Fuckin’ A, Mike. How do you do it?
cynicism with humanity =p
At his age, it’s cynicism. As you get older, it’s called experience.
Nah, this goes past cynicism and experience. This is pure unadulterated Sardonicism. Cynicisms older, cooler and harsher brother.
Probably has a masters in physiological warfare.
Nuclear Psychological Warfare
I like to think mike has a doctorate in LIFE
Mike IS life.
Well, that’s pretty much Mike’s entire role in DoA so far, right? He refuses to let people take their own shit. I’d say maybe 15-25% of the story lines so far have resulted directly from some innocuous comment or action by Mike. This is just much more direct than usual. It’s like he’s the Mr. Miyagi of total, dickish honesty.
Mike and innocuous comments? Are you reading the same comic as me??
maybe not innocuous. but a lot of it has come from either mike or joyce
I do “judgemental christian” better then Joyce EVER will.
Fuckin B. That’s what a 76% will get you.
That’s shockingly passive-aggressive.
I’d prefer her being Aggressively Passive.
I’m pretty sure Mike’s being active-aggressive =p
Mike fights you in a way you don’t want.
And then they make out.
That could actually work.
Dangit, now it looks like Sal’s checking out his package.
I was going to avoid commenting on that last panel until I realized how pointless that was.
Anyways, panel 5 = potential pre-sexytimes panel.
Oh good I’m glad I’m not the only one who wants this to happen.
It’s been too long since we’ve had some good old-fashioned hatefucking in a Willis comic.
Mike is like the anti-Batman.
He’s not the villain we deserve, but he’s the one we need.
Wouldn’t the anti-batman be the villain we deserve? One which is the product of all our deceit and hypocrisy.
That certainly sounds like how Mike would justify himself.
Depends on how you mean it. In one sense, Gandhi would be the anti-Batman.
Think about it. We’re both obsessed with creating peace and a safe, stable society, and neither of us care if we break a few laws on the way. The difference is that he worked publicly, passively, and non-violently, refusing to seek revenge for wrongs or to reward violence with violence; while I work secretly, aggressively, and violently, making myself so dangerous to criminals as to scare the unmentionables out of anyone who thinks about breaking the law.
But, if you look at in the sense of alignments…
…it kinda depends on the writer, that’s all I’m saying. Hard to find the “opposite” of a guy that has been written as everything from a terminally obsessive misanthrope that kills deities for fun to the big blue bat buddy, a policeman’s best friend.
You’ve thought about this, haven’t you?
Is that top center one supposed to be B:TAS? The staging looks like it, but the shading (both detail and color) is throwing me off.
No, that’s from The Long Halloween by Leob and Sale.
I don´t think the word “Anti” means what you think it means
I don’t know, I think a lot of the people Mike “helps” completely deserve it.
He blue balled my fists.
It’s gonna be hard to pick things up for a while.
That’s unfortunate if you didn’t have it coming.
Never could understand why Sals so popular yet Dannys not
Because when Sal fucks up, she does it spectacularly and entertainingly.
Because Danny’s boobs aren’t nearly as nice.
Sex appeal + motorcycle + accent + doesn’t turn down sex for absurd reasons + glorious chocolate river of hair.
Call us when Danny has a glorious chocolate river of hair.
Fanart in ten, nine, eight…
Seven… Six… Five… Four…
Had a feeling you’d answer the call, but I didn’t want to put you on the spot.
If Sal and Danny had stayed together in Universe-A, that’s what their kid would have looked like.
Didn’t we see their kid in J&W? He didn’t have too much hair.
That’s very long hair.
Gotta say, it’s not a bad look for him.
That is sickeningly sweet O.o
You mean his one chest hair finally gaining some friends?
Wait, Danny turns down sex, because he doesn’t want to screw just any stranger that shows interest and because he’s feeling a little uncertain after his last relationship blew up, and that’s apparently “absurd.” But Sal hooks up with her TA in part to get better grades than she’s earned, and between the two, it’s Danny’s attitude on sex that makes him less likable?
Oh, I’d parsed that as “doesn’t turn down (sex for absurd reasons)”, not “(doesn’t turn down sex) for absurd reasons”.
I think both Billie x Danny and Sal x Jason qualify as “sex for absurd reasons”!
Here’s the actual conversation where he justifies his reasons.
Danny: “I did want to! I’m not dead! I just didn’t want to take advantage of her.”
Joe: “Was she underage?”
Joe: “Was she drunk?”
Joe: “Was she crying?”
Joe: “See, I don’t get why I’M the one who doesn’t respect women when YOU’RE the dude who thinks he knows better than the girl about whether she wants to have sex.”
Danny: “Yeah, but what if he thinks it was a bad decision later?”
Joe: “She thinks she made a bad decision now. Turns out it was asking you!”
And then in the very next strip (if I recall correctly) he admits that those aren’t the real reasons.
Yep. That was mostly just an excuse, and his real reasons were as I outlined. He’s not comfortable with casual sex (strip before), and also is still messed up by his break up with Dorothy (strip after).
Plus, his reasons in that strip itself aren’t that absurd, if you credit him with enough awareness to pick up on Billie’s motivation for pouncing him. It was a moment of vulnerability for her self-esteem. Personally, I’m not sure I can credit him with that, so I’m going with “excuse” more than “reason.”
Sal has enough superficial cool to somewhat balance out her personality flaws, at least when they’re not comp[lately out of control (but the odds of that happening in this universe is slim). You look at her and you think ‘damn, she’s awesome’ and it’s not until later you realise what a fuck up she is. With Danny there’s nothing really impressive so you start neutral and his behaviour drags him down from there.
It’s actually kind of interesting to go back and read the comments for Danny’s first few strips. The readers started fairly positive, even siding with him against Dorothy during the first few break up strips. Danny’s kind of the strip’s unofficial fuck up. He doesn’t do anything really bad but you toss him a straight forward scenario and he finds a way to fumble it. It can be funny or endearing or annoying but you can guarantee he’ll stick his foot in his mouth at least once.
Sal however doesn’t really do much so she still comes off as the cool girl.
See, most of the time I’m simply frustrated with Danny and his shenanigans, as opposed to furious at some of the crap other characters pull.
This could end badly for Mike, Sal is not one of the more stable characters in the comic. But then neither is Mike.
have you read any of the walkyverse stuff?
ShortPacked but only since about 2011 or so. I remember Robin having to deal with the sex tape and losing Leslie for a bit, nothing before that.
Dude. Reserve a week, phone in the fish tank, blinds down, pizzas ordered, and start at the beginning. See ya Monday.
If Sal attacks, Mike wins, by making her realize how screwed up she is AND getting her kicked out in one go. If she doesn’t attack, he wins because he knows people far better than her and can destroy the lies she tells herself. Remember his smile in SP! when Amber hit him? Violence against Mike merely makes him stronger.
Hooray for mike dialogue!
I just made an “oof” sound like I was somehow verbally winded.
… Well, that hurts.
That’s right, Sal. ROW ROW, FIGHT THE POWER.
As much I would love too I dont think making a drill reference would work here.
She got drilled by that TA.
Wow. . . that hurts MORE.
Seriously. I think it’s that “It’s a broken system” bit. And the fact is Sal does seem to have some serious issues learning math, possibly a learning disability- or at least one hell of a complex that it doesn’t come as easily to her as it does to Walky. She’s got issues, she definitely needs some help but I don’t know that tutoring is the thing she needs. At the very least it’s not the only thing.
… Is there any major character on this cast who WOULDN’T benefit greatly from a trip to the campus counseling center?
Unfortunately, the campus counselor is is Ninja Rick. He recommends Seppuku for all drama.
This is canon to me until proven otherwise. And even then I will still pretend it’s true, just quietly.
Some schools, depending on size, have more than one school counselor.
Then I suppose it’s a good thing there are four or five Ninja Ricks in this universe. Probably enough to keep the place staffed.
Four. They are the Teenage Mutant Ninja Ricks.
Rickelangelo, Rickatello, Rickonardo and Rickael. They fight the Shricker and his henchmen Bebrick and Ricksteady.
Hmm. Perhaps we’ve found a way to convince Amber to visit after all.
The faculty list is a rickroll.
So, Ninja Rick, Ronnie, and Historical Jesus?
At least two of those are dead in this universe.
Just becuse they can’t literally be Ronald Regan and the historical Jesus brought back to life doesn’t rule out characters that look and act like them.
No, see, he deals with drama by challenging them to a fight with the knowledge their tragic backstory will come out during it and speaks only in motivational Naruto quotes (Which I am certain there are, somewhere.)
Naruto is like a motivational parable. Whether they’ve ever been collected is another question.
Oh, they have.
Sierra. They’d make her put on shoes first.
I like to believe Sierra is a major character, so yes.
_”… Is there any major character on this cast who WOULDN’T benefit greatly from a trip to the campus counseling center?”_
This takes a rather optimistic view of the abilities of campus counseling.
Fair point. We are talking about Ninja Rick as the campus counselor.
But by this point Amber at least needs serious professional help. Probably several other characters as well.
Er, talking about him as a hypothetical. Point being we have no idea what this school’s counseling services are like and they could be anywhere.
Well let’s see…
Danny is Danny. I’m sure there are some neuroses that need clearing up in there.
Joe “won’t touch [love]“, which may be caused by the divorce and a symptom of greater problems.
Walky is still a little childish. Dorothy should clear that up, though.
Mike seems okay, and makes a nice counselor to boot, but he is rather antisocial.
Dorothy is neurotic about her goals. But Walky should be able to temper her.
Sierra, though shoeless, seems well adjusted (that’s one, if you’re counting).
Joyce is rapidly approaching the “Precipice of World View Collapse”, which *will* break her.
Sarah is unhappily antisocial and getting flak for getting her old roommate in therapy.
Billie is a noted alcoholic and can’t stop, and can’t adapt in other sectors either.
Sal is suffering from “Second Fiddle Syndrome” and is a little cracked.
Marcie, though mute, seems fine (that’s two).
Mary needs a good slap upside the head. Or two. Thousand.
Roz is suffering from “Second Fiddle Syndrome” as well, though she seems to be coping better than Sal.
Jacob seems fine (that’s three, although we don’t know enough to give a full diagnosis; *did* his problems carry over?)
Ethan is hiding from himself and needs to be pulled out of his closet. Again.
Daisy NEEDS to get laid. And soon.
Amber’s issues have issues, and she needs therapy most of all.
Dina is a little under-adjusted for her age, but is otherwise fine.
Ruth is very angry-like and recently had her heart broken; she would probably benefit from therapy about as much as Amber.
Jason, though he is breaking the rules, doesn’t seem to have many problems himself (that makes four)
Leslie suffers only a crush on Rep. DeSanto (five sane persons so far)
Then there is an assortment of characters that we don’t know nearly enough about. Mandy, Grace and Agatha could all have major neuroses, but I doubt it. Joshua/Jocelyn is in the closet herself, but is no longer on campus, and therefore doesn’t count. Raidah doesn’t like the status quo to change, which may hide deeper problems in and of itself. And who knows how all the background characters are in the head?
So, in answer to your question, Willis seems to love to draw crazy people. Have at it what you will.
That hurt like a… a… fish hook to the mouth?
Anyone want to try a better pun? It’s not like I set the bar very high…
How’s that for timing?
That was crossed the Line, Mike. How dare you Cast such doubt on Sal. You really need to Reel it in, man.
Guess we found a sinker. But just Bob and weave.
You guys are really baiting me
Just don’t accuse me of trolling
Why – what’s your angle?
I think he’s just Hooked on puns.
Where’s Peter Pan when you need him?
Perfect Mike. Miking for Mike’s sake, and when the hook lands it sinks and hurts…
I must request mercy for the comically stupid, but a question if I may.
When Mike says “It is,” is that just a vanilla agreement, depriving Sal of the argument she was hoping for as the hover text says? Or is it a vanilla agreement to the effect of “It is. Because you can alter your grade via sex.”?
Because I assumed the latter at first, but the text makes me wonder if it’s just the former.
That second “vanilla agreement” should read “passive-aggressive barb”. I have no idea how I got those mixed up
Best thing about Mike, he can be interpreted in any way that’s pointing out assholery. It is both, neither, and everything but.
I think it’s a bit of both. He’s pointing out that she gamed the system in her own way, while denying her the righteous anger she would feel about it being gameable to begin with.
Broken system could be interpreted as the actual school system being broken to where you have to flaunt things peopel want in order to get the attention and time needed to learn the subjects properly… or an unearned passing grade. These things could be money (classic story of a university sucking up to a rich kid via influencing the professors to give them passing marks to try and ensure that the McMoneybags family ‘donates’ a new science building), or in Sal’s case… sex. Jason probably won’t just pass her because she’s giving him sex, but he sure as hell wasn’t going to give her extra tutoring if she hadn’t.
But it could also be alluding to Sal herself being broken. She puts on a facade of not caring and not being bothered, but it’s pretty easy to see through if you’re not impressed with posturing, like Mike is. Him agreeing with her pretty much was just an affirmation of “Yeah, you’re kinda messed up, having to trade your body to pass a class”.
Mike: “Cast enough lures, you eventually land a fish. And I landed you hook, line and sinker. See? I can make puns, too.”
Sal: “Maybe I will kick your ass.”
When Mike agrees with you, it’s time to rethink your life.
Ethan should have kept that in mind.
Mikes a wild card, he knows how to fuck with your head and sometimes it will be for the good or for the bad, I guess that his screwd up way of being friend?
God DAMMIT Mike
Real Talk? Almost everything Mike has done to this point has kind of been, in his own twisted way, a way of helping someone, somehow.
guess GOOD kind of asshole, like…Mr.Anderson kind of asshole?
You can sometimes help people by being the bad guy. The Mike technique for improving lives is totally valid as long as there are balancing influences. Just do not mix with alcohol…at least not until long after it is working…
Only Mike can turn helping into a weapon.
yeah man, I love mike.
The comic needs more mike
I don’t think the pajama pants helped anybody….
Without that episode, Dotty and Walky wouldn’t have ended up dating. I think. Been a while.
Wait, so you’re telling me that Mike just throws random guesses out, and his guesses are either right, or end up revealing the truth?
Not entirely random, I don’t think. You don’t generally go fishing in places you don’t expect to find fish.
But those places are where i find all my hoots, spare tires, and cadavers.
Dude! do you know how many fish are attracted to cadavers? That’s like prime fishing real estate. Seriously, see the “serious” Gravatar?
Well if you didn’t know the context, Mike implying that someone’s doing sexual favors in exchange for grade boosts is on par with him implying other people’s moms do whatever.
Well no, Sal is sexy so it’s reasonable to think that she would do something like that. Otherwise it’s just him insulting her.
Sal is sexy AND has been getting private tutoring, note.
I’m glad that Mike has reappeared. He really is good in these situations.
You know…Mike should be a detective….or we could have a film noir stuff with Mike.
And *Boom*, Mike drop.
To the ground….after being punched by Sal.
Right, because we all know Mike is a sissy.
That…was brilliantly awful.
It’s what I’m terming his earth-shattering moments for other characters.
Danny made her do it.
No, you can’t blame Danny for that. Blame Jason’s bow-tie for that.
2nd Panel…that line should’ve been followed up with Mike putting on a pair of shades.
Why fight when your opposition will inflict all the damage on herself for you?
Mike: Master of the Mind Games.
Man I love Mike. We like Mike!
Good old Mike.
It would be very interesting to see these two as a couple.
I’m stuck between seeing Mike as the Voice of Reason or just cunning asshole.
Both. Cunning assholes are what keep society on its toes.
Mike is the Greek Chorus of this comic, armed with flamethrowers and riding Cerberus. It’s hard to tell whether he’s a jerk out of misplaced altruism, though, or just because he like to set people in denial on fire and watch them burn.
All right. . . Now to find some one willing to draw a high quality image of a flame thrower wielding Cerberus rider.
Possibly with some characters from spinnerette?
So, is Mike agreeing with Sal…or is Mike probing for shovels for Sal to dig a hole for herself?
The second. It is ALWAYS the second with Mike. Kind of his strongest points.)))
So when are we getting a Mike story-line?
Every storyline is a Mike storyline.
The first time I saw this comic, I thought Sal’s eyebrow in panel 5 was her eye closed and below it was a giant black tear drop.
Never, ever try to justify anything you do to Mike.
This is gonna be ironic when Sal realizes she earned that score fair and square so the system actually isn’t broken the way Mike’s implying at all.
Soo – any bets if and when he comes across Dina?
Mike’s met Dina.
Ah, I forgot.
Alright, you know what? Screw it, Mike is my all-time favorite character.
I know I might not have much clout, being only a reader of the DoA universe, but every time, jerky or not, he constantly plays this voice of reason, this insensitive truth that no one wants to hear, the harsh reality that the world’s majority DEFINITELY does not care about your issues, and it is therefore your responsibility to carve out a better result than the one you’ve made through anger or misery.
Thanks Mike, ya jerk.
I would like to restate my “Mike has the psychic power to sense whatever statement will bother you the most” theory.
You imply that enough people are sleeping together, and eventually you’ll find out some of them actually ARE sleeping together! GENIUS! I’mma go do this right now! Think I’ll start with total strangers, those are great practice.
I sense multiverse continuity shenanigans afoot…
I think it’s just me, but for the life of me I can’t work out what’s going on with Sal’s face in the last panel :S
I think she’s looking down and to the side in thought, likely pondering the implications of Mike’s words, but I can see your confusion with how much her eye jumps around her face. Panel 4 to 5 was pretty jarring for me too.
Did… I just read Mike giving… sympathy toward someone?
Yeah, but see the alt text. If he called her out on it, she could rage in defiance against the judgment of the man. Now she’s just sad, because sympathy prompts her to examine her own, internal, justifications.
The genius to me about how Mike handled this is he somehow knew that Sal would get self righteous and feel fine about her actions if he continued being the way he was last strip.
So he swapped to passive aggressive and let Sal’s own guilty conscience start eating at her from within.
Sal apparently feels guilty about screwing her way to a good grade.
I don’t think she knows Jason very well. I’d bet that grade is completely accurate.
If Jason were willing to trade grades for sexual favors, but thinks Sal’s sexual favors are only good for a 76, she’s got more than one reason to feel bad about this whole affair.
That’s our Mike.
I have a theory that mike doesn’t actually exist and that he is just the embodiment of everyone’s conscience. He never says anything but the harsh truth and no one can get mad at him because they know he’s right.
last panel “It is” *deathly shame on you stare of death”
you have a very nice way of working with your characters, I´ve never once seen anyone acting out of character of opposite of what they would do, love your comics
Wow…Mike just admitted trolling by using the actual original analogy.
I’ve actually gained some respect for him.
Man, I was hoping she’d kick his ass.
…as much as I was hoping she and bowtie would maybe form a bond of some kind.
….umm….would Mike blackmail her with this or anything? I’m not sure what brand of asshole he is in this continuity.
Since he hasn’t blackmailed Ethan with outing him yet and he just outed Dorothy and Walky to Danny without any hope of recompense, I doubt he would be the type. He would also rather punch someone in the face than have fifty bucks. Whatever his ulterior motive is, profit is not it.
Good point. Well made.
I suspect Sal actually learned enough to earn a 76 during those hours Jason spent explaining it, possibly coupled with a new blanket policy of partial credit.
Fuck me, when is someone going to call Mike out on his jerkass bullshit?
I appreciate his appearances being lower than in SP but can we go the final step and just cut him out all together? He really has no place in this series, he’s a 2D character in a 3D series.
Call him out how? Just call him an asshole? He already knows.
At this point?
Don’t talk to or hang out with him and if he starts to talk to you scream “FUCK OFF MIKE!” at the top of your voice repeatedly until he leaves.
That won’t work either. He’ll just stand there until you get dragged away for shouting obscenities.
Besides, as almost everyone here has commented, he is not the jerk we deserve, but the one we need. Yes, his actions are largely inexcusable, but they do help those he hurts. The only exception in the Dumbiverse I can see is Ethan, but that’s because Ethan’s a scaredy-cat and Joyce is naive.
He’s still trying to help Ethan and Joyce.
I know, but neither are getting the hint.
Mike’s one of my favorite characters. He’s the Dr. Cox of DoA – he’s always an asshole, but half the time it’s to help someone in his own way.
I think you’re confusing “doesn’t say very much” with “lack of depth as a character,” because from what he DOES say, it ought to be obvious that he thinks pretty hard about everything he observes, which is a staggering amount for a college freshman. Mike is far from 2D, he’s incredibly insightful and his lines are always hilariously cruel – because he’s always fucking right.
That’s why he’s such an asshole. He never helps or hurts anyone; he lays bare the terrible truths and watches people destroy themselves. Who says you have to use your insight into the nature of others to help them be better people?
Mike is probably the closest thing to a counselor we’ve got. Even if his help is sometimes a byproduct of his randomly flinging hate around– he didn’t exactly PLAN to spark this particular incident, after all.
Can people stop typing two paragraphs!
I really hate mike in DoA, but he’s my favorite character in Shorthpacked!. Is there something wrong with me?
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Who is the main character of Dumbing of Age?
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