Is it too late to be asking “Too soon?” ?

Thanksgiving is coming up, any day now! How can we be aghast at seeing decorations and cartoons on a holiday theme? Is it too late to be asking “Too soon?” ?

That’s what Reply All Lite wants to know:

If you’re Moderately Confused twice … is that Fully Confused? From Anon and Andréa:

Santa already being featured, notes Andréa:

So why hesitate over Thanksgiving, which is well nigh upon us!

And Cathy can have the last word, asking the question for us:


  1. In fairness to Phil Dunlap, it should be noted that the “Ink Pen” reruns are suffering from inexcusable carelessness at GoComics. The strip shown above originally appeared on Christmas Eve (in 2006), which was a Sunday. GoComics has shifted the calendar a month and a half forward, and is re-releasing Sunday strips on Thursdays.

  2. KILBY: I don’t understand WHY GoComics can’t get it together about their rerun strips. CATHY strips are timed perfectly; SHIRLEY & SON, RAISING DUNCAN and GEECH are always off kilter (as are others I can’t remember right now).

  3. It is waaaaay to late to be asking too soon. I’ve never known a year in which christmas displays weren’t up and accepted as normal by that the third week of November. The very latest we can ask “too soon” is the last week of October but even then it’s just a kvetching to keep up appearances and it’s hard to think anyone means it. Anyway, this year the started coming up in August so hearing someone say “too soon” right now is fairly laughable.

    Actually, I find I can’t even think anymore what time of year it is if I see something. If I were to see a christmas display in May, I have to consciously calculate and evaluate “well, what is the date” before I think “Is this a display for the current season, or is this just a stock item I’ve come across at an arbitrary time” (which is what I thought when I did see the displays in August).

    Actually this year was the longest Halloween display season I’ve ever seen. I never thought of Halloween season being anything that people starting doing for more than three weeks earlier but this they started displaying them just a few days after the christmas decorations went up. And the still haven’t taken them down.

  4. The “Christmas season” has started post-Halloween (or even earlier) for at least the last 40 years. So at this point, I find any post-Halloween complaints of “they start Christmas earlier every year” sillier than the “early” start of the Christmas season.

  5. I’ve not been in a store since March, so I don’t know what’s on display and what isn’t. I DO know my Holiday catalogs began arriving in August; I mailed our Holiday cards in October (just in case), and I’ve already ordered/shipped gifts via amazon.

    I think we’re all just in a HURRY to get this year over and done with.

    The Stahler Halloween-lasting-too-long comic I interpreted as “we’re still wearing masks even tho Halloween’s over and done with”.

  6. I agree with Andréa about the first “Confused” panel.
    P.S. As for Stahler’s second comic, I just read today that the German “Santa Claus” post offices will be opening for business soon. There are seven of these, which are located in various appropriately named towns, such as the “Heaven’s Gate(s)” (“Himmelsthür” & “Himmelpforten“). A preliminary review of the letters that have already started arriving (from all over the world) shows that many of the children’s requests for this year are somewhat different from the usual norms, including “Get rid of the virus!“, and similar sentiments.

  7. I have one of those comics, but it is political, so . . . if moderators tell me it’s ok to post the URL, I will. Otherwise, you’ll have to email me for it ‘-)

  8. Danny Boy, don’t worry about the snacks. I fully expect that the Super Bowl teams will be COVID-ridden, and the game will be postponed once or twice or just cancelled. Those 2 teams will have played the most games, traveled the most, socialized the most — how can they survive all that and remain virus-free?

  9. One of the Confused panels was sent in with a note calling it “today’s Non Sequitur” — so we filed it in Doubly Confused 🙂

  10. Becky, thanks for your help in envisioning.

    With Super Bowl in doubt, I guess I should concentrate on plans for my big Oscar Night Watch Party, with all my movie buff pals and palettes. We need to have our snacks ready, and not need to run out for more, glued to the screen as we will be, from the Red Carpet Arrivals coverage, the Big Ceremony, the cutaways to Story of the Seat Holders, and finally coverage of the … the .. what do they call them? … oh yeah, the After Parties.

  11. There are usually two weeks between the last playoff game and the Super Bowl. They could isolate the teams for that period and have pretty high confidence of no cases.

  12. I expect The Fiancé to get cracking on our NYE plans! Can’t wait too long, or all the reservations will be … cancelled for pandemic. 😦

  13. Didn’t Charlie Brown comment on “early” Christmas store displays in the classic animated holiday TV special?

  14. Costco had Christmas stuff up concurrent with Hallowe’en stuff this year.
    And I was in a Walmart the other day: not only was there Christmas stuff, but the Back-to-School displays were still out, presumably because in-person school was supposed to restart here (but has since been cancelled).

  15. Didn’t Charlie Brown comment on “early” Christmas store displays in the classic animated holiday TV special?

    Actually not the christmas special (which commented on how commercial it all was but not about it being early) but it was commented on the Halloween and Thanksgiving special. It was a single sight gag in the Easter special (and the Arbor Day special) but that was an exaggeration. It might have been commented on the not-classic Christmas special that was made in the nineties or so that i have never seen.

  16. Now that I think on it, putting it all out at the same time makes a certain kind of sense; the stores want you to do the most shopping in the least amount of trips. I used to wander the Holiday aisles just to see what the current decorating trends were, but I for one won’t be doing that this year, and I’ll bet others won’t be, either. So, it’s a smart marketing move.

    This year, merchandise-wise, I won’t be complaining.

  17. I took the Cathy one to not be Too Soon about christmas but Too Soon about Covid… and as Covid kills people and Christmas doesn’t bring them back I kind of have to say, Um, Yes, it is too soon.

  18. woozy: It’s too soon to have jokes about Covid? If so, aren’t half the comics in this post too soon?

    Cathy clearly means Covid took away a lot of what made up happy, and Christmas will bring it back happiness; not that Covid killed people, and Christmas will bring them back to life.

  19. @ Andréa – Well, technically it’s “2007”, but I like your way of thinking about it even better.

  20. I never remember to look at dates; I just assumed it was relevant to today. If I thought anyone at GC was actually LOOKING at the comics they put up, I’d think someone did this intentionally. But, as we know, so many of the classics/reruns are run ‘out of season’. Shirley & Son just finished Christmas.

  21. Andréa: The Bizarro is in some sense early for a New Year comic, but it actually wouldn’t make sense if it was done too close to the actual New Year.

  22. Cathy clearly means Covid took away a lot of what made up happy, and Christmas will bring it back happiness; not that Covid killed people, and Christmas will bring them back to life.

    Now it’s my turn to pull a Mitch. It can’t “clearly” mean that if not every-one saw it that way. I can see Covid “taking away” a lot of things that make us happy although that isn’t a natural reading to me (I’d say Covid didn’t take anything away; we chose to do without considering the circumstances) but I don’t see the Holiday season, done early by ourselves in isolation, as “bringing it back”.

    I saw “covid taketh away” as particularly grim. Maybe it didn’t need to be and yes it clearly couldn’t mean that (although it’s not clear what it does mean) so… I didn’t like it.

    (It was probably just the wording.)

    And no, Covid jokes aren’t to soon, but grim jokes might be.

  23. @ Andréa – And unlike “Ink Pen”, the “Cul de Sac” re-runs are correctly synchronized, the offset from the original publication date is just one day (possibly because of leap year effects).

  24. Last December time got away from me. The Sunday before Christmas I nervously told Robert that the indoor Christmas decorations were not going up (and as someone deprived of Christmas when young and whose traditions for decorating are every Christmas movie every seen – I tend to, to put it lightly, OVER DECORATE. His reply was “Thank goodness you realized it – I was afraid to mention that it was too late to decorate.” We ended up setting our small table top tree (which is usually used for our studio tree) in the midst of his weaving and looms in the living room with a very small assortment of favorite ornaments on it. But we said that “next year” the decorations would DEFINITELY be set up.

    I have, as I have mentioned, a small Christmas type village with bears as residents that we change seasonally during the year. As of this past weekend I had not setup Thanksgiving – which involves Pilgrim and Indian “reenactor” bears set up next to the school. Still did not have time to finish setting up their village – so I told Robert that it is set up as “setting up the camp” which means one bear is schlepping water in buckets while the others are standing around talking to each other and the other residents of the village.

    I WILL get the inside Christmas decorations up this year – though it is amazing how doing nothing takes up so much time. If nothing else – we will be home all day Christmas as we are not going to his sister’s house for Christmas Day dinner this year – especially since her husband has just been diagnosed with Covid-19.

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