How about a round of applause for Epicus Doomus, who went the extra-extra mile in covering three consecutive weeks of Funky madness? That’s four weeks more than doctors recommend. Your friend billytheskink here, hopefully (but probably not) prepared to tread water for two weeks right along with this strip as it tries to stay afloat until March 2022.
Alas, Sunday’s comic was an omen and Les Moore’s tour of contempt continues in today’s strip. Yet another person (one of Pete’s relatives, perhaps?) has been standing in line to meet the author of a book that they know nothing about? Skinny McBrowncoat has never heard of Les or the previously released Lisa’s Story book? I mean, that is believable, sure, but did he just see a line at the bookstore and decided to stand in it?
Panel two’s look over our dazed customer’s shoulder seems to confirm that this book is all text, not a graphic novel like it originally was going to be. I wonder if it was Les or his publisher that decided to stick all of Durwood’s artwork in the circular file.
Link to today’s strip
Look at that douche in panel 1, visible strain on his face as he forces himself to listen to Lillian’s blathering. Les does however hit paydirt as Lillian acknowledges that she’s here to buy “the new Lisa’s Trilogy books”. This is not how a real person would describe what she’s doing, but at least Les made one sale. I suppose that’s the part that drives this book signing sequence forward, since the punchline is nothing more than a continuation of yesterday’s punchline. I do like how Les in the last panel, looking puzzled, holds Lillian’s book right up to his face as if he’s never seen such a thing before in his life, deciding to smell it. He looks confused and disoriented. Oh, Lillian, your delightful smile is wasted on this man. He’s never going to read your book. Don’t kid yourself.
I have to admit that I’m more intrigued by the subtitle in panel 2 for The Last Leaf, which is “Lisa’s Story Concludes”, which with that awful stylized lettering I’ve read more than once as “lisa’s story omelettes.” How could this possibly be a conclusion to Lisa’s Story? She DIED in the last one! If it’s about Les’s ability to become a functional member of society again after his loss (which not only has a debatable premise, but is also the most reasonable direction for the book to take), that’s not about Lisa. That’s about Les. It’s as if Fitzgerald wrote “Gatsby’s Story Concludes” about how Nick Carraway got on with his life.
But that’s not really a surprise. After all, I bet if you took all the strips in the new “Lisa’s Trilogy books” of Batiuk’s and counted the strips where Lisa appears and the strips where Les appears, Les would have more by a substantial margin. Hell, dump the book where his purported protagonist is dead and I’d bet Les still has a wide margin in the other two. It’s never been about Lisa. It’s always been about Les. For every strip of Lisa reflecting on her own about her life’s circumstances in a way that doesn’t focus on Les, there are probably ten of Les moping about some damn thing.
Whew, what a tangent. Anyway, your main character, ladies and gentlemen.
Had I known TB was going to gratuitously shill for his next collection of strips in today’s strip, I wouldn’t have plugged his Amazon pre-order page yesterday. Click the link above to the previous day’s post if you want to see it, I’m not linking it again.
So… Durwood first floated this whole “Prelude” idea to Les over a year-and-a-half ago. Les allegedly began working on it shortly thereafter, with his publisher delaying release of The Last Leaf until he could finish it so that they could be released together. In fact, just last week Darin explicitly tells Les he wants to see what he has written so that he can start on the “illos” for the book.
But in today’s strip, Les is just NOW given the idea for the Prequel/Prelude book that he claimed to have started in mid-2015, a book it was definitely implied he was procrastinating on just LAST WEEK?!
I… I mean… Just… Just move on to the next story arc, please.
The Last Leaf, by the way, is going to be an actual thing. That means that, combined with Prelude and the already-published The Other Shoe, this trilogy of books that Durwood has proposed is going to be a real (expensive) thing too.
And to think I said I wasn’t gonna plug TB’s books today…
Link to today’s strip
Once upon a time there was a comic strip. This comic strip centered around daily life at a fictional Ohio high school. It featured a whole cast of zany high school characters, like the nerd, the cool kid, the bully and etc. While it wasn’t the most popular comic strip or anything, most readers found it to be somewhat amusing and perfectly acceptable.
Then the guy who wrote this comic strip got bored and decided to change the tone of the comic strip by centering it around “real life” issues, like the kind you and I face every day. He created a brand new character named Lisa who’d get into all sorts of melodramatic situations all the time. No one really liked this Lisa character but the comic strip writer LOVED her so he plowed ahead undaunted, placing his new character into ever-more implausible situations, like silly superhero weddings and post office terror bombings. The rest of the comic strip followed suit and suddenly ALL the characters were involved in these wild melodramatic situations. Car crashes, illnesses, wars, alcoholism…it was endless.
But it just wasn’t enough for the comic strip writer, so he decided to up the ante and REALLY draw attention to himself by giving the Lisa character cancer. For years and years his readers watched in horror as the Lisa character slowly withered and died in the most drawn-out and agonizing way imaginable. And everyone noticed…briefly…before going back to mostly ignoring the comic strip and the comic strip writer’s daffy antics.
Then after the Lisa character died the comic strip writer didn’t know what to do with himself or his comic strip. So he kept going back to his cancer story, again and again and again and again. The Lisa character appeared as a ghost, her husband began writing a book about her and soon the Lisa character was in the comic strip even more frequently than she was before she died. Everyone became annoyed or just plain bored by the endless contrivances he used to keep featuring the dead Lisa character. It finally reached a point where it became a parody of itself and everyone either started making fun of it or just stopped reading it altogether. The end.
Wow, that was easy. And I’m neither delicate OR a genius. Few things irk me more than LesTom’s incessant whining about the trials and tribulations of being a “writer”, as if either of them would know. No one put a gun to Dick Facey’s head and told him he had to write exclusively about his dead wife just like no one ever forced Batiuk to concoct his dopey little melodramatic piles of crap of in lieu of entertaining people with jokes. If BanTom is really struggling and stressing over “writing” a two week arc about some fat moron going to the DMV perhaps “writing” was a poor career choice. I mean hey, every SoSF guest host (and commenter) manages to find something funny to say about his idiotic comic strip every day and we have way, way less to work with than he does, as he theoretically could write about anything he likes but we’re stuck with FW.