The Family Circus torments Philadelphia

Comic strips are supposed to have jokes. Four panels, a few recurring, main characters, a pithy observation on the banalities of Mondays, and boom. You read it, at BEST you get a smile on your face, and then you throw the comic section into the garbage and move on with your life.

For close to 200 years (estimated) Family Circus has been terrorizing readers with the quirks of the Keane family; parents Bil and Thelma, and children Billy, Dolly, Jeffy, and P.J. and a one-panel strip that is high on Christianity and low on jokes.

A typical Family Circus involves a soft pun, a bible passage, and a shot of their long deceased grandfather looking lovingly down at the family from heaven. Strip after strip, pun after pun, dead grandparent after dead grandparent, it goes on, and on, and on, and on.

Does that sound entertaining? Something you’d enjoy reading every single morning since the strip’s debut on Feb. 29, 1960? If it does, than buckle up motherfuckers because I have big news.

Family Circus brought it’s HILARIOUS off-kilter brand of comedy to the City of Brotherly love for a week of vacation strips as the Keane family visited Philadelphia.

Strap in as we look at the Keane’s pilgrimage to Philadelphia and hold on to your funny bones, you don’t want to bust a gut laughing at these absolute gems.


Two things about this strip. One, show me ANYWHERE in the city where such a sign like this exists. Already off on shaky footing, Jeff Keane, but I suppose I’ll suspend disbelief for just a moment.

Two, you’re seven year’s old, Billy, it’s not that hard to spell. Maybe a little less Bible study and a little more cracking those spelling books so you can get caught up to grade level, dumb dumb.


Not to be outdone, Dolly joins in on the stupidity. You’re just embarrassing yourself, Dolly. Do you really think it’s a fucking doll of William Penn, or even the real William Penn who has been dead and buried for more than 200 years? When do her parents realize that her prattlings are less cute and more evident of some serious psychological damage?


Not seen: Thelma cracking Billy across the face for his CONSTANT back talk. Nobody likes a smartass, which is probably why so many other tourists turned a blind eye to the blatant incident of child abuse.


She probably wouldn’t, Jeffy. You’re three years old, you’re not going to be playing in the street unless your parents secretly wanted to see you trip on the cobblestones and split your skull open, which is what 99% of this strip’s readers hope for every morning they subject themselves to this nonsense.


Billy, you little shit. Eat your gyro and just leave your poor parents alone for TWO MINUTES.


You’re 3-years-old, Jeffy. Your stilted speech patterns and childish mispronunciations of simple words should be setting off warning bells in your parents heads that you’re suffering from some fairly severe learning disabilities.


Just horrendous parenting. These kids are going buck wild as their clearly checked out mom and dad pretend they don’t exist. They’re not even keeping tabs on their 1-year-old, who is moments away from being taken in by DYFS due to a clear case of neglect.


Wait a second….this looks familiar.

You’ll be hearing from my lawyer, Keane.


The Keane family takes in a Center City Sips event and blend in perfectly. By the way, where is Dolly getting all of these pennants from? That’s like the 20th different Philadelphia-centric pennant she’s had through this run.


Oh you’re going to fucking get it, Billy. Just keep complaining, see what happens. You remember what happened in front of the Betsy Ross House? You just keep testing me, boy.


SHE SAID SCRAPPLE, YOU LITTLE FUCK. Oh my god is this trip almost over? Daddy is unseen in this strip, most likely sleeping off an incredible hangover after stumbling home from Delilah’s at 2 a.m. when he couldn’t take hanging out with Billy any longer. Billy, you’re ripping this family apart with your “humorous” observations.

When does the strip reveal that the plane they were flying to Philadelphia international airport actually crashed in a rural Pennsylvania cornfield, killing everyone onboard, and that this “trip” is just Keane’s hellish view of what the afterlife really is? A tortured span in Limbo to wash away the family’s sins before ascending into heaven? Or, has this all just been the last desperate synapse firings of little Billy’s brain as the plane hurtles out of control to the ground, imagining the final vacation he’ll never get to see as the travelers scream in panic and fear in their last moments on earth?

Either way, enjoy all the city has to offer, Keane family!

You can probably find a Phillies pennant or two by clicking the links below.

Shop Philadelphia  Phillies gear at!

Shop Philadelphia  Phillies gear at!

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