Tag Archives: cellphone

Pea-Brained

So, do you think it’s just Melinda that forgets what Funky does for a living, or Batiuk himself? I know Funky currently owns and manages Montoni’s, but I guarantee he’s done more than his share of cooking, and I don’t get at all why Melinda is so shocked she’s literally covering her mouth. But I guess it’s worth scrapping years of character development for the bad sitcom level hilariousness of “men don’t know how to cook”.

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Alumnaiku

Look, the man himself
Deigns to appear on panel
Here in today's strip

Why is he worried
No one is coming to see
Him in uniform

No one is coming
To see Holly twirl either
But whatever y'all

This Harry Dinkle,
He sounds like a real jerk
This guy here, real jerk

With his history
Of abusing band members
Why would alums play

But of course these two
Still have their band uniforms
No one leaves high school

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Healing fact-or fiction?

Oh sweet Sousa, it’s HIM! I guess we all knew his appearance was inevitable after Holly brought up band alumni yesterday, but I think we were all hoping he wouldn’t show up as soon as today’s strip. But now he is involved AND he is tossing around comic book/video game terminology like he‘s DSH or the other guy in this strip named Harry, making this story arc go from insufferably bland to straight up insufferable in three panels flat. And now we know Holly wasn’t the only majorette he routinely maimed…

Holly really shouldn’t be surprised he remembers her, though. After all, he named his shoe brand’s majorette marching boots after her. I guess that means he is being sincere then telling her she was the best majorette he ever had, though I’ll also bet he‘s been keeping her royalty checks from the sale of those boots for the past 29 years too.

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The Happy Masses

Link to today’s strip.

So, it’s another Sunday strip that adds nothing, but takes up a bunch of space.

The main thing I find of interest is the last panel, where Mason apologizes to Les, because “keeping the masses happy” is “a thing now.” Hasn’t it always been?

Dunno how to tell you this, Mason, since you’re apparently a dimwit and cannot learn new things, but “keeping the masses happy” is a major part of the motion picture industry. (Not so much in the comic strip industry, I guess.) Every studio wants their productions to be seen by as many people as possible.

Of course, Lisa’s Story is an Important Art House Film Designated (By The Author, Not The Critics, And Not The People) For Greatness, so naturally it won’t make the masses happy, and it will not be a popular or financial success. It’s just too special for the ordinary dullards who slog back and forth on this planet. Look at them, they pay their bills, they buy their Egg McMuffins, they sometimes drive to the lake so they can eat sandwiches, they might laugh at those late night TV hosts if they’re not too exhausted after their mundane days. *Shudder*

This is yet another manifestation of Batiuk’s idea that people do not know what’s good for them, they do not seek quality art that shows how a super-sensitive man reacts to his wife’s death (and finds fame thereof), but instead are happy to watch Chris Pratt do handstands in a Burger King parking lot while the soundtrack belts out something about “Cartoon Heroes” or maybe Hobbits and Isengard.

“Keeping the masses happy” is the lowest thing a “creative” person can do. (It’s certainly not the way to *cough* win awards, which should be the focus of anyone who dares to call himself an “artist.”) Look to the Oscars: If a movie is popular and is a big financial success, it’s not winning any awards in today’s movie industry.

The people who make movies, though, would love to make the masses happy. It’s how they make their money. I bet, back in the day, they even hoped Radio Ranch would be a smash hit, rather than a future relic fetishized by aging cartoonists.

One other detail here is very, very telling. In the third panel from the end, Mason mentions that the film is based on Les’ life. Not Lisa, but Les. It would have been easy to substitute the word “book” for “life,” but I guess sometimes Batiuk’s ego gets the better of him.

As long as I’m linking crap, why not link this. It’s wonderfully melancholic and yearning at the same time. Heck, it’s Saturday night, I’ll link everything that–oh hello, officer, no, I was just moving on, thank you!

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Return of the Phil

This doesn’t quite seem to be how normal people would react to someone randomly returning from the dead. (I know it’s a waste of time expecting people to act normal in this strip, but still). I absolutely believe that if someone in the Batiukverse did spontaneously, inexplicably return from the dead, the first thing they would do would be seek out the nearest comic convention and ruin an event honoring someone else.
Boy, is Les going to be pissed with Lisa shows up and ruins the Lisa’s Legacy Run this year.

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Everyone Knows It’s Wendy

Six days of Ruby telling of her struggle as a woman in the male-dominated golden/silver age of comics. Then Mindy shares some hurtful online comments that she’s received, and even Ruby, who’s seen it all, is taken aback. The plot is just starting to move into “contemporary issues affecting young adults in a thought-provoking and sensitive manner” territory. But hey, it’s the Sunday following a Mindy and Ruby week, which means we get a  Wayback Wendy Sideways Sunday Comic Cover.

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Comment Allez-vous

It’s Memorial Day, and I’m gonna invoke my privilege here and just throw out today’s link for you all to pick apart. Thanks for reading and have a safe and enjoyable Saturday.

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This is the farmer sowing his corn

Link to today’s strip.

Good grief, look at that word zeppelin in panel one.

This the dolt who made the call
To schedule the audition
To fill the position
To be the organist
Down at the church that Tom built.

Presumably Harriet was right there the whole time and knows what was going on; of course, given the writing in this strip I’m surprised she didn’t repeat his words verbatim in her panel five frog-face. After all, she outlined all his other accomplishments and (of course) concluded that he was the best thing evar. In probably the fastest 180 I’ve ever seen.

The reason being, this entire episode is Tom Batiuk publicly patting himself on the back. “Look at this terrific character I created! Is this award-winning or what?”

As mentioned yesterday, unless this church has a single Sunday service, Dinkle will be spending a lot of time there. Most churches I’m familiar with have several Sunday services, a couple on Saturday and at least one every weekday. Let’s not even bring up holidays. That’s going to cut into a lot of Dinkle’s other activities. (Come to think, how does Lillian manage to run her bookstore? Answer: it’s magic. Dark magic.)

All of which promises what could be could be an interesting twist: what if Dinkle failed the audition? I think it would be the first time in the strip when he didn’t get everything he wanted. It might humble him and make for a rounder character.

And of course it will never happen. The strip is now total wish-fulfillment and trivial observations. Where every “hero” character is Superman.

And with that, I am out of here. Please welcome the always erudite and entertaining Epicus Doomus who will be your host for the next couple of weeks. Exit, stage left!

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I Wish He’d DisAPPear

I’m going to ignore the “haha, apps are confusing mystical objects that nobody can understand” “humor” here and just focus on Becky. What in the world is her expression about? The raised eyebrows and smirk look more seductive/romantic than anything else (although in the second panel she looks eerily like Pete and Summer, because for some reason only three or four face types exist in this strip). And honestly, if it was revealed that Dinkle and Becky were actually having an affair, it would vastly improve the logic of this strip.  Because “deaf band director who retired decades ago is constantly shadowing the current band director for no real reason” is stupid. It was the same thing with Linda and Buck. I think it’s a sign of bad writing when totally unintended subtexts actually make more sense than the actual plot.

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Always Enjoyable?

Link To Today’s Strip

Oh goodie! I get a Dinkle arc. Having to scrape together some kind of humor or commentary for Dinkel arcs is ‘always enjoyable.’ But it gets tedious trying to remember everything that has happened to Dinkle in Act III that has slowly morphed him from a unique and bombastic caricature of a passionate band director into just another bland, smug, Westview Pod Person.

Please note, while Dinkle claims that teaching piano is ‘always enjoyable’ he doesn’t look like he’s enjoying it today, and…spoilers…he doesn’t seem to enjoy it all week long. Maybe in Westview the words ‘always’ or ‘enjoyable’ mean something very different than what’s listed in the dictonary?

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