The Duck of Death December 19, 2022 at 8:22 am
Guys. Guys, is he gonna have the whole freakin’ cast from both comics in this church and pan over the crowd while the ensemble sings the Hallelujah Chorus?
Is this how it’s all gonna end?
baeraad December 22, 2022 at 1:52 am
I… think Batiuk thinks he’s going for a heartwarming all-the-lovable-goofballs-come-together-in-a-church-on-a-snowy-Christmas-night sort of thing for his ending…
Sourbelly December 22, 2022 at 10:56 pm
Batdick has spent days establishing the fact that every Westview citizen who matters is driving to the Jazz Messiah Nonsense in dangerous weather. He has spent zero seconds explaining why.
As confounding and confusing as this strip has been over these final months…you can’t say that a lot of effort wasn’t put into today’s strip, the last-ever Sunday panel of Funky Winkerbean. Nearly seventy people (and one cat) are packed into St. Spires. I was even able to recognize most of them…but there are a couple head-scratchers. Continue reading →
Real impressive snowplow there, Pulitzer (nominated once fifteen years ago, did not win) Boy. That thing looks like a death trap. Given the five months of total whiteout blizzard conditions in that town, you’d think they’d have a few real trucks. And why is Cayla screaming? Les is going to totally ruin his $1500 car by plowing through that snowbank. And for what? Christmas jazz played by elderly dementia patients? Bah, humbug, I say. Cayla’s reaction is all out of proportion to what’s actually happening here, which is a whole lot of nothing.
Great Moments In FW Arc Recap History
March 1-7, 2020
Dinkle shares with Becky that he has been reading a book about squirrels.
The instantly forgotten, one week, totally random arcs, now those were the real challenge. Anyone can snark on Bull dying or Marianne getting cancer while playing Lisa in a movie, but the arcs like these, those were the ones that put you to the test. By Wednesday you’re totally out of squirrel and/or nut puns, but there’s a post to do, and you gotta come up with something. And it’s tough, because Becky and Dinkle are still talking about squirrels. Every SoSF guest host, and the regular commenters too, know exactly what I mean. Sometimes it was like he was daring us to just give up and stop reading the strip altogether.
Now THIS one is just totally, wildly out of nowhere. The odds on EVER seeing a daily strip where Maddie and Keisha interact, only with each other, had to be a billion to one…until today, where Maddie (!) grills a recalcitrant and oddly hostile Keisha (!!) over Summer’s love life. This will undoubtedly fuel speculation over Summer and Keisha’s relationship, whether intentionally (I seriously doubt it) or otherwise. Until proven otherwise, everyone will still assume that Summer was the prom scenery of “uncertain sexual orientation”, let’s call it. And Keisha’s bitchy fronting over Maddie’s seemingly harmless query will do nothing to squelch that theory.
There’s a non-zero chance that this is the last time we’ll ever see either of these characters, which makes the whole thing even more mysterious and wildly random. And speaking of bitchiness, why are Westviewian women so notoriously catty? They’re fine while they’re in the background, setting up punch lines for the boys or making observations re: how dumb the men are, but get a pair of Westviewian women together and the claws come out. Someone obviously hurt BatYam a long time ago, but the less I know about it, the better off I am.
But anyway, circling back to the strip again, yeah, this seems to be a real sore spot with Keisha, for some mysterious, never-to-be-resolved reason. And why is BatNutz doing a strip about Summer’s love life (or lack thereof) anyhow? Was anyone clamoring for this? Has anyone ever clamored for this? What is it about single characters that makes him so uncomfortable? Why the incessant need to pair everyone up? Huh?
Today’s glurge filled festival of pathological coddling gives me the opportunity to delve into something I’ve been wanting to examine for a long time. But it’s going to be a challenge to talk about, because I swore that I wouldn’t talk about CERTAIN CHARACTERS by name this week.
Let’s talk about Cayla.
For the last several years, whenever she’s appeared Cayla has been the target of a strange mix of pity and ridicule in the comments. And it’s earned. Because Cayla’s presentation in strip is the most conspicuous manifestation of just how twisted and weird the enshrinement and cult of Dead St. Lisa has become. She is a consolation prize. A tacked-on coda. But rather than be resentful of her situation, she has become a priestess and mouth piece of her glorious predecessor.
The external reason for Cayla to be this way is that she’s been written to be a benign gift to the author avatar. She’s built for comfort, not conflict.
But it is so strange to follow Cayla’s journey, and try to imagine a real, flesh and blood woman choosing a similar path. If there was such a woman as Cayla Williams, who would she be?
What do we know about her personality and her history prior to her entering the strip? She comes from an athletic family, who cared enough about her to attend her wedding, but whom she hasn’t seemed to worry much about since. She has completely adopted Funky, Harry, Holly, and crew as her circle of friends, so must have had no close friendships extant before her move to Westview. She worries about her financial matters, while being a shopaholic. She’s class conscious, and seems to want to buy the good opinion of rich people. Current insecurities and prior blows to her ego seem to have hampered her confidence. A previous romantic partner left her with a daughter to raise alone.
Soon after moving to Westview she saw what she wanted and she pursued it. Of a hundred different seats that were open with no asking, she had a particular one in mind.
And from very early on, she knew that she would be jostling for position with a corpse in a race she might never win.
But she went after it anyway, even duked it out with a younger woman. She was pretty bold with her intentions.
Why? What did Cayla want?
Well, one thing she seemed to want was financial security for herself and her daughter. She was looking for someone to ‘pool resources’ with.
Second, she seemed to want people that she could care for, that would be emotionally dependent. She seems to genuinely enjoy being needed. This would fit with her underlying lack of confidence.
In fact. She enjoys being needed so much, that she seems to put herself in a position to both be needed, and remain needed. She wasn’t just looking for someone who appreciates a kind heart. She wanted something to prop up, because when something is leaning on you for support, your position is secure. They can’t leave. And the type of support she offers often promises future financial or social gain on her part.
So of course she is willing to jump on the Dead St. Lisa bandwagon. Her affection for her predecessor might even be genuine. That dead woman is the source of all her current and future security. And it could be she is content to have a decoy and mirage to distract her meal ticket. Some people find too much romantic attention smothering, better to shunt some of that off on a ghost. Let the feelings you elicit be lukewarm, safe, and necessary. Keep feeding the muse of pathos by offering those threesomes from beyond the grave.
Because. Let’s be real for a minute Cayla. You don’t care if you’ll never live up to Lisa any more. You only cared for a moment, when you were worried she’d keep you from scoring the prize that matters. Lisa’s dead. And the helpless withering worm left in her wake needs you. You’ve made sure of that. Yeah, sometimes he’s annoying and insufferable. But he produces, and he provides. You can give him pleasure, and you can give him pain, according to your whims. And either way, he’ll wake up needing you tomorrow just the same. What you really get off on is the control. You like watching him fawn, but you love watching him squirm.
And that is my headcanon for Cayla. She didn’t want a healthy and whole husband to love only her. She wanted a meal ticket just broken enough so it wouldn’t run out on her. And she’s carefully cultivated the relationship, keeping her victim just neurotic enough to maximize her comfort, security, and enjoyment.
It’s been an interesting two weeks folks. Hope you enjoyed! Beckoning Chasm will be in on Monday. I’m interested to see how he handles Batiuk’s upcoming homage to ‘The Day the Clown Cried,’ we’ve seen presaged in the banner.
First off, kudos to unca scrooge and others who noted that the joke in yesterday’s strip had to do with men being last-minute shoppers, while women were ahead of the game. The presentation was unusually subtle; generally, Tom Batiuk can’t help but have one of his characters point out how clever he is.
And the joke would have worked fine…in a sitcom made during the early 1960s. But here in the technical vastness of the future, we can surmise that surely humor is very different.
Take today’s thing. It seemed pretty obvious from the outset that the pun being avoided here was something Batiuk was aching to use. The fact that he now denies himself is quite odd. Including it would have made at least one joke, no matter how poor; keeping it out just makes today’s strip one more pointless episode in a long string of them.