Introducing our hottest new feature attraction:

Failed Joke of the Day!

[Jog enters his usual gas station and approaches the counter]

Jog: Hey.

Cashier: Hi.

Jog: Four dollars on seven. Pre-pay.

Cashier: Ha ha. How come you only get four dollars all the time?

[Jog thinks to himself: “Say! Here’s an opportunity for a heartening jest! I will pretend I have a very small gas tank... what a farcical notion!”]

Jog: Well, it’s all my tank can hold.

Cashier: Ah… so you’re just topping it off?

Jog: …

Cashier: …

Jog: Um, no. I was just… uh…

Cashier: Oh, ok.

[Awkward silence]

Jog: Thanks.

[Jog hurries out]


Check back soon for another roaring installment of: Failed Joke of the Day!

*Tim O’Neil did not like Eightball #23, though he has respect for the craft involved (you'll need to scroll down a bit):

Looking at Eightball #23, I am overcome with the perception that Clowes himself is repulsed by his own work. Almost every line is drawn with a weighty premeditation. He has suffocated his own style, burning every extraneous element away until we are left with the awkward utility of an educational pamphlet. Sure, every line is placed with the utmost virtuosity, and every angle is exquisitely deduced, but there’s not an ounce of life in the whole thing… It’s a beautifully crafted artifact, representing one of our best artists at the peak of his craft. But the artifact itself is cold and hollow, reflecting a shallow, cynical and repetitively dull worldview.

I can only reply that I found the book’s style to be a fitting match for the worldview of its lead character, which suffuses the reader’s ‘eye’ throughout the story. I suppose if Andy is meant to be representative of humankind in general you can see the book’s message as deeply cynical, but I personally detected too much sympathy for other characters (particularly Louie, who’s kind of an ass but is ultimately woken up from his own myopic stupor) to lean in that direction in my own reading…

*As you all know, I have zero intention of ever spending money on “Identity Crisis”… and who needs to? We have the Internet to provide for our DC summer event needs! David Welsh's Precocious Curmudgeon has collected all of the latest word in one handy place. I now know more about The Flash's powers than I ever dared dream. (found at Near Mint Heroes)

*Ever since I finished “Amy and Jordan” I’ve been alternating my nighttime reading between Walter Kerr’s well-regarded silent comedy study “The Silent Clowns” and Pacific Comics Club’s “Krazy and Ignatz: Daily Strips 1/1/1921-12/31/1921”. PCC’s book is actually a collection of four teeny eensy weensy tiny volumes they previously released, now in a mercifully larger 6 x 6 format. It’s 320 pages, collecting (as the clever reader may have already inferred) all of the daily strips from 1921. The reproduction is ok, with one installment per page, though there’s some fuzziness to the lines upon close inspection. The Krazy Kat dailies of this period are slightly different in tome from Herriman’s expansive Sunday pages. The rapport between kat and mouse is more squarely based in vaudeville (which, coincidentally, Kerr identifies as one of the key vulnerabilities of silent comedy during the onset of popular sound filmmaking: the vaudevillian style of artificial delivery became instantly obsolete in the eyes of the public once they were exposed to the patterns of 'natural' speech on the screen). Krazy often misunderstands Ignatz’s comments and declarations in the service of some sort of pun or verbal gag; it's simple, but always amusing. The confines of the six-panel setup don’t allow Herriman to lavish as much attention on his nebulous desert vistas, and there isn’t much room for subversively florid anti-exposition or extended character interaction. But the art is instantly pleasing, even at a smaller dimension (both physical and in breadth of focus).

It’s also important to note that the book is limited to only 1000 copies, and it’s been out for a while. I had little trouble getting one off of eBay for around cover price, but it’d be best not to delay if you’re interested. PCC is prepping a second volume for 1922, and I’m unsure if the print-run will be as limited, though the 6 x 6 format will remain the same.

*My sidebar seems to be sinking. I knew I shouldn’t have chosen the ‘quicksand’ template.

Hmmm, maybe that ought to be the Failed Joke of the Day...