Take a gander at today’s strip. Truly fowl, it swan of the worst yet. Remarkably, it manages to come across more dated than the similarly-themed 43 year-old strip seen below:
Dinkle can’t write despite making an honest(ly awful) effort, Les couldn’t-can’t-won’t write unless it is about someone who died a decade prior, the late Livinia wouldn’t write… I’m starting to see a pattern here.
Claude Barlow’s “tectonic scale” could probably be applied to today’s strip, and this week in general, which feels like it has been going on for eons.
What really throws me in these Dinkle-Barlow strips is that they come across simply as vehicles to deliver TB’s puns. That concept struggles when Dinkle is a character who otherwise isn’t at all disposed to being a mirthful pun-maker. It struggles further when Barlow, as an unseen character, seems to slide from being an unwitting pun set up to an unwitting pun-maker to a “humorously” terrible composer just to suit Dinkle’s TB’s mood. I get that the Barlow shtick was supposed to add to Dinkle’s over-the-top nature, and that kid of worked back in Acts I and II when he was an over-the-top character. Now, though, he’s a character that used to be over-the-top, like a guy who still wants his nickname to be “Animal” even though the only time he really got crazy was at a couple of parties in college. Now, this is just listless and out of whatever character Dinkle has remaining.
Today’s strip features a pun so tremendously corny that Dinkle had to pause for a second while typing it up to… uh, take notes on it? Maybe he had to write it down because it was so bad it crashed his WordPerfect AND broke the “oy” tag on Comics I Don’t Understand.
Oh, and here’s a remarkably prescient strip of Dinkle doing his Clade Barlow shtick way back in 1981, shortly before Ronald Reagan’s inauguration.
An old running gag
Pops back up in today’s strip
Oh goody, oh joy
The life and times of
Claude Barlow: Volume 7
Just volume 7?
Dinkle’s been working
On this Claude Barlow tome since
“Up your nose with a
rubber hose”, but with Dinkle
you’d need oil pipe
Really? Duck Pond huh?
Barlow’s talent limited
Kinda like Dinkle’s
This is more writing than seen
From Les and Pete both
The “new year” is about 10% over, but today’s strip doesn’t care.
So Dinkle has a basement full of unsold band candy… but just last year he was flown to Belgium and received an award for being the Van Houten chocolate company’s all-time biggest purchaser. That might seem odd, but I’ve actually seen something similar before. I believe the prosecutor called it “money laundering”.
Link To Today’s Strip
“Then Mr. Dinkle came into the girls locker room and told us to get “backwards dressed”. You know what, I’m beginning to think there might be something slightly amiss about that guy!”. And during the trip to Pasadena they vomited instead of eating and sat outside the bus, which of course was going in reverse. Then later in life you decided to re-marry so you chose the opposite of someone you liked and were attracted to then let yourself go completely instead of making an effort to be healthy. We get it.
BatNard should try writing these FW strips backwards, starting with an actual joke first then working his way back. That way perhaps one of them might eventually include one. Why are they letting Holly hijack Christmas (and Morton’s glory) with these inane and totally pointless Dinkle stories? I guess the idea here was to do a sort of “you wanna hear about Dinkle? Well, do I have some Dinkle stories for you!” kind of thing but absolutely no one was demanding more Dinkle stories so why he went off on this particular tangent at this particular time is beyond me. His endless need to constantly re-establish the basic traits of characters he’s been doing for forty-plus years is downright intelligence-insulting. Everyone already knows that Dinkle is an annoying nut who’s always capable of doing something wacky, there’s no need for unrelated characters to drone on about him for days on end.