Tag Archives: comic books

Chester Roasting On An Open Fire

Link To Today’s Strip

Uh, correct me if I’m wrong here but that comic book has not been properly slabbed and bagged, which makes it WORTHLESS. Why, sometimes it makes me wonder if these idiots are really “comic book collectors” at all. At least BatBore acknowledged the already-established fact that Chester already has every issue of SJ ever, which was a major plot point way back when he still represented the evil side of comic book (sigh) collecting.

So, did Octoshark have a shark head and octopus tentacles or was he just an eight-finned shark? Because one of those seems sort of better than the other. In any event, maybe he could apply this premise to the other characters. Holly could give Funky a slightly sharper pizza-cutter, Les could give Summer a slightly less slovenly hoodie, Cayla could give Les a slightly more cancer-y cancer book and so on. The possibilities are limitless.

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Comeback Kidder.

Link to today’s strip

Dinkle! Stop touching your face! It’s gross! I don’t care if you forgot to shave, or have some kind of numb-cheeked neurological disorder, you will break out in ugly old man acne.

Speaking of ugly, Becky in panel three is a real barker. Bags under her eyes, lines around her misshapen mouth, weird flesh-colored half moon circles on her eyelids, mismatched ears. Ugh. Edvard Munch could be more flattering when portraying anxiety.

And I’m confused. Becky has a husband that isn’t Dinkle? I did another archive deep dive and, after going all the way back to December 2018, I found this weird strip.

That’s DSH John. But are they married? They mention each other a few other times, I guess? But that was the last time they were in a strip together. December 22 2018. They’re married, right? And have kids? When was the last time we saw kids?

Since 2018 Becky has attended OMEA in January, the school end picnic in May, Bull’s funeral, all with Dinkle at her side, and DSH John nowhere to be seen. Over 20 individual strips. And she only had 3 strips WITHOUT Dinkle.

And isn’t John married to Crazy Harry?

Found this funny strip from a year ago though. I guess Dinkle must be catching the Alzheimer’s that Mort Winkerbean lost. Because he forgot he’d already praised Becky for going digital.

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Strange Matter

Link to today’s strip

A strange and sudden change of pace Sunday strip featuring no one’s favorite Komix Korner employees discussing the quantum properties of comic book or something…meh. Sometimes these comic book geek gags go right over my head and I’m not really in the mood to research this crap right now. Sure beats watching someone open and read mail, though.

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La-bore Day

While we’re waiting for today’s strip to drop, I’d like to add my kudos to the many kudos directed at comicbookharriet for taking Batiuk to the woodshed on a daily basis for the last three (!) weeks, and in the process, educating all of us about some real-life women heroes of the comics.

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Sympathy for the Devil.

Today’s strip

As usual, Sunday’s strip wasn’t available for preview. I’m actually hoping we get a comic cover of some kind. Anything to actually showcase the fictional artwork of the fictional woman we’re supposed to be honoring.

I’m going to give Tom Batiuk the benefit of the doubt. I don’t think he intended this arc as some completely hollow awards grab. Epicus said it best in a comment from earlier this week, “I think he does these idiotic stories to give himself something to mention during his annual puff-piece interview in the Canton Daily Bugle’s “Lifestyles” Sunday supplement.”

I would add to this that I think Batiuk sees himself as a man with a platform to bring attention to real life issues, and historical injustices. And while a part of him may be doing this for the ego-stroking self-importance, I want to honestly believe that there is also a part of him that genuinely desires to, in his own tiny way, examine the problems in our world by putting them in his. Those occasional Funky-goes-AA-to-rant-about-global-warming, and Funky-wanders-through-an-abandoned-house-and-ponders-mortality, arcs seem to come from real anxieties about our world, and the nature of his art, his legacy, and being forgotten.

The problem is that Batiuk goes for the easiest answers. The most comfortable soap boxes. And has shown himself unwilling or unable to do the minimum of research required to keep himself from spouting out popular narratives that are unsubstantiated and unverified.

The women I’ve been reading about all week were diverse, their viewpoints were diverse, and their experiences were likewise different. Most importantly, their experiences were complex. They struggled with deadlines, business cycles, and plain old artwork, more than they ever struggled with sexual harassment. Yet Batiuk has given us two weeks of a conversation framed almost entirely around men.

If Ruby Lith was meant to be the avatar for the experiences of these women then, I’m sorry Tom, you have done them a gross disservice. You chose to portray their struggles through a bitter old harpy who would rather talk about the men who done her wrong than her own accomplishments. Tom, these people were artists. They were not cardboard dolls for you to act out your white-knight fantasies with.

Well, that’s it for me for now! Our glorious leader, TF Hackett, will be taking over on Monday. Many, MANY, thanks to him and Epicus for letting me take this blog in a more serious direction for a couple weeks. I promise that zany sarcasm is still definitely on the menu the next time I’m in the driver’s seat, so those of you bored or unimpressed with the Grampa Google assisted history lesson need not worry.

But, thanks so much to everyone who left warm and enthusiastic comments over this arc. It meant so much to me that you all were so supportive in my obsessive nit-picking and interested in learning about the awesome Golden and Silver Age artists Ruby Lith should have been based on.

Until next time!

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I Like My Coffee Like I Like My Women. Bitter. Tainted. Washed Up.

Link to today’s strip

That must be one of those ultra hipster coffee shops that adds CBD oil to the ‘special’ brew, because Mindy in panel 3 is baked out of her skull. And the sapphic undertones come back in full force as Ruby leers at Mindy and confesses she wishes that she were young again, and Mindy, grinning, labels her a ‘girl’, promising to make her fantasy reality.

And it is Batiukian in the extreme that Ruby’s protest of her ‘coffee girl’ duties was passive aggressive and petty. If he wanted Ruby to be a real crusader, she would have flat out refused to fulfill the chauvinistic expectations of the men around her. But no, she was miserable, remained miserable, and now wishes she had been born in a different decade because her own was unabated misery.

I’ve read so many compelling interviews this week, interviews with Lily Renee, Valerie (Violet) Barclay, Ramona Fradon, and Marie Severin. You know what these women wanted to talk about? What they got passionate talking about? Art. Writing. Their Work.

They didn’t want to spend hours complaining about how every man in their life was a miserable bastard. We’ve seen one picture of one character Ruby Lith drew. We know more about all the men who ruined her life than the art that was supposedly her passion.

An interesting interview with Fradon started this way.

Bradley: I suppose one of the first questions you get hit with is: Was it hard to be a woman in the comic industry? Did the guys treat you poorly, etc.? But I also know you haven’t had a negative thing to say about that aspect, and that’s awesome, so let’s skip that part, and talk about the work.

You like mysteries. So do we. Please tell us about working on House of Mystery with Joe Orlando. Is there a standout story for you from that period? Also, what other mystery-type books did you get to work with?

Ramona:

    Thanks for not asking me that.

As for the mysteries, I enjoyed working with Joe Orlando. He was a great editor. He was more interested in the art work than other editors I had and he taught me a lot, especially about inking. The mysteries were written very melodramatically and I preferred working on them more than the superheroes.

She enjoyed working with a man. A man who was a ‘great editor’ who pushed her to do even better work. Please stop asking her the same tired questions about her presumed persecution. Ask her about her ART. Ask her about her CHARACTERS. Let her know that you care about her contribution because she is a great comics artist in her own right, not because her sex makes her a curiosity.

Bradley: As cool as Metamorpho is himself, I’m a big Sapphire fan. I really think Sapphire Stagg is one of the hottest chicks in comics. Is there some Ramona in Sapphire?

Ramona: Of course Sapphire was me.

Bradley: Just fun to hear you say it.
Another goofy character you worked on was Plastic Man. Was there any key difference, enjoyment, or advantage between working on Metamorpho vs. Plastic Man?

Ramona: Plastic Man was fun in a different way. His stories were satirical and he was a total goof, while Metamorpho was sexy and involved a lot of interaction among the characters. I enjoyed them both but in different ways.

Bradley: Metamorpho sexy? You really are Sapphire!

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Bullpen Bullsh*t

Today’s strip.

Don’t know why I bothered updating this, it’s just a boring restatement of same boring theme of the entire week. I really wish I could pin Batiuk down and demand his sources for this storyline. I want the biographies, the interviews, heck the Wikipedia articles, he’s read. Because if he’s basing this on Lily Renee, fine, she was a teenage immigrant stuck in an office with strange men who made things uncomfortable for her. But telling this narrative as the prototypical experience does a disservice to the careers of Marie Severin, Toni Blum, and all the other women who managed pleasant working relationships with their editors and coworkers.

Here’s a little view into a sexist, patriarchal, art-jail of EC Comics where Marie Severin was an invisible colorist: harassed, underpaid, and unappreciated.

Was [artist] Al Williamson pretty demanding?

No. I didn’t want him to commit suicide because … You know what we did to him one time? Because I’m bad like that, I had this disappearing ink. You know in those days we did dopy things. You wore glasses with eyes. And Al Williamson would come in with his artwork like it was his child. I mean he killed himself on it. He was young and enthusiastic. It was wonderful. Great stuff. He brought it in and I was out to get him. So, Al Feldstein said something to me. We had it all planned and I threw it on his shirt and I said, “Don’t you talk to me like that!”

He said, “Are you crazy?!” Everybody wore white shirts in those days, everybody. And I walked out of the room.

And Bill is going, “Ah hahahah.” [Laughter.]

And Al is saying, “She’s crazy, she’s lost her mind.” As he’s talking it’s disappearing. And Bill is going, “Ah ha ha ha ha,” and it was still wet. When he looked down it was gone.

So when Williamson came in, they got his work and Al went, “Oops, oh my God!”

And Williamson went “Oh! Oh! [Laughter] You’ve killed my child!”

Did Al laugh when he realized that his art wasn’t hurt?

Oh yeah, but it took him 10 minutes, ’cause he was ready for an ambulance. ’Cause any of these guys, they really worked. Everybody worked hard on their stuff but Al especially. He was the baby and he brought in his stuff late. Very late. [Laughs.]

Below is a picture Marie drew and colored in 2004 of the EC Comics staff as they were in the 50’s. Look how she drew those chauvisinstic boors who either ignored her or made her life hell.

a poor invisible woman, maligned by her peers

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