Tag Archives: Buck Bedlow

De Jock Vu

Today’s strip takes us back in time to Sunday, I think. Yep, TB is repeating himself all of two days later… eh, he’s done worse.

Well, not much worse, because Buck hitting on Linda (and insulting the entire canine species) is some of squickiest squick we’ve seen TB hatch in a good long while. How else are we supposed to read “a little attention and a job to do”? This is not cute or endearing, it’s gross. Buck looking kinda like Dennis Hastert does the strip no favors either. Just awful all the way around.

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Habakbuck

Aaaaaaaaaaaaand… we’re still watching Buck and Linda wade through Bull’s sports junk in today’s strip? Of course we are. This is post-40th anniversary Funky Winkerbean we’re looking at, expectations are for fools.

Oh hi, I’m billytheskink, and speaking of anniversaries… I’m proud to be the one to take you all through the 10th anniversary of this here groundbreaking blog. I will, however, profess nothing but lament that we must be subjected to the maudlin nonexistence of a story arc that is surely coming this week.

So Buck has the same problem with hoarding sports memorabilia that Bull had? That sounds like a trite but reasonable “men, amirite” bit until you consider that Bull followed his high school football career with a 4 year college career, an NFL training camp invite, assistant and head football coaching jobs at Westview High School, a head girl’s basketball coaching job at WHS, a rescinded offer to coach a college football team, and championships won in both high school football and girl’s basketball. As far as we know, Buck’s football career ended when he walked off the field at Big Walnut Tech for the last time. Bull has an excuse to have collected a bunch of junk from his decades-long career in sports. What’s Buck’s excuse?

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All Bucked Up

Link To Sunday’s Strip

Thanks for the expository dialog, Linda! Apparently lugging Bull’s old garbage to the dump WHS Sports Hall Of Fame makes up for concussing him all those times. In my opinion Bull is the clear loser in that deal, which is certainly no surprise. I really wish he’d stop dragging this out, but then again dragging things out is kind of what BatBrain does, much to everyone’s disgust. And how come Buck is all wry and cheerful while Bull was all unpredictable and squirrely? It’s like HIS CTE comes and goes. Sigh.

Stay tuned for billytheskink AND SoSF’s 10th anniversary! If only time went as slowly in real life as it does in the Funkyverse.

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Burn It All Down

Link to today’s strip.

Well, my wish from yesterday wasn’t granted, and we’re back with the Mope Set.  As before, I don’t know what to make of this; I wish I’d had the arc where Funky misses the winning basketball shot, because that’s easily explainable as Tom Batiuk’s utter hatred of his title character.

Then this would be relevant:

(Larger and more satisfying version here.)

In today’s case–well, is it true that fewer high school kids are going out for football?  I have no way of knowing either way.  My impression is that sports are always popular for students.  If the numbers are falling, one thing I do know is that it’s NOT because the kids read a powerful anti-CTE story in Funky Winkerbean.

And the last two panels, again, make me wonder if we should be concerned about Batiuk’s mental state.   Much as I disdain his work, I have no animus against the man himself.  May he live long and prosper.  But what on earth is Buck talking about?  How does cancelling the football season mean that the band “wins”?  Aren’t they tied in great measure tied to one another?  Yes, there are other band activities, like the odd concert and student assemblies and so on, but the main display of the band is at sporting events.

And please tolerate a dumb question from a non-sporto, but it’s March.  Isn’t the football season already over?

As for Linda’s curtain line, does Tom Batiuk know what “Pyrrhic victory” means?  It’s when you win a war, but at such great cost to your side that it might as well be a defeat.  Trying to spin the logic here, she means no football games means, um, no band half-time shows, but, uh…there’ll be other occasional activities for the band (which the football team wouldn’t have).  So the band has marginally more stuff to do.  But there may be so few of said activities…uh, lemme think.  I guess she means that the school might consider cancelling the band as well?  Is that it?

Why would she care?  A) She’s retired.  Other than retirement pay, the school is in her past.  (Of course high school never really goes away in Funky Winkerbean, but still.)  B) She never had any interaction with the band that I can recall.  If the school cancelled football and band, why would she care either way?

In order to really have that line work, the band members would have to be actively persuading students not to join the football team.  Which is not what they spoke about.  And neither Linda nor Buck would know anything about such a scheme.  (And that kind of scheme would make a very interesting storyline, honestly…which is why we’ll never see it.  Damn.)

I keep bashing my head against this strip, trying to figure out the logic or sense behind it, and all I get is a headache.  I think Funky Winkerbean is giving me CTE.

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Do Tell

Link to today’s strip.

I’ll confess, this week I have felt really baffled by this strip, pretty much left without much to say.  But today’s thing is the cherry on top.  Bull’s reaction that he had a “tell” shows him much more alarmed than the knowledge that his deterioration is right on track.  Remember:  his football career (and thus the period where his “tell” would be an issue) is at least thirty years gone, but his death is right around the corner.  I figured the wry smirks he’s been handing out would be much more appropriate here, but what do I know?  Not a whole lot, it turns out!

I’m really hoping today’s episode closes this, um, “story.”  For a strip which seems to pride itself on being inexplicable, dull and uninvolving, this week has reached a nadir (or perhaps a summit) in each field.  It’s like watching toast get cold.   Yep, that toast is not even warm anymore.  Close to room temperature, I think.  No one wants to eat it now.

I think that should be the Funky Winkerbean slogan: “No one wants to eat it now.”

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High Loss Finish

Link to today’s strip.

Poor, poor Bull.  Despite being a generally decent guy over the last fifteen years of his life, he will never catch a break from Tom Batiuk.   Just thinking of all the things he did to help Les makes me believe Tom Batiuk is a deeply ill man who needs a good solid look in the mirror.  Not that he doesn’t look, often and at length; he should just try a different angle.  Bull also gave his students an encouragement to play, and the parents an opportunity to cheer; what did Les do for anyone other than himself?  Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.

All the Hollywood work and comic book careers were given out by other people–Cindy in the case of the former, Chester in the case of the latter.  Heck, even DHS John gave Harry a job when he was suddenly unemployed.

Les?  “I screwed up.”  “Yes, you did.”

As for Bull’s viewing habits, well, I think if I were a coach, I’d watch losing games over and over.  It’s the best way to see what mistakes were made and how to correct them.  But for Batiuk, no, this was just Bull wallowing in masochism and self-pity, two things no Westview inhabitant should be without.

I actually do own a VCR (it’s one of those DVD-VCR combo things), but I haven’t even plugged it in in years.   And I can’t remember the last time I bought a tape (certainly not in this century.)  Let’s also not forget that Funky Winkerbean is supposed to be set ten years in the future (your rules, Batiuk, not mine).  This is like keeping important files on a floppy disk–and a 5.25 disk at that.

All that being said, it’s not impossible for someone to have a huge collection of VHS tapes…just less and less likely as time goes on.

Kind of like this strip.

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Speaking of “Deeply Flawed…”

Link to today’s strip.

I dunno, Buck.  I’d say if the plan is getting rid of you, then it’s moving along swimmingly.  On the other hand, I’d like to lodge a complaint that Les is still around.

Again, I remain baffled that this was “written,” “drawn” and published.  Only the last seems to’ve been done with any talent or purpose.  People who are naively expecting a “prestige” arc from this strip are not going to be at all satisfied with what they’re getting.  (Regular readers know to expect nothing, or worse.)   This whole are doesn’t seem have any point behind it; two people in a room babbling past each other.  The dialogue is meant to seem deep and profound, but it just comes across as moronic.

If Batiuk had an occasional story that at least did something, I’d write this one off as something fished out of the trash because the deadline was RIGHT THERE.  There’s no excuse to have something so utterly pointless printed under one’s name.

That 50th can’t get here fast enough.

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