This Week in Milford

December 31, 2022

It Won’t Be the New Year That’ll Suck, IYKWIMAITYD

December 30, 2022

We wrap up the year on the prowl with Keri at Casa Gordon, where Mel has left an unchaperoned Toby to get the party started. What’s with Keri’s exploding eyeball, tho? We knew she was no friend of Dorothy (they’ve already met, or at least Keri’s left fist has met Dorothy’s face) even if she might be a Friend of Dorothy where Toby’s concerned. Gotta be Toby’s referring to her in the past tense. (Never mind that Toby was in utero while Mel was under Kari’s roof; we’ll let the retcon slide for today.) Not so much the notion of being friendzoned, or that Toby’s tight with someone Keri’s not friends with, but being referred to in the past tense, then.

December 31, 2022

Time to pull out the rarely used “sucking face” tag. Time also to pull out the not-so-rarely used (at least by yhs) IYKWIMAITYD tag from Whose Line.

Whether Keri and Pedro are a one-and-done hookup or become something more lasting – and their fathers’ reactions to whatever happens – will be yet another thread woven into the tapestry of Gil Thorp. a tapestry that to our eyes appears “a hodgepodge of many threads, some short and some long, some smooth and some cut and knotted, going off in different directions.” To whom does this tapestry appear a work of art? Are they of this earth? Will we, perhaps, join them in being able to see this current version of the strip as a work of art? Or will we have to wait for the graphic novel?

It’s not always been easy to follow the Barajas-era Gil Thorp, but I’m gonna try to stick with it in 2023. Here’s hoping you all will, too.

December 21, 2022

A Hot Spit Take

As promised, my jet-lagged and sleep-deprived self is here with today’s post and it’s gonna be blunt.

While Valley Tech players dance around like Matisse’s Icarus, Gil offers Luke a congratulatory handshake and gets a neck full of spittle in return. Not only does Martinez still carry a misdirected 35-year grudge, he also suffers from Napoleon syndrome and delusions of grandeur. Squeaking out a one-point win because you stopped your opponent’s two-point conversion attempt hardly qualifies as an embarrassment. There were no stakes attached to the golf game and no one listens to Marty’s podcast. People can only be embarrassed if they choose to be, and Gil clearly has not chosen to be.

Enough of this chode. He should get what’s coming to him eventually. Enough of the Tuesday morning quarterbacking, too. Gil gambled and the gamble didn’t pay off. It happens. I still think there should be some explanation for why Milford decided to go for two and not try to force overtime with an established kicker (maybe two, if we count Hooper and if the scores that are neat multiples of seven are any indication), but I’m not holding my breath. A few days on the domestic front and a Saturday Christmas Eve strip (surprised no Hanukkah strip with Kaz and his new squeeze) and we should pivot to basketball.

Now if you’ll excuse me I need to take a look at the inside of my eyelids. Happy Solstice. teenchy out.

December 9, 2022

Hooper! Draw the chum line!

Filed under: actual action, Exploding Eyeball Syndrome, football, Gil Thorp, Marty Moon — robmize2013 @ 10:11 pm

The title of the post is somewhat of a line from Jaws, when the 3 men are out on the sea chasing the shark and Robert Shaws character Quint yells at Matt Hooper, played by Richard Dreyfuss, to steer the boat so as to allow Roy Scheider playing Chief Brody to toss chum on the water to attract the shark. I never tire of watching that movie; it never ceases to amaze me how the most inexperienced seaman of the 3 winds up killing the shark using guile, bravery, and good old common sense, and the lessons learned from the movie if one watches it carefully can be carried throughout life. It shows that if you keep your wits and never give up, anything is possible, no matter the odds.

Back to Milford football and yes, its past Pearl Harbor Day and we’re still playing. What else is new? Hey we’re in our comfort zone at last! And Marty is showing the effects of all that liquor as he forgets he’s on the radio and tells us to look at something.

The Larks have recovered an onside kick and keep the football for another possession. The players are a bit spread out as they run on the field. And why is it finally showtime now? Was the previous segment of the game only a preview? And I need to see more players on the bench behind Gil. Youre gonna need more then 5 guys to pull this off. Where’s the defense at least? And no idea what number the guy to Gils left is. Could be a U. Hey U, get out there!

November 28, 2022

I’m Going For It! OMG!!!!

Look at all this incredible sports action! OMG, Barajas and Whigham have really knocked it out of the park with today’s strip. I mean, stiff arms, fourth and goal, going for it are all sports things, specifically football things that are happening right on the funny pages!

The story is so dramatic! Keep in mind that there are so many layers of narrative at work here. Not only are we in the middle of all this exciting football action with the storied defensive play of Valley Tech’s legendary “El Tigre” defending the punishing offensive threat Emmit Tays (Emmit, as you will recall, was a punishing ball carrier who knew his way around a stiff arm) but we are also in the middle of a sharp contemporary story where Gil is reviewing old VHS tapes of games! That is dynamite story telling right there, folks!

I can’t get over the awesomeness of that stiff arm. Tays even let El Tigre catch up to him just so he could deploy that crushing stiff arm and also not score on the play. That’s dedication to DRAMA right there, folks! Why just run the ball in for a score when you have a defender beat if you can cause some pain. (You see, the deep backstory of the beloved Tays was that his homelife was awful, so he had to deal out pain on the gridiron) OMG This is so incredible I can barely stand it. Bravo Barajas!

Let’s pause the action to remember that Gil is watching this on a VHS tape. It reminds me of the scene in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation where Clark Griswold goes up into the attic to retrieve the Christmas presents and sees the old home movies and projector and ends up getting absorbed in watching them. I can just see Gil sitting there in a daze with his chin resting in his palms, reviewing these tapes in Mr. Reddenbacher’s, make that Maestro Turturro’s, classroom (aka the MHS memories archives). Maestro Turtorro will eventually have to poke Gil with an old school pointer to snap him out of this reverie. So dramatic! So evocative. I think I’m going to weep!

So where were we? Oh yeah, it’s fourth and goal and Milford is down by four. Maybe it’s near the end of the game? It must be. Gil may have already fallen asleep watching the tape now, but he will probably wake up in time to see what happened. He’ll see himself yelling encouragement on the sideline to “Go For It” and the team will go for it in some very exciting and dramatic way. I’ll have to assume that somebody else signaled in the extra dramatic, extra exciting “Go For It” play that Milford will execute and probably fail. Contemporary Gil will weep at what El Tigre did to him and bask in the glory that was Tays. This is incredible. I can’t believe I get to witness this. I wish Snoopy was here to see this.

Stiff arm!!!!!

November 19, 2022

“Onomatopoeic Saturday,” or “A Slap on the Wrist, Then a Crack on the Ankle”


SLAP! AGH! AHHH! CRACK! Keri’s turning into an episode of 1960s Batman all by her lonesome. She might’ve had help from Luhm with that last one, though. Such a shiny, shiny floor.

What’s all this about a nurse? Where’s Rick Scott when you need him, not available for the jayvees? No matter; Keri’s getting sidelined for a bit. Call it karma for not getting benched or kicked off the team for punching out Dorothy if you will. Gil has done the same to kids not named Thorp for less.

This should give Barajas time to drop a couple of reaction strips about Keri’s preferential treatment. With all the jumping around we’ve seen, those have been in a little short supply. Consider the Tabitha-now-Toby making the team, making funky plays and converting into a skill position player subplot. In the days of Rubin we’d have had at least one if not more pissy middle-aged person complaining about Toby being allowed to play football, followed by A Very Special Gil Thorp in which some preachy lesson would be learned. In the days of Jenkins this would just not be spoken of.

With Keri sidelined, maybe we’ll smash cut to another subplot. Time for the Luke Martinez Revenge Tour to resume? Or The Last Days of Meemaw? Will she outlast Funky Winkerbean?

meta: Gocomics has been down all day (rumors of turning into a pay site circulating), plus I’m on the road today. Sorry for the late post.

November 16, 2022

Friends of Dorothy? Not so much.


This is the kind of action we’ve been waiting for for years. Herk the Mauler style action. Kenzie Hanley style action. Old school Mark Trail action. Barajas & Whigham, today you get a pass from not knowing how to portray the fundamentals of American football. But only for today.

Condoning violence isn’t cool, and neither is making fun of someone for having an emotional reaction to an active shooter drill. Gotta hand it to Keri, though; she talks the talk and walks the walk. She says she’s gonna kick #&% and she kicks #&%. Wondering if she has the Phantom’s signet ring among her knuckle dusters. That skull would leave a nice mark on Dorothy’s jaw.

Wondering even more whether Barajas will tackle another of today’s hot topics in the aftermath: the selective enforcement of the law. In a world where a kid gets expelled for bringing peanut butter and a butter knife to school with no criminal intent and a coach does nothing to stop it, what will that coach do when his own flesh and blood straight up cold-cocks another student? Looking forward to following Keri’s arduous path through Valley Modified to Onondaga CC and Le Moyne.

November 14, 2022


We’re back in Orville Redenbacher’s classroom where Keri is falling asleep. She’s losing sleep due to PTSD from the flat-out stupid mass (sic) shooter drill/community theater production she witnessed right here in Mr. Redenbacher’s class. Maybe we will eventually explore what a shitshow that “drill” was and see some of the MHS administration face consequences for staging a theme park stunt show in a high school class. Yeah, the whole thing still bugs me.

Moving on, maybe another way to read this is that Keri is getting sleepy because listening to Mr. Reddenbacher is utterly boring compared to watching him go Herk the Mauler on an armed intruder. Seriously, how are you supposed to follow that. The least Mr. R can do is maybe tear a phonebook in half or demonstrate how to correctly swing a folding chair.

Kids do fall asleep in class. It can be embarrassing. I don’t know that Mr. R did anything especially provocative in waking Keri up that caused all the laughter. (Is it laughter, or did he just write HA all over the blackboard?) Either way, Keri’s now got a new traumatic event to deal with. Maybe she should just transfer to a different class. I think her dad has some pull. Or better yet, she can just transfer to Valley Tech and we can really get our West Side Story reboot in gear.

metapost: tdrew, I’ll cover for you on Thursday.

November 12, 2022

P! T! Sssssssssss! D! PTSD! Fight! Fight! Fight!

Too soon? My alternate title was gonna be “Bang the Thorp Slowly” but then I noticed Pedro Martinez was nowhere to be seen.

I mean, that’s all we’ve got here. The Linda Lindas’ drummer’s riffs, hard enough to remove the enamel from her bracelet, are triggering Keri’s memory of last week’s active shooter drill. Keri bolts from the library, her confused friend trailing behind.

Before I move on, however, I feel that something important needs to be pointed out. Take a look at yesterday’s strip, then take a look at the thumbnail from the Linda Lindas video in franku2016’s comment on yesterday’s post, the same thumbnail I used in my September 21 post. What stands out the most for you? For me, it’s the accuracy in how the Linda Lindas are drawn. The colors of the gutiarist at left (white shirt, blue plaid skirt), the lead singer and bassist (dark shirt with pink graphic, green plaid skirt), the PTSD-inducing drummer (black shirt), and the guitarist at right (white shirt but different colored shorts) are damn near spot on with how they actually appear in the video. The drumhead logo and the girls’ hairstyles are spot on as well. The colors and styles of guitars are not, however.

What does this tell me? That Whigham and the colorist (are they one and the same?) are capable of getting things almost perfectly right. Why, then, are the sports teams’ uniforms so maddeningly inconsistent? Why do teams change color from game to game and sometimes in the same game? Why do we go through seasons where every one of Milford’s opponents wears the same uniform colors? Why do Milford’s road uniforms get colored, period? Why does this strip half-ass it visually when it’s capable of not half-assing it? Barajas, I know you’re out there. Please pass the message along to the Chief: Be best. We know you can.

Our Saturday cliffhanger, then, is finding out to where or to whom Keri runs, and how Gil and Mimi fit in time for Keri’s upcoming therapy sessions around everything else that has their lives in an uproar. teenchy out.

Inspiration for today’s post title. teenchy did not attend this school.

Sunday morning meta: I see said school’s football team was upset last night and is likely out of the running for the College Football Playoff. I hope I didn’t jinx them.

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