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In latest depressing Tom Batiuk comic, the world laughs as old man flees death

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A harmless codger comes face to face with his own demise, and the younger people around him laugh with abandon.

That haunting scenario is what constitutes humor for morbid cartoonist Tom Batiuk in Satuday's episode of "Crankshaft."

Today's comic should be full of light and air. After all, Crankshaft yesterday encountered his own aged self - visions of which have plagued readers of Batiuk's "Crankshaft" and "Funky Winkerbean" for years. And today we discover it was all in his mind (a relief except it suggests Crankshaft is starting to lose his marbles).

For the crowd assembled in the lobby, however, it's all fun and games . An elderly gent seems confused and the world roars. The only thing funny in today's "Crankshaft" is how Batiuk continues to avoid the inevitable onrush of age that will kill this comic's protagonist.

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