28 Comments

  1. I see your point, but the afflicted one is amused by his illness and taking life in stride. It gives me a very different vibe.

  2. Funky Winkerbean strip has been on a ‘downer’ in recent years (concluding this week with Bull’s death by suicide, driving over a cliff, no less) . . . her grandfather has dementia, perhaps going into full-blown Alzheimer’s, making it the equivalent of the Funky Winkerbean strip. AND ‘running a loss’ is a business term that he compares to losing his memory.

    Which, BTW, I only read when it appears on Comics Curmudgeon . . . who needs to read the comics to be depressed?

  3. Her strategy with Gramps seems to be showing mostly her love and concern, even though her disrespect for authority and sanctioned procedures is leading to probably unwise choices. She has always been shown as fundamentally a good kid, though with a very spiky attitude.

  4. Bull Drove his car over a cliff??’?

    Bull was driving the car and it went off a cliff. Presumably it was suicide as he was wearing his football helmet.

  5. Bull has also been dealing with CTE for a couple of years. He’s been spiraling downward for a while.

  6. I don’t understand why wearing the helmet is an indication of suicide. If he wanted to preserve his brain for CTE diagnosis and research, a car crash seems pretty risky (helmet or no).

  7. I hear Tom Batiuk is going to do guest strips for other comics.
    In upcoming story arcs..
    … Pearls Before Swine will lose a major character, but the cast will be partially comforted by the really good bacon sandwiches after the funeral.
    … In B.C., the apteryx will be killed in a botched turtlejacking.
    … Over at That Is Priceless, he just keeps posting works by Edvard Munch with the caption “Lol”.

  8. LOL

    The rejection of benefits and ultimate death and funeral arc begins early in September. If you aren’t already depressed by the news, you can always go read this strip.

  9. The cliff Bull drove off of is not explicitly the same one that drunk Wally and Becky drove off of back in 1997, but it may as well have been as in both instances compact cars drove through the guardrail like it was finishing tape.

    Since Bull’s car went off the cliff on “Nobottom Road” (a real road in northern Ohio, but not one along a cliff face), the story has been running forward and backward alternately, which makes it a confusing slog more so than a sad slog, I think.

  10. I enjoy the occasional strips featuring Cynthia and her grandfather. She is generally portrayed as cynical and smart-alecky, a bit of a privileged troublemaker. Her interactions with Grandpa show a different side. She genuinely cares and is concerned for him, and has vowed to help him cope with dementia and avoid being stuck in a nursing home. I really like seeing Cynthia portrayed as a complex, multidimensional character. if you don’t follow the strip, I can understand having some confusion when reading these strips. Knowing the backstory helps.

  11. @DanV,

    I agree completely. A while back there was an arc where Cynthia and the trophy wife actually tacitly admitted loving each other. Total heartwarmer.

  12. @lazarusjohn: “And the NFL rejected his application for benefits.”

    Not surprisingly, as I believe Bull’s career consisted of only a one-day tryout with an NFL team (the Bengals?), who didn’t sign him up.

  13. The helmet tends to lend some support to the suicide theory, as noted to preserve his brain for study. Or he was just in a dementia fog and thought he was going to the game. I’m sure it will be discussed extensively and depressingly, with occasional inappropriate remarks.

  14. In B.C., the apteryx will be killed in a botched turtlejacking.

    It’s a different bird that rides on John the turtle. He’s called Dookie Bird and can fly.

  15. >In B.C., the apteryx will be killed in a botched turtlejacking.

    >It’s a different bird that rides on John the turtle. He’s called Dookie Bird and can fly.

    Hmm, when I read lazerusjohn’s comment, I assumed he meant the Apteryx was killed while attempting to turtlejack John away from the Dookie Bird.

    But… you are probably right.

  16. Brian is right. I got the wrong bird. D’oh!

    In a story arc Tom Batiuk does for CIDU, lazarusjohn is pecked to death by birds he cannot identify. Hilarity ensues.

  17. Pearls Before Swine will lose a major character, but the cast will be partially comforted by the really good bacon sandwiches after the funeral. Doesn’t really suggest who the victim is. Pig loves BLTs.

    @shrug: I think it was implied a few months ago that Bull was on the practice squad for some team (the Rams?) and might have played a few downs in a handful of games.

  18. The most recent story is that Bull had a short “tryout” with the St. Louis Football Cardinals, but he did not make a regular season roster or play in an NFL game. Previously, it was mentioned that he was contacted by a Cardinals scout but did not get a tryout due to a knee injury. At this rate, Batiuk will probably give him a three year career for the Chicago Cardinals in the next strip…

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