Happy May, Funkysnark Fans! Comic Book Harriet here, ready to push us through another couple weeks of this horror show, much like the shambling hulk that pushed the cart through the haunted murder attraction in House of 1000 Corpses.
Many thanks to Spaceman Spiff for guiding us through two weeks of some of the weirdest storytelling to come out of Funky Winkerbean for a while now. It was like each day brought us another level down deeper into another tangent of meaninglessness. Never has a story that begins with a man buying doughnuts for alcoholics and ends with him nearly dying to save a CD player been told with such astounding lack of passion or sense.
Now we’re back to the Dinkle pandemic that has been sweeping this strip for the last year. We’ve had nearly 50 days of Dinkle since November (the traditional start of Dinkle season.) This is my third shift in a row where I’ve gotten Dinkle arcs. First he was teaching piano lessons, then he was substitute teaching, and now I get my chance to get in on the ‘Dinkle scores a choir harem’ action.
But maybe the Dinkpocalypse is coming to a close soon. Today we get an exciting celebrity cameo: the undead hell cat from Pet Semetary, Winston Churchhill. I, for one, am eagerly anticipating Dinkle getting his scrawny arms ripped to shreds like chicken drumsticks.
Did you know President Bill Clinton likes to jog? I sure didn’t, at least not until today’s strip… and when I say “today’s strip”, I mean “when he was first elected President”. Does TB think calling him “President Clinton” is not enough of an identifier for readers or did he just recently start watching a DVD box set of 1990s Saturday Night Live episodes?
What’s with all the Eeyores in the first panel? Funky just dialed up BILL CLINTON on a whim, got the former POTUS to answer directly, and was told by the man himself that he would help. Why is Rachel even questioning this?
Better yet, why am I questioning this? Any of this? It’s been a fool’s errand for decades.
Writing facial recognition software in the Batiukverse has got to be the ultimate fool’s errand. While I was not able to find any source for Amicus’ 20% of the time figure here in real life internetland, in Westview I would think the figure would be well above that. WAY well above that.
We can only hope today’s strip is the awful coda to this awful story arc about these awful people.
This is why you turned down Buck’s advances, Linda? Not because he was being incredibly creepy and distasteful? Not because you are still mourning your husband who committed suicide not even 6 months ago and don’t feel like jumping into any relationship? Not because you know absolutely nothing about him beyond his high school football career? Not because the only thing you two demonstratively have in common is your late husband?
I agree with Linda on one thing, though. I can’t go through this again, either.
Today’s strip takes a pre-dick-tably maudlin turn. Like we didn’t all know “Les tries to sullenly undermine this dumb movie thing” was going to be the gist of this story arc.
Even if I wasn’t short on time to write this, I’m wouldn’t archive dive to prove that Lisa did or did not say what Les is claiming at some point in time… because I can quickly and easily point to a time when she pretty much said the exact opposite.
Hey, remember when this story arc was about Bull? Today’s strip sure doesn’t.
Look, I’m just going to gloss over the fact that Dinkle was actually introduced well over a year into this strip’s existence and just give TB credit for remembering that Funky Winkerbean itself is 47 (and a half) years old… And with that out of the way I’ll go right into wondering what the heck this has to do with Bull, his condition, his life, or anything. I guess if you twist your neck 117 degrees and squint until you experience sharp pain in your temples it appears the notoriously egotistical Dinkle (or is that Buck?) is paying Bull a compliment by saying they were equals despite his long and incessant history of considering all things inferior to himself and his marching band. But really this is just TB repackaging his biggest hit.
Dinkle is the only thing about this strip that has ever moved merchandise. His “football fields are for band practice!” bit covers books and t-shirts, and even serves as his character’s introductory line in the stage play Funky Winkerbean’s Homecoming. Dinkle’s shtick has sold band posters (“Dinkle wants your horn to twinkle”) and shoes, and no less than 9 Dinkle-specific collections of FW strips have been published! No, seriously, there have been 4 Lisa books and 9 Dinkle books.
Football Fields are for Band Practice!
Harry L. Dinkle Live at Carnegie Hall
I Never Promised You a Rose Parade
Gone with The Woodwinds
Would the Ushers Please Lock the Doors!
Attack of the Band Moms
The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side of the Football Field
Music is Worth it… Music is Worth it… Music is…
This is nothing more than TB pushing his most-recognized character/cash cow into a story the New York Times inexplicably gave him ink for. Ugh!
Please feel free to add any that I and Merriam-Webster may have missed. Thanks.
Also, just to remind anyone who wasn’t reading back in 2011, or those who have had the good fortune to forget, Bull’s bullying of Les in high school was an act to protect Les from real bullies. It’s like Les doesn’t even read this strip…
It’s back to the WABAC machine in today’s strip. No, I’m not talking about the flashback to “five years ago…”, I’m talking about Bull’s funeral, which has itself moved two-and-a-half years backward in time in order to accommodate a five years ago flashback featuring players Bull last coached in the spring of 2012. Well, at least we are getting something that is actually about Bull in this one… that’s so damning with faint praise that it could keep an ocean at bay. (“Billy was a special blogger”, they said at his funeral.)
Also, I tagged both Keisha and Linda in this, because I’m not sure which one of them is standing next to Summer in panel 3.
Are you wondering how Bull’s wife and children are mourning his death? Maybe how his former players and fellow coaches, whose lives he surely had a large impact on, have reacted? Well, too bad for you, for the art of storytelling, and for general decency… because today’s strip is focused on four schmucks, only one of whom even knows Bull moderately well (and one who has NEVER once met the guy) and none of whom have talked to Bull in at least 3 full years. Heck, they aren’t even talking about Bull, they are awkwardly reminding us that Cindy was popular in high school.
Bull’s death only made page 2 of the Westview Gazette? This is a town with only five employers and Bull was the most decorated employee in the history of the largest of those. What could possibly have made the front page?
Today’s strip continues this week’s dumb one-off jokefest by having Logan Church join Progressively-Lumpier Black Guy and Preschooler Bernie Silver. Batiuk shows his lack of range by putting Logan in the now Westview woman uniform colors of magenta and black. Make her vest a cardigan and she’s stolen the elderly Holly’s wardrobe.
Anyway, dumb joke about mandarin oranges and Jello, which, for the record, I have only seen together sparingly in my many years on this planet, and none of those times in a school cafeteria. That Lumpy finishes Bernie’s punchline only underscores how labored this joke is.
And one wonders why Logan, who was introduced as savvy enough to have a business blog “picked up by ABC News”, would be hanging out with these two goobers. Perhaps her status nosedived when she switched her ethnicity.