Underwear

underwear

Okay, but… wasn’t this really Janis’s decision? There doesn’t seem to be any age-related reason for her to be wearing undergarments she doesn’t like.

If anybody should have a complaint here, it should be Arlo.

This reminds me of “If I get a bologna sandwich in my lunchbox one more time, I’m going to jump.”

26 Comments

  1. “Okay, but… wasn’t this really Janis’s decision?”

    No. Women’s bodies change as they age. The undergarments required to support (and contain) them changes, too.

    Sometimes they like, and welcome the changes. Sometimes not so much. And they’re women, so they usually change their minds about a dozen times for each thing.

    Janis, as a character, is unusually self-conscious about her appearance. This is not an exaggerated, sexist thing, but derives from the fact that Mr. Johnson had some experience being with a woman who was unusually self-conscious and Janis’ character is based on his experience.

    What Janis is saying is that men’s underwear doesn’t change, but what she is SAYING is that men’s evaluation of their bodies doesn’t change.

  2. This would make more sense if there were an obvious physical difference between Janis-Then and Janis-Now (other than her haircut).

    Or if her new underwear appeared to be of the control or support variety, which they do not.

    For that matter, I’m pretty sure Jimmy HAS drawn her wearing bikini panties recently.

  3. The pink panties are larger than the blue panties. I am guessing that over the decades there have been huge changes in her body – remember she has had a baby.

    I would say that buying women’s underwear is about the hardest thing to buy – especially when one wears an odd size that stores do not carry – such as bras where the size around and the size of the cup differ too much from each other – but Robert has had a problem lately as men’s briefs have a lower waist rise than used to and they fall low on him for them to be comfortable. Maybe he will have to start to mail order them for size also.

  4. We, now I’m even more confused: If the pink panties are supposed to be visibly larger than the blue, then why would they be in the same basket (unless she only does her laundry once every 20 years)?

  5. Men get fatter as they age, too. That isn’t gender exclusive. I’m not sure what she’s holding up. Are those panties or briefs? That makes it more confusing.

  6. “This would make more sense if there were an obvious physical difference between Janis-Then and Janis-Now”

    Are you referring to panels in this cartoon? Because there’s probably only a few minutes between panels 1, 2 and 3 and panel 4.

    “For that matter, I’m pretty sure Jimmy HAS drawn her wearing bikini panties recently.”
    She definitely WILL NOT wear a bikini anymore, though.
    Whereas Arlo’s wearing the same old tighty-whiteys he’s always had.

  7. “I’m not sure what she’s holding up. Are those panties or briefs?”

    In panel 1, she’s got a pair of Arlo’s. In panel 3, she’s got a pair of her own. I assume panel 2 was clear…

  8. James, you think Arlo wears baby-blue briefs?

    I’m fairly certain this is just a commentary by Janis on how she never wears skimpy, lacy things anymore (because she now has more imperfections that require undergarments to cover).

  9. OT: Anybody else getting this message from GoComics?

    500 Internal Server Error
    If you are the administrator of this website, then please read this web application’s log file and/or the web server’s log file to find out what went wrong.

  10. James Pollock wrote:

    “Mr. Johnson had some experience being with a woman who was unusually self-conscious and Janis’ character is based on his experience.”

    Whoa… The first time I read that, I missed the word “with”. It’s a completely different sentence without that word.

  11. Well, sometimes you wake up one morning and look at what your life has become and… darn….

    So I can accept and understand this.

  12. I don’t think this was supposed to be a then and now strip (if it were, JJ would have drawn Janis with her former hairstyle).

    I think it IS possible that the briefs in the first frame were supposed to be Arlo’s, but if that is the case, Johnson should have made it more clear by showing them with the characteristic men’s underwear flap.

    I do not believe we are to infer the panties in frame three are larger– it is simply a closer perspective.

    I also don’t see Janis as being unusually sensitive about her appearance.

    This is little different than Cathy hating swimsuit shopping. Finding undergarments that provide the appropriate support, the desired level of comfort, AND attractiveness is a challenge, and the challenge increases as you age. Janis resents this. She also resents that men seemingly have it easier.

  13. “James, you think Arlo wears baby-blue briefs?”
    No. I think he wears tighty-whiteys, which are, well, white.

    “It’s a completely different sentence without that word.”
    Yes, yes it is. I sure hope Mr. Johnson, if he does see my comment, reads it correctly and doesn’t think I’m saying a completely different sentence about him…

    “I do not believe we are to infer the panties in frame three are larger”
    They are. They’re “granny panties”.

    “I also don’t see Janis as being unusually sensitive about her appearance.”
    Mr. Johnson does.

    “This is little different than Cathy hating swimsuit shopping.”
    AAAAAAACK!

  14. ” Finding undergarments that provide the appropriate support, the desired level of comfort, AND attractiveness is a challenge, and the challenge increases as you age. ”

    So right.

  15. “‘ Finding undergarments that provide the appropriate support, the desired level of comfort, AND attractiveness is a challenge, and the challenge increases as you age. ‘

    So right.”

    Though, technically, true of both ours and yours. The difference is that the attractiveness (or not) of the menfolk garments is a MUCH smaller weight in the calculus than is the attractiveness of the womenfolk garments.

  16. On first reading I did not make any distinction between the underwear of panel 1 and 3 being significantly any different size and I thought they were both hers.

    However in light of facial expression panel 1 being his and of normal “man” size and hers being “granny” type I think panel 1 was probably meant to be Arlos.

    Joke works and more or less the same either way. but logistically panel 1 being Arlo’s (albeit not as clearly depicted as it might have been) simply works better.

    And I think it’s the baggy shape, not the size that is offensive between men and women. If the panel 3 were HUGE in comparison the joke would be clearer…. but also *much* meaner.

  17. For the gentlemen… the reason for “granny panties” like the 3rd panel (I’m not sure whose drawers were drawn by the drawer in frame 1) is due to the pregnancy- stretching of skin where bikini brief waistband usually sits. After 7 pregnancies, the skin is paper-thin there. Higher-waist briefs avoid painful rubbing. FWIW

  18. ” Higher-waist briefs avoid painful rubbing. FWIW”

    Sounds reasonable.
    Now, why does the waistband of older mens’ pants float towards the armpits?

  19. The garment in Panel 1 is not white, so I don’t think there’s any justification for thinking it belongs to Arlo.

  20. “The garment in Panel 1 is not white”

    It’s white-in-shadow, like the inside edge of the white basket. Or the colorist goofed. (evidence for the latter… the changing colors of the folded items in the bottom left of panels 1 and 2.)

  21. In what way does the identity of the colorist alter the possibility that the colorist goofed?

  22. Under the cloak of anonymity, I will say that my mother, who is Janis’s age (mid 50s?), does not wear granny panties. Other than being one size larger, her (bikini-style)panties are identical to mine.

    And that’s the last I intend to discuss my underwear here.

  23. With many if not most strips, the dailies are colored by people who have no input from the strip author. So they often have to guess at what color to use. That leads to things like the Little League uniforms in Sally Forth being radically different colors at times.

    Johnson could make a mistake, but it seems less probable than if a third-party were doing the color.

  24. James Pollack – because people shrink as they age. If the trunk shrinks more than the legs then the same size pants which is still needed, have the waist line move up the body to adjust for it.

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