April 08, 2005

New and Improved Comics!

The Wall Street Journal goes front-page with a report on how many of the classic comic strips are "updating" themselves for the 21st century. Here, for instance—and this isn't a joke—is the new, bolder, "Family Circus":

Now that's creepy. Also, speaking as a former kid who often, often, often invented games like this for the neighborhood rat pack to play, I can attest: Marines vs. Insurgents wouldn't be fun at all. The insurgents, remember, are supposed to blend in with the regular population, that's the point, and maybe they'd throw some mudballs every now and again and beat up that little redheaded kid (strike the enemy where they are weak!). But in real life, we all know the game wouldn't unfold like that, because it's not exciting. Instead the FC kids will just run around chasing each other. Or have a mud battle. Or kick each other in the shins. But then they're clearly playing either "Cops and Robbers" or "Cowboys and Indians" or some other timeless classic. Whatever, it's a pedantic point, sure, but I needed something to say instead of "Family Circus sucks!"

Oh, and Family Circus sucks. And the strip above is still creeping me out. However, I ought to stick up for "Garfield," which deserves barely half of the disturbing amount of abuse I've seen heaped upon it by friends and colleagues. A year ago, Chris Suellentrop explained the genius behind Garfield's mediocrity, and I think he nailed it.
-- Brad Plumer 1:39 PM || ||