Tag Archives: Starbuck Jones

Wow, That’s a Lot of Flames

Today’s strip was also not available for preview. I’m expecting it to be a single panel of every character in the strip burning in the golf club flames, while Les stands safe to the side mocking them for not remembering to stop, drop and roll. And then Monday the strip will start all over again in Act II without any kind of explanation.

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Geek Shrieks

As silly and lame as this story has been, I do like the second panel, where Pete’s girlfriend (fiancee?) is genuinely worried he’s not going to ask her to attend the red carpet premiere with him. Because of course she’s concerned he’d ask Darrin instead of her. I still think at least part of the reason she exists in this strip is because Batiuk finally realized how weird it looked having Pete and Darrin take trips together to buy dollies, and Darrin spending all of his time with Pete when his wife was staying in California for some unknown reason.
I do not understand Pete’s expression in the last panel. Is it smugness, like “I’m a heck of a guy, inviting my girlfriend on a trip for two someone else is paying for”? Or is he just closing his eyes and imagining fighting Zeton warriors?

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The Carpet Will Be Red With Fire

Oh yay, just what any story needs, Manic Pete. Of course it was just a matter of time before Pete, and then Darrin, and inevitable Harry and John are out in Hollywood involved in all this for some reason. How many imaginary movie titles do you think Batiuk has? I picture a sheet of paper in his studio with a “Batom Cinematic Universe” breakdown of 20+ titles, involving the Inedible Pulp, Rip Tide, Wayback Wendy, and heck, he’d probably have Lisa’s Story tie into it too. It still just baffles my mind how much time has been spent on Starbuck Jones, and how we’ve seen basically nothing of it beyond a few titles and covers Batiuk got someone else to draw.
I do love how weary Les looks in the first panel. Poor guy. Look at all he’s been through. Getting a vanity cameo in the movie he’s being paid no doubt way too much money to option.  And now he’s having to drink wine on a couch with the hot blonde girl from school he still has the hots for. Why can’t anything ever go his way?

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In a Funk

Today’s strip was, of course, unavailable for preview.

But please, let us discuss poor Funky. When was the last time Funky had an arc that wasn’t pointless filler? There is hardly a character in EITHER Funkyverse strips that is stagnant as this poor lump.

If the arc is dealing with something bordering serious, Funky is the world’s most passive protagonist, reacting to events outside his control and doing what other people tell him to. Alternatively he serves as the distributor of jobs, food, and apartments to whoever wanders by needing them like some kind of slapshod Greek god rising from a rickety machine to fix ‘conflicts’ in a piss poor drama.

If Funky is going to show any initiative of his own, it is to chase down a pizza box monster.

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Diss Master

Again: why is this meeting even taking place? Aaron and Marc, the Clone Brothers, knew that Mason wanted to make “a depressing film about a woman dying of cancer,” yet saw fit to waste their time and their sparkling water in order to tell Les to his face that this project was a no go. This whole sequence harkens back to that time that Les and Susan Smith had to face a bunch of angry Westview parents over Susan’s choice of Wit for the school play:

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Just Yuan Me

Even more disconcerting than their hoodies is Marc and Aaron’s penchant for completing each other’s sentences. So much to pick at in today’s strip. Has anyone else ever encountered this usage of “bank” as a verb meaning “to make money”? Must be some new lingo. Unlike “gangbusters,” a word that dates back to the Prohibition Era. And the SJ sequel Rise of the Zeton Warriors hasn’t come out yet? It was filmed concurrently with the first Starbuck Jones movie, which had its premiere over two years ago.

Hitorque
April 29, 2020 at 3:31 am
If Les is so hell-bent on “telling his story properly” and staying pure to his vision regardless of box office gross, why isn’t he seeking out the indie arthouse filmmakers…??

Right! If “everyone knows that China is where the money is, why is Mr. “I’ve Been To So Many Pitch Meetings I Can Predict What People Say” (h/t Banana Jr. 6000) wasting his time and everyone else’s with this pitch? I thought this was about making this movie “the right way“, not about making “bank.” Finally, somebody help me parse the punctuation in the second panel: “And that’s the problem…!” Ellipsis, exclamation point. I’m reading it as “And that’s the problemmmmmMMMMMM!

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In Them High-Rollin’ Hills

School chums Cindy and Les arrive, not at the Jarre’s beach house, but at Mason’s new pied-à-terre in “the ‘Hills’.” I don’t know where TB cribbed his California architecture notes, but all those tubular steel railings and odd-sized windows do give the building a sort of Cali modern feel, even if the doors on their three-car garage suggest a public storage unit.

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This Clown

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.

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Chester Roasting On An Open Fire

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.

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Bench+Leaves=Double Symbolism

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?

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