The field day finger isn’t usually the middle finger, but it sure feels like a fuck you.

Anyone who’s ever had to field day knows what this is (e.g.: literally every Marine, ever). This finger is the difference between packing it up and changing into civvies for the night’s shenanigans, or busting out the Windex again to wipe down every surface in existence. Staff NCO’s have a rather sorcerous ability to find dirt and grime in places you didn’t even know existed in your tiny room. You’d think cleaning a 10×10 room with three people would be a fairly quick event, but Field Day is a momentous weekly occasion that brings dread and sorrow to all those involved.

Of course, Field Day in the Marine Corps doesn’t mean the same thing it does in the civilian world. Like many otherwise normal and already-named things, it has its own silly Marine Corps idiomatic assignment. It simply means to clean the shit out of your room. Generally, Field Day is every Thursday, so that everyone can leave on Friday with minimal fuck-fucking. Of course, that rarely happens, you’ll probably still be on standby for no apparent reason until 1900 on Friday.

For your weekend liberty brief, I’m going to turn it over to your First Sergeant. First Sergeants reading this, please text everyone in your company a simple “I love you.” Screenshot it and send it my way for the lulz. You might even win a prize.

Ever since I started this comic, I’ve received notes and emails wondering why I had never done a comic about “Charms.” For those of you not in the know, Charms were once considered a great evil in the MRE dessert lineup. In the early days of Iraq and Afghanistan, it was said that anyone who consumes the wretched sweets would unleash a Pandora’s Box of sour luck. One Charm could wipe out an entire platoon, so it was best to throw them away.

Of course, the reason I never did a comic about this is because Charms weren’t in MRE’s by the time I got into the Corps. To me, aside from watching it in Generation Kill (great show), it seemed kind of irrelevant to my Marine Corps experience.

However, the Marine Corps has even changed since I left it. This is nothing unexpected of course, and I like to think that Terminal Lance has done a good job of staying with the curve and being at the top of the social media game. If you don’t already, follow the Terminal Lance Facebook page for daily random submissions from across the Corps. I think most of the best content comes from you guys, and I always love seeing the random shit that bored Marines come up with. I never throw anyone under the bus, so if you message me something and want to remain anonymous, that’s totally fine with me.

In the meantime, we’re trying out some new stuff with the ads (specifically on mobile), so please bear with me. The ads can be annoying but they’re necessary to keep the site going.

I’m still working on The White Donkey, but when it’s done I plan on jumping into a lot of new things. I feel like I’ve been so caught up in this project that it’s been hard for me to focus on the fan service I used to, which really sucks. I get a ton of questions about the book all the time, which is great, but mostly it’s about how to purchase it. The book will be available to purchase online, when it’s available. Backers will get it first, but it should go up for sale shortly after.

If you’re reading this and you have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, The White Donkey is a graphic novel I started writing in 2010. It stars Abe and Garcia, and is a realistic take on the Marine Corps experience and their deployment to Iraq. I don’t have a release date yet, but keep checking back here soon.

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Poor First Sergeant.

It’s not his fault that the Marines don’t like him. Gunny gets it easy, he gets to sit in his office all day and acquire cool shit for the Marines. He rarely wastes your time in formation, and when he does give a libo brief, it’s short and hilarious. First Sergeant has the dubious honor of being the company’s Green Weenie representative. No one wants to talk to him, because generally talking to him means you’re in some kind of trouble.

Any time the company CO has bad news? He sends First Sergeant out to break it to the platoons. Gunny doesn’t give you guys bad news, Gunny just takes care of you. Leave gets cancelled? That’s not Gunny’s fault, he’s not the one approving leave requests. Gunny tells you to go on a working party? Don’t blame him, he’s just doing what the CO and First Sergeant told him to do.

Everyone loves Gunny.

Gunnery Sergeant (Gunny) in an infantry company is probably the best rank. There’s only one of you (usually) and you’re too high for anyone to bother you but not high enough to really take the blame for anything. You spend all day trying to hook Marines up with new gear and less shitty field conditions so everyone basically loves you. Additionally, somehow, Gunny’s are always genuinely funny to listen to. It’s like they attend a comedy workshop after picking up rank just to keep everyone loving them.

Gunny is your friend, it’s First Sergeant that’s a dick.

In other news, there was no update on Tuesday because we were having some site issues, mostly related to the ads. Again, if you experience any redirects or videos with sound or anything, please email me or let me know on the Facebook fan page, Twitter or whatever else I’m on.

For your weekend liberty brief, I’m going to refer you to your company Gunny. Please text your company Gunny and let him know that Terminal Lance told him to give you a liberty brief.

Lance Corporals are amazing animals when they’re on their game, but they have to know what you’re talking about. Sometimes it’s important to break things down for them to understand in a language that makes sense.

Lance Corporals don’t measure time in the same way that most people do. You see, regular people use a series of numbers to illustrate the passage and display of time. However, the world of the Lance Corporal is very different, as measuring time in such a way is irrelevant to their way of life. For them, there are three “tent-pole” moments of the day, and everything else falls in between there somewhere.

  • Morning Chow
  • Afternoon Chow
  • Evening Chow

Keep in mind, no one calls these breakfast, lunch or dinner; this is chow. To measure time more incrementally, we use “jacks,” which is how many times one can masturbate (give or take). Smokes, a pinch, and for the evening it’s usually measured in beers or (god willing) fucks.

Jokes aside, I want to take a moment to offer my condolences to the families and friends of the four Marines that were slain yesterday in Tennessee. These are their names, may they rest in peace.

  • Lance Cpl. Skip Wells
  • Gunnery Sgt. Thomas Sullivan
  • Staff Sgt. David Wyatt
  • Sgt. Carson Holmquist

I considered doing a comic about the event, and even not doing a comic at all today. However, the show must go on, and if I know Marines as well as I think I do, I’m sure they would just want us to try and carry on the best we can.

On a totally unrelated admin note, we’re still trying to track down the trouble ads on the site so we can remove them. Let me know if any of the ads give you issues (like sound, redirects, etc).

Have you ever noticed that Staff NCO’s seem to live off of coffee? Clad with a coffee mug in-hand nearly 24/7, you’d be hard pressed to find a set of rockers not hopped up on the glorious brown bean’s black life juice.

Scientists have recently discovered, however, that First Sergeants and above don’t actually have “coffee” in their mugs. Rather, they’re specially trained in the cold brewing process of collecting the tears of Lance Corporals and below with the employment of their black, frostbitten hearts hidden deep within their chest cavities.

They say it can take up to an entire 24 hours to collect a mug full of tears from a single Lance Corporal, but with enough anger, green-weenie buttfucking and malice, some can do it as fast as 5 minutes. Have you ever had a leave request that you waited to get approved for weeks, flying your entire family out to spend a nice time together after being assured it would go through, only to have it coldly denied? Have you ever had to stand by in the barracks while your girlfriend waited for you off-base for 7 hours, only to have liberty secured at the last minute?

These are cold-brewing techniques that First Sergeants and above use to collect the tears they need to thrive. Caffeine is addicting on its own, but fucking over Lance Corporals and below gives them a fucking boner.

If there’s anything to be said about the “Guide” in boot camp, it’s that he’ll tell you about it for the rest of his fucking life.

For those of you unfamiliar, the boot camp platoon Guide is the top ranked position amongst recruits. That is to say, if you were a turd in a pile of shit, you’d be the turd that looks good and actually has to talk to the asshole all day. (This metaphor works better than I thought it would)

The Guide’s general responsibilities are to carry around the platoon flag (guidon), and act like a total douche to the rest of the recruits in your platoon. My guide was a POG reservist, whose only real redeeming quality was that he could run a 300 PFT. Impressive stuff, but he unq’d on the rifle range and barely acquired a ‘Pizza Box’ by the end of it. I’m sure, however, while those of us that were active duty infantry went off to our units and onto further adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan, he went home and told all of the women he could that he was the guide in boot camp.

For my own part, I had the best billet in all of MCRD. I was the “Artist Recruit,” which meant I got to skate out of a lot of stuff and draw things. I’ll take that any day over being the guide.

On a side note, I’ve been having some issues with the ads on the site. If you get redirected please let me know, as well as any details about it (like the URL you get redirected to, brand, etc). The ads are a necessary evil, but I absolutely don’t want anything going on that is detrimental to reading the comic.

People join the military for a multitude of reasons, some of them are looking for adventure, others are looking to jumpstart their careers with real world experience in a professional field. As a grunt, preparing your resume after you get out is one of the hardest things to do, if you don’t already know what you want to do.

In my case, I knew I was going to use my GI Bill and go to school (which all of you should do anyway).

However, it would seem that the infantry isn’t exactly a marketable skill unless you plan on being a cop or some such. In reality, that is selling the experience a little short. The infantry itself teaches you a lot, and if you deployed to a combat zone, you have experience that is deeper than bullet notes on a sheet of nice paper. Still, it’s hard for grunts to quantify it accurately and give themselves credit for the things that they did learn. Infantry Marines make great leaders in any industry, you just have to know how to sell yourself.

As for TAPS itself, I didn’t find it particularly helpful in my specific case. I knew I was going to be an artist. TAPS and the Marine Corps itself doesn’t exactly cater itself to that idea, but the Post 9/11 GI Bill is a godsend. Even if you’re not like me and you have no idea what to do, just go to school for free until you figure it out. It buys you another 4 years of free rent while you figure your shit out, at the very least.

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On a side note, this strip was previously published in the Marine Corps Times newspaper, so apologies if you’ve seen it before.

On another side note, I want to also give a shout out to VeerOut Dynamics for doing such a great job with the Terminal Lance official store over the last 6 months or so. The business is owned and operated by a Marine, and recently launched a Kickstarter to help provide shirts to under privileged kids. Check it out!

As many of you embark on your 96 hours of liberty on this fine American holiday, I want you to remember the rich history of America’s separation from the British.

So basically, the British sent a bunch of disgruntled Lance Corporals out to the new world with no Staff NCO or officer supervision. They saw how awesome it was, from the beautiful and vast vistas of the American plains to the hot, dark-skinned local girls and decided that they really didn’t want to go back. This shit was awesome. Why would they?

So on July 4th, 1776, LCPL Thomas Jefferson went into IPAC and picked up his DD-214. All of his buddies from his platoon saw it and thought it was rad as shit, so they all signed it. They stayed in America, got drunk as fuck, stopped drinking tea and switched to coffee because tea is for pussies.

This weekend we celebrate the most glorious EAS date of all time.

America’s.

Afterward, America and the British fought over their VA benefits for like 8 years. Using his GI Bill, LCPL George Washington got his degree (Badassery, BFA) and became the first President of the United States.

Have fun this weekend. Watch stuff blow up. Enjoy a Samuel Adams.

America.

Sit down. Your mom and I have talked about it, and we’ve decided that it’s time for you to learn about where safety briefs come from.

You see, when a Marine and a bad idea love each other very much, sometimes they… share a special hug. Sometimes this special hug results in chaos and things catching on fire, or maybe someone ends up dead or pregnant. Either way, this is the start of a new safety brief. It’s beautiful and magical, as some POG scrapes together a PowerPoint full of misspelled words and clip art at the last minute for an angry Lieutenant Colonel.

The birth of a Safety Brief

A New Safety Brief is Born at Mackie Hall

Have you ever noticed that whenever a Marine fucks up, it’s never his fault? There’s a total lack of self awareness when it comes to guys who continually fuck up, which is probably why they continually fuck up. I remember being recalled on a Saturday morning for an impromptu formation at the behest of our platoon sergeant, because someone got into a fight at a bar the night prior.

Said Marine arrives to formation, still hungover, looks around and says aloud, “Oh this is bullshit, I’m not standing around waiting for Staff Sergeant for this.”

He was the sole reason the entire platoon was there, in civies, waiting on Staff Sergeant.

We all wanted to punch him.

Some people just can’t help it. Some people are just that guy.

A historic and landmark Supreme Court decision was made this morning regarding the legalization of same sex marriage across the country. In case you haven’t heard, same sex marriage is now legally recognized across the land! Rainbow flags rejoice!

Don’t worry though, the Curse of the Dependapotamus cares not whether you are gay or straight. It starts the same. You marry young, in love (or just a convenient way for both of you to improve your living standards), you get to move out of the barracks and have awesome sex every night while your friends are field daying. It almost seems to good to be true, until the Curse starts to creep in. Your spouse starts gaining weight rapidly, and they’re upset because they think you don’t find them attractive anymore. They buy a puppy, but they’ve never had a dog before and they really have no idea what they’re doing, but that doesn’t stop them. The dog is shitty, untrained, pisses on everything and barks at everyone. The next thing you know, you’re coming home to a house smelling of animal excrement and suddenly there’s a child–then another–and maybe even a third. You max out your credit cards trying to keep your life afloat, only to find that your spouse has been having an illustrious affair with your POG neighbor the entire time you were deployed.

Somehow, this will even happen to gay Marines.

Surprisingly (or not at all surprisingly), the military and specifically the Marine Corps have been extremely progressive in their handling of same-sex affairs. Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell was repealed a few years back, and everyone knew it was already gay anyway. This NCIS poster alone should give you an indication that the military has been more progressive than the average civilian populace over the last few years.

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On the other subject of the Dependapotamus, the Military Times recently did a piece about the subject of “Dependa Abuse.” I was interviewed for the article and I stand by everything I said. Obviously, I write and draw comics that are meant to get a laugh. This is not abuse, and I’m not going to stop any time soon. It’s one thing to make a joke out into the void, it’s another thing to seek people out and spout vitriol to them on Facebook or otherwise. Don’t be an asshole.

Additionally, I defend all of my Dependapotamus work simply because I make comics based on observational humor. I didn’t invent the Dependapotamus, it is a creature that exists in all of its profane glory whether I am here or not. We have all seen it, repeatedly, which is why it is funny. It is truly unfortunate that good spouses get dragged through the mud because of some unsavory wives, but every Marine in the Corps has seen it, and you would be lying if you said you hadn’t. I make generalizations out of observation, it is the nature of what I do. The marriage system in the military is ultimately flawed, by encouraging young people to get married before they even know themselves with generous incentives.

Anyone that thinks gay marriage ruins the sanctity of marriage has never seen a Marine contract marry a stripper for BAH.

In the end, of course my Dependapotamus jokes don’t apply to every military wife. That’s not the point.