Tag Archives: running

In a Barb Wire Fence, Fatally Tangled

Link to Today’s Strip.

Hey, way to be the ultimate douche-bag, Les!  Don’t tell your “friend” about the sports car as you approach it (or, if it’s driving, approaching you) so that he could easily see it.  No, no, wait until you’re both past it, so he’ll have to turn around to see it and halt his momentum.  That’ll teach him to be a fat slob of a loser!

I guess the “joke” was on Les, though–his Expression in Panel Two looks like someone who is stunned that his get-the-fat-guy-to-turn-around scheme has had no effect.

And this strip is yet another in which there is absolutely no content.   No attempt at a joke, nothing that’s supposed to be “meaningful,” just another week of naught tossed off in a matter of house, then tossed into a drawer to be brought out and printed when snarkers derail your planned Ghost Lisa appearance.  (I’m assuming.)  Nothing to think about, except 1) who “shoots” an episode entirely from the back like this (although I guess it saves having to draw a nifty car), and 2) I wonder who went to all the trouble of shoveling the sidewalk so neatly.  I mean, look at that–someone did a really good job shoveling, and just the sidewalk, too.  Not like a homeowner shoveling his way from door to walk, just sidewalk all the way.

Anyway, that’s all I see here.  And as it’s hard to criticize something that has no substance at all–neither good nor bad–I have to say, well played, Tom Batiuk.   You’ll get to that magical 50th yet!

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No-Joke

Link to today’s strip.

Ah, there’s the punchable Les we all know and loathe.  Even with little more than half a face visible, I still want to punch that half until it’s gone.  Funky’s Expression in Panel Two (the Theme For The Week) is one of unmitigated fury, which struck me as strange until I realized that in panel one, Wino McHomeless’s remark could have been taken as sarcasm.   And to be fair, in panel one Funky looks like Holly after being (initially) denied a comic book.  Oh, I’m sooooo helpless and incapable, someone needs to give me things as gifts for free.  Oh boo hoo hoo, my son is in the military, soon to be slabbed as a key issue.

…sorry, got a bit off track there.  Anyway, if I was out running, and some guy passed me and said “Way to go,” I think I would probably interpret that as sarcasm if I was having the same sort of difficulty as Funky.   I mean, there I’d be, wheezing and puffing, trying to keep up with my Perfect Friend, and he’s essentially saying “Huh, wheezing and puffing, eh?  Well you’re doing it real good!”    I wonder why he didn’t say something like, “Don’t stop!  You can do it!” or “It takes a while, but you’ll get there!” or something more generally encouraging.

Oh.  Oh, you’re kidding.  Really?  He said that so that Tom Batiuk could insert his “joke” which uses the difference between  “go” and “no-go”?  I don’t know if I’ve encountered anything sadder this week.   And I write these entries a year in advance, so that’s a lot of weeks!

Bonus:  Funky’s zipper pull tab is lovingly rendered, isn’t it?    That and the Button are the only items to have any care lavished on them, other than Les, of course.  I mean, look at Wino’s right hand.  Clearly he’s a mutant of some kind.  Is he an X-Man?  I bet his mutant super-power is never appearing in Funky Winkerbean again, which sounds darn handy!  (ha ha ha)!

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Padding Out The Week

Link to today’s strip.

Well, I sure get the image of Tom Batiuk, after posting today’s strip, sitting back, having run around his tiny baseball diamond, waiting for the phone to ring.   Hey, it’s Apple Computer!  And they love his idea of an arm holder!  And they want to pay him millions for it, and they also want to produce Lisa’s Story for theatres–and the way Tom Batiuk wants it made, too, with none of those dumb changes that are dumb!  HalleluiahAmen!

In reality, of course, there may very well be such an item already on the market…and I have to say it strikes me as completely idiotic.  No one who is a serious runner would be capable of using this–you have to use both arms when running, after all, but beside that you also have to be aware of where you are going and what’s in front of you, meaning you’re not fully concentrating on showing those mean commentators just how jobless they are.   Most technology used during exercise is meant to keep your mind occupied so it can’t tell the body, Hey, knock it off!  I’m trying to write!  So listening to music is great, surfing the web, less so.

I would think such a device would actually be an impediment to getting any exercise, but of course that assumes it’s made for a human.  Clearly the fellow above is not a human being, his face alone tells you that.   He looks a bit like The Man From Planet X, honestly, which is great that he got work after so long…even if it means being an extra in Funky Winkerbean.   Oh well.

This is a rare strip indeed where I don’t feel like punching Les, but then I am currently quite ill with the flu so perhaps I don’t have the energy.  But look at Funky’s Expression in Panel Two (clearly, this is the Theme of the Week).  He doesn’t look surprised to see such a device–he looks utterly crushed, as if his dreams have all just screeched to a halt.

Maybe between writing the first panel and the second, Tom Batiuk learned there was already an existing arm-holder thing.   Ah, that makes it all make sense, now.  Well, no, but when there’s a straw, might as well grasp it, right?

SPECIAL BONUS:  HOW TO COMPOSE A COMIC STRIP PANEL – The Tom Batiuk Way!

If you put your character in front of a tree, like this:

–then you’re putting a mental image in your readers’ heads, so you might as well go all the way.

There!  Perfect for the cover of the latest issue of The Nostalgic Punk.

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Push The Button, Frank

Link to today’s strip.

I don’t follow sports, so I have no idea which team is represented by the button on Funky’s hat.   (Almost wrote “hate” there.  Whoops!)   Whoever it is, it must not be a team that Tom Batiuk likes because–duh–he’s adorning Funky’s hat and not Les’.  Simple logic.  Besides that, what team would want their insignia highlighted by appearing in Funky Winkerbean?  No team, that’s who.

Speaking of Les, isn’t it just amazing that there’s Les, same age as Funky, looking thirty years younger, and wearing a regular old running outfit too–not festooned with layers of clothing to protect his delicate fat from the onslaught of winter, like someone we could name.

Funky’s expression in panel two seems to show him melting, like a man made of mashed potatoes softening up because too much butter was added.   While he shifts from panel to panel, unable to hold a coherent form, Les, lovingly rendered as always, smirks punchably.  His face looks like a taunt to everyone unfortunate enough to bother with this comic strip.  Go ahead, punch as hard as you like, go so far as to break your monitor, Tom thinks.  I’ll keep drawing more and more Les faces.  Tom smiles to himself.  Because the only person I hate more than Funky is you, dear reader, you denier of prizes.

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