The Marriage Mess


Contributions or comments related to this page?

» Email us

Last Updated:

» June 8, 2023
Not Another Religious Tract Dissection by Boolean Union Studios


The Marriage Mess

The Marriage Mess

Chapter 1 - The Friendly Fanatic which the Miller's find themselves visited by a close relative.


  Jessica   Andrew  





Page Index
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

Commentators Jessica Andrew

oPage 1

Page 1 AndrewAndrew The friendly fanatic? Oh, that promises much more humor than is actually delivered.
JessicaJessica Yikes. We just got done talking about how ugly these people are, now they're breaking down into the ether from the waist down. That towheaded kid also seems to be eyeballing the preacher's ass with no small measure of disgust.

AndrewAndrew I rather like the swirls. It lends a sort of art-deco, or Japanese woodblock quality to... oh, who am I kidding, it's probably just an excuse not to compose a complex, multi-character scene. Jack Chick isn't just a Christian artist, he's a LAZY Christian artist.


o Page 2

Page 2 JessicaJessica "Business, you say?!? Bring him around! I always treasure stories of the heathen savages!"

Mrs. Butterworth's lolligagging is holding up cueball back there. He's got a hot date with a ball shiner down that the local bowling alley.
AndrewAndrew Takin' care of business... EVERYDAY!

Ok, I admit it. I've got nothing.


o Page 3

Page 3 JessicaJessica Indeed, a man desperate for the company of "white women" sounds wonderful indeed. Though if his tastes for women fail to exclude this walking piece of jerky she's prematurely trying to set him up with, then I doubt he's picky enough to insist she's white to boot.
AndrewAndrew You know, this panel sets up some expectations that are never met elsewhere. This lady never shows up again. So he isn't married because the only women he knows are, um, black?
JessicaJessica Come on, Match-Maker! Make me a Match! Find me a fine! Catch me a catch!


o Page 4

Page 4 JessicaJessica "HAW HAW" - The misery and loss of others brings me joy!

This is what I would imagine the dictionary illustration for "shit-eating grin" to look like. Sis looks like she just won the lottery. And what kind of bullshit diagnosis is "Jungle Fever" anyway? Perhaps that explains why this cousin only likes the company of white women, his wife left him for one of the (presumably) more articulate African natives.
AndrewAndrew Like a lot of Chick's characters, Brad looks like he's supposed to be a caricature of somebody, but the illustration is too incompetent to make it work. Incidentally, he's the spitting image of a kid I knew in middle school. Here's to you, Joey. I hope to god you grew out of that.


o Page 5

Page 5 JessicaJessica "@!!*! Sandy!" I'm sensing a few anger issues with old cueball here.
AndrewAndrew "Razza-frazza-frugga-dugga... kid!"
JessicaJessica Also, I'm starting to get pretty weirded out by the loving detail put into the drawing of this guy's knuckle hairs. So far Mom's been little more than a glorified cotton ball on an old house coat, and I can barely even make out Sandy's face, but the hairs on the back of Dad's hand are more detailed than the hairs on his head. What few there are.


o Page 6

Page 6 JessicaJessica "I'm so ashamed of your hair Billy. He'll probably think you're a girl..."

"With facial hair..."
AndrewAndrew He bears a striking resemblance to Carl from Aqua Teen Hunger Force. Perhaps it IS Carl, as a younger man.
JessicaJessica I'm seriously starting to worry about this cousin. Besides, I don't think anyone in this family is really in a position to lecture anyone else on the merits or flaws of a particular hairstyle.

"No, Pops. Most stewardesses spend the night waxing their mustaches." Or perhaps the kid is upset because cueball appears to be passing gas in a prolonged but inaudible fashion.

Though here we come to a very important universal law of Jack Chick. All characters that are meant to be looked down upon will be drawn in the most god awful fashion possible. The superficial reasons seems to be that if you find a person visually appalling you'll subsequently want to disassociate with them. Contrariwise, all "good" and even most neutral characters are drawn across a wide spectrum reaching from "Passable as Human" to "Preternaturally Attractive." And if a character changes alignment, they'll go from being hideous to beautiful, sometimes even between one panel and the next. This often acts as a pretty effective barometer of which attitudes and behaviors Chick himself approves and disapproves of. It's a phenomenon that has been pointed out by other reviewers and can be found in almost all his works. If a character looks like a horrible Jewish stereotype, or a walking lump of crap, chances are they're the bad guy.


o Page 7

Page 7 JessicaJessica The wife vacillates between a horrible caricature of Barbara Bush and an overstuffed Ottoman pillow.
AndrewAndrew "No, Helen, it isn't me!"
JessicaJessica "Thank you for not making me take a cab to your place. You are thoughtful."


o Page 8

Page 8 AndrewAndrew Mark, the Lord has given you the power to lie through your teeth!

Yeah, we've got a serious case of the swirls again. Chick really doesn't want to draw Sandy's legs if he can help it.
JessicaJessica "He also didn't mention my child molester 'stache, or my unsightly stomach paunch, or my misshapen popeye arms... That's cool!"
AndrewAndrew Sandy's dematerializing again. Though, if she really had "The Real Power" a 'la Ms. Frost, I'm sure she would have bailed on this comic in the first panel. She even looks like Ms. Frost's long lost daughter. And we all know how those satanic witches like to have sex outside of wedlock!


o Page 9

Page 9 JessicaJessica We finally get a look at Cousin Mark's mug here, and he kind of looks like an elderly Bob Hope. Or a past-due raisin.
AndrewAndrew Helen looks like she's about to blow her top, but nothing bad has actually happened yet. Also, swirls. At least Sandy gets legs now.
JessicaJessica I'm guessing Mom disagrees with his assessment of Sandy there... "NO WIRE HANGERS EVAAAARRRR!!!!"
AndrewAndrew Could be the go-go boots. Nice!
JessicaJessica That kid thinking about blowing from that vantage point is sooooo not cool.


o Page 10

AndrewAndrew "But is the Lord gonna bring her back when she's better?"

Man, that kid is ugly.
JessicaJessica "No, Brad. She was taken home with a fever... a JUNGLE FEVER!!! So yes, the cannibals 'ate' her, but not in the way you think. Now let us never speak of that again."


o Page 11

Page 11 AndrewAndrew "A man's gift maketh room for him."

I see. So this is how Mark gets rid of all the extra junk he didn't want to bring home.

"Now I can fit the rest in my car!"
JessicaJessica "Bring stuff and people will be far more likely to let you freeload for a while." ~ PROV. 18:16.


o Page 12

Page 12 JessicaJessica So Sandy and Meat Head both got dresses (I guess he did think he was a girl), Brad got a horribly gaudy decorated basket, and Mom got the severed head of a Lhurgoyf. Thanks, Cousin Mark!
AndrewAndrew Helen appears to be holding a large hunk of... I dunno... petrified crap?
JessicaJessica Maybe it's an ossified elephant turd. I'm not entirely sure.
AndrewAndrew I think Brad got a drum, actually. It looks like the "Indian Drums" sold at finer tourist traps nationwide.


o Page 13

Page 13 JessicaJessica Oh... it IS a drum! Yeah, that was a great, forward-thinking gift for this little fellow. I am sure his parents will enjoy hours listening to his heavenly, percussive rhythms. Wait a minute... I thought Jack Chick thought that any music with a beat was the #1 undercover recruitment tool of Satan? Mark has unwittingly set the precious feet of this young cherub onto the crooked left-hand path. May God forgive him.
AndrewAndrew Helen got majorly ugly again. She either has a mouth full of walnuts, or is wearing a baboon mask. Actually, she looks like the trolls from David the Gnome.

With that gene pool, it's no wonder that Brad looks like he does. Sandy must be adopted.


o Page 14

Page 14 AndrewAndrew There's the talking windows! I knew we only had to wait so long!
JessicaJessica "HEY... I don't like this!"



o Page 15

Page 15 JessicaJessica "I pray that this home will be a light shining in the darkness..."

...instead of the ghastly freak show it so clearly is now. Amen.
AndrewAndrew Prayer is humiliating? Aren't the Millers at least supposed to be Christian?
JessicaJessica Humiliating doesn't even begin to cover it... What the hell is Meat Head doing back there? And cueball's face appears to be slowly sliding off of his skull. Also, I see Sandy finally wised up and bamfed herself into a better comic. Perhaps a Family Circus. Or Mary Worth. Or even Mark Trail for that matter. Why does she get out of "Happy Fun Jesus Time?"


o Page 16

Page 16 JessicaJessica "One of these days, Alice! Bang! Zoom! Right to the Moon!" Judging from her reaction, I can guess that whenever he get's mad like this she's used to "falling down the stairs."

"His month's stay will PROBABLY be a nightmare!"

... as opposed to the domestic bliss we usually reside in. Damn your praying relatives!
AndrewAndrew I like how he emphasizes "probably." That emphasizes the possibility that it will not be.
JessicaJessica "I wonder how we can get rid of him?"

Arsenic? Laudanum? White women?
AndrewAndrew I love how terribly exaggerated everyone's reactions to Christianity are in Chick-land. People who aren't super-Christian aren't just non-religious... they are always rabidly anti-Christian, and treat behavior that is fairly mainstream (like praying at bedtime) as beyond the pale. This must flatter Chick's religious audience, who like to believe that everyone is against them... notwithstanding the huge majority of Christians in America. Seriously, a fanatic? People who pray aren't fanatics, and I don't think anyone in real life thinks that. I dunno, maybe this strip doesn't take place in the US, but in some God-free paradise like the Soviet Union. It is, after all, 1978.