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Brenda Starr to end on January 2

Brenda Starr, the 70 year old comic created by Chicago Tribune columnist Dale Messick, is set to retire on January 2. The strip is currently produced by another Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich and drawn by June Brigman. According to the Chicago Tribune, the two creators opted to end their association with the strip and Tribune Media, who syndicates the strip, opted not to find replacements.

“There’s sadness about stopping, but no regret and no ambivalence,” Schmich said. “It came to me really clearly that I was done. ? I don’t think the character is dead. But the comic strip in this form is.”

The Tribune also reports that the first volume of a collection is due out next June and that the Brenda Starr character may live on in graphic novels.

Community Comments

#1 Tom Heintjes
@ 8:53 am

Wow…sad but not surprising. TMS is pulling the plug on some venerable properties…Brenda and Annie foremost among them. I hope they can properly handle their younger ones. (Brewster Rockit is particularly good.) Best of luck to June Brigman, a great talent!

#2 Rob Cabrera
@ 9:02 am

Silo Roberts’s red-haired, newspaper journalist mom was partly inspired by Brooke Shields’ portrayal of Brenda Starr. I know that’s obscure and completely random, but it’s true.

#3 R Pyle
@ 10:39 am

Dang it. I never forgave whatever syndicate it was for ending Winnie Winkle. Now this.

#4 Darryl Heine
@ 2:41 pm

In June it was Annie, in January Brenda Starr retires. But what are the chances the Tribune syndicate may retire in 2011 or 2012 Dick Tracy or Gasoline Alley?

#5 Jeff Stanson
@ 11:36 pm

Tribune gets rid of Michaels and his ilk, and also sends Annie and Brenda Starr out as well. I wonder if TMS will last much longer.

#6 Rich Diesslin
@ 1:51 am

How many papers were Annie and Brenda Starr in? Was it a tough decision or an inevitable one (or perhaps both)?

How many papers run Dick Tracy and Gasoline Alley?

R Pyle, I feel your pain. ;)

#7 Andreas Eriksson
@ 9:50 am

Brenda Starr was in “about three dozen newspapers around the world” according to:,0,7423887.column

#8 Walter Lilly
@ 3:28 pm

…Gasoline Alley , as of now , appears to be starting to work up to Uncle Walt’s death !!!!!!! Perhaps after that happens , they’ll spend six months or so – three?? – winding it down ?

#9 Rich Diesslin
@ 3:52 pm

@Andreas – thanks for the info. That may answer the other question then as well.

#10 Jimmy Delach
@ 5:56 pm

Re: Winnie Winkle,

Tribune Co. was the syndicate that ran Winnie from beginning to end.

At least the Chicago Tribune is able to run Brenda Starr up to the end unlike former Tribune strips like Gasoline Alley, Winnie and Annie. Tribune only has Dick Tracy as far as ancient Tribune strips go (they also have Shoe but that is a King Features strip now).

#11 Jimmy Delach
@ 12:32 am

Checking the demo e-Edition for the Chicago Tribune (11/14), the paper currently runs three Tribune strips (Brenda Starr, Dick Tracy and Broom-Hilda whose stay is being determined by a vote) and two former Tribune strips (Shoe and Mister Boffo).

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