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Link to Today’s Annoying Vertical Strip

“Rapping Around”??? Oh…I get it. “Rapping” meant something else in those days. Way to date yourself there, Batton. Sigh. Obviously the gag here is how Batton was tackling these timely, topical issues way, way back in the 1970s, when everyone started giving a hoot and not polluting. And Batton is all wistful about it as he realizes that his “art” made no difference whatsoever. And it’s all very hilarious, in that patented unfunny way of his. I’d like to throw the whole lot of them in that river, preferably with cinder blocks chained to their ankles.

Why is this an annoying vertical strip? Panel one, the fake strip, panel two, word balloon one, panel three, word balloon two. How hard was that? Something about that pseudo-Funky font really irks me, too. “Rapping Around” my ass.

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Induction Junction, What’s Your Unction?

Could Ruby and Flash be any less excited than they are in today’s strip, the big reveal of their hall of fame induction? I actually think they could, in theory… if they had to read this comic strip.

Despite Ruby’s wry response to being honored before she and Flash go the way of Phil Holt, the real life Eisner Awards Hall Of Fame is more than willing to honor comics icons who are no longer with us. Four of the six 2021 inductees announced thus far are no longer living, including legendary American political party mascot creator (and 180 year old) Thomas Nast and Swiss proto-comic strip pioneer Rodolphe Töpffer (who passed away when Thomas Nast was 5 years old).

One inductee who is still living is Lily Renée, who turned 100 back in May and is most likely one of TB’s biggest inspirations for the Ruby Lith character (big kudos to our own ComicBookHarriet for making and elaborating on this connection). Given that TB is known to work about a year in advance of the publishing date, the Ruby Lith-Lily Renée connection makes this story arc remarkably prescient… or it would if TB had not revealed his eerie precognitive powers several times before in both Funky Winkerbean and Crankshaft. At least this time he used his powers to predict something good.

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Enjoy Every Sandwich

A tip of the SoSF turban to Comic Book Harriet, who never fails to spin enlightening and entertaining gold from Tom Batiuk’s dreary dross.

The usually exposition-happy TB cuts us a little slack today: without any kind of setup, we rejoin the interminable Kitchen Reno, already in progress. Maybe “progress” isn’t the right word…Funky and Holly’s kitchen is still a complete shambles. But what a lovingly depicted shambles. Clearly, Tom “Write what you know” Batiuk (or maybe Chuck “Really just the penciler” Ayers) must have experienced a kitchen renovation a couple years ago, and was “inspired” to subject Funky (and us all) to a similar ordeal. I’m surprised the FW blog hasn’t been featuring “reference photos” of a gutted Kartoon Kastle kitchen. Willya look at all the details! Every outlet cover has been removed (I thought the bare outlet in the upper left was emitting sparks, but that’s just today’s date). Tools and extension cords are strewn about, plastic sheeting hangs in the doorway, and the floor is covered with a (poorly taped!) dropcloth.

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