Tags: unfortunate implications theatre

Snarky Candiru2

Meet The Demon Spawn.

The interesting thing about Lynn is that she loves to depict mothers scrambling to keep up with sassy, rude, malicious, messy and destructive monster children that live to eat fulfillment in an attempt to devour the soul of the mother they were born to hate because a love of chaos and wickedness makes them feel as if it's actually good to move and talk and play. This revolting pandering to mothers who actively resent an evil law imposed on victims like them that prevents them from killing their teeming get for looking at them funny takes its worst form when Meredith and Robin come into the picture. While Lynn wants us to believe that Deanna and Mike have done their best, it's damned obvious that the muttonhead father would let his kids drink paint thinner because he's too damned busy cranking out swill to want to be a dad and Deanna, she's so in love with the idea of 'child as superior form of talking doll that she can put away when she gets tired' to want to do anything that isn't mope and fret whenever they get bored. The end result is children acting out because they are not adequately supervised.

Of course, there is another factor to be considered when one contrasts them to Gordon and Tracey's quiet, well-mannered, well-behaved and happy children: Gordon and Tracey are teetotalers while it's damned obvious that Pattersons are heroes of many a well-fought bottle. The irritating fact that most of the children in the strip were the end result of an alcoholic stupor tends to suggest that a lot of their problems in life are derived from their parents' raging alcoholism. One would be forgiven for alluding to Aldous Huxley's "Brave New World" and whispering about alcohol in their blood surrogate behind their backs.
Snarky Candiru2

On the unfortunate implication of Gayle's going home to Mother.

Of course, the real reason that Molly and Gayle disappeared is that Lynn had no real-world versions to observe. Just as Annie's children disappeared because she lost touch with Corbeil Anne and her family, the children who were supposed to feed her ideas failed to do so because they were brought up to respect a person's privacy. If Aaron and Katie's mom didn't want to be disturbed, they weren't going to do so because that's bad form.

The problem with this is what I mentioned yesterday in that it looked as if there were something terrible about Milborough that made them want to flee back to Thunder Bay as soon as their mother resurfaced and never look back. Whatever the horrible, bad, no-good thing that made Milborough unbearable was, it inspired Molly to take up American citizenship and Gayle to flee to the terrible frozen city of Thunder Bay to ward off the baleful threat. Since it couldn't be Connie's fault because she's just some poor benighted idiot who still doesn't realize her Twoo Wuv was using her as a human shield and since they know that Greg is a pathetic slob eager to please Step-Mom, the horrible monster they ended up having to flee probably doesn't realize how off-putting sweeping that damned porch is.
Snarky Candiru2

Technical Note Two: The transfer perplex.

Of course, it's not just the underacknowledged racism that made Lynn give Dawn slanted eyes that factors into how Liz 'made' Paul up because he got sick of dealing with her crazy bullshit. The upcoming mess with Greg's somehow getting a transfer to Milborough just like that is also a problem that's based on her creator's ignorance as to How Things Work. It seems to me that given how Doug probably damaged his career by moving to Hamilton in order to be a supportive husband, she seems to have somehow convinced herself that if someone loves you, he (and it's always a 'he' because for a woman to follow her man around is a defeat) should be willing to uproot himself on a dime to prove it. Since fate and faith weren't powerful enough to overcome the real world concern that Paul couldn't bounce around like an idiot merely because some flighty twit he was dating wanted it to happen, he had to be a lie in order to prove that the way Pattersons are raised is totally freaking stupid and self-serving.

The reason that I mention this is that we can somehow use this stupid belief in order to counteract the stupid belief about being with one's own kind and embracing one's heritage and keeping some stupid old white woman from having to admit that the old tribal quarrels are as obsolete as she is by the subtle masterstroke of having Duncan's dad get a better job somewhere not loaded with Patterson-worshipers. While we'll have to endure the stupid whining about how this breaks up the 'team' just before the big useless fight with the sitting duck antagonist, it'll be well worth it in order to avoid having to watch his slow deterioration into Jar-Jar [BOXCAR!!] Binks.
Snarky Candiru2

A technical note: Pablo, Paul, Brian, Luis and Duncan.

Before I continue on with my honest bios for this battle of the bands thing Lynn was floating, it's my distinct displeasure to remind you of one of Lynn's more annoying peculiarities: the odd belief that for some reason, men of colour needs must stay where they 'belong' because participating in the 'majority' white culture will somehow magically kill them. The first such person is, as I've said, Pablo Da Silva. While in the book "The Lives Behind The Lines", he was merely stringing Connie along about his wanting to move to Canada, her on-site Liography has it that for some reason that is probably Lynn having grown up stupid under the Red Ensign, Pablo is some sort of hothouse flower who'd die of exposure if exposed to daytime highs of minus ten Celsius. This is sort of a foreshadowing of how Paul would melt because he's made of snow and can't be part of the Pattersons' world either. Those of you who've been paying attention realize that it's also highly likely that both men made an insane demand that needn't be taken seriously: expecting Connie and Liz to give up their lives back in Ofayland and living amongst the swarthy.

This by-product of being an unreflective, paternalistic dunce growing up arrogant and short-sighted in a white settler dominion is also why she's made of Brian a Westerner who, for some reason she never goes in to, decides to marry into a foreign culture because she believes him to be embracing his heritage when he's just embracing someone who can put up with his weak bullshit. The reason that I mention this is that she's got the same thing in mind for Duncan Anderson when he meekly follows Granny back to freaking Jamaica to be with his kind, embrace his heritage and get away from stupid Caucasians like the Pattersons who say shit like that. Also, everyone knows that Hispanics are in the country illegally so that's it for Luis Refugee and maybe Cantu and Castellanos should do something about the idiot Anglo-Canadian talking like a Trumpista.
Snarky Candiru2

Further notes on Funky's first marriage.

Looking back at the whole "Mike wails like a total imbecile because Rhetta tried to introduce him to the concept of being on break" calamity makes me think that when he stopped being Evil Linus Van Pelt, he became a sort of horrible amalgam of Les Moore and Funky Winkerbean in that he's what happens when a very lucky no-talent who has less than no idea how the publishing industry works is fused with a pompous clod who lives in fear of female domination. It thus behooves us to discuss why his first wife Cindy is about to become the victim of what's clearly the same sort of stupid revenge fantasy as the current ungodly mess with Ted.

We can start off with the fact that their divorce and Funky's descent into alcoholism was touched off by the fact that his fragile male ego couldn't handle the idea of Cindy making more than he did and perhaps calling the shots in their marriage. We began with his getting sloshed with an old high school girlfriend and blowing off a birthday party she'd thoughtfully planned for him and ended with his finding out about her being hired by ABC New York before he did. Despite the fact that she had no idea that they were going to do so, the sullen yahoo still thinks that she deliberately violated their agreement to make decisions together and he mutated into a worse punk than Mike Patterson.

While it's obvious to me that Cindy could and should have demolished the idiot, she took pity on him when she found him sprawled in a damned gutter because he drank away his self-inflicted torment and left him the house and his stake in the pizza parlor that was supposedly more important than her silly little network news thing. What happened next should be obvious if you understand the psyche of the North American Entitled Mansplaining Dunderhead: rather than having the decency and brains to be grateful, he acted like any boomer frat rat asshole whose fragile little ego had been threatened and decided that she somehow needed to be punished for daring to hijack the marriage. The result of that was, of course, expansion plans that foreshadowed the doomed attempt Target made to break into the Canadian market. Rather than blame his failure on his horrible pizza, predatory acquisition tactics, horrible relationship with his suppliers, human resource methods rejected by the Gestapo as being unnecessarily punitive and tone-deaf refusal to understand what century he was living in, Fat Boy blamed the whole ungodly mess on his long-suffering first wife because of course he did.

The reason that I mention this is that we're heading into the end game; Batiuk telegraphed his punches when he made what looked like the bafflingly unrealistic move of having her fired from every network because she was too old. This will, of course, herald in an annoying conclusion that, after a swipe at the evil interwebs for unleashing a plague of bullies and haters that Batiuk thinks never existed beforehand because he's too much like Les to realize that features editors used to toss complaints in the garbage, depicts her simply crawling into the Gutter Of Wounded Assbucket Male Pride and, before dying, lamenting her hateful need to surpass a man.

All of this happened because Funky is the part of Mike whose male ego is too blasted fragile to cope with the idea of having a girl tell him what to do. As I'll remind you tomorrow, Les is the part of Mike who's rewarded for writing horrible books about trivial stories and also not having the least idea how the publishing industry actually works.
Snarky Candiru2

The could-have been romantic plot tumor.

As I implied yesterday, April isn't actually missing too much by not having to endure hand-wringing, pants-wetting simpering from Elly about the direction her life is taking, Elizabeth running her stupid mouth about how horrible it is that actions have consequences, Mike being a patronizing dickchoad, John harrumphing about her attitude or Deanna making a jackass of herself by not seeing that our hero was not put on this Earth to live her life for her. That being said, there's something else that she's better off not having to bear witness to: her idiot parents, moron siblings and unspeakable clodhopper in-laws planning Meredith's wedding. After all, since she's eleven, she's practically an adult and has to be married off before she's too ooooold.

The reason that I make what I wish to Hell was a joke is that for some ungodly reason that probably has to do with a delusional old fool simpering about how when she was eleven years old, she KNEW what love was and who she was in love with, Lynn is obsessed with the idea of pairing the children off at the age of eleven. As howtheduck tells us, this has a lot to do with why Deanna and Janice had to take a powder after next year's Halloween party of her getting a bug up her ass because Mike did something stupid. As he saw it, the idiotic plot would have had ten year old Mike torn between two extremes. On the one hand, we'd have Deanna as a stand-in for the sort of girl Lynn thinks twelve-year old Aaron should have gravitated towards and Janice as a living warning not to associate with the wrong sort. It's like how she'd later revive Deanna as a means to the end of telling him "I told you so" about the end of his marriage.

That being said, it's probably for the best that Ruth Johnston managed to convince Lynn that she should hold off on that until Mike was in high school so that she didn't get angry letters about kids growing up too fast. The letters didn't make sense to Lynn because of that whole "I KNEW I was in love, real love" at eleven thing she has.
Snarky Candiru2

Elly's Bitter Business Bureau

Of course, it's not just the lost strips that predict elements of the future. The recent library fundraiser arc also hints as to what the Pattersons would be doing twenty years or so down the line owing to it being a foreshadowing of what a dull-witted failure Elly was going to become when she took over Lilliput's. The strip in which Elly has to rush back into the house because they're running out of things to sell is the first hint as to why Elly was dependent on the good will and brains of Moira Kinney to keep the woman who used to own the place from having her kneecapped. The source of this baffling strip seems to have been the end result of Lynn observing her mother-in-law rush into the house to sell something that wasn't originally for sale. Now, a normal person would assume that while Ruth didn't want to sell the object at first, the offer the other person made was too good to pass up. The idea that Ruth had run out of things to sell would not occur to anyone who knew how the business world worked. Since Elly is the product of someone who lets other people handle her business affairs for her because they bore and confuse her, it's not hard to see why she made so many stupid decisions over the years.

The stupidest decision of all, of course, was to buy a business where she'd have to work with the public. As we see time and again, Elly is quite simply awful at dealing with the public for the same reason that she's an awful parent, awful wife and awful daughter: she's a brittle idiot who can't take the rude behaviour she dishes out to other people. What's worse, she's the avatar for someone who looked at all the people shopping for Ruth's bargoons and wrote them off as being akin to a bunch of stupid raccoons paying good money for someone else's meaningless old crap. The same arrogant, dismissive disrespect for the people attending the sale re-emerged in this effort in which she makes no effort to help some poor sap who assumed that a book store owner would actually bother keeping up with the news. Said woman also probably assumes something else that she shouldn't in that she assumes that Flapandhonk is going to make sure that her inventory doesn't sprout legs and walk out the door. The dumbass with the turnip sprouting out of her stupid face was so glad to have someone flatter her that she let a lying jackass rob her blind. What bothers me about Elly's talking about keeping an open mind is that it was so open, her teeny little brain fell the Hell out.

Fortunately for all concerned, the effort of having to think further ahead than the next five seconds proved to be as heart-rending and unfair a trial for her as it is for her children so she moved from befuddled employee to inept owner to insane and domineering landlady. Eventually, her crappy diet will kill her and Moira can be free of her stupid and useless interference.
Snarky Candiru2

Raiders of the Lost Foob, Chapter Three: Twoo Wuvs and Ice Floes.

This tendency of Lynn to recycle rejected plotlines isn't the only instance in which the Lost Strips can be seen to predict the future. While it's true that the sequences that I'm about to discuss were reasonably harmless back in the late Seventies and early Eighties, they tend to be off-putting in the hear and now because of all that's happened afterward. The first such lost sequence concerns first grader Michael's big, sloppy embarrassing crush on Deanna. Back in 1979, what we saw is a small, scruffy boy developing a crush on a classmate who saw him as something of an irritant. While it's true that most parents would look at his flat-footed attempts to impress the girl and make a cute little aside about how funny it would be if they were to eventually marry, most sane people would think that that was at best, a very long shot. If they found out that the two of them actually did get married, said average, normal healthy person would describe that is a very odd little coincidence. The problem is that Lynn ain't most people. If questioned, she'd probably chuckle that they were indeed destined to be married all along. What's more, most of her fans would join in being impressed at how romantic this all is.

The second set of rejected strips that predicted the Pattersons' present day started off when Elly got a letter from Marian telling her that her grandfather had passed on. The first rough-draft goes as follows:

Panel 1: Elly holds a letter in her hands and says "Oh, dear, John! My grandfather has just passed away! What an awful shock for my mother!"
Panel 2: John 'comforts' Elly by reminding her that the man was ninety-three, that they've been expecting this and that her mother will by okay.
Panel 3: He then says that the man wanted to go before saying that her mother will be relieved now that her life has been made so much easier.
Panel 4: She agrees with this but then says that Marian now feels as if she a fifty-five year old orphan.

While the second goes like this:

Panel 1: Elly tells John that it's easy not to talk about it but wonders what will happen when their parents are elderly and need care.
Panel 2: John mutters something about they owe them so much and need to repay all they were given but can't see living with the parents.
Panel 3: Elly tells him that Jim and Marian will never move in with them but she herself can't bring herself to park them in an old age home.
Panel 4: John ends the discussion by agreeing that it's an awful decision that they don't have to think of yet so should stop talking about it.

The interesting thing about all of this is that John's jerkish remark about how happy Marian will be now that she's no longer looking after a very old man not only demonstrates that he's a heartless dick who can only think of things in terms of what's convenient, it seems to me to foreshadow the way Eva Warzone, the Continental and Luis Refugee deal with April's grief over what happened to Jim. The underlying idea that since Jim and Elly's grandfather were very old, the best thing to do is be grateful that their suffering is at an end so that one can move on to things that actually matter. In John's case, it's not having to worry about the future; in the case of Eva Warzone, it's crushing Becky before she can crush them.

This leads me to another thing wherein making John and Elly's life easier comes into play: his comment about how he and Elly are somehow beholden to their parents for something that they don't actually seem to want to be rewarded for doing. I do not know where these two came up with the idea that parents should somehow or other present their children with an itemized bill for services rendered when they leave home because their folks sure don't believe that they're owed anything more than happy children. What I do know is that for some reason, the two of them think that they have to own horses because of that favor bank system of morality they believe in.

This, I think, is why Jim was very reluctant to move to the Pattermanse. He didn't want to impose because his children had their own lives. He stayed a couple of years so as to make Elly happy and to get his bearings after Marian passed but soon found himself wanting a private life again with Iris. The problem is that by the time that Elly's horrible cooking gave him a minor stroke, their refusal to plan for that sort of thing left them scrambling around like lunatics and treating April like someone who has mittens pinned to her jacket sleeves in July. What it also tells us is that when he actually did pass on, April will have been  accused of wanting to make his death about her and her drama by inquiring as to why the assembled hypocritical vermin come to whine about how much they'll miss a man they shunned like a leper because they feared his aphasia was contagious didn't do more for him when he was still alive.
Snarky Candiru2

Raiders of the Lost Foob, Chapter One: Elly goes to night school.

As you will recall, Lynn recently made an astonishing sounding revelation about her plans for the strip as if she were telling us the time of day. The soap opera addict in her thought it would be ever neat if she were to have Elly's boss Susan be a veiled threat to the sanctity of the Pattersons' marriage. She says that she reconsidered later because she thought better of it but it seems to me that whoever suggested that she might have had help doing so is spot on. While no one knows for sure, it might be that someone she trusted took her aside and explained that if she pulled a stunt like that, she'd be dropped so quickly, her severance check would have skidmarks on it.

The reason that I reminded you of this is that it has recently come to my attention that said adviser might have led off with the phrase "Don't you LISTEN?!" This is because as you may or may not know, Lynn has recently seen fit to post some of the strips that the Syndicate didn't deem worthy of publication. While some of the strips were sent back because the artwork wasn't good enough or the dialogue could have used some fine tuning, other sequences were rejected out of hand because The Powers That Be weren't comfortable with the direction Lynn wanted to take her nice little slice-of-life family strip. The one that clio_1 identified as being a problem is the "Elly goes to Night School" arc. The arc started off with Connie prescribing adult education as the sure cure for Elly's advanced case of freefloating self-loathing (as well as her own case of not having a husband); for some unguessable reason, Elly decided to pursue an artistic bent and went into a super-stereotypical macramé course. Despite getting defensive about her motivations, it soon became clear that what she was actually pursuing was a fantasy that could have resulted in a rather destructive reality were she not given to chickening out. This is because she fell hard for her lecherous ape of an instructor because she took the slick-talking jackass's spiel at face value despite Connie warning her not to. The moral of that was supposed to be "John might be a smug rat bastard idiot who treats Elly like a housemaid but he's the best man she'll ever know"; the moral we'd have learned when the Syndicate pulled the plug is "Don't rock the boat."
Snarky Candiru2

Causality goes to Exile Farm.

Now, to get back to the whole 'John sets Mike up to fail so he can have an excuse to be angry' thing, it's fairly obvious that John and Elly's belief that their children are freeloaders who owe their parents for the clothes they wear, the food they eat, the roof over their heads and the air they breathe is not the only self-serving and destructive value that marks them as slithering filth and revolting white trash. The other false value is that children have no right to expect punishment or reward to be related to what they themselves do.

Well, I should not use the word "reward", should I? The Pattersons don't believe in rewarding their children when they do something good because nothing the children do can be allowed to please them. What I should say is that the level of punishment is directly pegged to how pissed off John and Elly happen to be at any given moment. What really seems to infuriate John and Elly is any sign that the children are showing 'ingratitude'. Given that the two of them are incredibly selfish people who want a medal and a parade for the performance of a moral obligation, 'ingratitude' is best defined as any behavior that might imply that John and Elly's whims are not the only thing on Earth that have any value.

This sort of hatred of 'ingratitude' helps explain why John and Elly are always angry. Simply put, they think that their children are trying to mess with them because they hate them and want to destroy them. This, in their mind, justifies their making children live in a constant state of apprehension so that they don't get any funny ideas about how Mommy and Daddy are what Chris Rock calls "low-expectation-having motherfuckers."

The end result of this horrible emotional abuse is to produce children who lie as a matter of course. They really can't help it and aren't doing it to be evil. They need to lie to protect themselves from insane, hateful parents who blow up over trivialities and try to elicit the praise said vermin selfishly withhold so as to conserve gratitude. Also, they become hyper-vigilant to the idea of being attacked. My guess is that if Mike weren't habituated to the idea that John would just saunter on over and start yelling at him because he had a hard day being reminded that he's not a big deal, he wouldn't have squealed about how Rhetta and Martha betrayed him.

Fortunately for him, though, he has a penis and thus gets fawned over because he can perpetuate the family name. Liz and April have to choose the safe option.