Link to today’s strip
Oooh, we have a real treat this week. Not only was Monday a nonentity where one character essentially tells another, “I will soon tell you the point.” But we get a double dose of the ‘suspense’ today. Do you think by the end of the week we will know the crux of the ‘conflict’? I give it 50-50 odds.
Funky is shoveling the snow off the sidewalk, and talking to his wife on the phone. So much wrong with this.
While I guess a March snowstorm isn’t insane for the Midwest,(here in Iowa we had snow on Thursday,) the strip on Sunday had the students standing on growing green grass in light jackets and sweaters.
Funky is just outside his house. Unless his wife is away from town, isn’t she just inside? Why is she asking him if he’s sitting down? Why is she having this serious conversation with him on the phone, instead of waiting the 15 minutes for him to finish shoveling? Has she locked him out of the house? Do they only converse with cell phones now? Does she refuse to set eyes on him since he turned into a horrible eldritch amalgamation of the Stay-puff Marshmallow Man and Statler the Muppet?
‘Not necessarily bad news’ always means, ‘it’s not bad for me, but you won’t like it.’ Funky is right to sniff doom. On the other hand, a good whiff of Funky right now probably smells like moldy dog and onions. He sniffs doom with every inhale.
Link to today’s strip
The internet has been a wonderful breeding ground for all kinds of new dialectical terminology. Whereas before we had things like Ockham’s Razor or Pascal’s Wager. Now we’ve got Godwin’s Law, “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1.” The Bechdel Test, “Whether a work features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man.” And Poe’s Law, “Without a clear indicator of the author’s intent, it is impossible to create a parody of extreme views so obviously exaggerated that it cannot be mistaken by some readers for a sincere expression of the parodied views.”
Here we have an inverse Poe’s Law. A sincere expression of a view so obviously exaggerated it is indistinguishable from parody.
Also. Is this all of the students who walked out? That must have been some editorial.
Link to today’s strip
No Les, for either one of them to be jokes, they would have to be funny. And kudos to all the commenters who wondered if Batiuk would remember far enough back to reference the machine gun. Turns out it was cardboard. What is funny is that bringing a fake gun to school these days is likely good enough to get you suspended. Ah, the good old days, when Batiuk still had the balls to use guns for humor.
There is something funny in this strip though. That kid carrying the ‘We’re Still Here” sign looks like an immigrant from another strip entirely. I’m guessing Archie. He’s either got freckles, acne, stubble, or a tiny tattoo of a flock of migrating geese on his cheek. That coat looks like he murdered Chewbacca to wear his pelt, and the orange scarf isn’t so much a fashion accessory as some terrible noose he’s broken free. He’s got a nose high and sharp enough to use as a can opener, pointy ears. And all of this with a receding hairline hiding under cowlick reminiscent of the infamous scene in “There’s Something About Mary.”
Forget everyone else in this strip. We should make it all about Cowlick from now on.
It’s been posited here and elsewhere that the supposed 10-year time gap between events in Funky Winkerbean and Crankshaft means that CS is set in the present, and FW takes place a decade from now…a decade in which medical science has found a way to diagnose chronic traumatic encephalopathy before death. It’s the only way to explain how Bull and Buck are aware of their condition, as well as the existence of such a weirdly specific online support group such as “Former Football Players with CTE” (“Oh, you played hockey? That’s another group.”) Meanwhile, Westview High School is courting controversy by replacing the Stars and Stripes with a “Blue Lives Matter” flag.
I’m sure Batiuk was running the imaginary bases after the five seconds it took him to write out this strip. Which is ironic considering how he’s crapping all over athletes and sports itself here. I guess sports are cool when you do them in your head after writing incredibly trite dialogue.
“Sports isn’t real life, it’s just playing” does not seem like a good thing to be saying when you’re honoring a guy for his sports accomplishments. Like, I get his point, but when this is the focus of Bull’s induction speech it really makes you wonder, again, why the hell he’s even being inducted. “All that silly stuff Bull did to get into your silly Hall of Fame, that’s just playing. Sitting around his basement now, that’s real life”.
For not the first time this week I’m totally baffled as to what Bull has done that’s supposed to be damn inspiring. Also, the strip that more often than not is just a vehicle for Batiuk’s comic daydreams really shouldn’t be criticizing anything anyone else does as “just playing”.
By far the best part of the strip is the hilarious handwritten “Bushka Family” sign. Not nearly as good is how Jinx looks. I really don’t think it’s a good idea to draw Asian characters with their eyes slanted and closed, especially when they’re wearing glasses.
“To sum it up, Bull, you inspired me when I had my pants off. I’m so happy we can’t quit each other. I’m less happy about this creepy stranger glaring at me from underneath that bush, but you can’t win them all, I guess. Boy, you sure would know a thing or two about that, eh, buddy?”
Also apparently spending all your time in your basement watching TV and reading the sports section while having no human contact apart from your wife and a random stranger who showed up one day is “not quitting” by this strip’s standards. Which, I mean, Bull hasn’t just ended it all, which really actually is inspirational for Batiuk.
And you can totally take this as “Bull was a moron who didn’t know what the word meant, and he still is because of the CTE ruining his brain”, which is a fun spin on it.
I don’t think I’ve seen too many more blatant examples of “sporto talk” as written by someone who never played sports and isn’t that familiar with them. “Shared our competition”? It really seems like he’s leading into “. . . but we also shared a forbidden love that we had to hide, from both the world, and ourselves. What’s that, Bull? You don’t remember that? Oh, that’s probably because of the CTE, right, pal?”.
And of course the only worthwhile thing about Bull is his Very Serious Condition. I’ve got to assume his induction has nothing do with his athletic accomplishments, but rather the terrible thing that happened to him. Because that’s the only reason Batiuk cares about him.