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Posted at 11:45 AM ET, 05/29/2009

The Funnypages As We (Barely) Remember Them

By Michael Cavna

Our quickie roundup of some of the day's most intriguing strips:

'RED ROVER' (WPWG)Enlarge Image

RED AND ROVER: This strip often feels like a blend of present-day and a nostalgic "Leave It to Beaver"-esque yesteryear. If it IS nominally present-day, then the sight of Red reading multiple pages of daily funnies is a particularly startling sight, as rare as it is. (Cue plaintive wail of violins.) And as such, Red, it seems, is either reading The Washington Post, the Houston Chronicle or a random newspaper pulled from a mothballed time capsule, the mere notion of which makes us nostalgic indeed.

'GET FUZZY' (UFS)Enlarge Image

'SALLY FORTH' (KFS)Enlarge Image

SALLY FORTH and GET FUZZY: Writing the perfect last panel is an art unto itself. What we admire about the last panel today in these two strips is not only that they're truly funny, but also that they could function as self-contained features. The "Get Fuzzy" panel, especially, you could slap on a T-shirt, greeting card or bulletin board in the offices of Cat Fancy and it would retain its poetry.

'CURTIS' (KFS)Enlarge Image

CURTIS: For the past two days, "Curtis" has been painful to read for one simple reason: It's as if the writer is certain that if he keeps repeating the term "hootchie mama" over and over and over, then eventually the mere words will merit a laugh. Good luck with that -- the creator would have better luck waiting for Godot (hootchied-out or no).

'BLONDIE' (KFS)Enlarge Image

BLONDIE: What can I say about Dagwood's killer-cool hat that wasn't already uttered by Bill Hader in the comedy "Forgetting Sarah Marshall," when he mocks chapeau-wearer Jason Segel with the words: "What's up with that hat... what are you in the Buena Vista Social Club? What member of the Rat Pack are you?" Just beautiful.

By Michael Cavna  | May 29, 2009; 11:45 AM ET
Categories:  The Morning Line  
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"Red and Rover" is primarily based in the early 1960s, isn't it? (The clothes, grooming, fascination with NASA and the astronauts, etc.) In those days, we got only 3 or 4 channels on the television (or fewer, depending on where you lived), but we sure got lots of funnies in the daily paper! I could live with that trade-off, again.

As for Dagwood's ridiculous hat, what would you expect, given how ridiculous his tonsure is, underneath it? As the salesman suggests, it's just a weird aspect of Dag's personality, to appear bizarre from the ears up.

Posted by: seismic-2 | May 29, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Because the Brady Bunch has been referenced (watched on that great floor-model TV), I tend to peg much of "Red and Rover's" action in the '70s.

Creator Brian Basset was born in 1957, so a nostalgia for the "The Wonder Years"-set era (late '60s-early '70s) seems all too fitting.


Posted by: cavnam | May 29, 2009 6:21 PM | Report abuse

Oh come Curtis, the phrase "Hootchie Mama" has given me all sorts of mental pictures, all hilarious. I can't wait to find out what she looks like! And now LuAnn has grown up...boys are checking out her potential for motherhood. Life with Elwood, the mind boggles!

Posted by: 2old2readcomics | May 30, 2009 2:51 AM | Report abuse

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