Saturday, September 16, 2006

The Purr-ning Bed


Any casual acquaintanceship with Garfield will tell you that the cat spends heroic amounts of time sleeping, eating, watching TV and lazing because he loves doing these things, and hates denying himself anything. Too true, but unlike his cartoon glutton layabout forbearers like Jughead Jones, Shaggy Rogers, or Dagwood Bumstead, Garfield is not motivated solely by joie de vivre. A true divergent thinker, he also tends to take up an oppositional stance for the purpose of flustering others, bucking expectations, and making excuses to himself for his actions. In concrete terms, Garfield not only stays in bed all day because he is lazy/ has nothing to do, but because he knows it bothers Jon. Why it bothers Jon is another set of issues. For the most part we can assume that he sees in Garfield's refusal to get out of bed the futility of his daily life, an acceptance of laissez faire "why bother?" nihilism that Jon is not prepared to make.

Who knows what Jon is really up to, but Garfield is so entrenched in habits of manipulation that he can only assume that acceptance and support is the kind of scam he's used to pulling himself. The panic in Garfield's eyes when Jon seems to approve of the cat's plan to stay a-bed all day is that of a master reverse psychologist faced with his own tactic.

4 comments:

Ben said...

It seems to me that the true reason for Garfield's Bug Eyed expression is a common Garfield story traight - the action has happened off panel or before and is only reacted to on panel. We must ask ourselves what happened in the 0 panel that would provoke such an expression. Was there a loud noise of John coming into the room? no. Was there another person in the room off panel that Garfield is reacting to, such as a naked Liz? no. I put forward that Jon woke up Garfield by one of two methdods - 1. Licking of nose. 2. Finger up bum. Either of these would produce the given response. The third panel then resolves itself to the trick also refering back to the violation. It's so clear I'm surprised you didn't instantly see it.

Ryan Ferneau said...

Well, no matter what disturbing thing happened to cause it, I think that's the cutest Garfield has looked in a while.

lisa said...

Jon's acting like he just got laid.

Ryan Ferneau said...

Oh BINGO.