Building Your Own Complaint

Monday’s strip mentioned Queen Elizabeth going to the potty.


Tuesday’s strip mentioned a gay man.



What do you get when you read the Tuesday strip without the Monday strip?  Your very own complaint!



As Rat says in this strip: “My, I hate this comic strip.”  In this case I agree.  Calling gays “Queens” is very offensive to me, as a gay man.  Would you target black people by calling them “big lips”, etc.?  I didn’t think so.




I wonder what other complaints people could come up with if they took each of my strips out of context?

This could get fun.


63 thoughts on “Building Your Own Complaint

  1. It’s too damned bad you can’t work that “big lips” thing in somehow.

    Thanks for the chuckle.

  2. I didn’t even remember Monday’s strip, yet I automatically presumed that a queen who would be “royally flushing” was actual royalty, and not a homosexual. I did assume that someone would be offended, but I thought it would be the “straight flush” remark – although I couldn’t figure out why that would be offensive, since gay and straight are pretty much generally accepted terms these days. Oh well.

  3. One of your April Fool’s Day comics had the characters using a Ouiji board, and then Rat PUNCHED Pig! It not only promotes consorting with demons, but violence as well! How dare you! Be assured, I shall be reading your strip daily to be able to further express my outrage over minute details!

    (Really, my favorite strip. I own all the Treasuries.)

  4. I’m a gay man. I do not find the term “queen” to be offensive in the least, even when applied to me. Of course, I’ve matured past the level of a three-year-old, which might make a difference.

  5. I am a gay man. I missed Monday’s strip. When I read Tuesday’s strip, I laughed so hard I nearly cried!

  6. OMG, next thing you know, the guy who originally complained about ‘queens’ is going to have something to say to Freddie Mercury. Good luck with that. Hmmm. Rue Paul is still around, though …

  7. I somehow missed the Monday strip, so I did misunderstand it, too. However, I didn’t think it was offensive. I understood “queen” to mean this: “a male homosexual, typically one regarded as ostentatiously effeminate.” And that’s the definition given by the dictionary I just consulted.

    That does not appear to be offensive. Perhaps if your strip had somehow indicated that ALL gays were “ostentatiously effeminate,” I might have seen how it could bother someone. But I didn’t read it that way.

    Of course, I’m neither gay, nor royalty, so maybe you should just flush my opinion. 😉

  8. As a Caucasian, American of German descent, I will be terribly offended if nothing is included about pasty skinned, flag waving Nazi boot-steppers.

  9. apparently some folks have nothing better to do than complain about a comic strip,as if a comic strip is somehow going to affect world opinion.The folks here in Richmond were offended by Lynn Johnstons’ “for better or worse” because one strip showed the Dad asking his kid to go get him a beer.The reader somehow thought that it promoted alcoholism in teens.Amazing that the reader did not know the strip is retired,and that what they were reading is repeats,and that nobody was offended back in the 80’s when it first appeared…people will complain and whine about anything to get attention these days….rock on Stephan !!

  10. I’m gay. I’m not offended. I actually thought a “Jacks over Queens” joke would have fit in there as well. lol

  11. OMG. Just when I thought people couldn’t surprise me. Did people complain about the one where Rat finds religion, and gives up morons for Lent? One of my favorites and one I quote. But I combine it with “and mouths, they all seem to have mouths”.

  12. Off with his head! Would rat listen Queen in a future strip? Is a new character about to enter Ratoppollis?

  13. I knew the bob strip was going to get complaints. Cmon people humor is like art not everyone agrees with the definition but know it when they see it. If u don’t like something grab a sharpie and cover it. Keep up the good work stephan

  14. This guy is obviously either a politician or a Fox News journalist judging by his ability to take things out of context. Not bright enough to be reading comics.

  15. If you don’t like Pearls Before Swine you are a loser! It is THE BEST thing out there.

  16. I read PBS everyday . Never thought about the word queen meaning anything except “the Queen”. Some people REALLY need to get out more. Love the humor always. You are one of the best! P .S. To the lasr commentor, For Better Or Worse is not retired

  17. Some people just can’t see the humor…. and that’s just one of the reasons our world is so messed up. Keep up the great work!

  18. I’m horrendously off-ended. As soon as I stop laughing, I’ll try to remember why I thought I was offended.

  19. If you read the strip you know the humor and you know Pastis. Personally I’m pissed off at Stephan Pastis because he abandoned my favorite characters of all time; the Crocs. Bastard!

  20. Can’t please them all! We need good humor in this world! Keep it up! Just don’t make fun of the Irish!(HA-ha)

  21. And here I thought you were going to tell us that Queen Elizabeth was offended …

  22. I remember a parishioner using one of your comic strips in a children’s sermon. The congregation loved it, though the pastor looked a little flush.

  23. I shudder to think what the complaints will be once you get to the dead man’s hand.

  24. Please, please don’t retire. What would I read for laughs? I would be vey offended, I promise. Word play is sword play without the S.

  25. Now you will need to start writing ‘refer strip xx for complete sense’ at the footer of each comic strip.
    Most love your comics so nothing to worry about 😉

  26. Part of what’s wrong today. People can’t take a joke. Guess thin skin is in.

  27. Before this whole page completely fills with hate-filled comics, I’d like to play the devil’s advocate.

    It’s pretty obvious to Stephan and regular readers that this third panel of the comic is referencing to Queen Elizabeth (from the previous strip), and is certainly not trying to make a pass at gays. At the same time, I doubt that many of us here are homosexuals either and so do not think of the word “queen” as a slang referring to a stereotypical and derogatory depiction of gay men.

    If the guy had read the previous comic then he probably wouldn’t have sent an email over this one. But he didn’t due to whatever circumstances, so instead he misinterpreted the comic as a flippant remark toward gay people.

    This guy definitely could have phrased his email toward Stephan in a more constructive manner. However, it’s certainly not seething with the vitriolic spew that some of the commenters here are implicating. It’s just the words of a person who reacted angrily to an honest misunderstanding.

    I feel like if Stephan took the time to make this post and instead used it to explain the comic to this guy, then both sides could have had a good laugh and moved on. But now there’s a bunch of people who are falsely angry at someone they don’t even know.

    If anything, I think the person who’s most at fault for taking things out of context is you, Stephan.

  28. Pingback: Building Your Own Complaint | vishwanivishesh13

  29. Gosh, John (above), I think a cartoon asshole (sans much-needed comma) might offend me!

  30. Funny, due to being away from home on Monday, I only saw Tuesday’s strip and just didn’t think it was all that funny. Maybe the context would have helped.

  31. ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
    I’m offended by all of these other commenters. Shit, I’ve offended myself now

  32. Sorry, but until I saw someone actually refer to gay men as “Queens”, I didn’t even catch that play on words, and I suspect a lot of other people felt that way, too. You don’t know if Stephan intended that when he first drew the strip. Okay, children, how about the next time someone says “That was a left-handed remark.” or “He’s sinister.”, I get offended. I’m a natural left-hander, so if you use words like that, I promise to throw a temper tantrum, jump up and down, and throw things at the wall. Happy? Get over it!

  33. If someone finds your strip offensive then you are doing your job well. Keep up the good work.

  34. I second that motion (user mike above).
    People like you because of controversial things/comics, not because you stay in the ‘safe’ zone. If your comic was in the safe zone, it would be unknown and stay that way.
    It’s important for people to be able to laugh about themselves and more importantly it’s important that we are not afraid to talk. The PC police are the worst thing to happen to us since the gestapo.

  35. That guy’s reading into something that isn’t even there. He needs to get a life and stop thinking that the world revolves around him.

  36. People who get offended by this strip should not even read comics. If you hate royal flush or gay jokes, get a life in the real world.

  37. …Anyone who can read a Pearls strip (and I mean ALL of them) and doesn’t laugh out loud
    ( and/or P–s their pants at the same time) doesn’t have a sense of humor or has sh#t for brains…. (an’ Ah mean that sincerely …)

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