Can someone explain today's Dilbert cartoon, in particular explain what "sticking the landing" means?

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2 Answers 2


'Stick the landing' is from gymnastics, when people pull off a tricky move and land neatly on both feet, properly balanced and with a flourish of the arms that communicates 'I did exactly what I intended to do'. It's like a whole-body 'QED'.

From Wiktionary

stick the landing (third-person singular simple present sticks the landing, present participle sticking the landing, simple past and past participle stuck the landing)

(sports) To complete a gymnastic or other athletic routine involving leaps, vaults, somersaults, etc. by landing firmly, solidly, and flawlessly on one's feet.

(aviation, astronautics) To execute a flawless landing (of an aircraft, rocket, or space capsule).

(idiomatic, by extension) To complete a process in an impressive and conclusive manner.

So in context, the character in green (Who I am gratefully advised by @PatDobson is called ‘Wally’) wishes to spend the rest of his life as a coffee-swilling blob of organic matter.

EDIT: I'm actively choosing not to address what the author may or may not have meant by referencing a DNA test. The test functions as the set up for the joke, and readers may bring whatever sub-text to the idea of DNA testing being used in the workplace according to their own world view without it affecting the joke.

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    For more context, Wally is consistently characterized in the strip as avoiding work as much as possible. If he had gotten promoted, he would be expected to do more work. See: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wally_(Dilbert)
    – Milo P
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 18:00
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    Likewise, Catbert is a red fictional cat, and the "evil director of human resources" in the Dilbert comic strip. Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 18:33
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    “a whole-body 'QED'.” I love this! Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 20:46
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    @JoshuaGrossoReinstateCMs If you think of Simone Biles sticking a landing, you just feel her radiating ‘it was to be proved, and I did’ vibes.
    – Spagirl
    Commented Feb 28, 2022 at 21:23
  • Or alternatively "All according to keikaku*" *keikaku means plan
    – justhalf
    Commented Mar 1, 2022 at 15:31

Regarding 'Stick the landing', Spagirl gave a good answer. As for the first square, this is probably a reference to diversity hires. (A recent famous incident of that happened with Elizabeth Warren in 2018: she took a DNA test that showed that she had some Native American DNA which may have helped her advance in Harvard.) Wally appears to be a white male, and as per the first square, does not have enough diverse DNA.

The author has spoken against diversity hires before, so that is my interpretation of what he meant in the first panel. I am not sure how else to interpret "DNA -> do not promote".

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    Are you saying that the genes that Elizabeth Warren inherited from a Native American ancestor may have helped her advance in Harvard? That seems like a strange claim to make. Do you have some reasoning or evidence to support that? Commented Mar 1, 2022 at 16:43
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    U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren claimed to be ethnically Native American, including on her application to Harvard and related documents. That seemed to some, especially among her political detractors, to have been a misrepresentation for personal gain (admission, scholarships, ...). She ultimately published the results of a DNA test that showed her to have probable Native American Heritage -- but no closer than about ten generations back. Warren touted this as confirmation of her claim. Her critics pretty much took it as confirmation of misrepresentation for personal gain. Commented Mar 1, 2022 at 22:01
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    The author has spoken against diversity hires before twitter.com/ScottAdamsSays/status/1277667276573954049 so that was my interpretation of what he meant in the first panel. I am not sure how else to interpret "DNA -> do not promote".
    – HanMah
    Commented Mar 2, 2022 at 18:50
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    I interpreted it as a goofy send-up of two workplace trends: intrusive health/wellness programs, and the use of invalid and/or irrelevant personality tests in employee development. Commented Mar 3, 2022 at 13:33
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    I'm not sure this actually answers the question. It seems to be trying to answer a question that wasn't asked.
    – Beska
    Commented Mar 3, 2022 at 21:14

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