“Does your mom know anything about basketball? She got any eligibility left? Maybe I should sit you and suit her up instead. She’s hopped up on goofballs, so I bet she’s got a better chance at finding the net than you.”
Today’s strip is chock full o’ insults. First Aaron insults his mom, then one of the most intelligent of dog breeds. Gil then insults Tina’s ability to understand whether Aaron is playing well or not and, backhandedly, Aaron himself for suddenly being worried about what she thinks. Neither of them seemed so worried when they were diming Tina out last week.
Finally, the attention to detail in this strip – in the entire winter arc, for that matter – is a little insulting. I rejoined the TWIM rotation mid-arc so maybe I shouldn’t be one to throw stones, so I’m gonna ask the Milford SID to check me on this season recap:
Binghamton – W
@ Downsville – ?
@ Tilden – W
Oakwood – ?
Central – W
@ Tilden – W
Goshen – W
Madison – L
@ Jefferson – L
Valley Tech – W
“marginally adequate” game – ?
@ Oakwood – L
Central – W
Jefferson – today’s game
Am I off, or has Milford played Tilden on the road twice and Central at home twice? If I’m off, I’ll come back and update this post. In addition, Aaron started the season wearing uniform number 24 but since the second Central game has switched to number 11. Today he’s conceded #24 to the kid standing to his left. I just get the sense that, in his efforts to turn the past three months into A Very Special Gil Thorp, Rubin’s lost sight of the actual action that supposedly drives this strip.
And we inch along to the next game, which happens to be one Aarons mom attends – has she seen a game yet? We hadnt explored this angle – that maybe his performances are tied to her being there. Of course we only had 3 months to get this far – Aaron was introduced on December 15, a mere 100 days ago. Looks like a recycled panel in P3 but not quite
By the way, I was thinking about the pace of this strip when I was in 2 traffic jams on my recent trip to Arizona for Cubs spring training – on 10 West in Phoenix, a 6-lane interstate that apparently still isnt enough room for everyone; my 21-mile trip to Goodyear Stadium took over an hour. Then driving home from the airport took 2 hours to go 115 blocks. Yeesh. Thats what I get for scheduling a later flight so I dont have to get up at 5 to go to the airport to take my shoes off. :) Good ol rush hour traffic plus a closed road.
Gil looks resigned to the fact of Aaron shacking up with him and Mimi; he had second thoughts 5 seconds after his proposal.
So many questions at this point…
- Did Gil ever get a word in edgewise?
- When does Aaron stop addressing Gil and start addressing the guys in the locker room?
- I confess to not being familiar with the ins and outs of pill popping. Does ones addiction and associated tolerance become so severe that you can be seen to ‘snack’ on the pills?
- Did Gil take Aaron out for another round of milkshakes and slices of pie or is rage (aka frustration) all the fuel that this kid needs?
- How much had that Central fan in the background had to drink before he/she lettered that sign?
Credit where it’s due: Panel one is great. The court markings even look plausible. That said, it’s not at all clear where Aaaaaron’s revived moxie is coming from. Perhaps those leftover fries he snagged from Gil are still tiding him over.
Finally, if panel one doesn’t do it for you, please check out the lovingly rendered bare back in panel three. I’m not sure what’s going on with the shorts, but I’m also not sure how long I want to look at that drawing trying to figure it out.
Let’s leave aside the mysterious periodic relationship between Aaron, his mother and Milford basketball for a moment and get back to something we really haven’t talked about enough.
Someone needs to explain to me what the hell is going on with Aardvark’s hair because between panels one and two it is not at all clear to me where it is shorn nor where it has been left to grow out.
Bonus point: Panel two is pretty darn awesome. Not sure why it couldn’t have been done across the final two panels as the drawing of Marty doesn’t add anything.
Milford is hosting Valley Tech. If you can peer back through all the ineffectual sleuthing of the last few weeks worth of strips, you’ll recall that Aaron predicted he was going to have a big game. He probably shouldn’t get in the game at all given the mouthing off in panel one, but we know Gil’s selective attention allows players to get away such violations.
Let’s focus on those suits! Kaz is sporting an electric blue zoot suit over a black shirt/white tie combo. Gil is more conservative yet stylish, but…check out Gil’s shirt! Sure it’s likely just one of those wacky colorist mistakes, but it appears you can see through Coach Thorp to the bleachers behind him. Is Gil just a hologram? That would explain so much!
Now it’s time for Aaron to have his big game. Let’s watch.
Tomorrow’s strip is so frustrating that I’m posting it today (also I’m slammed at work tomorrow by which I mean today).
Bonus point: Love Ken’s sideburn styling.