Friday, December 09, 2005

Enter Abdominal, Stage Left

Cheemaneester?!? What the heck is that? It stumped Google. I can't find any reference on the web to such a word.

Well, as predicted the real snow monster has finally appeared. Though why at this particular juncture in the story I can't say. It would seem that he is a little late to the party at this point. I thought it would have been better for him to show up before Tunk was unmasked and defeated. Nevertheless, here he is as if on cue.
It would seem that he is unhappy about something, though I'm not sure what. Is he upset that somebody has been impersonating him?

I also find it odd that Tunk was able to exactly replicate the look of the monster using mammoth fur when he apparently didn't even believe that it was real in the first place.

And speaking of staging, what happened to Mountain and Puny in the final frame here? Did the Roar! of the real snow monster cause them to suddenly vault backwards 20 feet?

You do the hokey-pokey and you turn yourself around ...

This is a Mike Thomas-style post, and it goes back to my common mantra lately - "It's all about staging!"

Granted, we've got at least a split second between panel one and panel two, but in that time, Mountain has released Tunk and shifted from his side to the front. In the meantime, Oop has also released Tunk, also shifted to the front, has grabbed his mask with his right hand, has shifted the mask magically to his left hand, and is drawing back to wallop Tunk again. Tunk, who has had has head caved in with an ax, has been jumped from the back by Mountain, has had his butt set on fire, and has received an upper cut by Puny, is suddenly no longer on fire and isn't even trying to escape, though everyone concerned has let go of him.

In the meantime (lovely meantime), Oop's outfit has turned back to a dark colour, while the boys are suddenly dressed in white in panel two. Odd, that.

Not that it's perfect, but I've sketched out a possible alternative layout that keeps our chess pieces moving in a logical direction. You could move the "camera" in tighter for a more dramatic presentation, but I think this would work. Also, while in my doodle it looks as if Oop is wiping himself, he's supposed to be holding the mask - in the correct hand. I imagine he could also be positioned shaking the mask over Tunk's head in rage and it would work too.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Space-time anamolies ...

I know that Jeff has suggested that we are probably being so critical of the Oopster that we can't just sit back and enjoy it anymore. Maybe so, but I'm just MST3K'ing this stuff anyway, because it seems so darn odd. I'm really enjoying this strip on several levels. Comparing this strip with the previous ones, it's as if Oop has drifted into the Bermuda Triangle ...

1) Torches magically appear in a darkened pen.
2) Either Oop has just stepped out of the shower and wrapped a beach towel around himself, or he's on his way to a toga party.
3) Mountain has magically disappeared from the fray.
4) Being on fire is unacceptable. Having your head caved in with a stone mallet (see previous strip) is no biggie.
5) Speaking of which, Oop's mallet/ax/flute has vanished. It's not even visible on the ground.
6) Not only is Tunk screaming because he's on fire, but I'd also expect him to mention that he has a flaming ice cream cone crammed up where the primordial sun don't shine. Flame + severe abrasions = sad monkey.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

World's worst come-on line

Judging from the first panel, it appears that something truly inappropriate is about to happen here.

Never fear, though, soon it's back to the rock 'em sock 'em action we love, with Mountain apparently focusing on one of Tunk's upper vertabrae.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Calling Alice the Goon ...

Am I the only one who expected Alice the Goon to come a-runnin' when Puny sounded out his pterodactyl call? Alice, that bizarro creature from the Popeye strip whose bloated, hairy, naked body kept children awake at night once upon a time, also tended to speak in this odd oscilloscope kind of lingo. Now we know what a pterodactyl sounds like - a resident of Goon Island. What does a Goon sound like? Umm ... err ... uh ... I dunno. I think I would have just opted for a cool sound effect like "EEERAAKKHHH!" or something here. You tell me. What is a pterry s'posed to sound like? On a side note, doncha just love the fact that Mountain is about to take on a smaller, unarmed man in a monkey suit with a club the size of a horse's leg? Is that class or what?

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Mammal? What's a mammal???

Jeff touched on this strip in a previous post, but it's interesting that in the Sunday Christmas continuity, Oop has, seemingly for the first time, run into a deer-like creature. Actually, he and his posse seem a lot more surprised by this reindeer than they ever were by the Abdominal Snowman in the daily storyline. Pretty odd. Now granted, the Oop strip plays fast and loose with prehysterical time, but you'd think that he would have run into a deer or ancient variety of antelope at some time in his life. Neanderthals had a sweet tooth for deer, as a matter of fact, as well as each other. My favorite part of this strip is when the Wizer refers to Guz, Foozy and himself as the "three wise men," deliberately leaving Oop out. He's our hero, but he ain't the sharpest knife in the drawer.