As much as I love Get Fuzzy, I have to admit that language is not one of its strengths. Bucky Katt and Satchel Pooch are constantly stumbling over phrases in a painful attempt at verbal humor. It’s something of a formula by now: one of the characters creates a nonsense word out of a common phrase while the other character tries to comprehend that word using clipped dialogue in the style of David Mamet. Today’s strip follows that same formula, but the resulting word – powertics – is a wonder to behold.
Archive for April, 2008
Confusion can be a difficult thing to pull off, especially when building toward a punchline. If your goal is to scare an audience, then suspense can be a great way to sustain interest. But the same trick rarely works for comic strips because readers are almost never engaged on a plot level. So hats off to Arlo & Janis for giving us a tight, suspenseful sequence that ends with a laugh.
I have to quibble with the use of the word “clean” in this strip, since I’ve never heard a woman use it to describe her date preparation. “Getting pretty,” yes. “Getting ready,” yes. “Getting clean,” never. It sounds like a term you’d use when washing mud off a rambunctious eight-year-old. Still, I have to admire the rendering of the filthy kitchen, including what appear to be oven mitts stuffed into the dishwasher and frozen pizzas crammed into the sink.
I’m not invested in the stock market (yet), but I am encouraged by a small but growing trend toward social responsibility. There are a handful of firms out there that screen publicly traded companies for sound social and environmental policies, in addition to growth potential. That’s the type of advocacy that informs today’s Sherman’s Lagoon, leading to a particularly sharp and funny punchline.
I’m really enjoying the dark-haired brawler’s expression in panel four. At first glance, he seems to be thinking the following: “Oh no, the same people that I thought had my back are going to abandon me, thereby forcing me to endure a pummeling!” But my preferred reading is that this pint-sized ruffian is giving serious thought to the term, “inner posse,” and imagining some hidden reservoir of strength that will pull him through his time of trial. Then again, the first reading is a lot funnier.