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CSotD: Humpday Hilarity

Editor’s Note: I’m going to begin floating what has been the “Friday Funnies,” which this week falls on Wednesday. I’d like to schedule two set installments a week, but given a seven-day week, it’s impossible to get more than two days separation on both ends and the locker doesn’t always refill that quickly. So you’ll see it when you see it.

Onward:

 

I have no idea what Darrell is talking about in this Baby Blues, because it looks like a movie theater experience to me, though I suppose they could put on a radio in the next room to replicate the low sounds of other people’s conversations.

Maybe not being able to screen out distractions is an ADD thing but I long limited going to the theater to movies that had to be seen on the big screen, until I realized most of those are high on scenery and low on thoughtful content.

Weekday afternoon matinees are pretty good. The other eight people are generally pretty well-behaved.

Anyway, I’d add that the movies you watch with the whole family don’t often require a lot of focus, and movies that matter are why little kids have bedtimes.

 

Speaking of unruly kids, I will admit I don’t know a lot about Michel Foucault and I don’t want to know this much about him but I do know he didn’t have a pendulum, nor did he write about them.

But here’s the first half of a cartoon about him from Existential Comics and here’s the second half, and it reminded me of when I was about to graduate from college and applied for a job at a Summerhill style school.

We had an interview scheduled and in the meantime I did more research on the Summerhill approach, said, “You’ve got to be kidding me” and withdrew my application.

The school went out of business a few years later. I don’t know what that means, except that getting a job there would shortly have turned out much the same as not getting a job there.

However, there is Hampshire College which isn’t quite a Summerhill school but basically lets you hide, surrounded by intelligent people, for four years, and, if you are Ken Burns, you can polish your documentary-making skills and if you are not, you can major in Frisbee.

There was no such college back when Edward Gibbon was a lad, though his memoirs make it sound like he pretty much wandered wherever his mind took him in the years before.

However, he found university life to be of dubious value:

To the University of Oxford I acknowledge no obligation; and she will as cheerfully renounce me for a son, as I am willing to disclaim her for a mother. I spent fourteen months at Magdalen College: they proved the fourteen months the most idle and unprofitable of my whole life.

So he dropped out and wrote “The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire” instead.

 

Still on the topic of kids, I don’t often like it when cartoonists rewrite lyrics, because they always seem to miss out on scansion, but in the case of Edison Lee, the bumps in the road add to the over-intellectualizing gag.

The strip is coming up on 14 years, but somehow Edison has remained a kind of wild card — a sardonic, “old head on a young body” observer of life one day and an irrepressible kid with more smarts than judgment the next.

He could do well at Hampshire.

Or by just skipping straight to the part where he writes a timeless classic.

 

Commercial Break

I’ve written about Counterpoint in the past, and Kal has an interview with Nick Anderson at Satire Can Save Us All, but the latest news is that the email-delivered collection of editorial cartoons will be adding a paid subscription level.

You can still get free cartoons with a simple subscription, but only two cartoons twice a week. For $70 a year — $49 if you subscribe before the first of June — you’ll get five emails a week with a few bells and whistles added.

If you don’t see that link in time to claim the discount, here’s the overall web address.

It’s more expensive than Comics Kingdom or GoComics, but I strongly suspect the artists will be getting a larger cut of the pie, so if you’ve been feeling guilty about not supporting enough Patreons, this may help.

Though don’t forget that we also have a list of Patreons and other cartoonist support sites.

Freddy the Freeloader was funny on TV, but he’s not funny in real life.

 

Time for Romance

When Tank and Barb decided to get married, I hoped it would bring in some of the domestic humor from the long-lost, much-missed “Second Chances” strip.

It hadn’t occurred to me that, with Nick and Kate as next-door neighbors and established friends, it could actually widen the possibilities, letting Tank go back and forth from sports commentary to domestic gags.

 

Large funny jocks with pro-athlete wives being kind of a thing in Hinds’ hometown.

 

And I’m delighted to see that, in Between Friends, Maeve is finally, finally, getting around to trying to figure out why her life is just one romantic disaster after another.

Not that I’d want it to stop, mind you. It’s a great running gag.

But if I’m going to praise Edison Lee for remaining vital and multi-faceted, and salute a major plot change in Tank McNamara, it makes sense to also praise Maeve not just for trying to get a grip but for turning to Kim, not Susan, for advice.

 

I’m not as pleased with Joe Staton and Mike Curtis for the name of this gangster’s moll in Dick Tracy.

I’m mostly ashamed of myself for not simply catching the band reference but immediately coming up with the earworm.

And if you’re not quite old enough for that to sink in, you should know that she used to date a villain named Mr. Roboto.

Now, there’s a name that styx with you.

Solve this mystery, Dick Tracy:

How can Joe Burrows, who wrote and sang lead on the song —

Look so different from Tony Locke, seen here, and yet sound so very similar??

Community Comments

#1 Richard John Marcej
May/27/2020
@ 7:24 am

Wait a minute…. Shaky’s alive?????

But… He died in 1944 when he was hiding under a boardwalk during a blizzard while on the run from Tracy & the police. He froze to death there, only to have his remains accidentally discovered by his daughter, Breathless Mahoney, in May of 1945.

(okay, okay, I KNOW they’re only comic characters and don’t “really” die, though while Chester was drawing/writing the strip he created, when they died. They DIED! *)

This is probably why I don’t read the current run of Tracy. While the creative talents are solid professionals, I have no interest in reading rehashed characters.

* – Okay, I know that Gould DID kind of-sort of brought back Mumbles from an apparent drowning, but he wound up killing him for good, eventually.
I’m sorry for hijacking the comment section here. I’m a nerd fan when it comes to Gould’s famous flatfoot.

#2 Christopher Smigliano
May/27/2020
@ 8:32 am

Richard: THIS “Shaky” is the NEPHEW of the original Shaky. As of this plot line, He’s involved with an Breatlhess Mahoney lookalike, and actress researching the original Mahoney’s career.
I can’t say what Gould himself might think of the current version of the strip, but I kind of like it. It’s become a loopy tribute to comics in general.

#3 Wendell Wittler
May/27/2020
@ 5:43 pm

It must be noted that the Dick Tracers recently handed the strip over to a webcomicker for a ‘Minit Mystery’: Charlie Wise whose regular outlet, titled Groovy, Kinda ( http://groovykinda.org/the-players/ ) has a main character named Edison Lighthouse.

I await, with anticipation, new characters named Achewood and Berkeley Mews.

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