Well, as Mason himself said yesterday, “things never seem to be going anywhere”… and no where has that statement ever been more true than in today’s strip.
Mason closed out yesterday’s strip implying that something had happened with the production of the Lisa’s Story movie he has allegedly been pitching around “this town”*, but we gain not a single bit of information on that today. Instead, Mason bemoans being an attractive, successful, and in-demand actor as a fate worse than death. Being an action hero was once his goal, by the way, and now he’s mad that he’s in demand for the kinds of roles he apparently had been pursuing? Perhaps he’d like to go back to starring in whatever Dino Deer was supposed to be or working on second-tier cable TV projects that never get finished…
* While I am sure there are folks in Hollywood who refer to it as “this town” and manage not to sound insufferable and pompous, Mason is not one of those people. I’m reminded of the use of “this town” in SCTV’s Sammy Maudlin Show sketches, written and recited by people who understood folks like Mason (and TB) who play the put-upon auteur for the bags of wind that they typically are.
Link To Today’s Strip
Uh, correct me if I’m wrong here but that comic book has not been properly slabbed and bagged, which makes it WORTHLESS. Why, sometimes it makes me wonder if these idiots are really “comic book collectors” at all. At least BatBore acknowledged the already-established fact that Chester already has every issue of SJ ever, which was a major plot point way back when he still represented the evil side of comic book (sigh) collecting.
So, did Octoshark have a shark head and octopus tentacles or was he just an eight-finned shark? Because one of those seems sort of better than the other. In any event, maybe he could apply this premise to the other characters. Holly could give Funky a slightly sharper pizza-cutter, Les could give Summer a slightly less slovenly hoodie, Cayla could give Les a slightly more cancer-y cancer book and so on. The possibilities are limitless.
There are so many times I’d love to have an honest talk with Batiuk about this strip. Like this week’s story. Are we honestly supposed to feel bad for Les here? “Aw, poor Les, he got peer pressured into doing something he doesn’t want to do.”, or something? I mean, he’s an adult, if he’s already regretting it, he can say “Actually Mason, I don’t want to do this.”. Or he could, once again, act like an adult and accept it and make the best of it. Batiuk so often goes for “deep and conflicted” but hits “in need of intensive therapy” instead. I wonder how soon Les is going to hallucinate a talking blue cat?
Panel 1 Mason appears to have caught whatever caused Cindy to have Stupid Hair in Act I. I would much rather focus on that than Mason apparently saying Les is a true hero, and he wants to portray him. “You made the big time after your wife died, you’re a real hero, Les!”. What the hell has Les ever done that’s close to heroic? Not curling up in a ball and dying after Lisa died? People do that every damn day and they do it in a far less pretentious way than Les.
My money is even more on Cindy portraying Lisa now, since I can totally see Mason saying that’ll add to the “realism” of the movie.
The stupid Bull storyline and interview are really starting to seem like massive baiting. “I’ll lure them all in with a moving storyline about a trendy topic, and as soon as they’re hooked, I’ll move on to Les Moore, the Greatest American Hero!”. Seriously though, has someone related to this blog done something to Batiuk, or hacked his computer, and taken over the writing of this strip? Because about the only explanation for any of this is someone really wants to make the writer look like an obnoxious ass.
What on earth is the right way to do Lisa’s Story? True to life, where it just focuses on Les’s reaction to everything, and skips right over the really difficult and interesting part of how he adjusts to life without her? Or focusing on the ridiculous medical paperwork mishap that anyone who saw it in a movie (or a comic) would say is just laughably bad writing?
Actually I think it’s pretty clear what “the right way” means. Lisa Must Die. Because serious art requires beloved characters to die in a very serious, very profound way. Except Bull. Bull you just knock off as quick as possible so you can get to Lisa. Again.
That “Cindy…?” is hilarious to me. “Formerly hot girl I used to stare at in high school and have no real meaningful relationship with, do you think I should make this beg life decision? Because yours is the only opinion that matters to me, way way more than my secondary wife’s.”
I had no idea playing the lead in one (or is two now?) sci-fi movies opens enough doors for you where you can just create movies by yourself. And this is another in the long tradition of Batiuk using “witty” or “funny” sayings that really make no sense, apart from not being funny at all. The doors are already opened, Les. I don’t think it matters what’s on the other side.
Do you think that’s still Cindy there, or just a blonde wig on a stick? They’d both work about as well in their job of sitting quietly while the menfolk handle business, which is all Cindy has done since Les showed up.
What are the odds that Skyler still lives with his grandma, even after Jess comes back? I’d say very, very high. If Batiuk still put any effort into this strip, I’d see this resulting into another time jump when Old Lady Jess is berating Skyler about how she threw away a promising Hollywood career to stay home with him and his bum dad Darin who ended up running away to live at the Flash Museum with Pete.
I’m all for women (or men) choosing to spend more time with their families, even if it means career sacrifice, but I really don’t like how this is presented as kind of an either/or thing here. And she was apparently willing to spend years in Hollywood finishing up a single documentary about her dead dad, but not working for an actual Hollywood production.
And is it just me or does Darin look not quite human in the last panel?