4/9/07 – See you in the funny papers! I remember hearing that saying a lot when I was a child. You don’t hear it as much anymore, if at all. Maybe that’s because the funnies don’t play as large of a role as they once did.
The funny papers referred to the comic strip section of the newspaper. I have fond memories as a child of grabbing that part of the paper every Sunday when my father came back from the store with San Francisco Chronicle. Or if the paper was delivered, I would run to the door just to read this one section. My parents could take the rest of the paper. As a kid, that was the ONLY section that mattered. And it was no different with the daily comics. I used to cut them out and read them again later, I enjoyed them so much.
Why makes me think of all this today? Johnny Hart died over the weekend. Who? The cartoonist who brought us the comic strip “B.C.” since 1958. He was also known for “The Wizard of Id”, which I personally always enjoyed more.
My comic strip reading days are largely over. Not that I don’t like a good laugh or anything. The tradition just sort of…died somewhere along the road of life. They no longer seemed funny to me. There ARE a few good ones left, but the “Mother Goose & Grimm” caliber strips are a rarity indeed.
Ever read some of the newer strips and feel like you just don’t get them? They ceased to entertain me. Sort of like comedians. It seems like my favorite comedians are either dead or aging rapidly. Will the comedians of today ever reach the legendary status of a Groucho Marx or a Milton Berle? Will there ever be strips to outdo “Hagar The Horrible”, “Peanuts”, or “The Far Side”?
Maybe it’s the nature of humor that has changed? Or maybe I am just getting old and jaded? Maybe so. But give me a good Groucho Marx double entendre or a classic “ Garfield ” any day of the week.
See you in the funny papers. And if not, I will certainly “see” you on the air.