The Dysfunctional Family Circus

The Dysfunctional Family Circus

Of course, the granddaddy of all Family Circus parodies is the Dysfunctional Family Circus. It went for 500 panels back in the 1990s, before being shut down by the lawyers. Lucky for us, the whole shebang is archived here. Here are just three examples from that site.

Unfunny
“…and please allow Daddy to continue to use his unfunny comic strip to impose his Christianity on America.”

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Jar
“OK, Mom. Take the RU-486, squat on this jar, and we’re off to the pro-life rally.”

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Catch
“Son, if God had wanted you to catch that ball, you would have. It’s that simple. So the question is not ‘Why did I botch that pop fly’, but ‘What have I done to make God angry?’ You haven’t been touching yourself again, have you?”

20 Responses to “The Dysfunctional Family Circus”

  1. Paradox Says:

    I disagree with the first one. The guy who writes these comics is in no way imposing Christianity on any one. He has every right to write what he pleases, and if newspapers want to run the strips he can. Imposing would be forcing people to be Christian, not just doing his own thing. You don’t have to agree with his views, but don’t claim that he’s doing something he’s not. There are plenty of nuts trying to force their religion on people, we don’t need to make up new ones.

  2. Ron Britton Says:

    Maybe impose is too strong a word, but the strip is unfunny, and he does load it up with Christianity.

  3. Parrotlover77 Says:

    I agree impose is a bit strong. It’s more the distribution chain that’s “imposing.” The local paper doesn’t have to run it. It sucks. FC is never, ever funny. I repeat: NEVER FUNNY. Okay, humor is subjective. I give you that. But despite that, it’s still NEVER FUNNY. I swear, how many times can you run the dotted-line kid running around schtick? Or the “not me” schtick?

  4. ericsan Says:

    It’s sad that at age 85 he’s still working on the basic setup/punchline thing. I think someone should do him a favor and take him to a Lisa Lampanelli performance to understand what humor actually is (note to Ron: you *have* to check her out. she’s a riot.)

  5. Paradox Says:

    The strip is unfunny though, I’ll certainly give you that. Frankly, most of the comics in the newspaper suck these days. Especially Garfield. I hate Garfield.

  6. The Watcher Says:

    My family doesn’t always agree, but I think my dad put it best when he once said, “The one thing that brings this family together is our universal hatred of The Family Circus.” I believe we were enjoying a Mother’s Day brunch some years back, and while waiting for our food, we were trying to come up with what the Family Circus would do for Mother’s Day. We decided that the family would be on their way to church, and someone would say, “I wish Grandpa could be here to see us!” but then Grandpa’s ghost would be sitting to the side. And we could all go, “AWWWWW!!!!”

    If I recall correctly, we were wrong, but it was still horribly unfunny.

    PS: I like Garfield.

  7. Ron Britton Says:

    Sorry, Watcher. I have to agree with Paradox. Garfield is awful. (The early ones were actually funny. I have the first few books.)

    You ought to send you FC idea to Bil Keane. He’d think it’s brilliant.

  8. Parrotlover77 Says:

    I think it’s worth mentioning (if anybody cares) that although 99% of the time the Garfield strip is no longer funny, it was hillarious in most of its other incarnations (such as Saturday morning cartoons that I have very fond memories of). Some people who have not seen the strip recently may not realize how Garfield now no longer just hates Mondays, but now apparently also hates being funny.

  9. The Watcher Says:

    Would you like it more if it had parrots in it?

  10. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Possibly…

    ;-)

  11. Ron Britton Says:

    So why does Garfield hate Mondays? He doesn’t have a job!

  12. bunkie Says:

    Maybe Garfield hates Mondays because Jon hates Mondays and wakes up grouchy!
    :-)

  13. Ron Britton Says:

    Jon doesn’t have a job either!

  14. bunkie Says:

    No wonder he wakes up grouchy! :-)

  15. mandrellian Says:

    This guy’s work may be completely trite but I’d still prefer to read a Family Circus anthology to just one frame of a Jack Chick tract … seriously, that guy makes me want to bend over and vomit up my own arsehole to diguise the stench of his ignorant, vile bigotry…and completely effing pedestrain artwork!

  16. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Chick’s world is full of demons around every corner and angels disguised as grandmothers. Why so harsh on such an obvious work of fiction?

    ;-)

  17. pacer Says:

    I get how someone not brought up to entertain ideas without accepting them could see Chick tracts as trying to force religion, but seriously, wtf are athiests so threatened by?

    and no mentioning how religion has been such a huge factor in every major war. I know it has been, that’s a ready-made excuse; everyone uses that one. Tell me something original about why you’re so threatened by it.

    really, I want to know. if you consider the Bible a work of fiction, I’m not here to change your mind, but if that’s all it is, why take such an active stance against it?

  18. Wurdulac Says:

    @Pacer:

    Because others view it as a work of fact, and try to get it treated as such.

  19. Ron Britton Says:

    Pacer:

    My nomination to be Atheist Ambassador to the Theistic Hordes was blocked in committee by the Murdering Puppy faction of American Atheists. Despite the fact that I had the support of both the School Curriculum Brainwashing Working Group of the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the Christian Heritage Denial Action Committee of the ACLU, my nomination had to be withdrawn.

    Therefore, I am unable to speak for all atheists, as you seem to believe. I am forced to speak only for myself.

    wtf are athiests so threatened by?

    Theocracy. The fundies are doing an awfully good job getting us closer and closer to it.

    and no mentioning how religion has been such a huge factor in every major war. I know it has been, that’s a ready-made excuse; everyone uses that one.

    Sure, that’s an old argument, but don’t be so dismissive. Religion is a significant, if not the single biggest, factor in many wars. If you’re implying that we’d have war without religion, I agree with you. Humans are greedy, selfish, violent bastards who will always covet what somebody else has and will always dream up some excuse to murder other groups of people, religion or not. (Religion is quite effective in rallying the hordes, so even if it is not the complete cause for many wars, it certainly made those wars bloodier.)

    The biggest flaw in your dismissal of religious wars, though, is your implied assumption that religious wars of the future will be like religious wars of the past. That is not true. The Middle East is overflowing with religious hatred. The American fundies have railroaded U.S. foreign policy to blindly support Israel to the detriment of Middle East peace, stability, and coexistence. They want to start a war in the Middle East, because according to their prophecy, that will bring Jesus back.

    I oppose fanatical religious fundamentalism in this country, because if left unchecked, it will bring about World War III.

    if you consider the Bible a work of fiction, I’m not here to change your mind, but if that’s all it is, why take such an active stance against it?

    I don’t. I told you I don’t speak for all atheists. I sometimes post articles that point out the ludicrousness of the Bible, but that is for educational purposes. Most people haven’t read most of the Bible, so they really don’t know about all of the contradictory, unscientific, crazy, immoral, violent, sexist, genocidal stuff in there.

    But you’re free to enjoy your Bible. I really have no interest in whether you read it, believe it, or use it to prop up an uneven table (Dog knows it’s used to prop up a lot of flawed arguments, so if you want to use it to prop up a table, don’t let me stop you.).

  20. Parrotlover77 Says:

    I get how someone not brought up to entertain ideas without accepting them could see Chick tracts as trying to force religion, but seriously, wtf are athiests so threatened by?

    Chick Tracts may be awful, but they are far from threatening. But the mouth breathers that take them literally, are larger than me, and carry handguns — they frigthen me something awful.

    Which leads me to the question: why are they so threatened by me? What did I do other than just want to be left alone?

    and no mentioning how religion has been such a huge factor in every major war. I know it has been, that’s a ready-made excuse; everyone uses that one. Tell me something original about why you’re so threatened by it.

    Yea, yea, religion only caused most wars ever in history, so what?! We shouldn’t mention that because it’s just so historical and true and old and true. It’s not fair to bring it up!

    really, I want to know. if you consider the Bible a work of fiction, I’m not here to change your mind, but if that’s all it is, why take such an active stance against it?

    Truth takes an active stance against fiction. It just is. It’s like asking, why does gravity pull matter together? It just does. It’s a property of matter that just is. In the same way, reality and truth will always be actively opposed to fantasy and falsehood.

    Speaking for myself, I can’t passively accept the truth of something that isn’t true. I don’t pester people about it usually, unless they bother me first. And I don’t go onto Christian blogs and ask them why they are so blindly stupid.

    Also, MAGNETS HOW DO THEY WORK?!