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Dick Tracy by Joe Staton and Mike Curtis

Dick Tracy

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  1. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy about 6 hours ago

    Although the explosion happened 7 days ago for the readers, it has only been a few minutes for Tracy et al. I’m not sure EMTs or other officers have actually had time to respond.

  2. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 7 days ago

    Well, I guess the show was a bomb.

  3. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 7 days ago

    It’s true that I am not all that familiar with the old Dick Tracy movies. I have seen them several years ago but never considered them part of the comic strip history; much like I never considered the Superman or Batman movies part of the history of those respective titles. And, certainly, the Warren Beatty movie had little to do with the strip. Even so, I found those movies entertaining to various degrees and I am not so much of a purist that I could not enjoy both despite the inconsistencies between media.

    Mike, as helmsman of the strip, has the luxury of picking and choosing as he pleases. But that, to me, does not mean that all of the old movies now become past history of the strip (even though he also plucked the character Cueball from the old movies).

    We are told in the strip that Dick Tracy has a past with this particular villain called Gruesome. Nowhere is it explicitly stated that this is the same personality called Gruesome in the movie. The coincidence comes in the fact that one character has had plastic surgery causing him to resemble Boris Karloff (paralleling the plot within a plot of Arsenic and Old Lace) and the other was played by the real-life actor, Boris Karloff. To me there is no indication that the movie Gruesome had recently undergone plastic surgery but I could be wrong on this since, as I said, it has been many years since I have seen that movie. So although there are similarities, I have no reason to believe that the two characters are the same individual but that the current character is more or less an adaptation. I believe it is more likely Mike, an avowed movie buff, is having some campy fun and blurring the lines a bit.

    You are correct that we don’t know how Gruesome offed Otis but what we do know is that Gruesome has the ability to move quickly when necessary. He made short work of both Otis and Sam.

  4. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 7 days ago

    Gruesome was late for his stage “places” call when he had his encounter with Sam. He likely only had time to subdue Sam, take his gun and wrist wizard, and shove him in the trunk. He likely tossed the wizard somewhere in the pile of props along with the locked trunk. Since there are several guns utilized by police officers in the play, he could have put Sam’s gun on the backstage prop table where it would have drawn little notice. More likely, he has the gun in his pocket which is why he is such a cool customer with Tracy holding a weapon on him. Recall that he was apologizing to the Stage Manager for being late.

    Still, these inconsistencies are not unlike the minor inconsistencies between Gould’s dailies and Sundays (which often did not quite match up). However, I agree that some of these things should have been shown or described. I believe that showing the scuffle between Gruesome and Sam would have added more excitement to the story and given the reader more disgust for Gruesome. We know that he is a brutal murderer but we have not seen him in action only the after effects. We know he is able to overpower a trained police officer like Sam but we have not seen how. I am still trying to figure out how he got the nickname, “Gruesome” since we haven’t seen him do anything particularly more gruesome than any other of Tracy’s foes.

    That all said, I try to go with the flow since I am enjoying this arc. Mike sometimes has the tendency to show inconsistencies and then explain later (re: Not finding the Nitrates under the lake and then up they pop again without explanation even though their appearance denotes that there IS an explanation—we just don’t know yet what that explanation is.) Perhaps we may learn answers at a later time.

  5. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 11 days ago

    They don’t strike me as the festive type for a Christmas tree.
    They just like popping the popcorn to make garland.

  6. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 12 days ago

    Another great summary in rhyme.

  7. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 14 days ago

    That wouldn’t be Shelley now would it? Happy birthday to her.

  8. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 16 days ago

    Sometimes Staton and Curtis like to leave such details up to the reader’s imagination, keeping the story from becoming too plodding.

    I have to disagree. I believe bursts of action do not make a story plod. In fact, I believe just the opposite. I think scenes of action enhance the story and break up the endless talking heads and descriptive narration. In other words, I would have liked to see Sam and Gruesome duke it out rather than just be told that it happened.

    The same could be said for the recent Annie arc. There were many places where more action could have been inserted. For example, when Tracy and Annie met in the clubhouse, they could almost have been caught requiring them to make a break for it or escape in some manner. The same could be said for their meetings at the movie theatre.

    I’m not offering criticism because I have disliked either the Annie story or this one. In fact, I have enjoyed both. However, I believe that lately action sequences have been few and far between and there is room for a better balance in some instances.

  9. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 17 days ago

    Apparently Gruesome also got Sam’s gun.

  10. Ray Toler commented on Dick Tracy 17 days ago

    At least Sam’s not knocked out. He can still make some noise.