Link to today’s strip
I’m excited to be getting a chance to contribute my bit here. I was honestly dreading that my first strip would be a Les strip, or Dinkle writing a book, and I’d have to come up with something halfway interesting about that.
I do like how this strip somehow managed to shoehorn in bricks. Precious, precious bricks. And “breaking down the barriers between people” translates to two people each saying one sentence and then staring robotically at each other. I mean, look at Adeela in the third panel. She looks like Wally just gave her a diagnosis of Total Body Cancer and she has seconds to live, and her memorial service is going to be at Montoni’s.
I think Wally’s in trouble though. He had enough difficulty with one Muslim in a hijab. When he turns around and sees they have him surrounded, even Buddy might not be enough to keep him on the Montoni’s Manager track.
I liked this arc much better when these two were wary of each other to the point of antipathy. Their initial awkwardness and mistrust of one another has, almost in an instant, been replaced with gentle scatological humor and hijab hijinks. Of course, Wally has to take it too far and bring up the handshaking thing.
Programming notes: Saturday’s strip was not available for preview; look for a placeholder post after midnight EST. Also! On Monday we welcome our newest guest author!
October 27, 2018 at 10:56 am
Like everyone else in Westview, Wally has no empathy. He could take his jacket off (since he’s wearing a T-shirt underneath it) and ask Adeela if that helps in making her more comfortable so they can work on the project together. But that would require him removing his “I am a veteran who has suffered” clothing and since it’s all about him, that thought will never cross his mind.
Well now! Could this be Wally’s big breakthrough? He’s finally ready to relinquish his good old M-65 jacket. Keep in mind it’s only been nine years since he popped up on Becky’s doorstep. Long enough for the jacket to fade from olive drab to the battleship gray we see today.
Getting a little too chummy there, Wally. You think all that cultural sensitivity training he got in the Army would have him avoid such vulgarity around Adeela, but he’s suddenly so relaxed he forgets himself. And rather than being offended, she’s actually amused by Wally’s coarse talk.
Since this story’s moving at such a slack pace, let’s pick apart the draughtsmanship. Ayers has always been a better cartoonist than Batiuk, But like Burchett (where’s he been, anyway?) I get the feeling he has to dumb down his style for Funky Winkerbean. Note the hirsute zombie in panel 1, and panel 2 Buddy’s deformed, mismatched legs.
Well, which is it? Can’t get back to sleep or great sense of relief? Methinks TB found and liked this Churchill quote (actually a paraphrase), and made up his mind to insert it into a strip, however hamfistedly.
The year’s most utterly predictable FW arc rolls into its fifth week. To recap:
- Wally announces he’s heading into his final semester; Funky and Rachel remark on Wally’s progress vs. post-traumatic stress disorder.
- We meet Adeela, Wally’s hijab-wearing classmate. Wally and Adeela are thrown together as study partners.
- Without even really trying, the two decide they can’t get along, and agree to ask their professor to assign them different partners.
- The sound of a loud siren sends the two into a panic; when they regain their senses they learn it was merely a test of the campus tornado warning siren.
Now, let the bonding commence. Before their scare, Adeela refused to sit at the same table as Wally. Now she sits thisclose, and shares a memory about her life back home. Is Batiuk channeling Yogi Berra here? “…when you went back to bed, you’d be up for the rest of the night” feels kind of like “It’s so crowded, nobody goes there anymore.” Except, you know, not funny, although Wally’s rejoinder does draw a wry smirk from Adeela.
Spring ahead, fall back, Sunday’s strip was not available for preview.