“Hey Siri. Look up ‘futurians’ on Wikipedia.” I’m still tuckered out from researching Charlton Comics, a franchise which a surprising number of you were familiar with. Wikipedia has not one but three “futurians” articles. Let’s leave aside the New Zealand sci-fi punk band by that name. TB’s musical tastes are certainly varied, but I doubt that’s who he’s cribbing here.
Tag Archives: Montoni’s
Well if today’s panel 3 ain’t just the purest distillation of Tom Batiuk’s raison d’être over the last couple decades of Funky Winkerbean…Which is why I used that quote in the header of this page. Anyway, “that place” that Batty is trying to get back to doesn’t exist, and it really never did. Continue reading
Like most people who will read today’s strip, I never heard of Charlton Comics, so once again, off to Aunt Wikipedia I go to glean some knowledge about yet another one of Batty’s obscure cultural touchstones. Though young Phil dismisses them as “crummy,” Charlton’s history is rather more colorful that the one TB dreamed up for Batom Comics. Continue reading
Kudos to the our newest bullpen addition BananaJr6000 for a stellar debut. Is it too late to hold him over for another week? Because I was hoping that by the time it was my turn in the barrel, this Phil + Flash + Kitch arc would be concluded, and I would get to write about something, anything else besides Batty’s imaginary comix universe. Continue reading
It’s hard to believe I once thought this bitter, hateful story would be “a love letter to something Tom Batiuk likes.”
This story had almost nothing to do with Prince Valiant, except for trashing its real-life artists. Three of the four from that era were slighted in some way. Hal Foster was depicted as unscrupulously plagiarizing someone else’s art; Gray Morrow’s name was gotten wrong; and John Cullen Murphy was conspicuously omitted. And since “King Features Syndicate” was proudly displayed on the office walls, Tom Batiuk even implicates his own employer in this fictional misdeed. And couldn’t even bothered to explain why. Continue reading
So we’re now in day two of Young Harry being baffled that a thing such as “comic book store” exists. And we also have Old Harry naming John Howard to someone in the past, which is extra funny because he still hasn’t mentioned having a wife or daughter.
And it’s also just a terrible thing to do if you’ve travelled back in time to the past. I expect tomorrow that he’ll tell his young self about the collapse of the USSR, 9/11 and COVID-19. Who am I kidding, I doubt Harry cares about those or even noticed they happened. This week will probably just end with the two of them hugging and consoling each other about the Death of Superman.
I feel like Batiuk missed a major setup for a Funko Pop related joke, given that one of Harry’s closest friends is named Funky.
“The best news is when you retire you get to keep working! I mean yeah, you’re still close to all your high school friends, and get married and have a kid, but the best part is you get to work for minimum wage and touch comic books all day!”
So after yesterday, when Young Crazy Harry had no problem believing this random old guy he met was himself from the future, today he has no idea at all what a “comic book store” is. It’s one of the most self-explanatory names possible. If you know what a “comic book” and what a “store” is, you should be able to figure out what a “comic book store” is.
I really don’t think this is the first time Batiuk’s had someone be totally baffled by the idea of a comic book store before. I feel like it wasn’t too long ago when Batton Thomas was rambling on about how he still couldn’t believe such things existed. I did some quick Googling, and the first official comic book store was founded in 1968, and their heyday was in the late 70s and 80s, so I find it extremely hard to believe that a teenager would react that way.
It’s also funny how quickly he goes from having no idea what “comic book store” means to wanting to know if you can get rich going it. Maybe it’s just me but it seems a bit weird that the kid who skips school regularly to play arcade games in a pizzeria would be so concerned about getting rich.
Another thing I tried searching for was the phrase Harry is saying in the third panel. I thought maybe it’s a regional thing, but I couldn’t find it. Apparently it’s just rephrasing “you can’t get everything” or “you can’t have it all” for some reason, but it just sounds awkward.
So, apparently when Harry was a teenager, any random old guy could just give him change for a dollar and tell him he was him from the future and he’d believe it, no questions asked. I don’t think “Crazy” is the right adjective to describe him.
This really is reminding me of the Dick Tracy storyline, where he got to use a classic comic character and all he did with him was have him carry boxes. Batiuk is such a big sci-fi fan, but when he finally does a time travel story, all he’s done with it so far is a guy going back into the past to play an arcade game with his past self.
I think that Harry has already managed to top the stupidity of abandoning the helmet that allowed him to travel through time. “I wonder if my past self seeing me will collapse the space-time continuum and destroy all life? What the heck, I’ll do it anyway!” I would have really loved if the third panel was just black, and this was a surprise end to the entire strip.