Today’s strip might not quite be at the “Somehow Palpatine returned”-level, but “Luckily, one of the residents at Bedside Manor overheard that the band was playing here at St. Spires” is certainly on the list of history’s worst narrative solutions via exposition.
I think Funky and Holly must have gotten turned around driving on those snowy roads. Judging by the looks of this lady waving sheet music at them, I’d say they shot clear past Centerville, through a multiverse portal, and straight into Whoville. Specifically, the Whoville from the live-action Grinch movie. Fitting for this strip, I suppose.
Comic Book Harriet here! Ready to aim aim high and kick it off, hopefully without slipping and breaking a leg. I wanna thank our resident Spaceman Spiff for caring for us all over the last couple painful weeks. He brought us comforting sarcasm, and a barrel full of witty insights to dull the ache of Batiuk’s broken humor.
Today we get a real treat. ThePassion of the Dead St Lisa movie bombed. So all of our comments about Funky Winkerbean gradually morphing into a Judge Parker, where characters are gifted success without merit, must have struck a nerve. Or Batiuk just finally remembered who he was, and is back to his old yanking-the-football ways.
But today is just PACKED with non sequiturs.
The only thing that confused me at first, but that I could make sense of after thinking about it, is that the release date of Lisa’s Story got pushed back. The movie just wrapped a few months ago, so it didn’t have any time to sit on the shelf mostly finished ala No Time to Die or Wonder Woman 1984. But then I remembered that movies get release dates well before they are finished, or have even started filming. And the great LA Firedemic of the vaguely defined ‘last year’ apparently shut down movie production long enough for Marianne Winters to be treated for early stage breast cancer. So yeah, the release date would have been pushed back significantly.
And it is an accurate and believable rendering of what did happen to a bunch of movies in the last couple years. There’s a whole Wikipedia page dedicated to the movies, cancelled, delayed, suspended, and/or dumped to streaming because of the pandemic. I’m actually surprised Batty didn’t decide to go topical-to-the-max and have it released directly to PicFlicks or Hula or whatever the Funkyverse equivalent of a streaming service would be. But apparently it was released in theatres.
And that is what is confusing me. There is no way Les and CauCayla would be learning about the movie bombing from an EMAIL from MASONEE. They went to a wrap party, but didn’t go to the premiere? They didn’t bother to check Box Office Mojo, or Rotten Tomatoes to see how the movie was being received critically or financially?
Les knows what it’s like to drop an anvil in a lake?
It that a popular idiom? I didn’t really know. So I went to grandpa Google and did a phrase search.
It really isn’t that common. Only four pages of results. I found it used a couple times in news articles because Judge Napolitano said it about Russiagate. A really sad blog about a sick kid. A few links to some fanfictions on wattpad…
And then things got weird.
What does this mean? What does any of this mean? Is it poorly translated from a language with ideogrammic elements? Is it some kind of secret code? Some kind of communication between hidden agents among us? It Funky Winkerbean PART of whatever this is? When Tom Batiuk ended today’s strip with “an anvil in a lake,” was he sending a message, recognized only by the few, that now, at last, was the time?
If you’re interested to see what dropping an anvil in a lake looks like, may I suggest this video. Where two Finnish people speaking nearly unintelligible English drop a red hot anvil into a lake and film it, just because, why not? Why not do that? Why not watch that? It makes a lot more sense than Funky Winkerbean most days.
“Cars”? You might be able to squeeze ONE Batiukmobile in that garage, but plural? No f*cking way. I can’t tell if that’s supposed to be sepia-toned Cory or Funky or what, nor can I tell how it relates in any way to the premise here, or why this wasn’t just a one-paneler, but at least it’s already Thursday which means this is hopefully almost over.
That’s a pretty decent house by Westviewian standards, definitely a home befitting the local pizza kingpin. Nice size, nice lawn, nice garage…it’s certainly better than Moore Manor, with its dead trees and weird detached office. Chester’s place is nicer, but than again he IS a renowned comic book collector and all. I’ve always wanted Batiuk to do a map of Westview and the surrounding area so I can see where everything is in relation to everything else, as this fascinates me to no end. Given his obvious refusal to put anything more than significantly less than the bare minimum into this thing, I assume I’ll be waiting for that for some time.
A sad listless joke, built on sad tired tropes, at the expense of a sad beaten man. This is one of those stealthily depressing FW strips, one that appears harmless enough on the surface but which reveals all kinds of terrible truths about the strip in general. Most “writers” probably would have skipped over this part of the story and jumped ahead to the part where Melinda is all moved in already, but not BatYak. He obviously saw some moving trucks outside and had another “and I thought it’d be very, very funny if…” moment and yadda yadda yadda here we are, with six days of watching Funky watching people putting boxes into a truck. Sigh.
Wow, talk about a pathetic waste of time, even more so than the usual Sunday strip. Apparently TomBan had a bunch of extra “Ominously Smirking Frankie” drawings lying around that he felt he needed to re-purpose, or perhaps he once again assumes his readers will forget the plot unless he drives it home over and over again for days on end. Either way the hackery just leaps off the page as the “story” (as it were) continues its inexorable death spiral into nothingness. What a sad-sack-sorry display.
What is this, the third wordless strip in a row? I haven’t seen anything like this since Darin had to open some mail. Today Bull is carelessly putting well over $100 worth of Batiukmobiles at risk as his inexplicable tantrum continues. As usual Bantom has confounded me by going off in a direction no sane person could have possibly seen coming. The clear highlight today is that “anger squiggle” over Bull’s head in panel one, which obviously indicates “anger”. Otherwise HOW WOULD WE KNOW???
While I’m still holding some hope that maybe we’re heading for a traffic fatality here or something, the likelihood of anything remotely entertaining happening here is dwindling by the second. No one takes longer to get to the “point” (so to speak) than BanTom does, every single thing simply must be dragged out for days and days on end until no reasonable person can possibly take it anymore. I’ve been doing this for years and it still never fails to enrage me and induce uncontrollable yawning. The notion that even the simplest plot point has to take an entire week (or longer) to build (so to speak) is exactly why no one bothers to read this thing, aside from those of us who like to test their patience, that is. WE GET IT, HE’S ANGRY! Now please, for the love of God, move on.