December 3, 2019 at 12:55 am
…[I]f he ever wanted to vacation at Easter Island, the locals would probably worship (Flash Freeman) as a god.
Lest we forget which “Turtle Thompson” we are speaking of: it’s “The artist.” Props to commenter Scott J Lovrine, who yesterday cited Silver Age comics inker Frank Giacoia as a likely inspiration for “Turtle Thompson.” A number of readers have suggested that this arc might be a dig at the mysteriously departed Rick Burchett; I’ll give Batty a little credit here and say that he wouldn’t throw a former partner under the bus like this. We don’t know how about Burchett’s ability to meet deadlines, but his work on Funky was just terrible, and I for one was happy to see him go. But his replacement, the formerly reliable Chuck Ayers, has rendered a grotesquely misshapen head on ol’ Flash here, making him look in rear view like a Q-Tip with ears.
Like pulling teeth without any anesthetic” how, exactly? For the one pulling teeth, or for the one whose teeth are being pulled? If they’re your teeth being pulled, well, that’s literal torture. It can’t be a picnic for the tooth puller either: extracting teeth takes a fair amount of strength, especially from a flailing, un-anesthetized subject. Anyway, yesterday Flash said that “Turtle” had “gone to the well once too often,” implying that he pushed things too far and was finally let go, yet the cajoling continues.
In what line of work, particularly in a publishing company, would a contributor get away with repeatedly pushing back deadlines? Especially without an explanation or excuse aside from “Well…” And what’s the reason that Flash has to speak to him by phone? Why is “Turtle” Thompson not chained to a desk like everyone else we’ve seen in the Batom salt mines? Why does the “sepiatone” flashback image have hints of yellow and green? Well? WELL???
Batiuk doesn’t bother to remind readers who this character is whom we haven’t seen since April…but he does have Pete exposit the setup he delivered just yesterday. These two nerds have got a lot of nerve, smirking about somebody else’s work ethic. Pete’s procrastination, particularly when under deadline, has been extensively documented, while Darin, when he’s not hanging around the post office, dreams at his desk of pirating drawing pens from cargo ships.
Casual readers won’t recognize the skinny old geezer looming over Darin, but we all know that it’s Flash Freeman. He’s kind of the Harry Dinkle of the comics industry: though he’s long since retired, he still likes to randomly “drop by” and interfere with people who are trying to do actual work. Of course, Darin and Pete need no excuse to goof off, and they literally worship the comics legend. Pete especially, whose grin stretches all the way to the bags under his eyes in panel 1.
Today’s strip wasn’t available for preview.
For once, I can at least give you all a preview of today’s strip, gleaned from the “Pipeline” of Batiuk’s blog. Just picture this illustration colored in…hell, color it in yourself, it might land you a new career! Picture the “Funky Winkerbean” header at the top, with Ruby’s or Mindy’s smug, disembodied head alongside the logo. Superimpose “Wayback Wendy” in huge, distorted digital type, across the top of the cover, and don’t forget the Atomik Komix “fallout shelter” in the upper left. At the bottom, throw in a single, round panel showing Mindy and Ruby congratulating each other on the success of their brilliant joint production. Lastly, give a “tip of the Funky Felt Tip” to the artist (not a woman) who contributed the artwork.
Update: Yeah, so I was wrong…rather than a sideway Sunday comix cover, only a portion of the artwork above is used. Unless Batiuk “disappears” Ruby, now that she’s served her purpose, maybe down the road it’ll get the full Atomik Komix treatment. –TFH