Tuesday, November 25, 2003
So unoffensive it's offensive
Berkeley Breathed: The good news about Hart's Islam-is-poo strip is that at least you know a real human has shown up for work, with his strip. The paper is littered with cartoonists too, well, deceased to actually participate in their own strip. It's a pity because there's a rather agitated bunch of very alive cartoonists that are waiting for their space to show us what a little passionate cartooning can be.
So it seems that Berkeley Breathed is returning to the world of comics, and pulling a page out of the Bill Watterson playbook, is demanding that is Sunday-only strip be given half a page. He also has a few choice comments about the current state of newspaper comics (some of which are probably shared by Bill Watterson).
I found myself outside a local diner for lunch, and decided to see just how bad the comics could be. Paid my 50¢ (ouch! When did newspapers get so expensive?), pulled out the comic section and read.
Ouch. That was 50¢ wasted.
Quiz time: The following dialog between two characters (named “A” and “B” to mask their true identities) occurred in which strip?
A: Sometimes I wonder why anyone hosts a big Thanksgiving meal … What with all the preparation beforehand and all the service during dinner, you hardly have time to enjoy either the meal or the company. Which leads me to my idea …
B: Unless it's “Why not put an extra cup of almond slivers on the green beans,” let's discuss it after the holiday.
- Hi & Lois
- The Family Circus
- Sally Forth
- Apartment 3-G
One you can reject outright—The Family Circus—too much dialog (today's Family Circus strip: Billy walking with a football under his arm, saying “Don't tackle me. I'm not playin' a game. I'm putting the football away.” Ho-ho-ho what a knee slapper that was!). So what's the answer?
Um … oh yea! Looking at the newspaper, the witty repartee was between Ted (“A”) and Sally (“B”) from “Sally Forth.”
All of the strips were so unoffensive that I was offended by their unoffensiveness. And Breathed is right—there are comics that should be dropped to make room for new ones. Blondie has been in newspapers for 73 years—it should be pulling Social Security right now. United Features is running still running Peanuts, although they're repeats from 1971. And Beetle Bailey has been running since, what? World War II? (Today's strip: “Coffee Gizmo?” “Don't put the cup on [the computer]! I want to keep her nice and shiny. You never know who's going to log in.” Oh, my sides! My sides!)
I think I'll stick with Sluggy Freelance for now …