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Posted at 8:00 AM ET, 02/ 5/2009

What's the Steamiest Comic Strip? (Oh, So Many Contenders)

By Michael Cavna

Panting? Petting? Lip sucking and, well, more lip sucking? Just what in the name of family comics is going down around here?

Given all the libidinous hot-plot lines in comics lately, the family funnies may soon actually be "in a family way."

Thing is, we usually can rely on our cartoon coitus to be only implied. We're not even talking anything near as risque as "I Love Lucy" (twin beds!) or "Dick Van Dyke" (closer twin beds!). My stars and heavens-to-Betsy, anything racier would give us the vapors. No, mainstream comics couples have to maintain all illusion of being chaste, one foot on the comic-panel floor, even when their own (immaculately conceived?) rugrats are biting about their ankles.

But cast our innocent eyes toward "9 Chickweed Lane" and Mozart's "Magic Flute" (thanks, O eagle-eyed commenters) or the recent consummation told only through the Great Hand Dance (let lips do what hands do, indeed), and it's starting to get hot'n here.

And there's a "Gil Thorp" lip-lock -- drawn almost in proper perspective, even -- that rivals "Blondie's" latest tonsil hockey. (That's for noting that, too, O noble band of Riffians.)

And here I thought only "Doonesbury" depicted The Morning After. Any day now, I expect dear sweet Luann to appear in a booty-shaking vid, pouring Cristal on R. Kelly.

At least we can count on the ironically named Cherry Trail to remain eternally pure.

Amid all these heavy-breathing, heaving-bosom shenanigans, I pose to you the (literally) Burning Question o' the Day: What's the sexiest, steamiest comic strip appearing live-live-live on your funnypages these days? Which pushes the heat, if not readers' hot buttons? The floor is yours. So to speak.

By Michael Cavna  | February 5, 2009; 8:00 AM ET
Categories:  The Morning Line  
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Just on artistic flourish, Judge Parker has the potential. But Sam and Abby have the s*x drive of a couple of panda's, without the success.

Posted by: JkR- | February 5, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

And what, exactly, is Edda wearing there? Looks like she's going commando, too.

Posted by: marshlc | February 5, 2009 10:13 AM | Report abuse

The hottest strip visually is "Judge Parker", but we would have to return to Scottsdale and detective Heidi Hottie to have any real action. At least the new story thread promises lots of scenes of cheerleader try-outs. Rah, rah, rah!

"Luann" is a weird case. Let's see - in the last 4 months, Luann insisted that her pseudo-boyfriend take a tape measure and determine her bust size so that he could sew her a revealing "sexy witch" Halloween costume - so that she could wear it to the public library to read stories to pre-schoolers. Then, her firefighter brother posed bare-chested for a "sexy firemen" fund-raising calendar - photographed by his girlfriend. Said girlfriend, also a firefighter, insisted that he repay the favor by shooting her own barely-clad poses for the calendar, too. That thread was followed by another fund-raising scheme, this one for Luann's high school field trip to Washington, that involved the school's sexiest student, head cheerleader Tiffany, wearing a super-small bikini so that she could be plunged into a dunk tank. After Tiffany quite half-way through, Luann herself filled in (but failed to raise any more money!). She thus consented to make up the deficit by agreeing to go out on a date with a rich guy she hates, if he will donate $950 to the trip's fund. (There's a word for that.) The strange thing, though, is that no one in the strip actually **does** anything that might be construed as actual, ahem, biological interplay. It's just a non-stop tease. I would try to speculate just what is going on with that strip, but I have alread spent the last 10 minutes just recapping the (non)-action, and that fills up my "Luann contemplation" quota for the rest of 2009.

Posted by: seismic-2 | February 5, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

bravo, seismic-2. bra-vo.


Posted by: cavnam | February 5, 2009 10:45 AM | Report abuse

For continuous, months longs remance, 9 Chickweed Lane has the prize, hands down. It is one of my favorites. Judge Parker was even leading to out of marriage stuff..but it is a family, so much for that! I just never thought of Louann as steamy...but then there is the nerd who loves her.

Posted by: ZeldaJane | February 5, 2009 10:46 AM | Report abuse

And look at today's "9 Chickweed Lane", where Amos is holding his cello so as to conceal the, um, uplifting effect of the "little good-luck kiss" Edda gave him just before he took the stage.

Posted by: greggwiggins | February 5, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

While I wouldn't call it the steamiest, nookie has been a storyline in Watch Your Head lately including a flirting with using the f-bomb a week or so ago.

Posted by: Mrhode | February 5, 2009 12:09 PM | Report abuse

9 Chickweed Lane is obviously much more overt, but for good old-fashioned raunch, you can't beat Arlo and Janis, which has featured jokes about threesomes, bondage and other things you wouldn't expect in a "family" newspaper strip. For which I say God bless 'em.

Posted by: stewartflamingo | February 5, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Arlo and Janis is the smuttiest strip in print.

Posted by: yellojkt | February 5, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

The most purely sexual strip is Brooke McEldowney's (9 Chickweed author) web-only strip "Pibgorn", which has attracted quite an online following. Hard to top a beautifully-drawn comic concerning a pretty fairy & a randy succubus as it's main stars...

Posted by: Nautiker | February 5, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure you know that possibly steamy strips are put on the "Arlo and Janis" page on the CIDU site.

Posted by: MAL9000 | February 5, 2009 7:15 PM | Report abuse

I've been following Chickweed Lane closely for years, and the Magic Flute reference is wonderful, as is the entire storyline. What a great talent. As is the sexing-up of Edda. I have never heard of Arlo and Janis, but I will very shortly see what's up. Um. Brooke McEldowney's great talent reminds me of Shary Flenniken's Trots'n'Bonnie of yesteryear. Anyone else? Of course, Trots'n'Bonnie as penned could NEVER have run in regular dailies. But, still, it was so well draughted, it was a delight to read. McEldowney is her heir.

Posted by: CitizenGeorge | February 8, 2009 4:47 AM | Report abuse

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