From the FW blog:
Rick [Burchett]…lays-out and pencils the Sunday sequence. When that’s finished, it’s my turn to jump back in and ink it into a Funky Sunday. The lettering is then done on the computer after which it goes off to colorist Rob Ro who proceeds, as he always does, to turn it into a totally beautiful Funky Sunday.
Colorist Rob can even turn a clump of gridiron turf into a flaming mini-volcano! Well done, Rob! So today we get the big payoff in the Buck Bedlow saga. We wondered why Buck showed up out of nowhere and went to such lengths to overturn Bull’s non-touchdown in the Big Game. What Buck was really doing was getting a preview of his own impending decline. But if he got his “CTE diagnosis” (grrrrrrrrrr!) “last month,” why did he show up back in September?
Well it’s been a pleasure stoking the snark fires these first two weeks of the new year. Tomorrow, guest author Charles takes over the reins. Wear a helmet, folks! –TFH
Link to today’s strip.
I hope none of you are fans of the blues or rockabilly, because you’re about to watch the things you enjoy become tainted with Harry Dinkle, and you’ll never get any pleasure from them again. I’m guessing Batiuk took a vacation to Memphis recently, and we’re all going to pay.
I don’t know what kind of a monster that is in panel one, but it appears to be wearing Mort Winkerbean’s skin. What godawful drawing–Burchett should be ashamed. Contrast that with Dinkle’s face in panel two–he gets the full “handsome” treatment, as well as a little action whip-around.
By slicing out a quarter of Mort’s face–
–he actually looks like a person. I’d like to think that Burchett drew him more like this, and Batiuk said “Damn it, Burchett, how dare you draw any character other than Les, Dinkle and Lisa as a normal human being!! I want all those sons-o-bitches looking like a non-human monster! Just like all the women should be fat and frowsy with Muppet faces!!! Do you like getting paid?! Cut it up and do it over!!”
What a loathsome thing Dinkle is–as I’ve said way too many times, of all the cast in this miserable comic, Dinkle is the one I hate the most. He always triumphs, he’s always praised, and always beloved. He’s one of the reasons this strip will never be noteworthy.
Let’s hope the prospective Mr. and Mrs. Jarre and Mr. and Mrs. Anger get back from the courthouse in time for the World Premiere of Starbuck Jones! The studio’s pulled out all the stops, installing huge inflatables of Starbuck, Jupiter Moon, and a Xanax Warrior atop the Val’s crumbling marquee, while the “front of house,” which just last week was brown, appears to have been repainted the same blue-gray as the drab balloons at that kid’s birthday party. Here’s hoping that the life-sized SJ and Jupiter we see waving to the crowd are costumed players; to have the movie’s leads cosplaying themselves at the world premiere would be too cheesy even for Batiuk.
If I were Hollywood producer Clay Wallace, I’d be leaning back with my feet on the desk too! When your director, leading man, screenwriter, storyboard artist, and their assorted hangers-on make brilliant decisions regarding casting, location shooting, publicity, and every other aspect of putting out a major motion picture, what’s left to do except kick back and enjoy things like palm trees outside and inside your office.
SosfDavidO here, and like most of us, we just can’t get enough of watching the writing and editing process being depicted in the media. If you enjoy pasty-faced nerds staring uncertainly at word processors as much as I do, you’ll really like the action in today’s strip! The sepia edges indicate it’s a flash back but it’s NOT, because he’s imagining they’re working at Batcom Comics in the 1940s because.. your guess is as good as mine.
Link to today’s strip.
I guess all the bird-themed dialogue is telling us that Chullo and Glasses are bird-brains. Got it. Although Glasses’ riposte makes no sense whatsoever. Is this his version of “Whatever”? Because he looks more anxious than dismissive.
Also, since Glasses is wearing a Marvel-themed t-shirt, and Tom Batiuk has gone out of his way to tell us he’s a DC guy, I think that means he’s supposed to be evil. Or maybe it’s more payback to Stan Lee for writing the forward for the new Funky Winkerbean collection. Those boots won’t lick themselves!
The only interesting thing here is that kid’s hair in panel two. Is she wearing a hat, or a plastic bag, or has she dyed part of her hair blue, or what? Does she have a chullo? Wedgeman could probably tell us, but since he was a senior last year, he has gone into the abyss…or at least, he should have. What do you want to bet that he shows up anyway, because continuity is for losers.
Link to today’s strip. I’m not sure, but I think today’s strip is supposed to be a “joke.” You might remember jokes, they’re stories with a humorous climax (as Mr. Spock observed in Star Trek IV–a moment of silence for Mr. Nimoy, please). They’re also things that this strip abandoned because it wanted to say serious things about serious issues. And if this is supposed to be a joke, you can tell that Tom Batiuk has kind of lost his ability to tell them. For one thing, he should have made Cindy’s narwhal horn blonde, so it looks like her hair and not simply a printer’s error. Unless her narwhal horn is supposed to be pure white? Which begs another question–if you don’t know anything about Cindy’s old hairstyle, if you haven’t read this strip obsessively for 40 years, this joke will make no sense. It’s a joke for Tom Batiuk and no one else. If this strip had a lighter tone, something like this could work. There are strips out there that have a regular cast and use story arcs, but manage to remember that what readers want are jokes, or at least sincere attempts at jokes. Those strips could have a well known actor, let’s call him Leonard Nimoy the Movie Actor, fly across the country to watch old videocassettes in preparation for his role as
Lisa Moore Mr. Spock, and the story could work without calling attention to how moronic and unrealistic the situation is, and we could all have a good laugh. Since this strip has made a fetish of being serious, such similar episodes call attention to themselves in ways that Tom Batiuk really resents. And his joke-telling ability has, as noted, atrophied. Who knows, though? Perhaps he’s great at parties and really livens things up. In his day job, though…. Finally, Cindy looks much younger in panel one than she does in panel two. Dear Mr. Batiuk, a 45th anniversary still indicates a pretty good run, and it’s only a couple of years from now. You might consider it.