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No. 621: Who Guards the Guard?

First | Previous | 2022-07-07 | Latest

Who Guards the Guard?

First | Previous | 2022-07-07 | Latest

Permanent URL: https://mezzacotta.net/itoons/?comic=621

Strip by: David Morgan-Mar, KelpTheGreat

Title text: Archie "Guard the Guard"
Archie: Ouch! I twisted my ankle!
Archie: OW! Can't even take a step!
Chief Lifeguard: How's our new man coming along?
Lifeguard: Let's go check him out!
{Betty is carrying Archie}
Chief Lifeguard: On second thought, let's check her out!
Alternate Punchline:
Chief Lifeguard: Only one day on the job and he's already washed up.
Alternate Punchline:
Chief Lifeguard: Yeah, he's coming along just fine.
Alternate Punchline:
Chief Lifeguard: I see he's a bit of a lightweight...
Alternate Punchline:
Archie (thinking): Busted...

The author writes:

The author writes: This strip has an interesting story behind it. First, here's my raw scan:

Whenever I read the Archie digest that this gag appears in, I always assumed that there was a printing error that had resulted in the rest of the dialogue missing from the thought balloon in the final panel. But try as I might, I could never figure out what punchline might work for the gag, while containing the word "end." So my original inspiration for this strip was just to come up with some punchlines that might work instead, but I could only come up with two, so I asked DMM if he had any suggestions. He had a couple of good ones - but he also pointed out that it's more likely that what I thought was a thought bubble in the last panel was actually a cloud, and the only printing error was in putting any words there at all. And that makes so much more sense - the joke works without any dialogue, and there's some yellow shading around the lines of the cloud which aren't present in the other speech balloons. So here's what the strip should have looked like originally:

But I still liked the punchlines we'd come up with, so that became the main focus of the submission.