Saturday, October 25, 2008


[Hi and Lois, October 25, 2008.]

I sometimes wonder whether the panels of Hi and Lois strips are a matter of piecework. (I've read that eight people "animate" the strip, whatever that means.) Composition by piecework is a plausible explanation of the odd continuity problems that vex the Flagstons, as in today's strip.

Or could it be that Hi and Lois is asking us to think about what happens in the strip's interstice? Are we to understand that while Hi ties, Lois makes the bed, rearranges the furniture, and adds depth to the headboard?

Nah, I didn't really think so either.

Related reading
All Hi and Lois posts

comments: 10

Slywy said...

And the stripes on the tie are missing in the first panel. By the second panel, the nightstand has gone bye-bye. Weird. I would think it wouldn't be that hard even for collaborators to figure that out.

On another note, the Myers-Briggs types say that Calvin (of Calvin and Hobbes) is an INFP (my type), but Watterson said something about "outgoing." We are not an "outgoing" breed. Well, mostly. Not by choice.

Slywy said...

She also added a door, apparently.

Elaine Fine said...

They flipped his part from one side to the other!

(I'm a visubub, the "captcha" of the day.)

Michael Leddy said...

I was willing to let the door go — I thought that it could be just out of the picture, sorta, kinda.

But hoo boy, there's more going on in that interstice than I thought. I didn't spot the missing stripes or the changed part.

It might also be that Lois hasn't rearranged the furniture and that someone has "creepy-crawled" the house in the interstice. That possibility I'd rather not consider.

Anonymous said...

The obvious explanation to me is that Lois is Goddess. Not just "domestic goddess", but Goddess.

Jai said...

My own interpretation is simple, but no less troubling: There are two beds. One for Hi, one for Lois. It's a page right out of the ancient past, where dinosaurs like I Love Lucy used to roam and pillage (Well... the viking dinosaurs). It is as loveless a marriage as I've ever seen, and their tiny individual beds clinch the matter.

Their separate sleeping arrangements eerily reflect their distinct personalities and night-time habits. Hi's bed is unkempt from restless slumber and/or sloppy habits, the headboard is two-dimensional, and is stationed next to a furnishing that can contain any amount of amusements to help him while away his night-time hours (As Lois has a separate bed, well, this explains a lot. It is unclear as to which marital partner is more at ease with their current situation, however). Lois' bed has been smartly made, the headboard has depth, and it is located directly next to the door (This shouldn't need much of an explanation - it is either a symbol of or a literal means to act upon her desire to leave Hi behind. I suspect a clandestine affair). This peek at the Flagstons' bedroom is granting us an unusual glance into their very souls, and what we find is both ugly and tragic.

And if there are two beds, the space in-between them is very wide, indeed. Is it merely a coincidence that their mirror hangs too high on the wall and too far behind a dresser for either Hi or Lois to be able to take a complete good, hard look at themselves?

Slywy said...

Actually, the scary part is they sleep in a pretty narrow bed for two AND share one big pillow. I don't think I could do that.

(And I am a "rebul.")

Michael Leddy said...

Pete, I'd say that if Lois by chance isn't a goddess, she's at least making the best of a bad situation.

Jai, Slywy, you will have to settle — peacefully — this conflict of interpretations.

It's funny the way this comic strip just falls to pieces. There's so much wrong that no one reader can see and explain it all!

Sara said...

Perhaps the artist intended the reader to view Hi and Lois like a Highlights magazine cover. Circle the items that don't belong. Can you find the hidden picture?

Or not.

Brian said...

Very Sloppy.

I never noticed that aspect of the Hi and Lois strip because I've historically viewed it as a lousy strip that might once have been worth the ink used to print it but is no longer.