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Terminal Lance #356 “Body Composition Program”


EDIT: The original strip said he had a “thick neck,” which is incorrect since having a “thin neck” would actually be less desirable for body taping standards. I updated the strip to reflect this.

I’ve never met a Marine in BCP (Body Composition Program) that actually felt like he was supposed to be there. People end up in BCP for a variety of reasons, but generally because they’re overweight and need to improve their physique. This probably doesn’t seem like a generally “Terminal Lance” stance to take on this, but I am a proponent of the idea that Marines should generally be in good shape.

Of the many disappointments and failed expectations I had joining the Marine Corps, being in shape was not one of them. Marines fight wars, and if I can’t fireman carry your ass because it’s too fat, that is a genuine problem. I’m not typically one to fat-shame, but I would argue that the Marine Corps is an appropriate place for such a thing. You’re literally getting paid to stay in shape. PFT’s and CFT’s may seem trivial, but they serve the greater purpose of making sure you’re fit to actually do your job (mostly speaking in infantry terms).

In any case, being in BCP is certainly embarrassing and a hassle, but just stick it out and get past it.

As for the comic itself, this is just mostly what I imagine BCP is like. I never had the problem of being overweight, my body type actually loses weight if I don’t consistently work out to maintain it. I suppose I’m lucky in that regard. The First Sergeant in the comic is inspired by one of my old First Sergeants, Michael Burke, who is now a Sergeant Major.

You might have noticed there was no new comic on Friday. My mom was in town for the holiday so I figured I would try and take a bit of time off for her sake since I hadn’t seen her in almost a year. In any case, we should be back and running at least until Christmas and New Year when I plan on trekking up to Portland to visit home. Busy times right now, trying desperately to get The White Donkey out the door, among other projects in the works as well.

On another note, if you’re an active duty infantry Marine and a decent writer with a sense of humor, shoot me an email.


Infantry Marine turned Combat Artist turned animator turned bestselling author turned dad.

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