This Week in Milford

January 29, 2008

Actually you did kinda mumble, coach.

Filed under: basketball, Gil Thorp, photoshop fun, What the hell is going on here? — jasbeattie @ 10:06 am


Ah, another annual tradition is upon us! Each year, Gil Thorp chooses one random day to get royally, insanely pissed off about something ridiculous, in order to prove he still  cares as a coach, and/or is not actually a robot. Lucky for us, we also get a bonus shot of a kid who may or may or may not have a mohawk, as well as the most confusing action panel I’ve seen in a long time. (I can’t even begin to dissect what the hell is happening in panel two…)

As the tradition goes, if Gil’s head explodes from his anger, we’re in for another six weeks of the same meandering, insane winter plotline. Let’s see what happens…


…well that was no shocker.

Wait a sec, is Gil trying to implement the Wing-T offense?



  1. Wow, I absolutely loved this strip today! The stupid photography/videography/things on fire storyline is a clunker, but this crazed basketball action is solid gold!

    Panel 1 – Mohawk sighting! And why does Frank always draw anyone who’s reading with their eyes closed? He does it so consistently I’ve stopped making fun of it. Which is a shame, because someone reading with his eyes closed is pretty funny.

    Panel 2 – Early nominee for Worst Panel of 2008. Everything in this panel is completely awesome. First, the plain whit background (very atypical for Frank — usually there’d be some lights, confetti, bizarro clouds, moon-like object, or holes in space-time). Second, Curly-Horse’s indecipherable expression. Third, the black kid up front who appears to be falling forward while in a karate stance. Fourth, the anonymous androgynous white kid, who seems to be both elbowing the black kid and judo-chopping the ball. Fifth, the ball itself: not only is it the 30-year-old 4-panel basketball, but from the motion lines, it must have been floating in front of black kid’s forehead before AAWK judo-chopped it away. Wow. I absolutely adore this panel. Jason, you have to make this into an Amusing Panel O’ The Moment at some point.

    Panel 3 – And on the heels of that, Frank doesn’t let us down! I haven’t seen Gil this angry since his head exploded, which was based on a panel taken from like 5 or 6 years ago. You know he’s angry because there are anger lines coming off his head. And it’s good to know that Gil hasn’t totally lost his cool, because he’s still capable of being a sarcastic dick. I can’t wait to see the smackdown tomorrow when Curly-Horse mouths off to Gil. This is actually a really classic Gil Thorp storyline. Talented but brash kid puts himself above the team, thinks it’s justified (in this case, because he’s the best scorer on the team), and either learns his lesson (starts playing team-first ball, leading to success in the playdowns) or doesn’t (gets benched and costs the team a chance at success in the playdowns). It’s been a while since we had one of these that went according to formula, so I’m hoping Neal doesn’t throw a wrench in the gears.

    Comment by Cash — January 29, 2008 @ 10:19 am

  2. Actually, now that I look at them side-by-side, I think Gil is even angrier today than he was back in the exploding-head panel. And those of you who are obsessive freaks like me have good memories will recall that back then, Gil was mad because Marty Moon had publicized Ted Pearse’s homelessness, turning Pearse into a pariah. So Curly-Horse must’ve really screwed up to make Gil even madder now.

    Comment by Cash — January 29, 2008 @ 10:24 am

  3. Is “wing” actually a position in basketball? Because I thought it was a hockey, soccer or rugby position.

    But then, they do say “playdowns” in Milford, so who the hell knows.

    Comment by spencer — January 29, 2008 @ 10:36 am

  4. Today’s panel is awesome…so much awesomeness! The mohawk kid, confusing basketball action, basketball players kung-fu fighting with the ball, Gil yelling at Curleyhorse for just standing around like the dick that he is…this has to be the panel of 2008!

    Gil better watch his step with Curleyhorse or Gil’s house will be the next thing burning to the ground.

    Comment by Regina — January 29, 2008 @ 10:37 am

  5. spencer – Yes, albeit informally. A wing is a perimeter player who isn’t a point guard. So shooting guards and small forwards can both be referred to as wings, or you can say a guy plays “on the wing.”

    Comment by Cash — January 29, 2008 @ 10:46 am

  6. Thank God reading this strip is paying off once again with Gil blowing his lid for the firs time in half a decadeI hope he hits Andrew, that Cindy Williams catches it on film, Gil loses his job, and finally ends up with Mimi and those freakazoid kids under (he-he, I said “under”) Bobby Knight at Texas Tech.

    Comment by ry — January 29, 2008 @ 10:51 am

  7. I agree with all — Neal outdid himself with the whacked-out graphics today, including another bonus of a chimp in the foreground of Panel One!

    Comment by Gil'sBarber — January 29, 2008 @ 10:59 am

  8. Or is it Frank who does the graphics? Sheesh somehow I’ve suddenly become confused by this strip. That’s gotta be a first.

    Comment by Gil'sBarber — January 29, 2008 @ 11:02 am

  9. Mohawks are actually making a comeback.

    Comment by Scott de B. — January 29, 2008 @ 11:12 am

  10. Gil’s Barber…I almost choked on my water reading the chimp comment… like everyone else, I totally missed the Simian-like character in panel one.

    Comment by Regina — January 29, 2008 @ 11:40 am

  11. I think Curlyhorse bounced the ball off Karate Boy’s head, judging by the smug smile. Karate Boy has assumed a defensive stance and will now turn and whale away on Androgynous Figure. Curlyhorse, being the mastermind of intrigue, is clearly enjoying his diabolical plan to…to…oh, hell, no one knows what he’s up to.

    Comment by julienne — January 29, 2008 @ 12:20 pm

  12. I think Mohawk Boy is The Toupee from Jan 7th’s opus of genius. They were playing a game on Jan 7th. Today he’s wearing his practice toupee… it’s cooler.

    Comment by SemperFi4evr — January 29, 2008 @ 1:21 pm

  13. Gil, judging from the fact that you have one giant tooth filling your entire mouth, you probably did mumble.

    Comment by sourbelly — January 29, 2008 @ 1:51 pm

  14. When I was in high school, all the coaches got stuck teaching hygiene classes or remedial math classes and such. Do you think Gil has to teach Driver’s Ed? I think it would be funny. Do you call that a three point turn? Did I mumble when I said check your blind spot? Did I?! (Actually, I think my Driver’s Ed teacher/coach might have been may have displayed head exploding rage on regular occasions…I am still obsessive about checking my blind spot.)

    Sorry to wander off topic, I studied panel 2 trying to formulate a logical explanation and my mind went on vacation.

    Comment by Ned Ryerson — January 29, 2008 @ 2:10 pm

  15. When I was in school coaches could still hit or kick you in addition to verbal abuse. Guess Gil has evolved from the “good old days!”

    Comment by ry — January 29, 2008 @ 2:28 pm

  16. It looks like they’re playing the Harlem Globetrotters, what with the goof moves and all. Can’t you see panel 2 scored to “Sweet Georgia Brown”?

    Comment by El Santo — January 29, 2008 @ 2:59 pm

  17. As for Mohawk Boy, he reminds me of the many, many college boys who started imitating Chad Johnson last year when he was sporting a sweet platinum-blonde mohawk. Maybe the kid didn’t get the message that Ocho Cinco is bald now.

    Comment by El Santo — January 29, 2008 @ 3:22 pm

  18. Okay, I’ve seen that “Gil’s head explodes” panel here a few times, but I couldn’t find it in the actual strip archives (granted, I only got back to about Winter ’05 or so)… was that panel actually seriously used, or was it just a glorious Photoshop creation? Either way, it’s a great panel, and I’m totally in favor of it, but I’m insanely curious as to whether or not it was actually ever used.

    Comment by Zaq — January 29, 2008 @ 5:38 pm

  19. Zaq – that was a glorious photoshop creation by our own Jason Beattie. It’s a mash-up of the car explosion from Fall ’06 and Gil getting angry at Marty Moon back in something like 2004, and it’s one of Jason’s finest efforts.

    Comment by Cash — January 29, 2008 @ 6:49 pm

  20. I’ve got it all figured out. The trained chimp is setting the fires for Curleyhorse.

    Comment by Pastor Z — January 29, 2008 @ 9:25 pm

  21. That would be way too cool for this strip, Pastor. ;P

    Comment by Gil'sBarber — January 30, 2008 @ 7:45 am

  22. Thanks for the shout-out, Cash…Yeah, ‘exploding head’ is one of my favotite Gil photoshop creations too (as you can possibly see, It’s also my ever-so-wee WordPress avatar.)

    The first time I used this graphic was this post here from October 2006. You’ll be able to see the original two panels, as well as enjoy a car exploding!

    Comment by jasbeattie — January 30, 2008 @ 8:39 am

  23. Okay, folks, since this is the only website in the world devoted to Gil Thorp analysis, can we please please please try to settle once and for all what is happening, or supposed to be happening, in panel 2. Otherwise it will be lost to the sands of time. My best guess is that the ball has come from out of frame and the black kid is leaping forward to catch it, while AAWK is shielding his face in self-defense. The motion lines just happen to be overlapping, making it look like the ball has been judo-chopped. At least, that would be the sane explanation, except the overlapping motion lines have produced shock lines of their own, leaving us with no CHOICE but to accept the judo-chop. Please, someone else take a shot at this. I’m going insane. This makes an M.C. Escher drawing look like a fucking still life.

    Comment by chromium — January 30, 2008 @ 11:07 pm

  24. […] having contractually gotten angry once in 2008, goes against the writer’s wishes and just stands there blankly staring at the […]

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  25. […] Nonsensical Gil-speak, a wacky mohawk, absurdly confusing sports action, and the rarely-seen pissed-off Gil…It was the only comic that was so good this year, it made Gil’s head explode again. […]

    Pingback by The “Best” of 2008: Vote Now! « This Week in Milford — January 14, 2009 @ 10:14 am

  26. […] and extra-loose neck swivel hinges. So what would happen if his head actually did explode. This, I […]

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  27. […] about to blow. Everyone better watch out if he ever gets that electronic tracking bracelet off. This might happen. Leave a […]

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