34 Comments

  1. I saw this this morning and KNEW it was an ARLO winner. I don’t know how many ARLO’s Evans has had, but I don’t think any will beat this one.

  2. My understanding is an Arlo is slipping something by an editor, and so, unless this editor just wasn’t reading the submissions, I don’t see this as slipping anything by anyone: the editor is in full complicity here — either they just don’t care anymore, or are purposely cultivating a more adult comics page. As Bill says, I defy anyone to come up with a non-Arlo interpretation.

    I think — married or not — just having them apparently naked in bed would never have flown 25 years ago, even if they were just talking about calling the plumber.

    Can we thank Frank Cho for having worn down comics editors to the point where they just don’t care anymore?

  3. Good point, larK. In baseball terms, this would be like allowing a runner to go from first base to second base when you have a 12-run lead in the 9th inning; it’s not even scored as a stolen base, but rather “defensive indiffrence.”

    Maybe I should just create a Cho tag…

  4. He suddenly remembered mid-sentence that a friend of his likes to do plumbing as a hobby for cheap. She knows him full-well and knows what he’s thinking and says she disagrees.

  5. Remember when the Dick Van Dyke show wasn’t even allowed to show married people in the same bed? And Rob with his jammies buttoned right up to the top? Then there was the ‘each actor must have one foot on the floor’ rule.

    I for one really like the present. In just about every way.

  6. “I for one really like the present. In just about every way.”

    Yea, I agree. Howwwwwever…..I don’t have kids, but I remember being one. Waiting for the Sunday paper to arrive and reading the big colour comics was always a weekend treat. Even though adults enjoy comics, a lot of them appeal almost directly to children…Marmaduke, Garfield, the puzzles (mazes, etc.).

    I’m just imagining a parent trying to explain this comic to their kid. “Why did he say ‘Oh’, mommy?” “Well you see Susie, she just grabbed his di*k.”

    I imagine that there are a million “What’s wrong with that? We should be open and honest with our kids! Get out of the cave, grandpa! Etc.” comments, but it’s still not a conversation I would relish having over toast and coffee early on a Sunday morning with a 6-year-old.

    Thank god I’m not a parent.

  7. Stan, this is why I began the Arlo Page so many years ago: it was physically a separate page, for comics I wouldn’t have wanted my children to see.

  8. All of the panels showing Brad and Toni straight on show some shoulder separation between them except the last “Oh” panel. Could it be she just moved over a little to just make body contact without any other hanky panky and we are all just dirty minded? Sometimes just a little snuggle is all that is needed for an “Oh” moment….

  9. I think that Woozy has done an admirable job of rising to the occasion and coming up with a plausible non-Arlo interpretation.😉

  10. I wonder why my emojis always look weird here.That’s supposed to be a winking emoji. It looks more like an I’ve-got-something-in-my-eye emoji.

  11. When you put your hand on the pump handle it’s clear that you intend a result.

  12. ” it’s still not a conversation I would relish having over toast and coffee early on a Sunday morning with a 6-year-old.”

    I am a parent, and was a single parent by the time my offspring unit was 6.

    I think the way I would have explained this would be to say that “she’s reminding him why he wanted to get married to her”, which is all the explanation a 6-year-old need to understand the comic. If you’re the “open and honest with your kids” type of parent, you still don’t have to provide all the mechanics to the kids before they’re ready, although “when they’re ready” comes earlier for most kids than most parents want to think.

  13. Mona, you could do better 😉 eg:

    I feel that Woozy has done a heady job of rising to the occasion and erecting a conceivable non-Arlo interpretation — not any Tom, Dick, or Harry could have done that!

  14. larK, I am disappointed with your limp suggestion for improvement. How hard could it be to perform a masterstroke of interpretation, getting to the job at hand and seeing what comes of it? Give me twenty minutes and I’ll type some more.

  15. You don’t really have to say much to a kid to answer his or her embarrassing question. The host of a radio show told an anecdote. He has a male dog, and when a little kid pointed at the dog’s junk and asked “What’s that?” the host answered, “That’s part of the dog.” The kid was satisfied with that answer.

  16. Your penetrating insight makes the back and forth worthwhile. We are undoubtedly on top of things now.

  17. Mark and James – I take your points that it’s not terribly difficult to redirect young children away from questions that make for uncomfortable situations. I realise that lying through omission is probably done over and over again to ‘protect’ children from the harsh realities of the real world before they are ready. Although as James suggested, they’re probably more ready than most parents are willing to admit.

    So I’m curious…doesn’t it, even a little bit, make you feel like bad parents lying to your children like this? Deep down, does it make you feel fraudulent or cowardly in any way? “My kid asked me a question and I lied straight to her (or his) face because I’m too chicken to have what would be, for me, an embarrassing conversation.”

    If so, thanks to Sunday comic strips like the one above, you get to experience that sensation more often.

  18. Try explaining menstruation to a six-year-old boy who has no end of followup questions.

    After that, I was ready for pretty much anything.

  19. Such stimulating oral discourse! You are so much more proficient than I, perhaps I should duck out the backdoor. Looks like I blew it.

  20. A pengiun has his car towed to the repair shop and tells the mechanic it won’t run. The mechanic says he’ll take a look at it, give him a half hour. So the penguin waddles down the street to Baskin-Robbins to kill time and get something cool. He goes back to the shop and the mechanic says “Looks like you blew a seal.” The penguin wipes his beak and says “No, no! It’s just ice cream!”🐧

  21. Chak – Even Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz who were actually married could not be shown in a bed together. Their bed was 2 beds pushed together and made up separately. In an episode where they are handcuffed together and have to wait until morning to deal with it, they are in bed fully dressed, and on top of the sheets.

    Supposedly the first TV show to have a married couple sleep in one bed was “He and She” which starred a married couple also. I am not sure though, as based on recent reruns, “Green Acres” has the main couple sleeping in a one bed.

  22. When I was in junior high I made the mistake of asking my mom about circumcision. I had no brothers and had not in memory seen dad in the altogether, so my view on this subject had been several years before the infant brother of a friend while his diapers were being changed (he was circumcised.

    Big mistake! Mom drew pictures – okay, not so bad – on the back cover of TV Guide -which then was around the rest of the week. I never asked mom a question on the general subject again as I was so embarrassed until the week changed.

  23. “Supposedly the first TV show to have a married couple sleep in one bed was “He and She” which starred a married couple also.”

    I heard it was “The Flintstones”.

    …..

    “He has a male dog, and when a little kid pointed at the dog’s junk …”

    My mother used to have an anecdote about a friends daughter. Her grandmother was visiting. The girl asked if a friend could play and was told no, the friend had to go to a funeral. So the little girl asked her mother and grandmother “What’s a funeral?”. So later the little girl and her grandmother were taking a walk when a man and his great dane walk by. “God-Damn!” exclaims the little girl “That’s the biggest penis I’ve ever seen!” The grandmother goes to the mother and wonders just how is she raising this little girl that she doesn’t know what a funeral is but knows what a penis is and… well, the anecdote doesn’t actually have a punch line but it is one of charms of raising children in the seventies… in California…

  24. According to the web, the first was a Dumont show called “Mary Kay and Johnny”. Apparently in “Ozzie and Harriet”, both configurations were featured. Below is a screencap from a 1964 episode with the two in a double.

  25. I remember an anecdote, maybe from the 60’s. Little girl asks her mother, “Mommy, what’s sex?” Mother figures it’s time for The Talk. Tells the little girl about when a mommy and daddy love each other very much and so on. At the end of it all the girl shows her the form she’s working on with spaces for her name and age and stuff and says “How am I supposed to fit all that in this little box?”

  26. Another variant joke has the little girl asking “Mommy, where did I come from?” and Mommy goes through the whole Talk, with diagrams and all, after which the girl says, “Uh, Molly says she came from Akron, Ohio, so I just wondered where I came from. That’s kind of weird, Mommy. . . “

  27. And both of those situations are why you ask for a bit of clarification before you answer those kinds of questions to a child. Been there, done that (with my first, the second is not old enough for “the Talk” yet. Well, not mature enough, anyway.)

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