From Calvin and Hobbes, the greatest cartoon ever. Bill, why did you leave us?
He got sick of how the Syndicates run the newspaper comics business and wanted to move into other areas where he had more freedom. He’s rather clear in this article about his feelings.
Brilliant cartoonist and storyteller, though.
Yeah, I know and I love his artistic integrity. Still, can’t help but lament.
It is a pity he retired. And “Sparky” Shultz died, another pity. Johnny Hart, too, although he went the way an artist should, at his drawing table. Pity his work went downhill so badly beforehand, but I remember the stuff he did at his peak.
Go back further, and there’s some impressive names. Al Capp, who got in the habit of using a chewed-up matchstick as a brush during the Depression and never got out of it. The insightful Walt Kelly. George Herriman. Winsor McCay. Great names, and fortunately their legacy remains with us.
Oh, I should add Berkley Breathed to that list of retired and passed cartoonists who made the newspapers richer.
Don’t forget Gary Larson – “cat fud” “Why the dinosaurs really died out” “Midvale School for the Gifted” “…i’m going to the vet to get tutored!” and the infamous Jane Goodall panel 🙂
Ah yes, Far Side will certainly be posted on here.
More to add:
Another sadly missed cartooinst was Edward Gorey – his name was very fitting to his morbid yet entertaining ‘toons.
Charles Addams too, who inspired “The Addams Family”.
A personal favorite for ‘toons, stories, and songs was Shel Silverstein – classic books such as “A Light in the Attic” and “Where the Sidewalk Ends” even have recordings available of him reading the poems.
Good heavens, I can’t believe I missed Larson and Addams. Did Gorey work in newspaper strips, though? I dunno if he did.
There’s certainly interesting stuff being put out now, but it’s mostly on the web rather than newspapers, who have been choking comics to death for years. A lot more experimental stuff, to be sure, and a lot of utter nonsense, but there are gems in those ranks. XKCD aptly carries on the more scientific part of the Far Side legacy. Pear-Pear is one that I’ve been following for a while, wordless and surreal. Stuff like Digger and Rice Boy/Order of Tales veer into the continuing story territory the newspapers gave up decades ago. The Abominable Charles Cristopher, on the other hand, gives us tremendously detailed animal art with a quirky, cynical sense of humour, while A Softer World does away with drawing and narrative altogether. It’s exciting times for a comic fan.
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