Monday, April 09, 2007

and end to id all?

With today's shattering news, we can ask the question whether a long, ongoing tragedy will finally come to an end. I refer, of course, to the comic strips BC and The Wizard of Id. BC and Id cartoonist Johnny Hart died a couple of days ago.

Hart's BC had become controversial in the last 15 years or so for its overtly Christian overtones. But that's not the tragedy I'm referring to. I'm talking about how BAD both of these strips had been for so long. Rumor has it they were both pretty funny when they started, BC in 1958 and The Wizard of Id in 1964. But it's a fact that they had both become pretty stale a long, long time ago. I think they had both jumped the shark well before 1980 -- and still they appeared in our papers day after day, taking up valuable real estate on our size-constrained funny pages.

In Hart's defense, BC and The Wizard of Id were hardly alone in continuing on for years, decades even, after losing any sense of originality or humor. Peanuts was a shell (sorry) of itself by the end, Hagar the Horrible has lived up to its name for a long, long time, and Garfield was funny for about three months before it began repeating its lame lasagna jokes and its raison d'etre changed from humor (if that was ever the case) to reminding us of Garfield's existence so we'd buy his crappy merchandise. And reading Family Circus now is like experiencing one of Dante's circles of hell -- a particularly unfunny one.

Which makes me appreciate the decisions of people like The Far Side's Gary Larson and Calvin and Hobbes cartoonist Bill Watterson's decisions to call it quits before the quality of their cartoons deteriorated. I miss them, but better to retire while still producing quality comics than to descend to the depths of BC and The Wizard of Id.

And that makes me ask -- will Hart's death mean the end at long last of his two signature strips?



Blogger Dupa Jasia said...

You will come and dine with us, Titbottom? He assented by continuing to walk with me, and I think we were both glad when we reached the house, and Prue came to meet us, saying: wellbutrin Do you know I hoped you would bring Mr.. She followed them into the dining-room to kiss and feed him, with an absent Howdy, Abner; how's your mother? Abner, big with the importance of their mutual intention, inclined his head stiffly and looked toward Ross actos for explanation.. I now attempt to oxycontin clear up the chronological relations which strike me as improbable...

7:05 PM  

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