Why a Cow? And Other Comic Animals

According to Larson, “I’ve always thought the word cow was funny, and cows are sort of tragic figures. Cows blur the line between tragedy and humor.”

© Gary Larson

Screen Rant delves into Gary Larson‘s background to try find
Why The Far Side Comics Are So Obsessed With Cows.


It was a back injury that laid Wally Badgett up and gave him time to hone his cartooning skills. After decades of riding bulls and saddle broncs, ranching and enforcing the law in eastern Montana, a back injury isn’t surprising, but the way it happened could have come straight out of one of Badgett’s iconic Earl cartoons.

“I was walking down the road and stepped on a rock,” said Badgett.

© Big Dry Syndicate

Not quite as obsessed with cows as Larson but doing the comic panel Cowboyin’ With Earl
by necessity has Wally Badgett dealing with those and other animals.

Badgett was inducted into the Montana Cowboy Hall of Fame in April of this year. As the third Saddle of Honor recipient, Wally will joined 2018 Saddle of Honor recipient Charles M. Russell and 2019 Jay Joseph Contway. He received a bronze sculpture of Charlie Russell’s saddle this past August; the last new bronze created by Jay Contway.

The Tri-State Livestock News notes the ‘Earl’ cartoonist honored for Western Art.


Why a Cat?

Davis’s childhood also proved key to his success — and it revealed just how feisty and funny felines can be. He grew up on a farm in Indiana, where he estimates 25 cats roamed free. Asthma kept him indoors, and a fondness of drawing kept him entertained.

After university he worked for Tom Ryan, creator of the American frontier comic strip Tumbleweeds, and he tried to get his own strip, Gnorm Gnat, syndicated. Meanwhile, he was answering Ryan’s fan mail.

“More and more, he was getting comments about inappropriate relationships and all kinds of things. And I thought ‘I don’t want to have to deal with that,’” says Davis.

Inspiration struck.

“I thought if I’m going to do a comic strip, I’m going to use an animal, because people really are much more forgiving of animals,” says Davis.

Jim Davis talks creating Garfield comics, cartooning, newspaper and webcomics to
The Kincardine News, which reports Garfield is still a funny favourite at 44.


Pigeon Dropping

After 20 years since the release of Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!, Mo Willems’s title character is ready to land in the adult humor aisle with the upcoming publication of Be the Bus: The Lost and Profound Wisdom of the Pigeon As Told to Mo Willems from Union Square Kids on April 4, 2023.

© Mo Willems

When asked what prompted him to direct his attention toward his adult fans, Willems told PW, “I’ve worked with the Pigeon for 20 years and I’ve never been able to predict what he’ll do next. Case in point, this book.”

Publishers Weekly informs us that the
First Adult Pigeon Book by Mo Willems Due Out Next Spring.