Sunday, January 25, 2015

Hi and Lois watch

[Hi and Lois, January 25, 2015. Click for a larger view.]

Here are the first two panels of today’s Hi and Lois, panels that will be missing from many newspapers. Not because of censorship: who can fault an infant for chortling about her neighbor’s alcoholism? Rather, because these panels form the “throwaway gag,” the unnecessary bit that can be removed to save space without damaging the logic of the Sunday storyline. No accident that it’s the risky joke in these panels.

Related reading
All OCA Hi and Lois posts (Pinboard)
The evolution of Thirsty Thurston (

comments: 5

The Crow said...

Wow, as many times as my father came home with bottles wrapped in brown paper bags, I didn't get the connection. And I used to read Hi and Lois regularly, too.

Now I have Mr. Thurston's image stumbling in my thoughts!

Slywy said...

To me, this is one of many signs of how some strips are stuck in the . . . 1950s? 1960s? Maybe I'm off, but I'm not sure a brown paper bag is the most contemporary marker of modern alcoholism.

Michael Leddy said...

Remember, his name is Thirsty Thurston. His red nose though disappeared quite a while ago.

I’d agree: this strip is stuck in an earlier time. That’s why it’s always so awkward when they try to make reference to contemporary technology.

Anonymous said...

Isn't it time to send Thirsty Thurston to AA? Even the baby sees him with a bottle. I don't think that alcoholism is funny. In one panel Hi is taking Thirsty in after the wife throw him out. This is known as enabling.
As the adult child, sister, niece & wife of an alholic I say that we should start a petition to change Thirsty from an active alcoholic to a sober alcoholic.

Michael Leddy said...

If you follow the link to the Hi and Lois website, you’ll see that Thirsty has cleaned up in recent years (even losing the suggestion of rhinophyma). I would see these panels as a matter of a very dated kind of humor sneaking back into the strip.