This Week in Milford

June 17, 2017

Blooper Reel

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Daftpunk can’t run her precious little hit piece on Ryan, so she quits the school paper.  Ryan gets rattled when Central girls troll him about an event that (according to his parents) wasn’t all that, so he loses his mojo and quits on the mound. Now the rest of the Milford baseball team quits all around him and the season goes down the crapper. Gil’s quit on his team too: relying on hope and working on his grilling technique, he could give two shits about the rest of the season. Yo Gil, out here in the real world, winners eat steaks, losers eat franks and beans. (By the way, what the hell is Gil wearing on his wrist? Is he talking to Dick Tracy on that thing? Maybe he’s talking with that talking baseball with EES in P1. And what the complete hell is with his hand with integrated spatula?)

Even the color monkeys phoned it in on this one: they didn’t color the Jefferson player or whatever it is Mimi’s got in that pitcher (and don’t tell me it’s straight Everclear). I’m beginning to get the idea that the Whigrub brain trust has run out of ideas on how to wrap this arc up; not saying they’ve quit on it yet, but it’s starting to feel that way.

I’ve been on the road all day to Bakst country and just arrived only a few minutes ago.  I almost quit on this post for today, so I hope you’ll forgive me for its brusque nature.

 

June 15, 2017

Truly, Madly, Reluctantly, Unfortunately

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Good thing I went with the color version of the strip today. These fair-haired women with prop glasses are all starting to look alike. Today it’s Ms. Rizk, not Dr. Pearl; we know this as Gil is the summoner, not the summoned. (Not that it’s clear Dr. Pearl summoned Gil but, you know, pecking order and all.)

Ever since the Central game the strip has been playing a huge game of connect-the-dots. Great leaps ever forward – from Kaz’s near telepathic understanding of what Gil wants to Gil’s visit to the Van Aukens to Gil’s chat with Dr. Pearl to today – with a lot of gaps to fill. Is it clear that Gil spoke with Ryan at his home? (The “genuinely remorseful” comment to Dr. Pearl might lead us to believe he did.) Whether he did or didn’t, what prompted Gil to speak with Dr. Pearl next? (To get the green light from the Doctor to lean on Ms. Rizk to quash Daftpunk’s article?)

And now, what leads Ms. Rizk to add the “unfortunately” tag to her statement implying that Dafunk’s article has already been quashed? Is it meant for us to deduce that, even though she’s been against Daffy’s hit piece on the ‘Cane from the get-go, she secretly wants to run the article? As our astute readers commented yesterday, this spring arc has turned into another of Rubin’s classic Bechdel Test fails. Girls’ sports have taken a back seat not only to boys’ sports but also to high school journalism which, by maintaining its integrity, may end up protecting a male athlete at the expense of his female victim and accusers. Ms. Rizk’s “unfortunately” may be her subtle form of protest against the Milford jockocracy.

Gil won’t give that a moment’s thought, ’cause sarcastically, he’s in charge.

June 6, 2017

Misadventures In Plot Advancement

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Man, our bespectacled Dafne summoner is about as useful as Rubin when it comes to advancing the plot. At least we got a score. Do you suppose any of the kids on the Central team know what’s going on?

Bonus point: As pointed out in the comments, it is awesome that the Valley Conference is old school and uses wooden bats.

June 3, 2017

What It Is Ain’t Exactly Clear

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Ladies and gentlemen, today’s strip offers classic laissez-faire Thorp coaching at its finest.  Ryan “Hurricane” Van Auken is getting rocked like a, uh, well, you know, while Gil leaves him in there to twist in the wind.  This prompts random Milford guy – is it the same one who answered the phone in the Journalism Office? – to run and tell Dafne, who’s at softball practice. (Interesting that there are ads on the practice field outfield fence; must be a lot of marketing money to spare floating around in Milford.)

The now elfin Dafne, looking a bit the daughter of Namor, suddenly finds herself incontinent drops everything and runs off to see what’s going down.  Does Mimi even acknowledge Dafne’s defection?  Hell no!  She doesn’t even look so much Dafne’s way! Mimi needs to grow a pair like that Coach Dawes and tell Dafne to go do what she loves but never darken a softball field again.

June 1, 2017

Signs, Girls, or Girls with Signs

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Ryan got a jolt yesterday because he remembered seeing Patty Duke in The Miracle Worker. His secret thoughts might lead us to believe that’s not really Patty, however. My guess is that the ‘Cane remembers her because he hit her but didn’t know who she was when he did.

This begs the question: If ‘Cane hit some rando girl in Central City, how does Dafuq reach the conclusion that the girl he hit was his girlfriend? Why do I get the feeling that this little show by granddaughter of Tommie Smith (or John Carlos) and her entourage will lead Daftpunk down the road of true investigative journalism to uncover info that will, at least in part, exonerate young Van Auken? Maybe because I don’t have much else to hang my hat on today after yesterday’s big reveal.

Speaking of hats: Take a closer look at Ryan’s today and in yesterday’s P3. The rest of the Milford crew wear that big, indistinct, Miramax Films-like sans-serif “M” but the cap Ryan wears clearly has serifs on the block “M”. It’s almost like he’s not on the same team. What says his teammates will treat him that way once they learn more about his backstory? They’ve been known to do that, y’know; just ask Barry Bader.

May 27, 2017

Ne c’est pas la raison d’etre

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As Ethics in Journalism Week draws to a close, we learn that it’s been the Teachers Lounge, not the Journalism Office, where Daffy and Ms. Rizk have been having their convo (and where Ms. Rizk’s earrings have fluctuated in size from typically Milford large to ear buds to visible from space). So much for that juicy story about MHS providing coffee for the Trumpet staff. Ms. Rizk makes the dual mistake of taking that convo outside into the hallway and ending it with enough of a thread of plausibility that Daffodil will run with it like a kid with the good scissors.

Now let’s sit back and watch Dafunk ruin her hard-earned rep as a hard-nosed journalist (not to mention what she’ll do to Van Auken’s) by turning into just another gossipy teen playing telephone and spreading rumors. Between the small-town gossips and the Coaches Thorp’s reps for not developing talent, it’ll be a cold day in hell before any out-of-towner with a promising athlete for a child willingly moves to Milford.

Musical inspiration for today’s post title:

May 25, 2017

Van Auken? More Like MacGuffin

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For the record:

Last time the strip featured a player in uniform: May 16 (well, practice uniforms)

Last time the strip featured a player in uniform in action: May 13

Last time the strip featured a player in uniform in action that was not celebrating something that already happened but was not depicted: May 6

Ms. Rizk’s hair going from blonde to light auburn (in the same Seattle PI version of the strip) is the most action we’ve seen since.

I’ve sat here for the last half hour trying to suss out whether Dafuq’s pursuit of the “Van Auken hit a girl” lead is a MacGuffin or a red herring (if the latter, today’s post title would have been Red Ruffing? More Like Red Herring”) or neither, or if it’s Ms. Rizk that’s trying to turn it into one . Suffice it to say that, despite Rizk’s efforts to nip it in the bud Dafunk will still pursue the lead until a Coach Thorp (Mimi most likely this time) nips it for good.

I’ve put too much thought into this post for it to make as little sense as it does. Off to work…

May 23, 2017

In Another Time and Another Place

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I’m not going to try and parse the crimes of the volcano as interpreted by Dafne. I will say that Ms. Rizik seems to have a pretty tenuous grasp on her role as an advisor but that’s par for the course at Milford High.

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