There is something eminently pleasing about today's Hagar the Horrible. Sure, it's an antifeminist nightmare of epic proportions--sure, it is reusing the most prevalent of the comic's six jokes--but really, who isn't secretly amused by the image of Helga carefully sliding rocks beneath the sheets on her husband's side of the bed? Even more morally satisfying is that it takes Hagar a while to figure out what's going on, and then he's simply so tired that he just closes his eyes and begins to drift back into highly uncomfortable sleep.
The medieval context makes everything slightly more ominous. Why are Hagar and Helga wearing their helmets to bed? We already know that Hagar, who wears the horns proudly, is a cuckold...but Helga? Is she mocking her husband? Is she implying that she is, er, horny? Did she just forget to take the damn helmet off? Or is she lying there thinking, "I wear a helmet to bed, and you don't care! I put rocks in your bed, and you hardly notice! Maybe tomorrow I should hide my lusty young lover under the sheets. You'll get a real surprise then.*
Helga is the Wife of Bath, my friends. Soon--very soon--she will reveal her true colours. Perhaps she will even introduce a seventh joke to the comic. I can hardly wait.
*A cake! No, wait...