1. Yes, the joke is that he got a burn from overuse of a phone that can’t cause a burn regardless of how much it’s used.

    As for the pattern, you’re right. But I think he just tried to make a pattern that wouldn’t happen from sun exposure. There are *many* comics we’ve mentioned where the artwork detracts from the joke, though usually in ones drawn much worse than F-Minus.

  2. Maybe the joke is that he was on the phone so much he got an irregular sunburn — the parts of his face shaded by his hand and phone remained pale. In that case, the pattern is still unhelpful; perhaps it’s meant to suggest equally prolonged periods of the phone being held to shade other specific areas of his face. That joke would be clearer if there were a single phone-shaped pale spot on the side of his face.

    Alternately, maybe the burn is coming from sunlight reflected off the phone. At least that would sort-of explain the “illuminated” area of the shirt as presently reflected sunlight.

    Old one-panel cartoon: A tanned man, just back from a business trip, has taken his shirt off and is telling his wife he was working too hard to fool around, and too tired to do anything but take the sun by the pool one day. On his lower abdomen is a pale area in the shape of a woman’s head, suggesting an act was being performed on him while he was taking the son.

  3. This cartoon reminds me that I get annoyed when films and TV progs show people watching monitors and TVs (from behind the device, so you can see the actors’ expressions) with projected images from the screen – such as rows of code – running across their faces, . No! That only works if the actor is standing between a film/slide projector and a big screen or wall. TVs and monitors just give you a generalised glow and at most a tiny reflection in eyes and glasses.

  4. It could be a labored attempt to go from burn-in on the phone screen from being on the same thing too long, to burning the user from being too close too long. Not that I’m trying to excuse or justify the attempted joke.

  5. The pattern seems OK to me, given comic logic. He’s not always going to hold the phone at the same position, so the light from the screen will hit his face in different ways at different times. Yeah, it’s not realistic, but it seems sufficient to me to get across the idea that it comes from a light source generally in the area of his left ear.

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