This week's panel suggested by Nat Gertler

Ooooh, Meta-Carl!

Don't often break out of the box like that, but Nat's suggestion just put a lightbulb over my head and I had to go for it! Thanks, Nat.

As always, suggestions are listed in the order they were received. Thanks for playing and please join us again next Sunday!

Sunday 01/16/2000

The Finalists!

What should Carl's Dad's Name be? Here are the two which garnered the most votes last week.

And I don't mind telling you... it's a close one!


    You write a 200 page book on how to write comics and you need US to do it? Sheesh!

  • Carl accidently removes the handbrake and starts rolling down the drive
  • Carl's mom fixes a hose from the exhaust, up through the back window and sneakily starts the engine
  • Carl's mom is horrified to see her husband also asleep in the back seat
  • Mom: CARL! Whilst you've been asleep someone stole the wheels!
  • Carl awakes to find a murdered prostitute in the back seat - "it wasn't me Mom! I swear!"

    The last suggestion could leave an opening for the introduction of Chaz Palimenterro[sic]



  • 60 years later... Carl awakes in a futuristic cityscape - "Gee, where am I?..."
  • A man runs up to the car - Man: "HEY! What yer doin', kid!" Carl wakes up: "Ooops. Wrong car!"
  • The can of Bud falls off the dashboard and spills into his lap. Carl: "Agh!"
  • Mom drives one of those big cranes with the huge magnets and picks up the car. Mom: "I'll show him!"


Greg Lam

    "gregg lamse"?!?! What, is that my evil twin or something?

  • Carl's mom chases Carl down the street, wielding a knife. She screams: "You took the last 'Bud'!"

Mr. ?

    Almost made it last time.... Isn't that's just like being caller #9 when they ask for #10.

  • Carl wakes up in his bed, hands and feet tied to his bedposts. Carl: "What happened?" or "What a wild party.. hic."
  • Carl wakes up and he's strapped in a chair. There's a sign above that says: "AA meeting today" Carl: "Noooooo!"
  • Carl's mom dragging Carl up the stairs. Ethyl: "Well, at least he kept his promise and didn't drive."
  • Carl wakes up strapped to a chair in front of a movie screen. Carl's mom is in the background with a huge grin. Carl: "Please no! Not the deprogramming again!"
  • Carl's dad walkes in rubbing his hands together gleefuly. Dad: "Good, the sleeping pills should have worked by now!"
  • And the NC-17 caption: Daisy has raised her head and wipes her mouth. She was in the passenger's seat all along and notices Carl is asleep. Carl's mom has a big exclamation point over her head. Daisy: "Just like a man to fall asleep right after!"

Lee K. Seitz (now age 29)

    My first suggestion takes care of the A & B names. You could always pick something else along the same lines.

  • Ethel: Carl Benjamin Atkins get out of that car right now!!!
  • As Mom approaches, Carl dreams he's reunited with his deceased father at a liquor store. (The dream could end any time after the intersection with "WWBBD?".)
  • Mom grabs the beer can on the dash and throws it at Carl screaming, "You promised!"
  • Mom tells Carl, "I can't stand this behavior any more, Carl. It's time I told you what really happened to your father. I'm driving you to the liquor store." (Can you fit that in one panel? 8)
  • Mom points to the right (at the R.I.P. Carl panel) telling Carl, "if you're not careful, you'll end up like that!"

Nat Gertler

    How can we continue cartooning when Charles Schulz has retired?

  • Mom on the phone: "Hello, Narcolepsy Hotline?"
  • Mom applies a small drop of InfiGlue between Carl's head and the steering wheel.
  • Carl dreams of his gravestone.

Christopher Woerner

    Caption: "Next morning" Mom's looking very threatening. Carl says, scared, "But I didn't drive!"

  • a close-up on Carl. The screen looks fuzzy. He's obviously fast asleep. "ZZZZ"
  • Mom's shadow falls on the car. It should look as menacing as possible. "Carl... time for bed."
  • Dad stands in the doorway with Mom. "Leave him, honey, you know how he is."
  • Carl wakes up, looks at Mom. "Mom, I'm thirsty."
  • Similar to my first suggestion, fuzzy panel, Carl sleeping, but we see his dream, of the infamous car crash panel.
  • Enter: Daisy
  • A shot of the house, at night, moon and stars, that kind of thing. Just, you know, to make things interesting.
  • Carl accidently removes the emergency break. CREAK The car starts rolling.
  • Mom asking "Hmmm, what would Brian Boitano do in this situation?" (who he?)
  • Mom saying "God, I need a drink."

    Mom looks angry. "I'll show him!!!"


  • (ethel pushes carl to the passenger side, then starts the car.) "Then I guess I'll drive!" She exclaims.

Gregg Lamse

  • Edna marches Carl into the front door of the Betty Ford Clinic. Carl's all chained up and she's wheeling him in on a hand-cart. And instead of Betty Ford, let's call it "Alcoholics Unanimous". Carl, yelling "I'd rather die" It'd be funny If Edna could say "Nonsense. You don't die for at least another 5 panels." Maybe next week :)

Dave Forsythe

    This is my 2nd suggestion, I hope you like it

  • Woman says "Oh no...My forcing Carl to pledge to not drink and drive has killed him...He shouldn't have just left the car running while he was drinking though.

    Hey...Seeing as this is a leap year, I'm trying to organize a 24 hour comic party to occur ON leap day. Tell me that's not perfect! I think it would be great if other people were to organize them too, then we would all know that there would be a huge (relatively, compared to any othern day) amount of people all doing 24hour comics at the same time. Just a thought.

[It's a good idea, Dave! Any takers? --Scott]

Michael Patrick

  • Carl's mom gets in the car next to him and cracks open a beer. MOM: If you can't beat 'em, join 'em!


    me coming down with something, gonna post anyway, hope don't regret later.

  • Carl's mom grabs one of the z's from above him and bonks him in the head with it.
  • Okay, here's sort of a two week suggestion... Carl's mom puts her hands to her face and wonders whatever she shall do with her Carl... The next panel would have her of course coming up with the wonderful idea of calling someone for help...her best friend/new boyfriend Brian Boitano
  • Ooh, just thougth of something. When Carls mom is wondering what to do with him, Carls face slips down onto the horn... "hooooooonk", but he still stays asleep.

    hmmm... hope the sociology paper I just wrote turned out better than my suggestions. ::falls asleep on keyboard::

James "DexX" Dominguez

    *chuckle* The beer truck panel had me giggling for a while. Now, if only I could come up with an idea good enough to warrant a single-credit panel...

  • Ethel quietly reaches in through the window and let's off the handbrake.
  • While Carl still sleeps, Ethel hooks up a tow truck to the front up his car. (Yeah, I am thinking "crushed into a cube"... how'd you guess?)
  • Carl wakes up, with the sun rising over the horizon, and notices his car is a stripped automotive skeleton.
  • Hey, haven't had UFOs yet! A bright light from above causes Carl's car to rise slowly from the ground... without waking him up, of course.
  • Carl wakes up and sees a sign reading "Welcome to Alaska". Suggested dialogue - "Huh?"

    Still trying to find the time (including recovery time) for a 24 hour comic. This weekend, I hope...

[What about Feb 29th? (See above). --Scott]

Don Zacharias

  • Carl's car is on the back of a giant Turtle which is waking from a 1,000-year nap and is PRETTY ANGRY.

    First time.


    These are probably silly....

  • Mom wakes up Carl. Dialogue: "Wake up, dear, Brian Boitano's on the line for you!"
  • Mom (into walkie-talkie): "The kid's asleep! Now we can commence our secret plan!"

Aldo Alvarez

    Just curious: Is Budweiser aware of the adverse publicity?

  • Carl barely notices that he's being dragged out of the car by his frustrated mother, who says: "I know what'll wake him up..."
  • Dad peers out from behind the doorway; Dad and Mom speak while looking at their unconscious son. Dad: (Indifferent) Is he drunk again? Mom: (Fulminating) Well, what do you *think*?
  • Close-up of Carl in car: a thread of drool drops slowly from his lips. Above his head, a fuzzy thought baloon echoes with the promise in drunken, blurry type: "Promise me you won't drink and drive, Carl." "I Promise." "Promise me you won't drink and drive, Carl." "I Promise." ...
  • Carl wakes up -- in jail, in the drunk tank. He's surrounded by other sleeping (or near-unconscious) drunks at varying degrees of hygienic and sartorial decline. Carl: Wha..!!
  • Carl wakes up -- strapped to a hospital bed. Carl: Wha..!! Carl: (below, in a smaller balloon, in smaller type): ...does this room have a mini-bar...?

[I won't tell Budweiser if you don't tell Budweiser. --Scott]

Travis Pelkie

    Carl's dad should be Frank, as in Zappa just thought you'd like to know

  • I said it before, and to my own chagrin, I'm saying it again, Carl wets himself, this leads to him realizing he needs help with his drinking, and goes to an AA meeting (Okay, so that's well into the future, but work with me here)
  • Frank is in the backseat, sez keep it down. Wacky drunken hijinks ensue
  • I'm spent

    Okay, so not many suggestions, sue me. Dyslexia, dam, that's a funny joke. Although I prefer lysdexia, myself.


    Ok, coupla things: First off, I like the name Franz. It just fits a vampire who's married to a homicidal woman named Ethil. It really does. Ok, second. I have developed a simple and effective way of dealing with our world's "millenium or century" complication with a simple phase. Ready? "Millentury" Not only is it chronologically accurate (kind of), but it works.

  • There is an inside shot of the truck veiwing Carl through the wind sheild. Carl stops, looks right at you and says "Whoa! A beer truck! How... ironic!"
  • The beer truck grinds to a screeching halt as the driver inside yells "Ho-lee POOP!!"
  • A shot of Carl cringing as the following dialoge appears " Carl! Get back-!" "SPLAT!"
  • "Oh no! That trucks gonna hit me!" Says a scared carl covering his face with his forearms. Then a voice calls from the drivers side of the truck "I'm not even MOVING!"

    I want to thank Scott Mcclound for giving me an excuse NOT to watch bland saturday morning cartoons. And I want to yet again wish every one a happy Millentury.

Jesse Rimler

  • Ethel gets in the car. Ethel:"Guess I better drive him home."

    Hey Scott, just wondering, but is Reinventing Comics going to be in full color, or just have a chapter of color like in UC?

[Actually it's all in black and white, though the extensions of the book on my web site might use more color. --Scott]

Nathan Kuruna

  • Well, at this time I'm sort of envisoning Carl's Mom, pissed off again, yanking Carl out of the car by the collar through the open driver's side window, quite possibly screaming "LIAR!" in keeping with that trend.

    I guess I have no comments exempt to inquire as to the status of Reinventing Comics. Oh, and any Carl fans interested in other interlocking stories should probably go see Magnolia, one of the years more interesting and complicated films...

[Reinventing Comics is still slated for Summer/Fall release. I loved Magnolia, BTW. I think Anderson's reach exceeded his grasp frequently, but better that than the reverse. A terrific ending to a spectacular year of movies! --Scott]


  • Carl's mom is crying, "What have I done wrong?", and takes to drinking. Probably finds they are out of alcohol and goes to the Liqour store.

Thomas Hsieh

  • Mom: CARL!! You drank the last beer, go to the store and buy some more!
  • Mom reaches into the car and takes Carl's keys.

Kean Soo

  • Carl, still sleeping, slumps forwards in his seat and knocks the car into gear. The car starts to roll forwards...
  • As Mom walks up to the car, Carl mumbles in his sleep: "I'll show her... stupid promises..."

    Personally, I still prefer Mom and Dad referred to as, well, Mom and Dad. It seems really inconsequential, and it would be pretty tough to squeeze their names into one of the panels (which would be interesting if it did, somehow).

[I don't know if we'll ever see their names in the strip, but, I dunno... the irrelevency of it has its own appeal, doncha think? --Scott]

Bill Schlimme

  • Mom: (pushing car down steep hill) Finally, I can rid myself of this pestilant parasite! Leonard! I require assistance! (Leonard was the name of Martin Landau's character -- James Mason's "assistant" -- in North by Northwest, from which I swiped the suggestion. Oops. I've explained too much.)
  • Mom: (Switching on the ignition) Finally, I can rid myself of this pestilant parasite! Leonard! Close the garage door! (This time I stole the suggestion from "Shadow of a doubt"!)
  • A flock of seagulls attacks Mom as she is heading for Carl brandishing a knife, ala the "LIAR!!" panel. (That's a flock of seagulls, the BIRDS, not A Flock of Seagulls, the insipid purveyors of '80's dreck -- although, now that I think of it, that might be a Hell of a panel, if you find the right way of representing those hellish hair-don'ts!)

    There! That college class I took on the cinema of Alfred Hitchcock wasn't totally wasted!


    It's too late, but I have to try anyway...

  • Carl dreams of driving.
  • Carl wakes up in a strange place.
  • Carl wakes up in bath-tub filled with ice, in a ratty motel in Mexico. He finds a note saying "We have taken one of your kidneys. Call the hospital or you will die."
  • Carl dreams up the beginning panel with Ethel, except he has white hair and a white beard. "Promiss me you von't vrite und revolutionary manifesto, Karl." Karl: "Ja, I promiss."

    Technically, it's midnight somewhere in the middle of the Pacific. Sorry.

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