Robot 6

Six by 6 | Six comics that made us laugh out loud

dr13coverA couple of weeks ago Chris Mautner and I listed the six comics that made us cry. You guys responded with more than 160 comments filled with memories of comics that brought you to tears as well. It was very cool and kind of overwhelming to see that many people open up like that, so from both of us, thank you.

One commenter, cinorjer, suggested we name “six comics that made us laugh out loud.” Which we thought was a great idea — thanks, cinorjer! — so wipe away your tears and get ready to exercise your funnybone.

Joining Chris and I this week is Tom Bondurant, who was quick to come back with an example when I asked for suggestions. So let’s make with the ha ha’s and get down to it … and please share your own favorites in the comments section.

1. “What am I s’posed to do with a whole dollar!?”

I laughed aloud at much of Brian Azzarello and Cliff Chiang’s “Architecture & Mortality” storyline from the recent Tales of the Unexpected miniseries. There were the Primate Patrol’s obvious (but well-executed) Planet of the Apes references; Traci 13’s “paper covers rock” spell; and the part where Infectious Lass says she’ll never know the touch of a man, about which I … Vampire! observes “perhaps if you changed your name….”

However, I particularly liked Dr. 13’s first real meeting with Genius Jones, the smartest little boy in the world. He’ll answer any question for a dime, but he won’t deal with Dr. 13 — because the Doc only has a dollar bill. “What am I s’posed to do with a whole dollar!?” Genius wonders.

“Tell you what — I have ten questions,” Dr. 13 responds.

“Do you have ten dimes?”

Eyes practically bulging out of his glasses, and beads of sweat leaping off his forehead, Dr. 13 spits, “I have a DOLLAR!”

It goes on like that for another few panels, until the head of the Primate Patrol bursts in: “How ’bout I geev you a nickel saun’wich?” And … scene!

Tom Bondurant

2. “If you know so much about career choices, why are you a guidance counselor?”

I was first introduced to Matt Groening via School is Hell, his so-true-it-hurts breakdown of modern education, plus college. I happened to be in high school at the time, and strips like “The Nine Types of High School Teachers” provided the perfect tonic to my K-12 weary (and incredibly nerdy) soul. I don’t know if it was one of the first comics I ever laughed out loud at, but it was definitely one of the ones I laughed at the longest.

Chris Mautner

3. “One punch!”


There were a lot of classic, laugh-out-loud moments in the Justice League comic that was relaunched in the 1980s, but I’d daresay this was the classic moment from Keith Giffen, J.M DeMatteis and Kevin Maguire’s run on the title. Guy Gardner, a bit of a loud-mouth alpha male, decides he’s going to lead the Justice League. Batman says no, so Guy decides he’s going to show him how tough he is … but before he can do anything, “Bonk!”

Mention the words “One punch!” to any fan from that era, and there’s a good chance they’ll remember it with a smirk on their face.

JK Parkin

4. “Do you swing it like a hammer or like a baseball bat?”

Richard Thompson’s Cul de Sac makes me laugh out loud almost every week with its absurd yet somehow true-to-life depictions of middle class suburbia. If I had to single out a strip in particular, though, it would be the one where the poor, beleaguered Nursery school teacher Miss bliss attempt to introduce a bit of decorum by introducing a “talking stick” that gave whoever held it the opportunity to take the floor. She then gives it to Alice, who, well, seems to misinterpret the concept.

Chris Mautner

5. “Cover your eyes, go back to Avengers Mansion, and make my dinner.”

Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E. by Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen was about as perfect as you could get in terms of a humor series by Marvel Comics. Not just because of the funny theme song, or Dirk Anger’s bizarre rants, or MODOK Elvises. Mostly because, well, nothing was sacred:


JK Parkin

6. “I have a bunch of old sneakers, but I don’t open a shoe store.”

You can’t have a list like this and not include Dorkin, easily one of the funniest people working in comics today. Milk and Cheese are great of course, but for my money, he’s at his best when ranting against the evils of the comics industry and all the stupid, stupid decisions made in its name. Dork #1‘s “Comic Industry trading cards” for instance, is a riotous savaging of the state of affairs circa 1991.



Gah, so many Nextwave moments. I’m partial to the Celestials calling Aaron a “total ****.”

Good call on Nextwave — recently reread it and it made me laugh every issue. Another very funny comic is The Annotated Mantooth. Matt Fraction is much funnier than he usually gets a chance to demonstrate and those three adventures of Rex Mantooth are gold.

I’d say the trilogy has to be rounded out to six comics that made you angry.
I’d probably include the issue of Y: The Last Man, towards the end, with the death and stuff…you know, no spoilers, I was mad as hell after reading that one, no tears, just anger against that character, and her motivations…

Definitely Nextwave, and that moment in particular. Good God, I nearly pissed myself when I read that bit.

Most of The Tick, as well.

There are many, many moments in Cable & Deadpool, including Bob’s pre-programmed reactions to Hydra’s many enemies (including, amongst others, Wolverine), Deadpool reclaiming the theme song to Land of the Lost (“Deadpool, Bob and Weasel, on a routine expedition…”), Weasel infiltrating Hydra as “the Pene-Traitor”, the many C & DP sunbathing fantasy sequences, Deadpool’s insistence multiple times over the course of the series that he was an X-Man (“I have a Marvel Girl costume that disagrees with you!”), Deadpool going after the Great Lakes Avengers not knowing that they’ve already registered, Cable watching The View (“Rosie’s made it interesting, don’t you think?”), Deadpool and Citizen V continuing to fight for reasons unknown even to them after discovering they’re on the same side, and many, many others.

Also, anything with Dirk Anger in Nextwave was beyond comparison.

“I am resigning. From life.”

“I have re-invented suicide as a group activity. Go me.”


“I think I’m having a nervous breakdown.”

And, of course, his speech about what ended up happening with his marriage. Classic.

The first comic book that made me laugh out loud was “What if” #34 (1982) which was just a series of funny What Ifs such as… what if The Thing was blue (“It’s Slobberin’ Time.”) and What If Wonder Man was a Woman and Power Man was a Girl (but due to their “Distinguished Competition” they were not allowed to finish the gag).

But my favorite moment was What If Daredevil were Deaf, which was written and illustrated by Frank Miller. Daredevil is kicking some serious ass, but doesn’t hear that all the thugs have been trying to give up and “talk” the whole time. These are the only scans I could find online (

Of course, I was about 10 years old at the time and I had traded the first three issues of Alien Legion for the one issue of What If, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.

Big Money B.G.

July 12, 2009 at 1:21 pm

One gag that has always made me laugh-out-loud was in an issue of “She-Hulk” from Slott’s awesome run, where Spider-Man has decided to sue J. Jonah Jameson for defamation. One of the lawyers asks Spidey why he thinks JJJ hates him so much, and Parker’s response is “Honestly? Because I’m black”.

The artist (can’t remember his name!) rendered the facial expressions of Jonah and his lawyer so pricelessly in their reactions to Spidey’s remark, total shock and denial, only for Spider-Man to giggle and say, “Just kidding”.

Great stuff.

loved the list. though surprised deadpool and cable did not get any love. and the one punch from justice leque loved the issue. for guy had that coming a long time ago. and also would add an issue of what if where the watcher has to deal with buracrats .

“But my favorite moment was What If Daredevil were Deaf, which was written and illustrated by Frank Miller. Daredevil is kicking some serious ass, but doesn’t hear that all the thugs have been trying to give up and “talk” the whole time.”

Mauro, that is a classic to me. Good call.

I haven’t followed the Avengers or the X-Men for a long, long time, but there was something I saw in a preview which made me laugh heartily. New Avengers #50, after Wolverine announces that Daken is his son. There’s a stunned reaction, then a panel of silence, and the Spider-man breaks in with “You’ve had sex?”

These are not my Avengers, and I have no idea where this Daken character came from, but like Larry the Cable Guy said…”I don’t care you you are, that’s funny right there!”

Mr. M is dead on with the New Avengers #50 moment. Also, in the most recent issue during their latest skirmish with the Hood…

Luke Cage: “If this doesn’t work…”
Spider-Man: “I’m already peeing.”

I agree completely with all possible praise for EVAN DORKIN and Matt Groening’s work.

I have also had some tremendous laughs from PETER BAGGE, CAROL LAY (‘The Job Thing’ is phenomenal!) as well as ALISON BECHDEL.

Anything DAN SLOTT writes is funny to me; both of his ‘She Hulk’ series, the ‘Spider-man/Human Torch’, and ‘Great Lakes Avengers’were superb.

BRIAN K. VAUGHN is another one. ‘Ex Machina’ has a lot going for it, but genuine crack-ups in the midst of taught drama is a real test!

Thanks for the list!

Dr. Thirteen had me with the prologue bit, but I actually liked “You can start by not calling me peanut at a place where everybody ate each other.” better.

The Tick’s best moment of brilliance had to be in the first series, when the ninjas were disguising themselves as a hedge…by holding up a single branch and saying “We are a hedge. Move along.” The Tick, being an idiot, can’t tell and Oedipus has to tell him. So when they attack later, the Tick yells a warning to everyone else.


I was in tears. Brilliant. Doesn’t work as well without the visual though.

Preacher had some side splittingly funny moments with Herr Starr, but I can’t remember enough of the specifics anymore. They’re all great though.

Fun list.

Tom Fitzpatrick

July 12, 2009 at 6:05 pm

Two of my favorite funny moments is in Nextwave is:

1) The demons from another dimension doing the dancing beat (forgot what it was called);
2) Machine Man quoting “Death to the fleshy ones!”


Just like with my “Comic that Made Me Cry” Calvin & Hobbes belongs at the top of this list. And there have been so many more comics than just that that I can’t possibly even make a top 6 of them.
And I wouldn’t be able to think of any comics that made me angry like Ryan K Lindsay mentioned, but if you did a “Comics that Scared Me” list I’d be able to respond to that.

One recent one from a superhero book would be an issue of Eliis’s Astonishing X-Men where Cyclops is yelling and cussing at Agent Brand, and Wolverine enters the scene upset with Cyclops. It was a laugh out loud moment from a kind of boring book. I can’t quote it or find it right now though.

Non capes: Ivan Brunetti. So funny and so wrong.

Superman/Batman: World’s Funniest. Every page.



Several recent moments:

1) Superman/Batman with the mini JLA (especially the scowling mini Batman with eyes in his bat insignia and the LEGO-figure Red Tornado).
2) New Avengers #50 when Clint Barton says, “That’s Bullseye, dressed as Hawkeye,” to which Spidey responds “you’re dressed like Echo.” (Many other good lines in that title- BMB writes a great Spidey, IMHO.)
3) Every freakin’ issue of Secret Six has me in tears (in a good way) – it has surpassed Birds of Prey as the book Gail Simone was born to write.
4) Almost every Jaime Reyes/Blue Beetle story, especially when Paco and Brenda fight. (They’re like little Happy and Pepper, arent they?)

Gosh, it actually happened!

OK, you gotta admit the several mini series of Damage Control are max funny, but the crowning moment of funny is the flashback to their getting trapped with the X Men in a malfunctioning danger room filled with lethal classic comedians and clowns. Nightcrawler slipping on a banana peel? Colossus thinking he’s defused a bomb only to have it go off it his face? “Stooges at 6 oclock!” “I’m on it!” Wolverine getting a pie in his face? Common, that’s hilarious.

And the Justice League International run, where an entire issue involves hero and villian attending the same French language class, but don’t realize it until the class is half over? Again, crowning moment.

And last, the Ambush Bug versus the Legion of Substitute Heros issue, many years ago. The Bug simply enjoys the Disney Land he’s landed in while the Substitute Legion fail miserably to catch him.

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