News Briefs for April 16, 2009

Comic Strips

» Doonesbury creator Gary Trudeau has a piece in Monday’s New Yorker (now available online). It’s an “unedited transcript of the complete G-20 Summit coverage of Roland Hedley, senior Twitter correspondent for Fox News, who appears regularly in ‘Doonesbury’.”

» Chuck Barney interviews Dilbert creator Scott Adams on what keeps Scott going after 20 years.

“I have to admit that it doesn’t meet my wildest dreams only because I’ve got pretty wild dreams,” he says before sharing details of a phone call he had years ago with Charles Schulz in which the late cartoonist mentioned that the billionth “Peanuts” greeting card had just been sold.

“That’s a billion with a ‘b.’ And that’s just one (licensing) category,” Adams marvels. “Think about it: What other artist has ever done anything that had a ‘b’ in it for billion? There’s nothing that approaches that. His estate will probably make more in one year than what I make in my whole career. There’s success and then there’s success.”

» Richard Thompson is now selling t-shirts. At least one. Richard is up for Best comic strip at this year’s NCS Reuben Award weekend for his comic Cul de Sac.

» Pooch Cafe creator Paul Gilligan has posted his submission for this year’s NCS best comic strip division award. The nominations went to Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine), Richard Thompson (Cul de Sac), and Mark Tatulli (Lio).

» Brian Crecente writes on the Kotaku blog that Matt Groening has trademarked Life in Hell for a potential video game. Brian admits that “Groening seems to have a habit of trademarking the strip for things he doesn’t plan to do with it and I think that this may be a red herring.”


» Vauro Senese, a popular Italian cartoonist was dismissed by the state run television company RAI after a cartoon criticizing the Italian government after last weeks earthquake. The cartoon was deemed, “offensive to victims” of the earthquake.

» A Japanese woman stole 800 original cartoons from the office of the late Masamichi Yokoyama in late December 2007. The cartoons were from the Yaruki Manman comic series that ran in an evening newspaper. They stolen cartoons are valued at 4 million yen. The unemployed, homeless woman sold the drawings to a second-hand book store. She was arrested last week.

» Roy Pelovello reports for the Manila Standard Today that Filipino legislative committees have approved a bill outlawing child-pornography (known as hentai) in comic art. Under the bill, any comics that “refers to any representation of a child below 18 years of age, engaged in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child primarily for sexual purposes” is punishable with prison, a fine or both.

Gag/Panel Comics

» I forgot to mention that Mark Anderson’s hometown paper did a write-up on his journey to full-time employment as a cartoonist.


», the remains of the now closed Seattle Post-Intelligencer, has competition from a start-up news site called which is partnered with The Seattle Weekly and with public television station KCTS and is now home to several former Seattle P-I writers.

» Sam Zell now calls buying Tribune Co. a “mistake.” I’m sure there are a number of us who could have told him that years ago.


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