March 8th, 2018

Snarky Candiru2

The lecture with the hug: what I think John and Elly are saying.

The interesting thing about the current arc is that during the discussion of same, I'd reminded myself of the mess Elly made of dealing with the Jeremy Jones situation. When she wasn't dismissively stating that April was either exaggerating the problem or not handling it the right way, the dumbass was telling her daughter that she was an extra-bad person for wanting to spurn a screwed-up little turd that should have been avoided. The reason that I mention this is that while John told April that he couldn't help her with the boy or her mother, he at least understood the situation better than his wife did.

The reason that I mention this is that we can use this to fill in the dialogue balloons for Wednesday's strip. While it's obvious that John is greedy, selfish, immature and cowardly and has it in his head that his children are freeloading off of him because he really wasn't the husband or father kind, he's otherwise relatively sane. This means that his lecture is going to be about how if Liz is trusted with a chore, she owes it to her parents to keep her head in the game and look where she's going....and also to 'think about how her mother will react.'

That last is a coded message Liz never understands because she's sort of literal-minded and would have to be told that she knows better than to think that Elly is an especially nice or forgiving or sane person. Elly proves it by getting into a blind rage and probably yelling about deceitful monster children who lie about thieves, lie about things being accidents, lie about being sad or sorry and lie most of all about their mother being an angry jerk who can't get along with her kids. One would be forgiven for thinking that Elly is a female version of Robin from Teen Titans Go! because she has all of his attributes: she's paranoid, crazy, obsessive, controlling and a perfectionist and she rules by yelling and violence.
Snarky Candiru2

Mr Richards Buys Someone Else's Dream House: Phil's exit strategy.

As has been noted before, Lynn has been transfixed by the notion that she has too many characters running around her strip because her idol was really into minimalism. Not only did this mean that the Nichols family and Connie's stepdaughters had to take a hike, it meant that Lynn had decided Phil was redundant not only because Alan was being unreasonable about their mother, she already had Mike and Elizabeth around to do the sibling rivalry routine anyway so, aside from a story arc about having to divide their parents' belongings after they'd passed, he wasn't needed.

The reason that I mention this is that after the set piece in which the Pattersons look through a photo album, most of this summer and pretty much the early part of autumn are taken up by Georgia prevailing upon Phil to take the next step in becoming a member of Geezer Nation: buying a house instead of renting. We had the standard ranting from him about the simple life he claimed to be giving up and the standard Acting Like A Guy and bumming a pick-up truck off of some jerk because he wanted to go broke and get into a spat he didn't need saving money because of the guy's love of fool's economies and so on and so forth. The next time he figures in the story is a few years after April was born dealing with some old duffer so scared of mythic gangs of the wrong sort swooping down from that neighbourhood to ransack his balloon-frame castle that he kept a series of stupid dogs tied outside all night long to go crazy and bark moronically at everything that moves. After that, he's stated to live five hours away so that Elly can behave as if a drive that long is akin to undergoing the Bataan Death March. By the time Anthony is giving Howard Erk the purple nurple, people would be forgiven for assuming that Elly is an only child....which, I should think, is another example of wish fulfillment on Lynn's part.