Link to today’s strip.
Well, this one is just terrible. I mean, this is the sort of strip that no one wants to read, because no one would find it funny, endearing, smart, or containing anything worthwhile at all. It’s not even a solid waste of the two seconds taken to read it; it’s just another needle jabbed into the soul. It’s the epitome of laziness for this laziest of strips. It’s depressing…so I guess, touche, Mr. Batiuk.
Oh well, they’re not paying me to stare at this, waiting for something to happen, so here goes. First, we have a jokey greeting that was a tired cliche back in the nineties, still being perpetuated here in the technical vastness of the future. Crazy’s Grecian Formula seems to be paying off, as he doesn’t look nearly as ancient and decrepit as he usually does–though to be honest he looks more like Obi-Wan from the prequels than Luke. (Ah, the Star Wars prequels. Truly, entertainment suited to the Funkyverse. If anyone should make a Funky Winkerbean movie, it’ll be George Lucas.)
Secondly, we have the whole crowd, including Holly, smirking and guffawing at this display of hilarity. Hell, a green-haired woman in the back is so amused her face is shattering. And a couple on the far right who appear to have dashed to Comic Con directly from their wedding–she hasn’t even taken off her veil–are staring in awe at the spectacle unfolding before them. “See? I told you this would be better than some dumb ol’ cruise!”
Finally, we have Comic Book John, offering one of those lines that sitcom and/or greeting-card writers would turn up their noses at. “Only at Comic Con!” looks like it’s supposed to be a thumbs up to the event, but it comes off as a thumbed nose.
Bleah, I tell you. Bleah. I try to avoid criticizing Tom Batiuk personally (try, I said) but this episode is good evidence that he doesn’t care and isn’t interested in trying.
It’s also evidence of dishonesty. What he has presented here, an episode which wallows in maudlin sentimentality, is exactly the sort of strip that he would sneer at in another comic for being frivolous and avoiding the true issues of the day. He’d probably say it’s not serious work if these people are having fun, they should be dying of cancer. (School play, anyone?)
Well, that oughta go a ways toward earning my paycheck. Hey, wait a minute–they’re not paying me at all!