Thursday, July 30, 2009

Late to the races...

August 1, 2009

Panel 1:"Or so says the Trail-o-vision..."

Panel 2:"And once you do, hunt that murderous fucker down and tear out his throat!!!"

Panel 3:Mmm... yes, a totally unpredictable twist in the plot. Who could have seen this coming? Not me!

July 31, 2009

Panel 1:This panel clearly suggests that Mark met Joey the Mullet, took him to the drums, saw him get shot, took him to the hospital, and went back out to the drums all in the course of a morning. Call me crazy, but that doesn't really jibe with, you know, time.

Panel 2:The Jackelrod Sphere might want to take refresher course in English grammar. The use of the same pronoun to refer to two different people in the same sentence doesn't really work that well.

July 30, 2009

Panel 1:"Using my patented Trail-o-vision, I should be able to trace the trajectory of the bullet and determine where our shooter was standing."

Panel 2:"Thank you Trail-o-vision! Now, if only I had that dadblasted Trail-o-schnoz. I need to hurry up and eat the rest of that case of Cocoa Crispies and send off for it!"

Panel 3:Meh, I've got nothing.

July 29, 2009

Panel 1:Mark, you could just wait for the doctor to dig the two leads out of Joey the Mullet's chest.

Panel 2:That sparrow seems to be infested with bird mites who are familiar with the Trailian oeuvre. I have to say, though, that the stomach-dwelling might seems to be kind of a smart ass.

Panel 3:"Are you threatening me?"

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

I'm a dipshit, too. [Updated 7/31]

Before jumping into the fray, I want to apologize for the lag time in posting recently. Work has been crazy and I've been trying to rectify that by a) doing my work, and b) finding a new job. I expect things to return to normal in a few weeks, at which point I will be able, once again, to assail your delicate sensibilities on a daily basis. Oh yeah, and I'm going away on vacation the week of August 8-15. If anyone has even the most fleeting desire to fill in while I'm gone, let me know via email.

Also, it would appear that Mark Trail is currently unavailable on the intertubes, so I had to stop mid-strip on the 28th. I'll finish this once I get access again.

July 28, 2009

Panel 1:Hmmm...two shots from a rifle to Joey the Mullet's upper, left torso and Mark concludes that Percival didn't want to kill him. Are you fucking for real? If Percy was aiming for the heart, he was definitely trying to kill Joey the Mullet. Of course, given that he was using a .177 airgun, he probably didn't do much more than leave a couple of welts. So, I take that back, maybe Mark is right....or Percival is a dipshit.


Panel 3:Hmmm...yes. Perhaps that eyeless Amazonian with the bottle of bluing can pick up her bow and arrow and protect the Mullet for a while.

July 27, 2009

Panel 1:There's no way out, except through Mark.

Panel 2:And all that stands between the viewer and some much needed R&R in front of a TV playing Maury Povich reading a 6-year old magazine on anal fistulas is Ms. Williams and a giant, eyeless Amazonian who seems intent on bluing our hair.

Panel 3:"Apparently they are somehow involved in the reason..." What the fuck language is that? It's like machine language translated into Japanese via Babelfish and then back into English by Google Translator. Hey, Jackelrod Sphere, here's a tip: the mob does not get involved in reasons, the mob provides reasons.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Saturday succotash.

July 25, 2009

Panel 1:Tiny hand, giant head.

Panel 2:Giant hand, tiny head.

Panel 3:Inquisitive green anole.

July 24, 2009

Panel 1:You know, if you want to keep a low profile and stay hidden, setting a car on fire is probably not a great idea. Even waaaaaay out in a vast wilderness like Lost Forest, someone is going to see the smoke...

Panel 2:Unless you fall in the ravine, first.

July 23, 2009

Panel 1:It wasn't obvious yesterday, but this "ditch" that Percival keeps referring to appears to run perpendicular to the direction of the road. I wonder if Mark dug it there so as to trap any unsuspecting British huntsmen driving around in boxy, 2WD sedans?

Panel 2:You know Percival, if you didn't spend so much time stroking believe you call it a boot where you come...So, as I was saying, if you didn't spend so much lovingly stroking the boot of your getaway vehicle, there might be fewer fingerprints for you to worry about.

Panel 3:Faithful readers, would anyone care to wager that the Jackelrod Sphere intends to take Percival's exclamation here literally? I bet that by Monday, Our Man Percival is lost and hungry in the woods, and is going to need to get saved by Our Androgyne Mark in order that Mark can than proceed to punch the daylights out of him.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

He ain't no Borges.

July 22, 2009

Panels 1 & 2:Has anyone ever read (or seen) Cujo? If you have, you'll remember the book's primary action turns on a woman and a son getting trapped in her broken-down Pinto station wagon by a giant, slavering St. Bernard (that would be Cujo). Clearly, Percival Carrington here is having flashbacks to Cujo. Panicked at the sight of the giant, slavering squirrel clambering down a nearby Sequoia, he gets his car stuck in the mud.

Panel 3: And, driven mad by fear, Percival begins to narrate his misadventures outloud. Unfortunately for us, Percival is dumb as a fucking post and spends most of the time describing things so self-evident they should generally be left unsaid.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Three-whiskey two-step

July 21, 2009

Panel 1:Mark, driving a jeep tiny enough to match his tiny, tiny feet, flushes a bevy of gigantic quail. I believe this provides further evidence for my assertion that Lost Forest is, in fact, and island and an evolutionary backwater.

Panel 2:Well, Percival, I think you've got an excellent head start in your quest for anonymity. Stealing Joey the Mullet's nondescript, brown sedan was an excellent first move. Lose the toy gun and the regulation 100% orange hunting outfit and you could definitely pass for a good guy (what with your distinct lack of facial hair and standard GI haircut).

Monday, July 20, 2009

So fucking slow.

July 20, 2009

Panel 1:Percival couldn't leave well-enough alone, and had to go shoot the poor slob. Now he's got an atomic wedgie and a sucking chest wound. Sucks to be a hard-up gambler, that's for sure.

Panel 2:Christ, that motherfucker is dense.

Panel 3:Or maybe he's bullet-proof. The fact that some unknown assailant just shot his mullet-headed friend there doesn't seem to phase Mark in the least. Apparently, he's going to amble off to the jeep with that slab of meat like he's taking a walk down to the local ice cream shop.

July 18, 2009

Panel 1:I'm thinking that Percival came to this assassination with a toy gun. I don't know how else to explain its incongruous size.

Panel 2:On the other hand, if your toy gun fires incendiary rounds strong enough to cause toxic waste to explode, does it matter that it's a toy? Of course, we may not be witnessing the results of Percival Carrington's shot. It could be that Mark is resorting to his old Jedi tricks and just used the Force (look at his right hand!) to give Joey the Mullet the wedgie to end all wedgies.

July 17, 2009

Panel 1:Apparently, guilt is an excellent hair tonic. Joey the Mullet's eponymous hair-do appears to be increasing in size and lushness.

Panel 2:Or, perhaps, guilt just transforms you into Michael Landon. I'm not sure.

Panel 3:Percival, that .17 HMR, while packing a punch, seems a tad small for the game you're hunting.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Spot of tea with that mink?

July 16, 2009

Panel 1:"Man, the only drums I have are a djembe and a set of bongos. I've been set up. Can we go back to my place and smoke some dope, cause this place is killing my buzz."

Panel 2:Those damn buzzards are back. Looks like something bad is about to happen.

Panel 3:And here it is! Percival Carrington popped out for a bit of hunting and, mistaking Joey's mullet for an elusive black mink, is about to let loose with both barrels of his Purdey & Son side by side!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Birds!

July 15, 2009

Panel 1:"Which, you will note, I am not currently sitting in because I am towing it behind this brown, hard-top sedan."

Panel 2:Ummm...Mark...about your legal theory. Prosecution for illegal waste handling is what occurs when the government has evidence that a person has caused to transport, transported or disposed of hazardous waste without a permit or in violation of a permit. Prosecution involves the presentation of that evidence so a judge or jury may determine if the person is, in fact, responsible for those illegal actions. If the person is found responsible and convicted of the crime, then they are penalized. You, my friend, seem to have mixed this all up.

Now, maybe your mistake lies in some discomfort you may have about the word "penalize." Rest assured, penalization has nothing to do with male genitalia (atleast in this context), and is all about convicted malfeasors paying money and serving jail time.

On a totally unrelated note, Mark, I'm coming to believe that birds play a symbolic role in your life. Right now, there's a black vulture floating over Joey the Mullet's jeep. I think someone is telling you two that you're going to be dead soon.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


July 14, 2009

Panel 1:I'm beginning to question Ms. Williams' intelligence. Does she really think that her hapless brother has the ability to take care of his gangster buds? If he did, wouldn't he have done so already?

Panel 2:Hmmm...I see she's bought into the whole Mark Trail = the Federal Government fallacy.

Panel 3:"More specifically, I'll ask him if he as any last words he'd like to share while my gangster friends measure him for his new concrete shoes."

July 13, 2009

Panel 1:Now that's certitude! I also like how the Jackelrod Sphere uses dramatic bolding to capture the concept of individual liability for corporate officers.

Panel 2:I take it Ms. Williams' question is a rhetorical gambit to highlight her initial assertion?

Panel 3:Wait. What? If you don't use the mob to ship waste, you'll get killed; if you go to the police, you'll get killed; if you go to Mark Trail you'll go to jail. This only makes sense if Mark Trail is, in fact, the federal government. Since he's not, this is gibberish.

July 11, 2009

Panel 1:I'm sorry, what? I was distracted by the silhouette of the person in the background preparing to shoot a patron in the head with his tommy gun. You crazy mobsters and your crazy mobster night clubs.

Panel 2:I see Mark has contracted out his interrogation work to a flock of geese who, it would appear, can talk out of their cloacae.

Friday, July 10, 2009

First Taiwan, now the Moon!

July 10, 2009

Panel 1:"I mean, do you know how hard it is to find a pay phone these days?"

Panel 2:"I'd much rather meet you at the poker table where, I'll admit, you'd probably beat the pants off me, but where I could atleast feed this powerful gambling addiction I have without having to worry that you'd come kill me if I didn't pay up all that money I lost to you. Oh, and by the way, I love your mood-handkerchief. I see you're feeling a little sad right now."

Panel 3:Holy Fuck! The Asian mob have taken over the Moon, too!

Ace? That bird?

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Yellow Peril

July 9, 2009

Panel 1:Um, dude, remember yesterday? You're going to tell him NOTHING. When faced with the sort of forceful interrogation you're likely to receive from our "man" Mark Trail, I find it's best to stick your fingers in your ears and shout "Nah-nah-nah, I'm not listening, nah-nah-nah" until he lets up.

Panel 2:Or you could lure him out to the dump site where (and please note the Jackelrod Sphere's use of artistic symbolism here) you can swoop down on him like an owl on a meadow vole, rend him limb from limb, ingest his steaming carcass, and poop him out later in a neat little pellet of hair, teeth and bones. Awesome.

Panel 3:Hmmm... yellow dialog bubble. What does this mean? Is the mobster taking a leak in the bathroom of some dimly-lit italian restaurant? Has the mobster developed a case of sudden-onset jaundice so bad his speech is yellow? Wait, I know! This is the Jackelrod Sphere's retrograde way of telling us that Joey the Mullet has been dealing with Asian mobsters!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Another sample stolen from Hideous Ties-R-Us

July 8, 2009

Panel 1:Is it me, or does Ms. Williams hand look absurdly tiny on Mark's shoulder? It's like he's wearing a giant, inflatable jacket or something.

Panel 2:Well, gosh, that should certainly clear your record Mr. Mullet. Who knew it was so easy to disclaim one's involvement in a criminal conspiracy?

Panel 3:Oh, come on now. No mobster worth a bucket of warm spit (or more!) would resort to such bland legalisms as "I would advise you to not say anything." If this dude were the real deal, when faced with Joey the Mullet spilling the beans, he'd threaten to choke him on his own testicles or something. At least Joey had the presence of mind to track down a pay phone to call his non-threatening mobster friend. That way, he'll only have to listen to him for $0.35 worth of advice, or however much it takes to make a call on a pay phone these days.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Lumpenproletariat

July 7, 2009

Panel 1:Mark is that an ironic because-we're-eating-at-50s-era-big-band-dining-club-in-2009 "fancy" or an unironic I-and-my-creator-are-so-completely-detached-from-reality-that-we-think-1957-defined-fancy-once-and-for-all "fancy"?

Panel 2:You know what? This dialogue doesn't improve if you replace "Mr. Trail" with "Mr. Bond."

Panel 3:Mmmm, yes. Because only environmentalists are concerned when they stumble across a pile of leaking drums in the woods. The rest of us sodden lumps would look at them, idly scratch our gonads, suddenly wonder whether anybody has a Twinkie we might eat or whether we should go to Wal-mart right now to buy a box, just as quickly forget what we were thinking about, and then wander off humming the latest hit single from Kris Allen and picking our nose.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Post-4th Catch-up.

July 6, 2009

Panel 1:Blah, blah, blah, recap, blah, blah, blah.

Panel 2:Blah, blah, blah, blind patriarchal condescension, blah, blah, blah.

Panel 3:Blah, blah, blah, suspicious bat eyes, blah, blah, blah.

July 4, 2009

Panel 1:"Maybe he can do something about this hair of yours."

Panel 2:Paddy, the Blue-Backed Woodthrush likes to store his insects under the protective cover of the Giant Clover here in the Land of the Lost Forest, where even tiny fungi grow to titanic proportions.

July 3, 2009

Panel 1:While there still remains some question as to the identity of the mobsters who ship waste for these yahoos, the real mystery is who is stroking Joey the Mullet's pomaded locks in this panel.

Panel 2:Dead. Jail... Dead. Jail... You know what Mr. Mullet, I'd take the latter.

Panel 3:If she were a smart CEO, she'd turn his ass in after having "found evidence" of his violation of the owner/operator provisions in RCRA. He'd take the heat for the crime, but he'd be safe from his mob friends and WCC would probably only get a slap on the wrist for not managing their environmental program better. But, she's not a smart CEO, she's just a bit player in the drama that is Mark Trail. This means that she's going to call Mark in for help, he's going to beat the Mob into a pulp, clean up Lost Forest, and return home to a day's worth of maudlin dialogue before sprinting on to his next adventure that will, hopefully, remove him far from Cherry's amorous advances.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Your life or your waste!

July 2, 2009

Panel 1:Ahem. [blushes modestly]

Panel 2:Finally! The close-up of the hair we've all been waiting for! Look at it. Joey the Mullet has enough pomade on the top four-fifths of his head to lube a Yugo. On the bottom fifth, though, the man has let his inner yakuza loose and punch-permed his mullet into the shape of a well-pruned shrubbery.

Panel 3:A world of shit, lady, a world of shit.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

If it's Joe Pesce...

July 1, 2009

Panel Zero:Okay, I'll admit right now that I'm actually enjoying this story arc. Sure, the whole gambling thing was fairly predictable, but Ms. Williams remains an engima. The Jackelrod Sphere has actually done a good job (gasp!) depicting a character whose motivations are murky and who seems to be treading a fine line between malfeasance and innocence. Of course, we're only on the 7th week of this plot so there's plenty of time for Ms. Williams to devolve into a charicature, but I'll give credit where credit's due. That said, I reserve the right to erase this post (and replace it with merciless mocking of the giant panthersquirrel in Panel 2) if the local capo shows up and is some short, swarthy dude in a pin-striped suit and fedora....