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.

THE LIKENESS
Bill Tetzeli | New York, NY | June 26, 2011

"Thou shalt make no machine in the likeness of the mind of man." Dune, by Frank Herbert. Now, more than ever.

WHY?
H. E. | New York, NY | June 26, 2011

"Why go to college?" Just Google "What does it mean to be a student."

WHY GO TO COLLEGE?
Grant H. | Hamilton, CANADA | June 26, 2011

Why go to college? To learn to think critically, to analyze and to compose logical arguments and to write a cohesive essay. Facts (all the facts) are necessary as evidence and to falsify hypotheses. Multiple choice exams have difficulty testing these, although written answers on tests can test these. There are ways around the problem of stealing term papers from the web. Inability to write well is due to the public schools, but these are grossly underfunded and overchallenged.

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KNUCKLEHEAD
Jim | Apache Junction, AZ | June 24, 2011

Re: DOWNSIDES. Suffered enough? Methinks not. To be such a knucklehead the only limit to his suffering is when the next knucklehead gets caught. It probably will just be another couple weeks.

CHESTER STRIP
Arby | Reston, VA | June 22, 2011

Re. the Chester strip on Sunday: "I quit my job, sold my house, gave away my stuff..." Jesus asked his followers to do the same thing.

KEEPER
Andrew F. | Chatham, UK | June 22, 2011

Today's strip is a keeper! Tammy's face in panel three is comedy gold.

EASE UP
M.B.J. | Denver, CO | June 22, 2011

Wow, Roland, my man, ease up on the sexual harassment. I would be willing to bet that just discussing your underwear is now listed on the no text policy, along with the strict "no genitalia discussion with a coworker policy" detailed in the employee manual. I know it's disappointing. You have your fan base, but if you are sued into brand-ruining infamy, people just won't understand your intent.

DOWNSIDES
Kathleen Williams | North Egremont, MA | June 22, 2011

I applaud almost all of your story lines, but I think the Congressman has suffered enough without your prolonging the agony about online photos. We all have our downsides.

PERFECT PUNCHLINE
Larry S. | Delaware, OH | June 21, 2011

The latest round of rapture mania has become the perfect setup, turning Zonk's cliched one liner into the perfect punchline for the whole sorry episode. Brilliant!

JOHN ADAMS
Jack Cerf | Chatham, NJ | June 21, 2011

IRREPARABLE HARM offers a paraphrase. Here's what Adams wrote: "I must study politics and war, that my sons may have the liberty to study mathematics and philosophy, natural history and naval architecture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, tapestry, and porcelain." That's the natural progression of elite families and wealthy societies. Unfortunately for the sophisticated grandkids, there's always some other individual or society just starting out at the "war and politics" phase, or its economic equivalent.

MAJOR EVENT
Rev. Dr. Bob Faser | Victoria, AUSTRALIA | June 20, 2011

Chester's experience in Sunday's strip echoes a major event in 19th Century religious history. In upstate New York, a popular preacher named William Miller predicted the Second Coming would happen in 1844. His followers (in many places in North America) sold their homes, farms, and possessions and waited for the event. When it didn't happen, some went off to other sects while others stayed by Miller, assuming he just had his math wrong. Church historians have called the aftermath of Miller's prediction "the Great Disappointment."

IRREPARABLE HARM
James Garner | North Little Rock, AR | June 20, 2011

Re: BOTH WAYS. The suicide rate among veterans speaks to the irreparable harm being done to our servicemembers, our children. I offer another quote on war and chiildren: "Let us study debate and detente, so our children may study industry and agriculture, so our children's children may study music and the arts." To me the most scary part of our current war is that we are at war with a 'nation' that seems to teach their children, "Our anger, our revenge and our wars are for generations."

POSSIBILITIES
Al | Eastham, MA | June 20, 2011

I wonder what would happen if Melissa had Ray for a first sergeant. The possibilities are endless and mostly good.

CHESTER
Bill Purkayastha | Shillong, INDIA | June 20, 2011

If Chester was so sure he was going to be Raptured, I wonder why he sold his house. It's not as though he'd actually have been able to "do" anything with the money in Heaven...

RAPTURED
Freewheelin Franklin | Freedom, CA | June 19, 2011

Chester! Some folks would consider having quit your job, given away all your stuff, and having to live in your car (a Mercedes no less), as actually having been raptured up to heaven.

MELISSA
Eileen | Salt Lake City, UT | June 19, 2011

I thought the rerun of Leo's even speech to gunslingers in coffee shops was a warning that you were resting up after the masterpieces you've been putting out, and preparation for bringing back the bad days of Melissa. I wish you had chosen something else to rerun, because Melissa has gone beyond her ugly experience, and is now more concerned with other people's pain, since hers is well on the way to becoming just a nasty memory. She's wobbly, maybe, but back in the human race.

BOTH WAYS
Dave-O | Washington, D.C. | June 17, 2011

A lot of the sexual assault problems with the military come from the fact that you're training men and women to embrace a very animalistic fierceness that can lead to some very unpleasant places with certain personalities. I'm not sure if we can have it both ways -- namely, humane soldiers. I think Sherman said: "War is cruelty. There's no use trying to reform it. The crueler it is, the sooner it will be over." The human character is only so elastic.

DISCIPLINE AND ORDER
Bryan | Yuba City, CA | June 17, 2011

Are we looking at Mel falling into another situation here? I agree that both sides should maintain good discipline and order. I'm not sure we are sending the right message here to our youth and our troops in the field. It's good to be friends but not good to allow the crude jokes, and lurid stares, not to mention the five dates her groupie claims to have.

UPSET
H. Dodds | MINNESOTA | June 17, 2011

I think it's interesting that the author of NOTICED BY MEN is upset that a fictional woman is being "spoiled" by the military by receiving male attention and, oh the injustice, eating meals. Especially one that was a victim of command rape. Yes, there are many gold-digging, manipulative women in the world, but I don't know that they have any bearing on this storyline.

FIRST THOUGHT
Laura Welch | Port Townsend, WA | June 17, 2011

In NOTICED BY MEN a reader poses the question, "Where, pray tell, is the correlative series of panels satiring cooly materialistic and manipulative females taking advantage of gullible decent men?"  My first thought: JJ and Mike!