jennifer Anniston’s hair
  23. Sid, from accounting
  24. We have General Grant, so why not Robert E. Lee too?

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My mother, the car

Quite the crowd on hand in today’s strip, with the first panel serving as the Batiukverse equivalent of the semi-famous crowd reaction photo from the 2017 Academy Awards’ wrong envelope incident. While the crowd of stars watching Marianne are not quite of the same wattage as those in the 2017 audience, I still spy some big names.

  1. OK, I don’t know who this is, but his mouth is huge
  2. The shirtless Nazi who gets shredded by a propeller in Raiders Of The Lost Ark
  3. George Foreman
  4. Dorothy Hamill (what’s with all the sports people?)
  5. The giraffe that stole David Cassidy’s hair
  6. A Dilbert cosplayer
  7. General/President Ulysses S. Grant
  8. Who invited Creepy Pete?
  9. Christopher Columbus (not that one)
  10. Soft-serve ice cream
  11. SHEMP!

Quite the menagerie present to hear Marianne call back to the time she went AWOL, nearly committed suicide, and then quoted her mother quoting an actress who was one of Hollywood’s most famous suicides. Anything to fulfill your parent’s dreams. How inspiring!

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Shmucks in a row

Today’s strip begs the classic 5 Ws (and an H) of writing. It also begins the Oscars story Variety promised last month. Yeah, I thought that maybe if I buried the lede it would stay in the ground, but alas.

Who is Mason talking to on the left? Wait, he calls her Marianne… that’s supposed to be Marianne Winters? The lady with the pentagon head and the pigtail-bun hairstyle my niece insisted on wearing when she was a toddler is Marianne Winters?

What is with TB’s willingness to use Hulu and HBO’s trademarked names but still insist on sticking to the eyeroll-inducing “Netbusters”?

When does TB think the Academy Awards ceremony takes place? We’re three weeks out from this year’s Oscars broadcast… Does that mean? Oh no, please no. I really hope TB just got the dates wrong.

Where is the “chateau” where this “real party” is happening? Chateau Marmont? Haha, really? I guess if you don’t know… then you don’t know. I’m in no hurry to find out, either.

Why are Cliff Anger and Vera Nash here? Neither one was involved in the Lisa’s Story movie at all… well, other than inexplicably being at the film’s wrap party.

How is this story going to end? Insufferably, no doubt. I don’t think any other outcome is possible.

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Slowly they turned…

Today’s strip is pretty inoffensive, as these things go. It might border on “nice” if we liked a single one of these characters.

Not sure why Funky and Holly look so surprised to see Morton playing the trombone. They know Morton is in this band. They know the band is playing at St. Spires. They walk into the Christmas Eve service hearing the strains of “Silent Night”. Put two and two together…

OK, sure, most of the churches I’m familiar with place both the choir and orchestra in front of the congregation rather than behind, but such a slight difference wouldn’t floor me like a character from the late They’ll Do It Every Time.

Maybe Funky has an excuse, he thinks churches are places to practice driving, but Holly has been depicted as at least a somewhat regular churchgoer.

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Return Of The Jerk Guy

Finally! Dinkle and the alumni band show up in today’s strip… though Jerome T. Bushka A&L Automotive Stadium looks suspiciously like St. Sprires church and the alumni band doesn’t have any instruments (though they all look to be about the age I would expect). Weird.

After the throwaway panels, you almost could have convinced me that a computer wrote this. Former marching band director plays music from famous composer. You could generate this gag, such as it is, with a UNIVAC… though I think the UNIVAC would spit out dialogue with a little more flair.

And with that, I’m out. Tackling tomorrow’s tantalizing strip and taking to task the next two weeks will be the incomparable Spaceman Spiff.

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Social Disinteresting

Link To Today’s Drip

Once again I am baffled. I assume this is a social distancing-based gag (timely as ever) but the idea that he’s sharing this incredibly mundane anecdote at an AA meeting just boggles the mind. At least the other alcoholics appear bored and disgusted by Funky’s wordplay-based mutterings, which I gotta admit is pretty damn accurate.

The less said about the gag the better. That one had to have been rattling around in that delightfully sincere head of his for ages. In fact I’m stunned that he never used that one before. It just seems so obvious.

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And You Can’t Fax Pepperoni Either

Link To The Strip

“While our takeouts from Montoni’s had been good”…nice sentence there, Pulitzer (nominee) Boy. That sentence is the literary equivalent of stubbing your pinkie toe on the bed frame on a 4AM bathroom trip. BatWrite’s insanely fractured syntax is definitely impossible to “replicate”, as it’s just impossible to force yourself to think that way, unless you’ve suffered a lot of head injuries or use a lot of LSD or something.

Of course the possibility exists that the “ambience” Funky is speaking of only exists in HIS head, given his deep lifelong ties to Montoni’s and all. I mean aside from the staff and Crazy Harry you almost NEVER see any other FW regulars hanging around in the background. It was never Westview’s answer to “Cheers”, where characters stream in and out all the time, exchanging wry smirks and wordplay-based banter as Funky and Company crank out the pies. Thus one could conclude that Westviewians don’t really give a shit about being inside Montoni’s, as so few of them are. They just want the pizza. Your coke dealer might have you drop by his stylish condo or he might meet you in the parking lot at the Sizzler but either way you’re just interested in getting the blow.

This arc could have been about how Funky missed his customers-slash-pals during the pandemic, which might have made sense. Or it could have been about how he found himself with all kinds of unwanted free time all of a sudden, which would have sort of tied in a little with the last one. But instead it’s about how the pandemic affected the actual building itself, which is certainly a “different” sort of take. And he’s the only one with nostalgic feelings for the place (even Tony is never there), so essentially this is just more childhood fetishization, a common FW theme (see: comic books).

But mostly it’s just stupid. Funky is usually one of the more sympathetic FW characters (by FW standards) but the urge to hit him with a cinder block is just overwhelming right now. Why is everyone just sitting there letting this idiot babble?

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Putting the “die” in dilate

Let us all sincerely hope that today’s strip is the end of “Funky terrorizes the optometrist’s office with his shmuckery.” Oh please please please! I ran out of things to say about it on Tuesday and since then I’ve been filling space with a Droopy photoshop done in Microsoft Paint, obscure 90s punk rock references, and my own experiences at the ophthalmologist. Today, I very nearly wrote 3-4 sentences in this post about what my cat was doing right now, but I’ve taken up too much of you all’s valuable time already. Well, at least I finally thought of something to say about this strip…

Speaking of drops, I’m thinking this country’s newspapers should do just that to a couple of comic strips.

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Pizza, Actually

Link To Today’s Strip

Or it might be when you give your oldest childhood friend your treasured copy of “Contrivance Man Vs. The Zanthian Blorks” # 1 so he he can complete his collection even though you could have easily gotten $125 for it on FleaBay. It depends on where you are in Westview at the time. Unless these are characters I am unaware of, this is an extremely rare example of BatYam devoting an entire Sunday strip to random anon-o characters, which doesn’t happen a lot in the Funkyverse. Ditto actual customers in Montoni’s. That certainly doesn’t happen every day either.

I assume that maybe this is an homage to something, maybe those old “Peanuts” strips or something. And it’s harmless enough, I suppose. I guess sometimes FW is just plain deeply weird as opposed to deeply weird and highly annoying like it usually is.

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Impending Dume

A sudden pivot to golf in today’s strip… huh? What is this, Gil Thorp? Not that I’m complaining about getting away from Les terrorizing the soundstage…

Continue reading

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