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.
I suppose today’s strip indicates that Adeela was the mother and not the child in last Sunday’s strip, which makes her fairly close to Wally in age.
No, that wasn’t obvious. Wally has been back in Westview for 9 years now. He was taken hostage in late 2007, BEFORE the time jump*, so he hasn’t patrolled an Afghan street in about two decades (heck, it is still a decade plus if you ignore the time jump). Adeela easily could have been that child and, oy… piecing together this strip’s timeline makes my head hurt. Still, I gotta say that Adeela has aged better than anyone in this strip except for maybe Cindy.
* Back in early Act III when Wally had apparently disappeared from the strip after the 10 year time jump, TB stated in a blog post (the infamous “it’s called writing…” post, in fact) that a “clue” in regards to Wally’s whereabouts appeared in the October 11, 2007 strip, in the immediate aftermath of Lisa’s death and just before the Act II to III time jump. That clue being the newspaper in the newspaper box that Les slumps past before he is pickpocketed by a couple of hipsters. It reads, muddily, “Soldiers Taken Hostage”.
Wally remained a hostage until July 2009…
It’s an attack of the SMIRKS in today’s strip! Let’s count em’.
1. Professor Forehead channels his inner and outer Les Moore.
2. STATE sweatshirt-wearing bunhead has changed into a purple top.
3. Young Kevin James or that guy from Smashmouth?
4. Cindy? Mindy? Sadie? Jessica? Anon-o-blonde? I’m going with Mallory Brooks, the world’s perfect genome…
5. When did Ed Grimley start wearing glasses?
6. Thatsnought Hewmore would be smirking if someone hadn’t given him the dreaded hatchet face.
7. Emily/Amelia cements her new class project partnership with a handshake and a side smirk.
8. Wally’s cheekbones decide that if his mouth won’t smirk, they will.
Bull decided NOW would be a good time to start making a difference? Oh well, I guess those kids he “educated” over the course of the last twenty (or whatever) years were just plain f*cked, eh? What a totally preposterous and embarrassingly lazy way to end this pointless and incredibly stupid arc. It’s just an amazingly dumb thing for the Bull character to say, especially when you consider that he’s done the “reformed former bully who learned to care” bit with Bull a dozen times at a minimum through the years. Just laughably poor, shabby, lazy and witless.
So what did we actually learn this week? One, if you’re a weirdo, a giant wuss or any combination thereof, keep the camera rolling when bullies attack. Two, if you’re a bully, check for cameras BEFORE the shakedown. Three, TomBat still has the remarkable ability to throw a random Les drawing in there once in a while that makes me hate the character even more, which shouldn’t be possible. Look at that face in panel three, the smugness oozing from every pixel with the leaves fluttering around his repulsive head as he smirks at his inferior, simplistic yet lovable old pal in that condescendingly annoying way of his. What a dick.