Blowback_toon

Blowback

A clean, well-lit place to vent

Please feel free to contribute to this frequently-updated forum, which posts selected commentary on our favorite comic strip. If you’d like your critique to be posted, please note that civility, if not approbation, counts. Click here to submit a comment.

NEGATIVE NED
Ken K. | New York, NY | October 06, 2013

I just read today's strip, narrated by Negative Ned of North Carolina. Some years ago, I was standing in a Northwest Airlines administrative office and overheard two employees chatting. Employee #1: "Hey, did you see USAir's new ad campaign? Their slogan is 'USAir begins with You (U).' " Employee #2: "Ha! Our slogan should be 'Northwest begins with "No." ' "

EXCUSE
Ed Cherlin | Columbus, IN | October 03, 2013

I get it. Zonker is giving us the excuse for the entire government going on forced vacation. It isn't any sillier than the real reasons, or the reasons the Right is pretending to give. Would it were only a week, and that we could send them to kindergarten when we all got back to work, until they learned how to play with others.

FAINT SHADOW
Joshua Rey | London, UK | October 02, 2013

Is the Bart Svigals who hires a fancy pants lawyer and evades his just desserts in Monday's 40 year Flashback related to the Barry Svigals who tries to pay to have his name read out in the mail silo? I think I've correctly gathered that the latter is an old pal of GBT, and am enjoying tracing the faint shadow of the author's personal life in his art.

Editor's Note:

 Your attention to detail is impressive, and your deduction is correct. The reference in Monday's 1973 Flashback and the rebuke in the 1992 mail silo strip are both friendly hat-tips to the architect and sculptor profiled here and here.

A BOOK?
Gregor | Minneapolis, MN | October 02, 2013

Hi! It used to be that a new Doonesbury book came out regularly. This has been a highlight of my year for longer than I care to remember. But now there has been a break for over a year. Is any release for a book after Red Rascal's War planned?

Editor's Note:

 Indeed. Planned and executed. As you note, the frequency of Doonesbury collections has evolved over the years along with the format. The hefty all-color hardcover model established by Red Rascal's War in the Fall of 2011 initiated the current pattern, which calls for a similar book every other fall. The pub date for Squared Away, a substantial volume whose gorgeous cover you can preview here, is only a month away.

MORE BABIES
Erin Frankel | San Diego, CA | September 29, 2013

We want more babies . Come on, let us see them!

THE TWINS
Fred Waiss | Prairie due Chien, WI | September 29, 2013

The funniest thing about the BLOWBACK comments on the twins is there are two totally different reactions to the same words -- "Chilled" and "Grinning." Those two should get together and compare notes.

ALEX
Benjamin Smeall | Green Bay, WI | September 28, 2013

Don't underestimate Alex's maternal power to change and channel the energy of her children. Maternal power is awesome and never to be underestimated.

CHILLED
Jesse Baker | Pound, VA | September 27, 2013

Sunday's strip with Alex and Toggle's kids chilled me to the bone. It basically confirms that Joanie's cursed bloodline has skipped a generation. Alex is a good person, but her mom and Jeff are monsters. Rather than children who share the traits of Toggle and his family, Alex has produced two hellspawns possessing the worst aspects of J.J. and Jeff's personalities. One is a shamelss attention whore and the other is an obnoxious slacker. I pray for Alex that these two terrors-in-waiting don't lead her to doing to Toggle what Joanie did to her first husband -- abandon him.

GRINNING
Margaret Delgatty | Vancouver, CANADA | September 25, 2013

I'm grinning. The twin on the left clearly inherited Grandma J.J.'s genes, and the one on the right got Grandpa Mike's! Can't wait to see which of them is Danny and which is Eli.

A FINE MIND
David Ferrier | Edmonton, CANADA | September 25, 2013

Thanks for today's David Foster Wallace video. A fine mind lost to us too soon. A YouTube video of "This Is Water", his pithy Kenyon College 2005 commencement speech, got 4,000,000 hits in the course of a few days. Here's a recent link.

HELPS
Giles Singleton | Wilmington, NC | September 25, 2013

Your work helps me and millions of others -- and always has -- to deal with the insanity of the world, the USA, and the idiots/fanatics in Congress. Thank you!

THE TWINS
David Hesla | Decatur, GA | September 25, 2013

Re the twins in Sunday's strip: The baby on the reader's left has just had a bowel movement, and is very pleased both with itself and with the stool. Per W. H. Auden in "The Geography of the House":

All the Arts derive from
This ur-act of making,
Private to the artist:
Makers' lives are spent
Striving in their chosen
Medium to produce a
De-narcissus-ized en-
During excrement.

This baby is an enthusiast, and is headed for a career in the arts.

The other baby is laid back, skeptical, perhaps even cynical. This baby is headed for a career in science, philosophy, or journalism.

The two of them represent the two sides of GBT.

ROBBED
Sue Lester | Comstock Park, MI | September 24, 2013

What? We missed the birth? We were robbed! No waiting room banter? No birthing room interaction between Alex and Leo? Who was born first, Eli or Danny? Someone had better have taken video. Maybe J.J. recorded the whole thing to use as performance art in the future...

THE BABES
Azela | Lanzhou, CHINA | September 24, 2013

The babes sound like two voices of Jeff (gaming Jeff and rest-of-the-word Jeff). Delighted to meet them.

MILLE GRAZIE
Molly Larson Cook | Bellevue, WA | September 22, 2013

Mille grazie for bringing Alex and the babies this lovely autumn morning! She looks great and those babes "sound" like terrific new additions. Can't wait to see/hear more of them.

YO!
Susan Wood | Rochester, MI | September 22, 2013

Yo, Trudeau! You mean to tell me Alex had her twins while the reruns were running?!? I'm expecting some serious cute to make up for that!

THE BABIES
Dave | Philadelphia, PA | September 22, 2013

Woohoo, the babies show up at last! I was hoping for some delivery room antics, but you can't have everything. The burning question remains, though -- will the evil one's name be Skippy?

FAMILY PORTRAIT
Normann Aa. Nielsen | Odder, DENMARK | September 22, 2013

Thank you for today's story. So much is told behind the frames: Alex and Toggle are okay, the birth was without any medical problems, the little family is content -- and there is a growing storyline in the apparent difference between the twins. This family portrait makes me feel good today.

ASTERISK
C. Taduab | Vancouver, CANADA | September 21, 2013

Re FORMIDABLE RESISTANCE: Bush may be an asterisk in the history books, but you can be sure he didn't risk anything of value to himself. That's for the American soldiers and Middle Eastern peoples. It's their asterisk.

FORMIDABLE RESISTANCE
Nick Kennedy | Wilton, CT | September 20, 2013

Sincere thanks for the continuing gift of your comic. It would be impossible to choose a favorite from among your extraordinary portfolio, but the Palin action figure and the Bush asterisk always make me laugh and renew my admiration for your inspiration. When I start to despair about the state of our country your work provides reassurance that public discourse is alive and well, and that there will never be the requisite public compliance to get us marching in lines off to some fundamentalist utopia. The most formidable resistance comes from the legions of smart___es.