Who doesn’t read ‘em? There are 34 daily "funnies" - the archaic term I grew up with - comic strips in the Austin American Statesman. Newspapers are struggling and have cut back on news coverage, while losing the number of advertising pages. Of course, these have to be related. Yet the comic strip coverage seems to be more robust and zanier all the time. New strips apparently are designed to catch more eyeballs than this seventy-eight-year-old long-time subscriber: younger eyeballs, more diverse eyeballs. I get it. No problem. Times change. I hope print newspapers will survive. I am old fashioned and prefer to read my newspapers and my books in a favorite chair in a quiet room.
The Sunday paper continues to be the superstar in terms of comic strips. It's in color! The current collection of thirty-five (did I miscount one or the other?) in the Sunday papers are favorites of someone or they would not make the cut. To be honest, I do not read the daily strips … too small … no color … just not appealing to me. On some Sundays I look at all of them. Some only to ponder who might be the target audience; others to wonder what they even mean!
Here are my favorites. Some are long time stalwarts, and others adopted a bit more recently ... one very recently.
Prince Valiant. Ah, my long-time favorite. The current little story line is one of the best ever. Val and Gawain are outsmarting some ruffian soldiers of a rival land baron in the outer realms of the Misty Isles. They actually are assisting a warrior from this group, a man they had captured, by cleverly negotiating that they “claim his orphaned family” as a prize for slaying him after they were attacked. To be a knight of King Arthur’s Round Table must be a fantastic gig. You wear the colors and emblem of the soverign and are a trained killer with a very cool hair style and a lovely wife. There is a little catch here. You have to read it for yourself.
Peanuts. 'Nuff said. The best.
Dilbert. More 'nuff said. Stupid is what stupid does. Good for the nerds!
Wumo. I understand this maybe half of the time. Am becoming a big fan!
Doonesbury. Still more 'nuff said. To be Gary Trudeau must be every kid's dream.
Garfield. Don’cha just love clever cats!
Six out of thirty-something. Not too bad. By the way, I try and understand Phoebe and Her Unicorn. I’m either too old, too literal, or too stupid to get this one.
Stay safe everyone!
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J.K. (Jim) George
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