I don't know why Leroy is so paranoid about identity theft. Having someone else assume his identity and the massive amounts of debt encumbering it would be a straight up blessing for him. Seriously, there is absolutely nothing to be gained from becoming Leroy Lockhorn. If I were Leroy, I would be actively baiting potential identity thieves into taking my miserable, wretched life. I suppose Leroy still doggedly protects his bad name because, despite it all, he is still a proud man. Also, that bald guy at the counter looks sort of like Lex Luthor; so one has to be cautious. Loretta gets the point for mocking Leroy. She leads 1-0.
Leroy is just dropping banal idioms on top of banal idioms here. In the end it is still pretty much coherent. I do think the Cold War analogy is an apt one to describe the Lockhorns' marriage. They are in a constant state of tense antagonism punctuated by the occasional episodes of warfare. The friends and acquaintances around them are like the other nations of the world and the Lockhorns are constantly attempting to gain influence and win them to their own viewpoint while attempting to make the other lose face. I'm not sure what their version of mutually assured destruction is though. Leroy wins a point and ties the game up 1-1.
If only Loretta were here to claim her point. She really managed to put Leroy in a humiliating situation in this panel. It's bad enough that he's a sweaty wreak, suffering along on the exercise bike but the excessive protective gear just adds insult to injury. He looks like a kid with severe seizure issues. It's commendable how she managed to get Leroy to comply to this mockery by exploiting his spendthrift nature. The whole scene is beautiful, but unfortunately all for naught since Loretta is absent. It's a push, the day is still 1-1.
By this point the Lockhorns have completely resigned themselves to receiving overly invasive inspections of all their baggage and their persons. Ever the superficial showoff, Loretta decides to at least try to impress the TSA officials with her finest clothes. Although I can't really tell the difference between what she's packing and all her usual outfits, I'm sure she's packing away the more expensive purchases from her frequent shopping sprees. I don't think the airport officials will be all that dazzled though in the end. Another push and the score remains tied up at 1,
Loretta clearly should have suspected that anytime Leroy suggests a restaurant that it will somehow end badly for her. This most recent lapse in judgement has led the Lockhorns to what I suspect to be the East Meadow "Hooters" on Hempstead Turnpike. Given the ideal ambiance, I don't know why Leroy doesn't frequent "Hooters" more often. He really is the ideal type of customer for the chain. Today, he is certainly in the right place to celebrate a close Sunday Showdown victory over Loretta. It looks like he'll be in for a victorious evening of wings, beer, and bimbos. Leroy wins the day 2-1.
What would have been a slam dunk opportunity for Loretta to criticize Leroy's drinking instead gets flipped into a winning act of defiance by Leroy. It all goes to show that any personal liability can, if properly executed, be turned into an unexpected point for the enterprising spouse. To successfully pull it off you have to really own your weakness and manage to get in your line about it before the other party can make a statement. Here Leroy manages to cut Loretta off with an Arthur Bach-esque flippant acknowledgement of his own crippling alcoholism, preserving his pride and infuriating Loretta. Leroy gets the first point and goes up 1-0.
That is some comically poor golfing by Leroy. The only thing more ridiculous than his errant shot was his ludicrous attempt at playing it off, assuming Loretta wouldn't notice his golf shot went 180 degrees in the opposite direction. Although me managed to turn a moment of weakness into a point in the last panel, Leroy falls far short of another successful conversion. Loretta doesn't work all that hard here for her point, but in a situation like this, she really didn't need to put in much work. Loretta takes a point and ties the day up 1-1.
Ever the massive philistine Leroy personally rates the quality of a ballet performance based on the dancers' verticals. I do have to admit, I'd enjoy the ballet more if they incorporated the occasional 360 tomahawk slam. Loretta once again looks on in incensed disappointment as another attempt at the cultural education of Leroy crashes and burns. In addition to scoring a crucial point against Loretta, Leroy also manages to sneak in a quick commercial plug for Air Jordans; it's win-win for him. Leroy goes up 2-1.
You can almost hear the rim shot going off in the distance after Loretta drops her retort to Leroy's complaint. It's a fairly cheesy one-liner but I sort of liked it (Pullman on the other hands appears not to be all that amused). As for Loretta's supposed commitment issues, both Lockhorns have numerous personal flaws but the you cannot question their level of commitment. The fact that their marriage continues on with no merciful end in sight after countless decades and arguments shows the ironclad level of commitment between the Lockhorns. Although they are more committed to the premise of making each other miserable than maintaining their marriage out of love, one cannot deny that they have the most committed, indestructible marriage ever. Loretta gets a point and the day is tied 2-2.
Why anyone would ever accept an invite to a party hosted by the Lockhorns is baffling. In addition to the inedible food, the awkward tension of being a bystander to the Lockhorns' incessant, all night, arguing, and the possibility of being accosted by a drunken Leroy, you also have to put up with "entertainment" like the panel above. Objectively Leroy's lame ass shadow puppets may actually be a preferable alternative to listening to Loretta wail out standards while on the piano; at least you won't suffer any permanent hearing loss. Loretta comes through on the fifth panel and takes the Showdown 3-2.
It is absolutely ridiculous that Leroy, who usually watches in helpless horror was Loretta racks up massive credit card debts at the mall, suddenly decides to put his massive foot down when it comes to her frivolous use of postage stamps. Perhaps he is starting small in his ongoing attempts to curtail Loretta's reckless spending; going for a winnable, low stakes, battle and gradually working his way up to preventing larger purchases. Good luck with that one Leroy. As lame and petty as Leroy's actions here are, it still meets the standard for a point. Leroy leads 1-0.
I do enjoy that classic picture of Leroy and Loretta on their wedding day. While it's easy to understand Leroy's distinctive look of equal parts fear and disappointment, Loretta's wide smile is somewhat harder to read. She should be just as unhappy as Leroy (and it clearly can't be affection since she is physically incapable of such emotions). My guess is that her spiteful nature is so great that she is actually taking joy at the prospect of having a long unhappy marriage where both spouses will be equally miserable. Though Loretta's comments are point worthy, Leroy isn't around to capitalize. It's a push. Leroy still leads 1-0.
Loretta's ever vigilant pursuit of standing in the way between Leroy and his towering amazons is so obsessive and single-minded that Loretta is more than willing to put the lives of innocent patrons at the beach at risk by commandeering a lifeguard station for her own personal use. For all we know a child could have been carried off by a riptide while Loretta was closely monitoring Leroy. Unfortunately for Loretta, Leroy is once again nowhere to be found in the panel to absorb Loretta's insults. Perhaps Leroy is employing a new strategy of hiding to render Loretta's barbs powerless. It's another push, Leroy continues to hold a 1-0 advantage.
The subject of the Lockhorns' unhappy nuptials returns again in the fourth panel. This time both Lockhorns are present and accounted for, but it's Leroy that is pulling off a bitter put down rather than Loretta. If Leroy's comment is true then Loretta's perplexing smile in their wedding photo makes slightly more sense, since she was the one initiating the awful marriage. Was it all part of some lifelong master plan of hers to keep Leroy as unhappy as possible for the rest of his life? Leroy clutches the day with that point as he takes a 2-0 lead.
There is no explicit indication as to what Leroy's job is. All we know is that it involves wearing a tie, is in an office, and that his paycheck is laughably small. One potential profession that I considered was that he was a lawyer. Now Loretta's line about past performance guaranteeing future results, which is a major rule when it comes to attorneys advertising their past success to potential future clients seems point closer to my suspicions. Although Leroy is asleep (possibly knocked out) on the couch and most likely unaware of Loretta's comments, I am going to give her the benefit of the doubt. Playing for pride Loretta salvages a point to put the final tally at 2-1 Leroy who pulls off an subtly dominant Sunday Showdown victory.
Leroy manages to pull off a pretty impressive trick by turning his flirting with bimbos from a liability into another means of antagonizing Loretta. He doesn't even need to say the insults himself, like a skilled ventriloquist, he sets it up so it's the dummy that does the mocking while he flashes a smug, knowing smile. The only other way Leroy could have improved on this coup was if he could have convinced his toothy acquaintance that Loretta was his mother. Leroy draws first blood and takes a 1-0 lead.
So it appears that Leroy's stocks took another beating at the markets today. Fortunately during this trying setback, he has his faithful wife by his side to further kick him when he's down. I believe Loretta might have initially been aiming to make an insult about how Leroy was too dimwitted to properly read the papers, but then found herself having to make a saving improvisation when Leroy left before she could go with her original lines. Loretta gets the point, the score is tied 1-1.
The Lockhorns' bathroom is a strange, incongruous place. Its dimensions are in constant fluctuation from cozy to cavernous. You have the random appearances of their huge antique drugstore scale with the upright meter (I'm surprised the machine isn't coin-operated and shoots out fortunes on cards). Also, what is the deal with that huge bucket with the small handle in the background? As for Loretta's zinger, it is adequate but unremarkable. It's obvious where the fat collects on Leroy. Since when was Leroy's fat neck ever a prominent target? Loretta still gets the point and takes a 2-1 lead.
It is nice to see that despite the wretched state of his personal health, Leroy still maintains a sense of humor (or at least a sardonic one). I do hope he's joking, since it would be a monstrous display of medical malpractice for Leroy's doctor to actually refer him to a carpenter for shingles. On the other hand, Dr. Blog's referral may just be his way of telling Leroy that his sub par insurance plan doesn't cover his current illnesses. It's a push, Loretta still leads 2-1.
Going after Loretta's age is a bold move by Leroy. There are few things that really get to Loretta more than mocking her age. Leroy better tread carefully for the rest of the day and be extra vigilant with his meals for a while. Even the poor carnival barker knows that Leroy has hit a particularly raw nerve. Kudos to Leroy though, fortune favors the bold. It's a tough game and you have to go big if you really want to be a champion. While Leroy isn't going to win the day his clutch strike and the end ties the day up 2-2 and he manages to salvage a push.
It just doesn't get any better for Leroy than this panel. He's out on the water, enjoying a fine, leisurely day of fishing; all while making Loretta do something she dislikes and mocking her misery. I imagine heaven for Leroy to be this fishing trip going on for all eternity. Usually when faced with an unpleasant fishing excursion, Loretta manages to salvage a point by relentlessly taunting Leroy for his lack of caught fish. I can only assume that Leroy has actually been successful enough not to be the target of ridicule. Leroy kicks off the Saturday in fine form, reeling in the first point and going up 1-0.
I am not sure if Leroy is quoting a notable figure. A quick searched revealed no direct source, but it does sounds oddly familiar. I suppose it's just a common saying. For Leroy, the whole scene comes off as a bit uncharacteristically erudite (relative to what we usually get from Leroy). It's good to see him flashing some confidence as well. One thing I've learned after all these years of covering the Lockhorns is that obnoxious confidence and self assurance can often times make up for being totally on the wrong side of an argument. Leroy scores another point and runs up an early 2-0 lead.
If an individual with a notoriously long history of tax reporting issues had an interview with a presumably hostile IRS agent concerning their latest audit, one would assume they would at least put on a tie. Perhaps these meetings have become so routine and commonplace that Leroy has begun to approach them with increasing casualness. While it is unrealistic to expect much sympathy from the IRS agent, Leroy could have at least tried to show a little respect for decorum rather than dressing like Tony Montana. I'm surprised Loretta just went for the obvious "I told you so" route rather than playing fashion cop; whatever gets the points I guess. Loretta cuts the lead down to 2-1.
This scene may or may not be directly following the meeting in the previous panel with the IRS agent, from the back he looks to be wearing the same suit. I guess though that if this scene was post-interview they would likely be going downstairs rather than up. If I didn't know about Loretta's lifelong passion for making every second of Leroy's life as unpleasant as possible, it would have looked like she was trying to help motivate Leroy to have a healthier lifestyle by being more active. Loretta gets the point as she comes roaring back to tie things up at 2-2.
The black Speedo clad male diver that is so prominently featured in the center of the panel is the first example I can recall of a male "Lockhorns" character with a relatively proportional body. The length of the limbs are a bit exaggerated in that bimbo sort of way but he is far closer to a human male than Leroy or his Leroy-esque friend. Speaking of Leroy's freakish measurements, his squat round compact frame would make him a world class cannonballer. That goes the same for his doppelganger friend as well. Leroy manages to blow his commanding early lead as Loretta pulls off an impressive three panel run from the edge to, despite falling behind 0-2 early, come back to take the day 3-2.