Central City has been notoriously bad to Milfordians over the years, and it looks like it’s going to be so again in the near future. How do they know Van Auken there? Did he play for Central in the past (and, if he did, wouldn’t Gil and Kaz already be familiar with his work)? That’s unclear from this exchange, but these young ladies know of him there. What’s also unclear is how they plan to “welcome” Ryan back
. Apropos of nothing, I watched Bull Durham last night for the first time in years, so my mind runs to locker room hijinks, garter belts and poetry readings. However, knowing this strip there’ll be mocking from the bleachers, probably involving people dressed up like hurricanes (the meteorological event, not the beverage) and a sign man or two. Meanwhile back in Milford…
… we’ve not yet been treated to a Mouseketeer Roll Call for the Lady Mudlarks*, but it would appear that their catcher is Le Pétomane. Even the home plate umpire is rendered speechless by the Milford catcher’s talking hind parts. It only seems fitting that Mimi’s minions are playing host to a team from the land of the noble gases. Clearly they’re not in Kansas anymore. Tune in on Monday when Carrie Hobson lobs a few smoke grenades of her own across the plate.
*And we seldom are, cf. the boys’ teams.
Rubin never fails to give us at least one unlikable Mudlark a season and this spring, Ryan “Cane” Van Auken is gonna be that guy. Rubin doesn’t always give us a troll right out of the box so credit where credit is due, I reckon. Pete plays Henry Hill to Ryan’s Tommy DeVito and just like that we’re off and running. The as yet unnamed Milford mopes (the one far right looking a wee bit like another Ryan) at the end of the bench already have the two thousand-yard stare and the “not this shit again” look on their faces.
Whaddaya think’ll happen next? Gil and Kaz have a “lighten up, Francis” moment with Ryan? Big Ken Brown and Mike Granger, Boy Detectives, dig up dirt on “Cane” and get him in protective custody? Dead bodies strewn all over Idaho? Stick around if you dare; between this and budding investigative reporter/softballer Dafne Dafonte, we’re in for
another three months of rambling wrapped up awkardly in three days interesting times ahead!
Well it didnt take long for the new storyline to run into a bump in the road. New lefty Cane looks every bit like trouble down the road with that scowl and ear to ear frown. Oh thats the same thing but whatever..
Usually they intro a character who gradually becomes unlikable; this chap claims to be over that already, as if there’s a rest home in Milford for “guys that used to be asswipes” and they get treatment and come out reformed. Cane is one of those.
I’m sure Cane still has plenty of temper that he will display before this long sledge of a season is through. Or he will break new ground and prove that even fairly nice guys, albeit sourpusses like he looks like, can still wind up unlikable like the rest and perhaps even apply for re-admission to the Milford Asswipe Rest Home.
Yeah, you called me on it, Tina
I’m just a Milford wiener
Don’t coach, I just observe
But now I’ve started meddlin’
Someone’s got some Oxy’s peddlin’
Yeah, I got a lot of nerve
Phallic trophies I may brandish
Thanks to golden boy True Standish
Honors that I don’t deserve
But my team’s been gettin’ beaten
‘Cause your Aaron ain’t been eatin’
But I got a lotta nerve?
Now don’t be getting nervous
I’ll be calling Social Service(s)
‘Cause they’re only there to serve us
And we don’t all always get what we deserve…
Then you’re sure to lose your jobs,
Your car, your son. Some nerve!
Reason I like the color version of the strip today: without it, I’d have thought the furniture was made of the same plaster as the walls.
Reason I don’t like the color version of the strip today: Who has skintone teeth outside of a low-budget Hanna-Barbera cartoon?* Maybe I’m wrong and those are just Tina’s badly cracked lips.
*Speaking of meddlin’
It’s great how things rapidly drew to a head the second time Gil had to cover another $3.50 slice of banana cream pie. You can practically see him wince as the order goes in. Never mind all of that hypothetical checking in with counselors or social workers, Gil is just going to cut to the chase and straight up talk Tina out of her opioid addiction.
Hey, it’s Steve Boone! Nice to see him picking up a paycheck during the football off-season.
I know Kaz is on record as regretting getting his tat, but if it has the power to migrate from one arm to the other, it must be pretty special. Maybe that’s why he hasn’t had it removed. Not sure what’s got Gil lathered up more: Kaz’s gun show, his own puny bicep curls, or memories of Hobart, Bill “Wildcat” Maris or some other pains in the ass on the Booster Club/School Board who’ll try to meddle in his efforts to help Aaron get those three squares he so desperately needs.
After the workout it’s off to the shiny halls of Milford High, where Gil and the COUNSELOR continue to speak obtusely past each other about Tina Aagard. Maybe Tina’ll get some dinner (if not some jail time) out of the deal, too.
Well here we go again with that staple of soap strip continuity, repeating yesterday’s last panel as today’s first panel. As pointed out in yesterday’s TWIM comments, since when did Ken and Mike ever really talk to Aaron beyond their amateur detective questioning?
Aaron lets his paw do the talking in P2 as he, Ken and unidentified Mudlark hooper (sans freckles, not likely Mike) soar just below the rim. Such hang time! Imagine what Aaron could do on three squares a day. Maybe we’ll soon find out.
Finally, once I convinced myself that the “f” in “shift” wasn’t silent, I wondered exactly what first shift Kaz intended to take. Babysitting the locker room post-practice? Feeding Aaron? Or what?
“My mom’s drugs. Thalidomide, to be specific. You see, Coach, Mom has leprosy. That’s why she works from home and in the back office of that seedy old hardware store – she doesn’t want to be seen. That’s also why she doesn’t come to our games.
“She was prescribed thalidomide to treat some of its side effects. She knew she wasn’t supposed to be pregnant when she took it, or become pregnant, but she did anyway. Now here I am, with my left hand attached to my shoulder like a flipper. Why else do you think I can’t hit the boards the way you want?”
Okay, you tell me whose hand that is in P1 then. Thing from The Addams Family in his recurring role as co-interrogator with smug-faced Gil?
“Aaron, those are Tic Tacs. She got ’em from Bobby Howry down at the MILFORD RECREATION CENTER.”
What a ham-handed way to work a current health crisis into the strip. And to think we could’ve had a Lady Mudlarks story arc running in parallel to this. Just as well; Rubin only had to introduce one character to fail the Bechdel Test this go ’round.