As a devoted reader of what used to be called “the funnies,” I have two comments to make about yours.

Mark Trail of the eponymous strip is an environmental writer who often does battle with poachers and land developers. So far, so good. We are in Maine, after all.

But in the current plot, having driven out in what appeared to be a Hummer for a tour of his land trust, he is being chased by a bear, and a black bear at that. “Exit pursued by a bear” is a famous Shakespearean stage direction, but that shark has been jumped.

As for the equally venerable “Beetle Bailey” strip, its tropes date to the ’50s of the last century: the fat sergeant, the goofball private, the alcoholic general ogling his secretary, etc. Again, so far so good, at least for those of us with a memory of the immortal Sergeant Bilko. (If you had any younger readers, they would be as puzzled as a hipster with an eight-track cassette.)

But without putting too fine a point on it, there is the question of good taste. Would anybody object if General Halftrack and the whole lame crew were to retire, taking with them thanks of a grateful nation?

Laurence Pope

Portland