While We’ve Been Distracted By Royalty…

While we’ve been distracted by royalty of the British and cartooning kinds the world continued to spin. Here we do some catching up. But before we move on from cartoon royalty…

10 Funniest The Far Side Comics, According To Reddit

One of the inspirations for Gary Larson’s popular recurring characters was just honored by his past students. It seems that Larson had David Webb as a science teacher, and it’s in class where he sketched out some of his earliest comics.

© Gary Larson

From his invention of new words to his hilarious lampooning of day-to-day events, Larson’s magnum opus has never failed to make readers laugh or scratch their heads in confusion. Though all his strips are funny in their own way, users on Reddit took to the site to mention the ones that still have them giggling today.

ScreenRant lists 10 of the “funniest” Far Side cartoons, though they admit “there is nothing inherently funny” about some.  It is more a list of the most famous Far Side cartoons.


Batiuk Befuddlement

I admit to not being totally aware of the relationships between Tom Batiuk‘s Crankshaft and Funky Winkerbean comic strips. But after both strips used the same joke a two Sundays ago, and both are currently featuring similar blond couples, I found myself in a state of confusion.

Crankshaft © Mediagraphics, Inc.; Funky Winkerbean © Batom, Inc.

Joseph Nebus explains my bewilderment is justified.

Now, movie star Mason Jarre and his partner Cindy Summers have ventured over from Funky Winkerbean and it sure seems obliterated the ten-year gap between the events of Funky Winkerbean and of Crankshaft. (Since 2008, both strips have taken place in “the present”, but one was ten years behind the other. So characters from Funky Winkerbean are ten years younger when they’re in Crankshaft, and Crankshaft characters are ten years older when they’re in Funky Winkerbean. Until now.)


Princes of the Pulps

Popular entertainment has not changed all that much over the past century. This comes into focus in Pulp Power: The Shadow, Doc Savage, and the Art of the Street & Smith Universe (Abrams)by Neil McGinness … This beautifully produced and well-written volume gives pulp mavens a large helping of the prewar medium’s bold action and adventure storytelling…

Pulp Power © Neil McGinness; characters © Condé Nast

Steven Heller interviews Pulp Power author Neil McGinness.

The artwork had to be perfect. Were there artist-stars or was each character formulaic enough to be interchanged and worked on by anyone in the bullpen?
Yes, The Shadow and Doc Savage stories both found lead cover artists that would shape the classic visual identity of the characters. For The Shadow, George Rozen emerged as the signature artist. For Doc Savage, an artist named Walter Baumhofer became the lead. There were other talented artists that contributed covers and illustrations, such as The Shadow artist Graves Gladney, but Rozen and Baumhofer carried out the bulk of the early character-defining artistry for The Shadow and Doc Savage, respectively.


The New Gil Thorp by The New Writer

The comic strip “Gil Thorp” has been published since 1958. And the fourth and newest writer of the strip is Tucson-born author Henry Barajas.

“The loose pitch was like, let’s do ‘Ted Lasso’ in a comic strip,” he said.

© Tribune Content Agency

Mark Brodie at KJZZ talks to Henry Barajas.

One challenge: Gil is an old-fashioned good guy.

“We’re kind of in the world of the anti-hero,” Barajas said. “There’s just a lot of people that gravitate towards people that aren’t really heroes, but they are doing the right thing, but they compromise. And that’s the difference between Gil is he never really compromises.”


The Newstand Nib

© Inkwell Comics LLC

Was at my local Barnes and Noble the other week scanning the magazine racks when my eyes alit on The Cities issue of The Nib. This is a first (for me) seeing the magazine in B&N.
Hope it becomes a regular practice.


Petitioning News Corp Australia

News Corp Australia has announced it will be dropping cartoon strips from all its mastheads from September 11. As a cartoonist for the Courier Mail since 1985, this decision to cancel comic strips has come as a big blow to me and others.

I’m calling on News Corp to reverse their decision to axe comic strips or at least digitalise comics and publish them on its online pages.

© Sean Leahy

Cartoonist Sean (Black Stump) Leahy has started a petition to return comic strips to the Murdoch newspapers in Australia. Sign the petition here.

If you’ve ever enjoyed a comic strip in a newspaper, please sign and share this petition to support cartoonists.


In Denver Football Season Means Drew Litton

Legendary Colorado cartoonist Drew Litton stopped by 9NEWS on Tuesday to summarize the feelings of Broncos Country in a way only he can.

art © Drew Litton

A cartoonist at Rocky Mountain News beginning in 1982, Litton draws for 9NEWS, the Boulder Daily Camera, Colorado Rockies magazine and Mile High Sports magazine and is nationally syndicated by Universal Uclick.

Sports cartoonist Drew Litton returns to KUSA-TV.


Keith Knight Sightings

Cartoonist Keef Knight is appearing at various venues east of The Mighty Mississippi. If you can’t see him (and Mike Peterson!) at the AAEC Convention/CXC Festival maybe you can make one of the other dates to see and hear Keith.