Today’s strip is the worst thing we’ve seen in this story arc yet. It is everything wrong with every strip so far in this story arc scaled up into a Sunday strip: it is boring, nothing has really been accomplished (we all saw “talk to the professor” coming last Wednesday), Buddy doesn’t do anything, we learn nothing about either Wally or Adeela, we still don’t know what class this group project is even for. I guess it is missing a photo album corner flashback, but that is pretty much it.
Not only that, it is riddled with errors:
– There is no “mistake”. Professor Forehead never assigned partners, he just told students to pair up themselves. He is not going to be able to assign these two new partners without breaking groups up, and if he is like most of my college professors, he is not going to care much about this melodrama.
– This is not the first time these two have agreed. They agreed that they didn’t like each other’s clothes not three strips ago.
– These two also don’t have any significant history of disagreement beyond their apparent clothing-based assumptions about each other. They’ve known each other for maybe 2 hours. The debate about what table to sit at is quite literally the only disagreement we’ve seen between them.
And with that, I’m relieved to be handing this nutria dropping of a story arc off to our esteemed captain TFHackett.
Adeela sums up this story arc quite nicely and concisely in today’s strip. No, this isn’t working. It’s obnoxiously pandering, laughably researched, blandly written, and glacially paced. Oh man is the pacing slothful. These two are just NOW admitting what we’ve known since last Wednesday. That might be fine if they had done something, ANYTHING, in the meantime… but they haven’t.
Cameo alert! Is that the backside of the original Stuck Funky banner Anon-O-Student in panel 2? Experts say “Sure, why not? We don’t really care.”
Well, I guess Wally and Adeela compromised on yesterday’s to-be-or-not-to-be around people problem by accommodating neither one of them in any way, as in today’s strip they are neither in a crowd nor especially alone. They are also sitting at separate tables for… reasons, I guess.
Yeah, yeah, I know. They are uncomfortable with each other and neither will admit it. We established that LAST Wednesday and the strip has been illustrating it over and over and over building “tension” ever since. I’m much less curious about where this story arc is going (I think we all know where) than I am about when was the last time that TB observed college students studying in a library.
Today’s strip we find
Both Adeela and Wally
“And being around
A lot of people tends to…
freak… me… out…” – Wally
Wait, was not Wally
Just in a crowded classroom?
Seemed OK at first
Plus there was that time
He subjected Buddy to
Monsters of Metal
Rache called that concert
His PTSD final
So I guess he failed
Adeela, of course
Was also in full classroom
Crowds freak Wally out
How can he run Montoni’s
When Funky hands off?
Ha ha ha ha ha
Crowds at Montoni’s? c’mon
I crack myself up
Adeela finally gets to use the photo album corners in today’s strip. I think so, anyways. Is that her as a child or is that her with the child? Or is that her at all?
Wally was in Afghanistan long enough ago that a young child then would be old enough to go to college now, especially when TB treats his 10 year time jump as that, a time jump, and not just an age jump to make his Act I and II characters older (well… Cindy in mind only, not body). HA! OK, scratch that last part then, the “time jump” has never been more than excuse to age his characters.
Still, the story of a Afghan war veteran and an Afghan refugee struggling to feel comfortable enough around each other to complete a college project could well prove interesting. Now, if only we could find someone to write that story… If only.
Today’s strip was not available for preview.
So anyways, here is post-second captivity Wally shaking the hand of the Afghan-native who held him captive the first time and who sold the Taliban the missile that shot down the helicopter he was flying in prior to that first time being captured.
Have a nice Saturday, everyone!
Wally goes full-on “Doug Funnie talking to Patty Mayonaise” in today’s strip because… that’s what this story arc requires?
Adeela is not exactly winning Miss Manners’ stamp of approval here either though. She also seems to think she has already introduced herself to Wally (or expected him to eavesdrop when she introduced herself to Professor Forehead, I guess). Is she just not a Three Stooges fan or is she one of those people who prefer Shemp to Curly?
Fair or unfair, the military briefing-college class parallels continue in today’s strip. Wally and Adeela are bad at engaging others in conversation. Professor Forehead makes Ralph from Sally Forth proud by assigning a group project on day one so he doesn’t have to spend any time at all lecturing these students. Buddy may have disappeared… I’m sorry that I am just recapping the strip, but I don’t know what else to say here.
What will happen when Wally and Adeela finally speak to each other (presumably) three and a half weeks from now? The suspense is mildly irritating me.
It is not really fair for me to question the comparison of a military briefing to first day of an unidentified community college class as in today’s strip. While I have my suspicions about how appropriate the comparison is, I have only experienced the latter situation.
I will, however, point out that both Colonel Crew-Cut and Professor Forehead are awkwardly stating what both their audience in the room already know and what newspaper comic strip readers could reasonably infer without such clunky exposition. It is like TB leading off each strip with a drawing of him saying:
The following is a comic strip I wrote. It carries the weight of substantial ideas. Silver Age Flash is also important literature.
Uh, maybe I shouldn’t have thrown that idea out there…
Nice as that introduction is, Epicus, I don’t know if my return is triumphant. Even so, billytheskink is here for a couple of weeks of wading through the marsh that is TB’s latest “substantial idea”.
Last week’s slooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooow build up continues in today’s strip. I guess this is supposed to build suspense while we wait for Wally to become uncomfortable enough around Adeela to win an award or at least generate a Tuesday Arts & Entertainment section quarter-page story about how Funky Winkerbean is more serious than Sherman’s Lagoon.
But there is no suspense in this strip. There is only Dilbert’s brother, the Human Bowling Pin: