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Crushing Despair

FunkyWatch: October’s Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ And ‘Crankshaft’ Strips

FunkyOct00

Over the past 40 years, Tom Batiuk’s Funky Winkerbean has transitioned from a gag-a-day comic strip about a high school to an ongoing chronicle of pure, abject misery. Thanks to the ongoing commentary on Josh Fruhlinger’s Comics Curmudgeon, I am now completely obsessed with it, which is why I spend a little time every month rounding up its finest examples of crushing despair.

You know those episodes of Buffy about how demons and vampires tend to take Halloween off because they see it as amateur night? It seems Tom Batiuk is the same way. Rather than building up to one single tragedy when we're all in the mood for horror and hauntings, he spreads the misery out, focusing on different vignettes about the slow death of joy in Westview -- and also his strange delusion about how high school marching bands are something a lot of people care about.

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FunkyWatch: September’s Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ And ‘Crankshaft’ Strips

FunkyWatchSep

Over the past 40 years, Tom Batiuk’s Funky Winkerbean has transitioned from a gag-a-day comic strip about a high school to an ongoing chronicle of pure, abject misery. Thanks to the ongoing commentary on Josh Fruhlinger’s Comics Curmudgeon, I am now completely obsessed with it, which is why I spend a little time every month rounding up its finest examples of crushing despair.

Usually, Tom Batiuk prefers to highlight the more existential problems of the human condition like depression, alcoholism or being Les More, but September brought an interesting new twist: Physical violence! Yes, between the multiple concussions from football injuries, an actual attempt at vehicular manslaughter and the physical consequences of attempting to care about another human being, things get pretty rough for the Funkyverse this month, even by the usual standards. Needless to say, I am thoroughly delighted by this turn of events.

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FunkyWatch: August’s Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ And ‘Crankshaft’ Strips

FunkyAug00

Over the past 40 years, Tom Batiuk’s Funky Winkerbean has transitioned from a gag-a-day comic strip about a high school to an ongoing chronicle of pure, abject misery. Thanks to the ongoing commentary on Josh Fruhlinger’s Comics Curmudgeon, I am now completely obsessed with it, which is why I spend a little time every month rounding up its finest examples of crushing despair.

As summer (jokes about explosive cookouts) fades into fall (jokes about homework), August finds the Funkyverse in a transitional period. While there are a few storylines going on in this month's strips, they're mostly just getting things in order for the next big stories -- but since this is Funky Winkerbean we're talking about, that just means that instead of horror and depression at what's actually going on, it's horror and depression about what's going to happen.

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FunkyWatch: November’s Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ and ‘Crankshaft’ Strips

funkynov

Thanks to Josh Fruhlinger at the Comics Curmudgeon, I started reading Tom Batiuk's long-running newspaper comic strip, Funky Winkerbean. For those of you who aren't familiar with it, what started as a strip full o

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FunkyWatch: June’s 12 Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ Strips

funkyjun

Thanks to Josh Fruhlinger at the Comics Curmudgeon, I started reading Tom Batiuk's long-running newspaper comic strip, Funky Winkerbean. For those of you who aren't familiar with it, what started as a strip full o

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FunkyWatch: December’s 11 Most Depressing ‘Funky Winkerbean’ And ‘Crankshaft’ Strips

funkydecember

While they're often overlooked by super-hero fans, newspaper comic strips are a vital part of the world of sequential art that reaches millions of readers and is no less worthy of examination or criticism than their long-form counterparts

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Daredevil: It’s Time to Stop Constantly Destroying His Life

shadowland

Anyone who's read a "Daredevil" comic in the last year knows that things are not going well for Matt Murdock. After assuming leadership of ninja death cult The Hand, the blind hero has taken one dark turn after another. And ever s

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