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January 4, 2008

As I Was Going To Saint Barts…

Let’s recap: Les didn’t know whether Funky was chaperoning Cory’s party… and Summer “took the fifth” rather than telling him because she didn’t want FUNKY to find out whether he’d chaperoned Cory’s party… because Les didn’t know that his best friend was off in the French West Indies.

(Your comments about the earlier strip)


  1. Please don’t get me wrong – I’m trying not to be rude – but: I really couldn’t care less.

    I do however have a suggestion: You have an Arlo page for comics of a mature nature – presumably for people who do not want to see them. And I assume that the new Ewww page is for people who do not want to see those comics. So I suggest the addition of a “griping about Funky Winkerbean” page.

    Of course, this could mean we’re starting down a slippery slope towards a state where the CIDU page is fragmented into a thousand special “not-interested” groups, but I think that’s a risk we can take.

    Of course, there is an alternative: Give up trying to make sense outa FW’bean. Just a thought…

    Comment by Ron Obvious — January 4, 2008 @ 7:54 am

  2. waidaminnit I thought les and funky were close bosom buddies. And les doesn’t know that funky and holly were out of town?
    things just get stranger and stranger in FW-world

    Comment by Peterk — January 4, 2008 @ 9:45 am

  3. Well, they are best friends but maybe not as much the side-by-side even peer feeling that bosom buddies might have. Funky was more often in the position of helping out Les, the far-less-than-athletic teenager trying to figure out just how to be. It would look like “who am I in this situation?” and Funky would show up to help him.

    That a guy wouldn’t tell his hapless best friend that he and his wife were flying off on a quick romantic getaway is hard for many to fathom. Or Les, heavily absorbed in his daughter and her late mother, may have forgotten a detail of his friend’s ongoing romance that he was told weeks earlier.

    Is it griping that’s going on here? [well, yes.] or is it people’s need to come to grips with the way life really is? or else be completely assured by others that Tom Batuik is way off the mark. (I won’t go so far as to say all people here are secretly adding “, would they?” to their “They wouldn’t …”.)

    There was clearly a deep “I don’t understand” going on in this country over Funky Winkerbean this last year. The more realistic drawing style of the last several years still gives me the willies.

    I’m not so much a fan of this drear either; the set-ups have been weeks or months longer than the pay-off. … but as for the benefits of understanding a comic, could this one bring lots in the way of acceptance and self-awareness, and make laughing at the way we, … I mean our neighbors, make their way through life, a lot easier?
    As an old DC Comics fan, I didn’t see why Marvel readers wanted to drudge through this kind of stuff in the 1960s and early 70s.

    Here’s my question:
    I miss the high school computer’s musings and hijinks; I wonder how *it’s* doing? Where’s the computer now?

    Comment by Kevin Andresen — January 4, 2008 @ 10:43 am

  4. Kevin – the ‘realistic’ drawing is so… I don’t know. The mouths are weird… wrong, almost, unless they’re in the patented Batiuk Smirk.

    Comment by Kaitlyn — January 4, 2008 @ 11:22 am

  5. As for the computer, I never saw it, I only heard about it, and if it was like a typical ’70s computer, it’s been recycled or put in a museum.

    It’s sentient personality, however, could have been put into a security system at the school. Those are real, but they don’t like TV shows and don’t die, so it won’t fit the new FW.

    Comment by Kaitlyn — January 4, 2008 @ 11:25 am

  6. OK, I hate myself but I was forced to go to to do some research… Cory is only 15 years old! Who leaves their 15-year-old alone in the house while they fly out of the country overnight? I thought it was bad enough that Les let his 15-year-old daughter go to a New Year’s Eve party for her second date – without apparently setting a curfew or asking whether the parents would be chaperoning. Damn! My parents didn’t leave me alone in their house overnight until I was 35!

    Comment by Funky Winker-overload — January 4, 2008 @ 4:24 pm

  7. “As I Was I Was Going To Saint Barts…”

    “As I Was I Was…”? Is this title a reference to a song or something?

    Comment by L.B. Wylie — January 4, 2008 @ 4:30 pm

  8. Well, as guess it would be okay to leave your 15-year-old home as long as your best friend in the entire world since grade school knew you were going and would be looking in on him and making sure he didn’t host any parties or anything…

    And L.B., yes and no: The title should have read “As I Was Going To Saint Bart’s,” but WordPress was playing cut-and-paste tricks on me and I didn’t notice until just now.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — January 4, 2008 @ 4:34 pm

  9. Ah, I was afraid I was missing some very cool and obscure reference. Thanks!

    Comment by L.B. Wylie — January 4, 2008 @ 4:45 pm

  10. I did not understand it when you first brought it up, and I have tried to let it sink in a couple of days before I broke down and asked; but I completely do not understand the contention that “Summer ‘took the fifth’ rather than telling him because she didn’t want FUNKY to find out whether he’d chaperoned Cory’s party”. Was there something earlier in the storyline that makes this interpretation more plausible?

    Summer only says, “I don’t want Cory to get in trouble”. One would more likely infer from this that Funky did not even know about the party, or at the very least, Summer did not know whether Funky knew about the party. (The follow-up strip makes in abundantly clear that Funky did not know about the party, but it isn’t apparent whether Summer is aware of Funky’s discovery or whether it was before or after the Summer/Les conversation. Again this make have been conveyed in an earlier strip.)

    Secondly, Summer merely says “No more questions”, she does not necessarily imply that the answer to “Were Funky and Holly around for Cory’s party?” is the one that might get Cory in trouble. She may be nipping the conversation in the bud before the questioning broaches any sensitive subject.

    Comment by M. Dabney — January 4, 2008 @ 5:22 pm

  11. The question remains, though, In what universe does a 15-year-old get to decide when she no longer wishes to answer her parent’s questions?

    This wouldn’t annoy me so much if we hadn’t just been presented with such precise details of Lisa’s illness.

    (Though as a responsible father of two teenagers, it would still annoy me)

    Comment by Cidu Bill — January 4, 2008 @ 5:30 pm

  12. Cidu Bill, I don’t understand all the hostility towards FW. Is there something that I’m missing about the history of the comic or something? I understand the specific complaints in each post, but it seems like for 90% of comics anyone could find something to complain about every couple of days. There’s certainly no shortage of unfunny or poorly-thought-out Blondies, Marmadukes, Brenda Starrs, Wizard of Ids, etc. . . It seems like you have higher expectations for FW for some reason? Did you use to think it was really good?

    I also never really got all the hostility towards FBOFW, because I never got too excited about it in the first place, but it’s been explained to me that other people used to love it, and are disappointed at what it’s become. Is it the same thing here?

    P.S. I regularly went un-curfewed to un-chaperoned parties when I was a teenager, and I turned out OK.

    Comment by Autumnal Harvest — January 4, 2008 @ 5:32 pm

  13. Autumn, I think a lot of it is that FW and FBOFW have set higher standards for themselves, shifting from gag-a-day to serious depictions of alcoholism, teen pregnancy, cancer, Alzheimer’s, racism, etc.

    When you go from there to plotlines that would seem ridiculous even in the context of Marmaduke, it’s jarring.

    Comment by Cidu Bill — January 4, 2008 @ 5:50 pm

  14. I guess the title I gave this one would have worked as well for this afternoon’s “9 Chickweed Lane” (scroll three comics up)

    Comment by Cidu Bill — January 4, 2008 @ 6:48 pm

  15. Have to concur with Ron in comment #1.

    Comment by Frank — January 4, 2008 @ 8:49 pm

  16. Is anyone else annoyed by the disjointed FW story arcs that are about a week long apiece, which are all are either magically resolve or just end, then whiplash right into the next arc without any sort of segue (i.e. we snap right from the Funky Bowl high-five to late on New Year’s Eve, with nary a mention of the pending party)?

    Was this strip always like this? Until recently, I never really followed this strip after they got out of high school – but the few times I did catch it, all the sad story arcs (alcoholism, cancer, land mines, etc) seemed to go on forever, so maybe I just didn’t notice.

    And is anyone else annoyed by the flashback method of story-telling this week, where one tiny detail is revealed each day? It’s like pulling teeth, and gets tiresome fast. I love Donal Logue, but that style made “Grounded for Life” unbearable to watch for me. Just when I thought I couldn’t find FW any more annoying… ; )

    Comment by L.B. Wylie — January 4, 2008 @ 11:32 pm

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