Archive for the 'The Funny Pages' Category

Political Flashback

Saturday, May 5th, 2007

I continue to be amazed by the memory trip that I’m getting out of my new Mad Magazine DVD-ROM — and so far I’ve only skimmed over parts of three out of the fifty total years of issues.

The latest mindblower is this group political caricature from 1971 by master caricaturist Mort Drucker:

click here to view the picture with my notes, and here to see the largest size.

See how many of these people you can name, and, more importantly, how many you can’t.

Just remember that 36 years ago, these were the political movers and shakers, and very, very few are alive and active today.

Note also that there are zero women, and only one non-white, and I think he was a Black Panther, and not an elected or even appointed official.

It’s weird to remember how white-male everything used to be.

Driving Me Mad

Tuesday, May 1st, 2007

Okay, I’ll do one more post to start the month, but no guarantees after this: I got my early birthday present to myself, Absolutely Mad, a DVD-ROM with scans of over 50 years of Mad Magazine, including specials and compilation-book covers. I’ve browsed some of the 60’s issues already, and it’s a real memory trip. I got my first issue in December 1968, and a few months later I got about 20 issues from about 66-68 dirt cheap at a used bookstore.

I guess you could call it something of an influencing factor in my life.

Anyway, looking through that is just one more thing that I need to be doing instead of posting, so I’ll get to it.

Last-Day-of-Summer Grab Bag

Friday, September 22nd, 2006

Tomorrow’s the first day of autumn, and yet it almost hit 100 degrees here today.

Welcome to Texas.

But fortunately, a cold front (and rain!) is supposed to blow in tonight, so let’s haul out the blazing sun icon for hopefully the last time this year:

The Spook sends this link: Doonesbury strips through the years, in five year intervals. On the day he sent it to me, it was the day of Boopsie’s first appearance in 1971.

He and I hadn’t started reading the strip at the time, not starting college until a couple of years later, but D’bury was a big part of our college experience during the Watergate era, so seeing these old episodes is a big monochrome flashback.

And here’s something back at The Spook: The Beer Cannon. There are several videos, but I picked the Best-Of montage as a good sampling of the weapon’s capabilities, and because it shows slow motion destruction to the tune of the 1812 Overture.

The downside: A lot of beer is wasted.

Mitigating factor: It’s Milwaukee’s Best Light.

Bonus points: Sometimes they fire sausage instead of beer, which is not ruined by the process, and in fact might often be improved.

And speaking of The Spook, and videos of destruction set to powerful classical music:

Hey Spook, did you get the CD I mailed you, and did you watch the animation?? If so, why no response?

Since I sent it, I’ve added the Green Army’s battlefront (consisting of several bad-ass tanks), plus their jets, plus moutains in the background of both fronts, and a grove of trees on the purple side.

Plus, one of the tanks blowed up real good.

Anyway, let me know if you got it.

Check out this Flickr set: Photos of the Washington state town (Roslyn) that posed as Cicely, Alaska, on Northern Exposure, one of my all-time favorite shows.

And finally, here’s a shout to one of my newest readers: My newest co-worker, Misty, who is that rarest of humans: Someone who laughs at my jokes. I know she’ll get real tired of my humor real quick, like everybody else in the office, but for now it’s good to have an audience.

Posting out of guilt …

Sunday, September 3rd, 2006

Yes, yes, I haven’t posted since Tuesday; I’ve been hashing out some animation ideas (which are looking pretty cool, if I do say so myself), and if tomorrow weren’t a holiday, I probably wouldn’t be posting now …

But I just had to mention that Friday was the birthday of Steve, aka ILuvNUFC of Look at This, and I didn’t notice until yesterday, one day too late.

Please help me make up by going over and wishing him a Belated Happy One in his comments …

And, to make up to all of you for not posting, here’s a tiny bonus, courtesy of the aforesaid Steve: A Cool Collection of Pink Floyd wallpapers, including one that seems to feature the backs and insides on every PF album cover ever (I specifically looked for “Atom Heart Mother”, and there it was!).

I include this link for the specific benefit of readers/friends Todn8r and Fract_L, neither of whom I have heard from in quite a while, and what the heck’s up with that?

Anyway, another reason for the short post is that I couldn’t remember most of the stuff I was going to post about, but one thing that I do remember will have to wait until another day (keyword to self so I won’t forget again: “Cave”).

And did I mention: Holiday tomorrow? I believe I did! Woo-hoo! Temporary relief from workplace oppression!

Robots, Nerds, and Code

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2006

Three quick things, because I like to kid myself that I could get something done if I don’t spend all night posting:

1. The Spook sends this link: Mystery Robot Said to Solve Crimes, Find Mines in Chile.

He adds the comment, “Now we’re talking….bodies, gold, oil.”

And guns. Don’t forget guns.

2. I found out that one of my co-workers used to work in tech support (not computers, exactly, but computer-based machines like ATMs), so we traded stupid-user horror stories, then I told her about The IT Crowd, the British tech support sitcom, which I wrote about here earlier in the year — and which is now on YouTube. And since I looked up the links for her, I might as well post them here, so here’s Episodes One, Two, and Three.

3. I’ve just got to say Welcome to the people who keep arriving here by the dozens through my post Saturday night about the Morse Code in Sunday’s Foxtrot comic strip.

I went to the trouble of decoding the message, because every time I post the answer to something intriguing or puzzling (like the snowman riddle on Lost, or the “Shape of Things to Come” commercial for Target), especially in the comics (like the recent Get Fuzzy/Pearls Before Swine crossover, or Foxtrot’s “Sgt. Neelie” trick last year), there are always people searching for it, and I like seeing how many of them I can reel in.

That’s the one kind of fishing I like to do …

Code Turkey

Saturday, May 20th, 2006

I’ve always said that Foxtrot is the geekiest comic strip ever, and it keeps proving me right.

In tomorrow’s strip (yes, in Dallas we get the Sunday paper on Saturday, because that’s just the kind of Type A, high-strung, can’t-wait city we are), the young geek Jason is seen doing a tap dance across several panels. In the final square his friend ask him if he made it into the talent show, but Jason said he didn’t because he one of the judges knew Morse code.

So I got curious as to what the message was, so I decoded it, and here it is:


That doesn’t seem like something that would disqualify a person from a talent show, but the important thing is that there was an actual secret message embedded in a comic strip.

That’s what I call maximizing your entertainment value …

Comic Strip Fun

Saturday, April 22nd, 2006

Since I’ve been off work, I haven’t had access to the newspaper every day — I would just pick up the Sunday paper, plus Friday (for the NYT crossword, the movie reviews, and Fry’s ad section) and Saturday (for the crossword) — so that’s almost two months that I haven’t had my daily requirement of comic strips.

I bring this up because I noticed three interesting things in yesterday’s comics:

1. In Zits, the teenager stops his dad from telling an interesting anecdote from his workday — because he always hates to see perfectly good blog material being told to people in real life.

As a blogger, I know the feeling.

2. There’s a fairly new one-panel strip called Brevity. In yesterday’s strip, a bald man in a suit sits with a microphone in front of him, and watches a scorpion approaching him on the table. The caption reads, “Moments later, everyone would think Kruschev was a kook.”

The reason I mention this is that if you get this joke, you’re either middle-aged like me, or you’re well-versed in your Cold War history for such a young sprout.

3. When I saw Get Fuzzy, I noticed something really strange: I could see the characters — and drawing style — from Pearls Before Swine in addition to the regular characters from Get Fuzzy. Plus, Satchel’s behavior was violent and way out of character for him.

Then when I saw the Pearls strip, it was the exact same strip, except without the GF characters.

That’s when I knew that the answer seemed to lie in the week’s earlier strips.

Sure enough, Monday’s strip showed GF artist Conley playing Battlefield and talking on the phone to his editor, who was telling him that: a) Some Pearls strips were accidentally Fedexed to him, and b) That he had missed his submission deadline, and had better submit something really quickly.

That day’s installment ends with Conley looking at the Fedex pack, and saying that he had some ideas …

The rest of the week has been, of course, the same as Pearls for that day, but with Fuzzy characters pasted in.

Pure genius.

And the really amazing thing is that I’ve found other blogs that have mentioned this, and several of the bloggers (and their commenters) have been totally flummoxed as to what was going on. “How can he get away with this?”, one blog asked, and a commenter whined that it was “blatant stealing”.

It was a frigging joke, people! The creator of Pearls Before Swine was obviously in on the whole thing — he would have to be, in order to pull it off.

Some people are a bit slow …

Post #31 of 36: 2005 TV Top 10: #3

Monday, January 2nd, 2006

The countdown continues:

#3. The Boondocks — Leave it to the most controversial comic strip in the country to provide us with the freshest, most shocking new show of the year — and on Cartoon Network of all places. Expect lots of whitey-bashing and lots of the N-word, but the show is also critical of many in the black community (R. Kelly got a whole episode dedicated to his insane behavior).

The most amazing part is that they got Regina King to do the voices for both the kids — junior black revolutionary Huey, and his little brother Riley, a gangsta thug in training.

If you like a show with lots of “I can’t believe they said that!” moments, this is your show.

What’s up, ‘docks …

Sunday, November 13th, 2005

I’ve been meaning to post this for a couple of weeks, so you might know by now: The Boondocks, the controversial comic strip, is now a cartoon series on Cartoon Network (Adult Swim, of course).

It’s pretty shocking, even more than the strip, plus they’ve got some pretty good guest stars, like Adam West and some of the cast of Futuram, so check it out.

The Lazy Way Out …

Saturday, October 29th, 2005

I’ve been busy working on stuff today (just STUFF, okay? Don’t push it …), so check out our friend Look at This‘s recent excellent collections of links on pot and other drugs, television, and comics.

That oughta hold ya …