Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cliche Comic Character Nominations

Every year about this time I run a series of tournament parodies about the funny pages. Two years ago Gil Thorp stole the crown in the National Crappy Comics Competition™ from top contenders BC and Mary Worth. Last year Bucky Katt ran away with best of show in the National Coolest Comics Character Contest. This year I'm throwing open nominations onto the floor for the National Corniest Cliche Comic Character Countdown or NCCCCC (and yes I do seem to be adding a C every year). The categories that need to be filled in are:

Dopiest Dad

Pick the cartoon father that is the dumbest most clueless foil there is. Think CBS sitcom dad stupid. It's a wide-open field so think hard.

Perplexing Pet

It doesn't matter whether it talks, walks, or humps the furniture, pick the pet that should have been put to sleep years ago.

Alarming Alcoholic

The comics have tried to become more responsible, but let's face, drunks are funny. Or at least they should be.

Kick The Shit Out of This Kid
Annoying isn't always funny. Find the child most deserving of a size 13 enema. If this child were your progeny, he wouldn't make it to middle school.

As always, definitions of "worst", "most" and "is" are left deliberately vague, ambiguous, and contradictory. The only rule is that the character has to be in a currently syndicated comic strip that appears in a major US newspaper and is available online somewhere somehow.

Thanks for the help and we can look forward to a fun-filled week of comics bashing.


Anonymous said...

All this is just off the top of my head, but:

DD: A huge field really.The first that come to mind are Darryl MacPherson (Baby Blues) and Luann's father (can't remember his first name). There may be worse, but I think the week-long light bulb arc gives Papa DeGroot the first seed.

PP: The "should have been put to sleep" criterion gives this to Marmaduke. Garfield has an occasional redeeming moment (and suffers from having to live with Jon Arbuckle); Marmaduke is demon hellspawn.

AA: I got nothing. There are very few current drunks in the comics. Ummm, the senator from Shoe or Capt'n Eddie from Non Sequitur?

KtSOoTK: Ruthie, Ruthie, and a thousand times Ruthie. I expressed my undying hate for her last year and it hasn't lessened.

Unknown said...

Dopey Dad: I want to say Dagwood from "Blondie". 90% of the strip's content is about him missing the carpool and falling asleep at work.

Perplexing Pet: Marmaduke.

Alarming Alcoholic: Andy Capp. Do they still write that strip?

Kick the Shit out of: all the kids in the "Family Circus". The only redeeming qualities of this strip are 1.) The endless parodies and 2.) the dog's name is "Barfy".

Anonymous said...

Dopey Dad: Hi Flagston of H&L. Hey Hi, haven't you ever noticed the uncanny resemblence between all of your kids and Thurston, your next door neighbor? You should dust Lois' ass for fingerprints.

Perplexing Pet: Marmaduke - hated the cartoon as a kid (anyone else remember it?) Hate the strip as an adult.

Alarming Alcoholic: Posthumus nomination: Aldo of MW. I actually liked this pathetic loser - killing him off was the stupidest thing the writers could have done.

Kick the Shit out of: MICHEAL PATTERSON (FBOFW)! Although technically an "adult" if the strip is going to keep flashing back, he should be eligible. I'd like to rip his smug, "sensitive" face right off of his conceited, self-centered head.

TBG said...

I think the dad in Zits is pretty clueless.

Heathcliff is certainly my nominee for euthenasia. Unless it's Rover from Red & Rover, but I'd rather see Red get the shit kicked out of him.

And the clear alkie winner has got to be the guy from the Lockhorns. Did you know his name is Leroy?

Sue T. said...

Kick the Shit...: MARVIN. Ugh. I only see that strip when it appears in the Comics Curmudgeon, but that's enough to make me loathe it. I'd add Curtis, Michael Patterson's kids in FBorFW, and Dennis "not very menacing" the Menace.

Don't forget John "Papa Foob" Patterson in the clueless dads competition. I think Marmaduke has the perplexing pet category sewn up, though perhaps Bucky Katt should be thrown in as well?

Anonymous said...

DD: I can't quite put Michael Patterson here, since he's still such a kid-in-an-adult's body (yeah, with his own kids and a house and all), it would gall me to do so.
Adam@home, I think. He just irritates me, although he is clever in his own way.

PP: Marmaduke. Found a copy of Marmaduke comics from the 60s recently. Not funny then. Not funny now.

AA: The sensitive artist Alan from A3G. I think he's an alcoholic. Maybe. The writers have been so damned coy with whatever he's abusing, I'm not quite sure...

KK: creepy kid sister in the current story arc. Hey, at least she's a new character! The FC kids, Dennis and Elmo from Blondie all should've been exposed at birth.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this is fun.

DD-I can't agree with the Zits dad because he has occasional moments of lucidity. Hagar is an idiot dad, but he also pillages on occasion, which is redeeming. So put my vote on Michael Patterson, an idiot who can't figure out how to get his kids into bed. Or his dumb dad, who left a toddler in a high chair all night. I think these guys offend me all the more because they are supposed to be so "real."

PP-I can't stand Marmaduke, it's true, but I hardly ever see him. However I see Howard Huge all the time, and he's a moron. Time to make him into a rug or something. Anyway, who decided that a very big animal is the pinnacle of comedy? I don't even like Clifford all that much.

AA-Leroy Lockhorn. Hands down. Though the comic improved when the original artist died and his wife (or daughter?) took it over. Leroy's still gross, though. And not funny. Though neither is Andy Capp.

KK-Can I use the flashback of Mary Worth? Or her ugly friend? If not, my kids all vote firing squad for the Keane kids, and I second that motion.

I love the categories, but it's kind of like shooting fish in a barrel.

Anonymous said...

DD - Much too large field, what with Herb from Herb and Jamaal, Jim Pyle from Non Sequitur, Ed Crankshaft and Les Moore plus all the more obvious ones. If there is a category for stepfathers, I would like to nominate Mark Trail.

PP - I have to admit I am a sucker for any animals in a strip. Even the cloying ones like Peekaboo in Rose Is Rose have their redeeming attributes. I have even developed an ironic admiration for Brad Anderson, if not for Marmaduke -- here is one old school guy still out on the boards by himself every day since 1954. I don't know what he is like in real life but like the late Mr. Scaduto, I am content to let his creation take up the four square inches of newsprint each weekday because I doubt anyone one else will do it for him after he is gone. I would be surprised if no one nominates Mac Manc McManx since he is a target of a lot of abuse over at CC, but I forgive Darby Conley for almost anything.

AA - Andy Capp is alarming. Thirsty from Hi and Lois is somewhat subversive for a family strip. But Moondog from Monty is a funny drunk. Honorable Mention goes to Rat and Pastis himself in Pearls Before Swine.

KK - Edison Lee. 'Nuff said.

Anonymous said...

D'oh! The KK is the kid sister in Pibgorn, with the mouthful of barracuda teeth, hair like a hedgehog, and the personality of a rabid dog. Not that her brother is much of a prize pig.

jnik said...

DD: Dagwood. He practically invented the genre.
PP: Marmaduke. Like Howard Huge,same joke every time - He's a BIG dog; but HH is only once a week.
AA: Andy Capp. He's still being published SOMEWHERE.
KK: Lio. Funny, but I'm glad I don't live near him.

Anonymous said...

DD - i want to vote for Rex Dumb as Dirt Morgan but really his (lack of) fathering abilities is very sideline in the strip. i guess a classic DD would be the father in Drabble - an awful awful awful comic.

PP - Marmaduke must die.

AA - Thirsty, cause you know he's drunk ALL the time. best functioning alcoholic ever. Hagar should be considered too.

KK - sooo may to hate but i have to go for Ruthie.

Proco said...

DD - Joe Pyle (Non Sequitur)

PP - Bitsy (Marvin)

KK - Clem & Mimi (Rose Is Rose), all FC kids, Marvin

McBangle said...

DD: Michael Patterson.

PP: I wanna say Marmaduke but I want to open up the field a little, so... let's say Garfield?

AA: The Perfesser, from "Shoe".

KK: Too many to choose from! But if I had to pick just one, I'd say Jeffy, from FC.

Anonymous said...

DD: Mr. DeGroot. The lightbulb arc pulls him ahead of clueless train obsessed Foob and enternally retarded Dagwood.

PP: I still gotta say Marmaduke. I'm sure the creator is a nice old man, but he's been telling the Same GD joke for 50 years. Also, his age is REALLY starting to show, the artwork has gotten so horrible I can't even tell what's going on half the time.

AA: I like Andy Capp just because its so damn un-PC, so he gets a slide. Leroy from Lockhorns.

KK: So many to choose from. All the kids from FC would be easy, but I'll narrow out Dolly, who was especially irritating this last year.

Cedar said...

DD: I know the FOOBs, despite all their faults, aren't quiiiiite cliches in the same way, say, the Lockhorns are, but I'm going to go out on a limb, and nominate the selfish, moronic, and ultimately pointless John Patterson for this category

KK: He's new, but I gotta go with Edison Lee here.

Anonymous said...

DD: I was going to nominate the dad from Drabble, but the nominations for John Patterson have swayed me. After all, he acts completely clueless and befuddled without the benefit of living in a perpetual sitcom comic.

PP: The dog from Marvin. Everyone in the strip is always in that drugged-half-lidded state anyway, so it wouldn't take much extra of whatever they're on to off him.

KK: Dolly. From Family Circus. Definitely Dolly. Dolly is an encephalitic shithead.

Anonymous said...

DD: ANY of the dads from FBoFW. John, Michael or Anthony. I hate all of them. So much. Rargh!

PP: Marmaduke is so the gimme here.

KK: Marvin is a little bastard. Robin Patterson (shit, do I hate FBoFW) is my runner up.