This Week in Milford

September 21, 2022

It Must’ve Been Zane Clark’s Doing

How bleeding edge are we now, kids? The Linda Lindas’ new album is their first album, released only this past June. They’d previously released an EP in 2020. Their breakout hit was “Racist, Sexist Boy” which kinda seems on brand for the nu-look Gil Thorp. Here they are performing it at a public library, which kinda seems on brand for the old-look Gil Thorp.

Rock ‘n Roll Thursday comes a day early to TWIM, then.

That, in a nutshell, is what today’s strip is all about: getting past the hard candy shell of modern society to get to the chewy middle of adolescent desire to be popular and part of a group. Look beyond the hijab-clad volleyball player and her brown-bagged meal (possibly halal, because the MHS cafeteria can’t be trusted) and see the girl who wants to let her circle of friends know she’s hip to the latest music. Look past Arianna’s acknowledgement of the hijab-clad girl (who hasn’t been given a name yet IIRC) and see the girl who wants her friends to know she uses Urban Dictionary. Look beyond Keri’s suddenly green-dyed hair and bejeweled everything and see the girl whose nose is out of joint because she’s not in the team picture one of her teammates took and posted to social media.

So sit back, relax, and watch the old Too Cool For School drama play out with a bunch of new faces. At this rate, we’ll probably see more of that than we will of Mudlark football.


  1. Such a “bop”? Is that a good thing?

    Comment by Bobby Joe — September 21, 2022 @ 10:15 am

  2. The drummer’s singing might get better when she’s 13, but the guitar work is already killer.

    Comment by Downpuppy — September 21, 2022 @ 4:27 pm

  3. Because this is my first comment of the week, LET US ALL HAVE A GOOD LAUGH AT THE MOST HILARIOUS RAVENS, BROWNS AND RAIDERS!!!

    1. I swear I thought the Linda-Lindas were some imaginary made up group… And holy damn they look like they’re all 13 years old?

    2. Damn it Barajas, the correct usage in this case would be “…spill the tea, Keri!” Although I appreciate in this context such a statement could easily confuse readers… And the only reason I know about “sippin’/spillin’ tea” is because I’ve spent almost every day of the last 14 years surrounded by college freshmen and sophomores…

    3. Look, I get we’re in a brave new modern world here, and I’m pleased the Thorpiverse has finally decided to join the 21st century, but Rod Barajas has just been throwing too much stuff at us, and way too fast… It’s like a blizzard: Abortion, teen pregnancy, hijabs, Gilberto’s past mistakes catching up with him, everybody in town doesn’t all think Gilberto is the greatest coach who ever lived and the son of God himself, Gilberto’s a drunkard, Gilberto’s a flirt, Gilberto goes on long GA flights to Capital City with stacked strawberry blondes to pick up undeserved awards, Gilbertina is contemplating divorce (being prodded on by her mother, of course), one of his kids is a hentai addict (and not the wholesome stuff, either!), the other kid is non-binary, Gilbertina isn’t even coaching, there’s a transgender on the volleyball team, Martinez Luna is sober and actually has some kind of moral compass, the bad blood rivalry deathmatch brewing with Lucha Libre what’s-his-name, the inevitable part when Gilberto makes a pass at Lucha Libre’s sex machine wife, it’ll be October by the end of next week and we haven’t even had the first football practice yet, the list goes on… I was still trying to digest the whole “Gilberto’s marriage on the rocks” storyline and everything seemed to branch off in infinite side plots, like some kind of superhero graphic novel…? Maybe we’ve all gotten too used to Rubin taking two weeks just to introduce ONE character to us, but I just want things to settle down and find some equilibrium…

    Comment by hitorque — September 21, 2022 @ 4:35 pm

  4. 3a. I guess the point I’m trying to make is Gilberto trying to salvage his relationship with Gilbertina and the kids and his struggles with the bottle — There was MORE than enough meat on that bone to serve as a compelling side-plot until New Year’s Day if not the start of next summer… Barajas is perhaps trying to juggle too many balls here?

    Comment by hitorque — September 21, 2022 @ 4:44 pm

  5. Haha… why did she crop me out? Because, not everyone thinks you’re cool or likes your parents, Einstein

    Comment by franku2016 — September 21, 2022 @ 4:59 pm

  6. They play way better then they sing, thats for sure.

    Comment by robmize2013 — September 21, 2022 @ 5:59 pm

  7. A bop? Are we sure it isn’t a jam or a banger?

    I like Keri’s mallard hairdo.

    I guess the Linda Lindas’ are doing an extensive tour of public libraries. Can the Milford public library afford them?

    ‘What’s the tea, Keri?’ is the new “What’s the frequency, Kenneth?’

    Comment by nedryerson — September 21, 2022 @ 7:35 pm

  8. I think a new writer deserves some time to get settled in before we start cheap-shotting everything he does. But Henry Barajas has now had a number of weeks to find all the light switches, the location of the clean towels, and learn the quirks of the old stove. And I can no longer hold myself in check.


    A conflict between Gil and a loud, vulgar new VT coach who happens somehow to be a good father?

    Problems faced by non-binary and transgender kids?

    Keri’a apparent conflict with the new volleyball coach?

    The breakup of the Thorp marriage?

    Mimi’s possible LPGA career?

    The return of a student from something like twenty years ago, seemingly friendly but clearly pissed at Gil concerning something about either her teenage pregnancy or a failed pass at Gil, or something?

    The dropped scene with the bartender revealing something about Gil’s past or future?

    Others I’ve already forgotten?

    As a musician, I appreciate counterpoint, fugue, and all other ways in which composers blend unlike things to good effect. But the present strip has yet to imitate Bach– it’s more like noise.

    Comment by vaganova — September 22, 2022 @ 7:56 am

  9. Keri’s problem seems to be with a big redhead, name unknown, jersey number cropped, possibly BR, because no numbers have tops like that.
    There are at least 12 girls on the JV volleyball team, all of them apparently athletes.
    Confusing? I’m starting to think that Barajas, Whigham, and the letterer are refusing to talk to each other.

    Comment by Downpuppy — September 22, 2022 @ 1:55 pm

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