Saturday, May 12, 2007

Carl Moore: Visual Metaphor Hack Genius

Day By Day strikes a wistful tone today. As usual, the point Muir is making is labored and not entirely coherent. I'm guessing it's a variation of the "everything changed after 9/11" meme. Zzzzzzzz....

Tinsley's joke falls flat as usual, but I find today Mallard Fillmore to be sort of poignant in a Philip K. Dick sort of way. Perhaps militarism is so embedded in our culture that one day missiles will be just another category of things to conform to our general way of living. But what's the idiot duck doing their in the corner, anyway?

State of the Union is awesome today. It takes a special kind of hack to mix visual metaphors. Okay, let me see here, the Republicans are Sisyphus, but "the media" is one of those canes from old vaudeville routines. But I don't get it--if the elephant is pushing a "defeat in Iraq" boulder up the hill, doesn't the symbolism suggest that the goal is "defeat in Iraq"? Yet another sign that conservatives really don't know which way is up these days.

Carl Moore, you have won today's CC Lame-Off.

(No Gaggle today.)

Friday, May 11, 2007

Carl Moore: "Kill 'Em All!"

Wow, a runaway victory today. Let's dispense with the also-rans first.

More incoherent Iraq hijinx from Day By Day. I think the joke has something to do with using sophisticated military hardware to ogle women, thus giving Muir two reasons to get aroused by how own comic.

"The media..." is how today's duck monologue kicks off, guaranteeing that reading the strip will be a huge chore. Payoff is more whining about how everybody says everything his Tinsley's fault. The usual bad art alert: check out that weird opposable thumb the duck seems to have as part of his wing.

Gaggle makes an even lamer attempt at environmentalist-targeted humor. I really get the feeling that these guys are uninspired by this subject, as they seem to be going through the motions even more than usual. And speaking of bad art, I love how Sheffield just illustrates his backgrounds with random vomit splotches.

And then...the hands-down winner. Moore's "ghost of Patton" schtick is one of his more embarassing reoccuring bits. It manages to rip off both Doonesbury (c.f. Trudeau's depiction of George Bush as just a talking gladiator's helmet) and some sort of Bob Hope USO act. And today--I can hardly believe it myself--Moore/Patton is making the point, at this late date, that Americans should stop being pussies about war deaths, since the death toll is still in four figures. Furthermore, this is apparently what a soldier thinks! It doesn't get much lamer than this.

Monday, May 7, 2007

Badly Drawn Duck In a Landslide

A rather lackluster day for c.c. lameness. If I'm understanding today's "State of the Union" correctly, it is (amazingly) nearly lameness-free, in that it calls bullshit on the notion that Imus will never again be a smug, nasty fount of broadcasted white privilege. On the other hand, maybe Moore is saying that people who expect someone to pledge never to say anything racist are bullshitting themselves. But why cut these guys any slack in this competition? I'm going to have to rule that today's strip is woefully lameness-free.

The only thing that's made "Day By Day" even remotely interesting lately (or ever) is the possibility that the respective spouce/boyfriend of the two people in Iraq will hook up. Otherwise, I still have no idea what these two are doing in Iraq. Jan is some kind of PR person hired by the military, but what exactly she does, besides serve up straight lines for the soldiers, is beyond me. Also, for the second time in three days I can't make heads or tails of the punchline.

Greg Sheffield's "Gaggle" (it's not pseudonymous, as I wrote a few days ago) is so inept today I can't even tell if it's lame. How does panel one lead into panel two? We learn that "Time" has released some sort of rankings, then all we get is that the magazine is "irrelevant." (And that's certainly a case of the Gaggle calling the Mallard Fillmore lame.) Oh, and real stellar Photoshop work there, Sheffield.

And then, good ol' Mallard, here to save the day with some striking lameness. First, of course, we have the terrible art. Seriously, has there even been a more poorly drawn anthropomorphic comic character this side of Dogbert? Why does this duck have two giant candycorns for feet? The subject of today's harangue is more boo-hoo-ing for the white man. It's central premise is empirically false. So thank you, Tinsley, for sprinkling a little vintage c.c. lameness into this moribund Monday.

Saturday, May 5, 2007


As is often the case, today's Day By Day is incoherent. Muir typically sounds ridiculous when he tries to comment on global warming--usually he settles for an Al-Gore-Travels-In-Airplanes-What-a-Hypocrite approach--but today I literally can't figure out the punchline. So Gore is--what?--presenting his new movie before Congress or something? Seriously, I have no idea.

"So there you have it," today's Mallard Fillmore begins, a clear sign that Tinsley, as usual, feels like he's presented six days of brutual commentary, rather than repeating the same trope over and over. Defending racists is a hobby-horse of Tinsley. He produced some particularly embarassing Mel Gibson strips that whined about how nobody would care if someone had drunkenly mouthed "anti-Christian" platitudes at a cop. And so Imus isn't a racist because Sharpton is a racist--or something. And his Jesse Jackson reference makes no sense. Jackson did suffer real political consequences from his "Hymietown" remark, just as Imus is suffering professional consequences.

And speaking of racists...State of the Union gives us some "do nothing" Arab guy who apparently is holding the world hostage by controlling the price of oil. Yes, if only those in the West who are "constantly hustling" to build a better world had some say in the matter. Oil companies, you say? Surely you jest! And that's why today's Lame-Off prize goes to State of the Union.

(No Gaggle on Saturday.)

Friday, May 4, 2007

Let's Do This!

The purpose of this blog is to keep tabs on an often neglected forum for conservative political discourse: daily comics. We'll mostly be looking at the ol' faithful "Mallard Fillmore," "Day By Day," ("'Doonesbury' for 'tards," as TBogg once put it), Newsbusters' barely-a-comic "Gaggle," and Carl Moore's presumptiously titled "State of the Union."

We'll note each day which strips has offered up the lamest comic. I guarantee you competition will be brisk.

Bruce Tinsley is fond of taking a dubious premise and spending all week lame-ing it up. This week's "Mallard" premise has been "Al Sharpton is jealous of Don Imus' popular radio show." Or something.

Moving on..."Gaggle," whose creator remains understandably anonymous, is often not a comic as such, but rather a two-second position paper with pretty colors and the worst caricatures ever. And so today we find "Gaggle" taking the unbelievable position that Chris Matthews is some kind of friend of Democrats. All in all, pretty lame, though as you'll see, par for the course.

Whatever its political pretensions, it's often hard to believe that Chris Muir slaves over "Day By Day" for any other reason than that he likes to draw women with big butts. Unlike "Gaggle," he usually at least attempts a joke (set-up, punchline, etc.), a task at which he is woefully inept. I don't know what poll he's talking about, but he seems convinced, lamely, that believing that Gore knows what he's talking about is untenable with believing he isn't an "expert." For example, I'm interested in Muir's thoughts on women's big butts, though I don't believe he has reached the level of "expert." I look forward to charting his progress.

Finally, we turn to "State of the Union." Let's see...There seems to be some sort of "trial" in progress. But wait a second, the jury is made up entirely of donkeys/Democrats. Were Moore to depict this scene honestly to reflect the "state of the union," of course, there would be a donkeys and a bunch of increasingly desperate-looking elephants.

It's close, but I'm going to have to go with Moore as today's lamest. More (and Moore) tomorrow...