This Week in Milford

May 8, 2021

Color Me Inconsistent

Yesterday and Thursday it was Zane changing outfits from one panel to the next (not to mention Katy’s eyes changing from blue to brown). Before that, it was Mama Brito’s constantly color-changing hair. Today it’s the always-red Mudlarks in black and chartreuse. There’s a lack of institutional control in the Thorpiverse and it’s throwing everyone for a loop. Hell, even Marty’s so pissed that his notebook is bleeding out onto his shirt and he’s karate chopping his pencil. Then again, his sippy cup’s nowhere to be seen so he might just be having a case of the DTs.

The Mudlarks have apparently traveled to Austin, Texas, to face Crockett. (There are no doubt other Crockett Highs; as this one hasn’t been identified by nickname yet, I reserve the right to come back and edit this post.) After his shaky bullpen outing, Zane Clark has somehow earned a right to a start, and he almost immediately goes all Robin Roberts Max Scherzer and gives up a gopher ball. He’s not throwing strikeouts like Mad Max, unfortunately.

Gil and Kaz laugh this off Bull Durham style. Surprised Kaz didn’t make a crack about the ball having a stewardess.

They must figure if Zane digs a hole early, he can’t blow a lead.

Seriously, though. There has got to be someplace that still runs this strip in black and white, doesn’t there?

April 16, 2021

From right field to blown save

Filed under: actual action, baseball, freak hands, Gil Thorp, Marty Moon — robmize2013 @ 8:12 pm

And we get introduced to the starting lineup which includes RuhRoh, Munch, Macy, and Zane. Half the guys played football for chrissake. Same bums. Its like nobody else can play sports except the same guys. By senior year theyve played 12 seasons. No wonder Zane took a couple years off.

Of course the ball finds Zane just as Marty is announcing his name.

No baseball cap for Gil the manager? And only 4 innings for your ace workhorse, even though its only opening day? I know they play at least 7 innings, so the bullpen needs 3 innings; plenty of room for 2nd guessing if they blow this lead, especially if Gil chooses the right fielder.

And I predict thats what will happen.

December 5, 2020

Gil’s Intrigued: The Rest of Us Are Bored

Geez, Marty, why so surprised? Have you killed so many brain cells with Johnnie Walker that you can’t remember Gil trotting out the Wing-T in 2007, also late in the season? (Hint: It was right after you called out Cully Vale as a convicted killer.) From the sound of it Milford may have practiced the Delaware offense but not so much with Leonard Fleming under center. Good thing New Thayer sucks this year.

Today’s strip has the feel of an arc-ender, what with Gil’s “wait ’til next year” spiel to Marjie and his fourth-wall-breaking, shit-eating grin in the final panel.* Gil’s counting on two things here: (a) No one reads the Milford Star (b) Chance Macy doesn’t get blowtop mad for a second straight season. He didn’t lose his cool this season; must have gotten some decent anger management training. Anna Corinna Karenina could stand similar to knock that chip off her shoulder.

Still the Mudlarks have to wrap up their season against traditional rival Valley Tech. Think Rubin will remember that?

*If this does end up being the last strip in the fall arc, I may come back for a metapost.

November 26, 2020

Metapost: Fifty Years Ago Today, Milford Won the Valley

Not sure how many of you TWIMers read the Curmudgeon today, but buried in the comments was a shout-out to The Daily Cartoonist’s running of the dailies from November 26, 1970. That day’s installment of Gil Thorp had the muddy Mudlarks slogging past Valley Tech to run the table for the first time in school history.

Noteworthy details: Robbie Cannon’s sock striping, Marty looking a lot like Elrod-era Mark Trail‘s Johnny Malotte, lettering that looks a lot like Gasoline Alley‘s, and Gil’s long, lithe, almost feminine hand.

While you’re digging around on that Daily Cartoonist page, enjoy the random misogyny, racial sterotypes, and inflation jokes. Still it’s nice to know that some things never change, like Gil lucking into victories. Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

October 30, 2020

Dumb and Dumber (questions)

So the final damages were 57-13. Folks, I’ve been to many high school football games. And a game like this, where you know who’s gonna win 5 minutes into the game, and almost all the fans leave after the halftime show, is not a good show. 1 game I saw 2 people leaving in the First quarter after the home team was ahead 28-0. Joliet Catholic once beat St. Joseph 84-0, after leading 52-0 at halftime. They finally put in a running clock in my state after a team is ahead by more then 35 points in the second half. A QB who played for both Illinois and Iowa named Jon Beutcher had a running clock almost every game his senior year for Wheaton- Warrenville South. But he was worth the price of admission he was so good.

A good show is a 13-12 nailbiter or a 45-42 shootout, close to the end. Not a steamroller annihilating the downtrodden opposition, who usually barely have enough players to keep 11 bodies on the field, and who are just trying to get out of there in 1 piece.

Yet Gil calls passes for the 3rd stringer after calling only runs for the 2nd guy. Hmmmm. Yeah Marty its a dumb question – who the hell cares how you finish a game like this, but you needed to ask Gil where those calls were last week when your backup disobeyed you. And if you’re so good, you should be able to get through the season with 2 qb’s. Again, I watched high school football for decades, and can barely remember any injuries to the qb during the game. They generally played the whole game, lifted only to let the backup hand off a few times. I dont recall a single 3rd stringer playing a down. So Gils logic is pretty weak. If anything the SECOND stringer should get the reps here.

Finally we have the sulking Corinna in the hallways – why the fuck should she explain why she wasnt at that yawner? Kick his ass CK and stuff him in a locker to boot.

October 28, 2020

Dueling Bad Jokes

Hard to believe there could be a worse team than Milford in the Valley, innit? Yet here we are. Wonder why we never see anyone else in the conference use some archaic formations, defensive schemes or kung fu treachery to make up for their shortcomings against Milford. Most likely because Gil hasn’t updated his playbook for this century and would be equally ready for those plays.

How will this play into our blossoming quarterback controversy? Easily. The Thayer-led Mudlarks will open up a big lead on Central, then Gil will relent and put Rapson in to mop up. Still trying to convince Gil he’s the better talent, Rapp will again defy Gil, call an audible and run a big-yardage play for a score. Gil benches Rapp permanently, Central’s coach accuses Gil of running up the score after the final whistle, and things get ugly.

At least that will offer up more excitement than Friday night at Casa Karenna, where mom and daughter are caught up in a high-stakes game of gin rummy or Uno or something. Probably Uno, since Corina might want to keep mom away from the gin and rum and steer her toward the Yoo-Hoo. Hiyo! (Calling it “a duel of their own” implies that the Milford-Central game is some kind of duel which seems kind of off given Marty’s description of the game turning into a blowout.) Corina cares more about her mom’s mental health than Milford football, which is certainly understandable given this past summer’s backstory. Now if only she could allude to that without being a jerkface to everyone she meets…

October 21, 2020

How Is the Milford Offense Like a Diesel Engine?

Neither of them have spark plugs!

This Milford-Madison game reminds me in a way of this past Saturday night’s supposed college football game of the year of the week. The team with a ground-and-pound offense takes an early lead then falls behind, its defense unable to slow down its opponent’s big-play offense. Tasked with orchestrating a rally, the game manager QB commits errors, throwing picks and getting his passes stuffed back in his face at the line of scrimmage. Despite all this, the coach sticks with his game manager, keeping the QB with more raw talent and game-breaking potential on the bench. Run the color version of today’s strip and the Mudlarks even start to look the part. Forgive me if I start referring to Will Thayer as “The Mailman.”

News flash: amateur football has turned into a track meet and defense no longer wins championships. Does Gil stick to his principles and watch his team slip down the standings in the Valley? Or does he decide he has doled out enough punishment and go with the guy that can make things happen? Pity that Gil dismisses everything Marty says out of hand; even a stopped clock sitting in his parents’ basement is right twice a day.

October 19, 2020

The Surprise Factor

Filed under: actual action, football, Marty Moon — nedryerson @ 4:32 am

The thrust of today’s strip is that cagey Gil is employing multiple formations to keep the Madison defense guessing. We aren’t shown the results of Madison’s defense getting wise to the I-formation. We just have Marty’s commentary from inside his little packing crate, spinning everything to sound suspicious of Gil’s game plan.

Was Madison surprised by the I-formation or did Milford just execute it well enough to grab a two touchdown lead?

We also haven’t seen the Air Jimmy spread offense employed by Madison. Milford held Madison once and then Madison struck quickly. Sometimes I wonder why we crave the actual action strips. The storytelling in them is even worse than the overheated team drama in the other 70%* of the strips.

*ballpark estimate with Moon level credibility.

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