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Posted at 12:45 PM ET, 07/ 8/2009

Does 'Frazz' Have Zazz? It's Time to Defend That Toon

By Michael Cavna

'FRAZZ' (UFS)Enlarge Image

'FRAZZ' (UFS)Enlarge Image

Yes, fellow Riffsters, time once again to play: Defend...That... 'Toon!

When The Post returned "Judge Parker" to its funnypages this year, the stay of execution perhaps adversely affected no one worse than Frazz.

Since moving to KidsPost, of course, the "Frazz" dailies run only four days a week. Plus, the strip sometimes now runs in random order, eschewing continuity. (Case in point: Today's strip as published in The Post; the intended rundate [July 3] is from last week.)

In this space, some readers have expressed how much they like "Frazz's" smarts, wit and cultural/historical references. Some other readers, though, charge the strip with intellectual smugness.

So, this week's question to you is: Should "Frazz" be returned to the daily comics page -- or does it belong on the KidsPost page or nowhere in The Post at all? (Note: This exercise is all in good, nonbinding fun.)

If you're not a "Frazz" fan, feel free to Impugn-That-Toon. But if you are a fan, then here's your chance to Defend That 'Toon.

By Michael Cavna  | July 8, 2009; 12:45 PM ET
Categories:  Defend That 'Toon  
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Next: Anatomy of a Censorship: Why a Strip Is Spiked


It occasionally gets a bit smug, but it's a good strip and belongs on the regular comics pages.

Posted by: capsfan77 | July 8, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Put it back, put it back, please put it back! Put a strip with no continuity issues (e.g. Garfield) on KidsPost and restore Frazz to its rightful place.

Posted by: reflord54 | July 8, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is a great strip that deserves much better than what the Post is giving it nowadays. And there are at least five strips that would fit better on the KidsPost page -- Peanuts, Garfield, etc. You have to wonder what the editors are thinking putting it back there. It should definitely be restored to the main pages of comics.

Posted by: agefen | July 8, 2009 2:00 PM | Report abuse

Frazz belongs in the daily line-up of 'toons. It is very classy and thoroughly enjoyable by adults. It goes above the kids heads. Do we dare say it again: dump Peanuts, keep Frezz.

Posted by: ZeldaJane | July 8, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Dear WaPo,

Please move a zombie strip to KidsPost instead.


Posted by: Hemisphire | July 8, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

The previous posters made great cases, I can add no more in favor of returning Frazz to the original pages. I can not imagine what the editors' thinking is in putting this fine linear strip on the Kids Post and running it erratically, with so many other choices available.

Maybe it's because I have no clue what Kids Post is supposed to be about. It seems to be all over the place in it's age targets and has insipid stories and writing that are bound to bore rather than entice the young reader.

And, with it's color printing, makes a poor fish wrapper to boot...

Posted by: JkR- | July 8, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Please put Frazz back into the regular funnies. It is one of the best out there today, along with Get Fuzzy and Pearls Before Swine. I think that these three combine cerebral and slapstick (can that be said of the printed page?) in good proportions. The Steve Martin of the comics page.

Posted by: ArlingtonSMP | July 8, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

Never mind that Frazz is about a Calvin-haired independently wealthy adult that has suspiciously intimate relationships with kids (Neverland Ranch anybody?), it deserves better treatment than it is getting.

Posted by: yellojkt | July 8, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is an excellent comic and has earned its place in the daily paper. That said, I have also come to wonder if the cartoonist is simply running out of ideas and themes. He has increasingly repeated the same premise over and over and seems to be way overusing such specific characters as little Caulfied.

I have also become less impressed with Frazz's creeping pseudo-intellectualism particularly as it is has become increasingly portrayed through elementary aged school children. While these kids have always been astute and observant as only kids can be...their increasing degree of 'adult' knowledge, language, and awareness has been taken a bit further than it should.

I would like to see Frazz's cartoon kids reflect on life and their day as kids...which is how the cartoon started. I think that use of child characters in this way had been just one of the many strengths demonstrated by this cartoon. Kids as mini-Nietzschians can become very tedious. Lets leave that degree of self impressed and pinheaded nonsense to Zippy and his friends!

Posted by: DrLou1 | July 8, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

There isn't a lot to add to previous comments. Count me as one more vote to keep Frazz, move it back to the main pages, and kill/move a zombie strip.

Posted by: bucky_katt | July 8, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Ms. Carswell,

Please take Peanuts, Garfield or some other zombie strip and relocate it to KidsPost.

Agnes was misguided. So is Frazz. Or how about Beetle or Hagar, who seem to recycle the same jokes every five or six years.

Posted by: brainiac1077 | July 8, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

Of course, the WaPo editors don't actually read the comics, and they have no idea what the various strips are all about, which is why first Agnes, and now Frazz, moved to the Kid's page. (Both strips have kids as central characters, so in the editors' uninformed judgment they're therefore kids' strips.)

Parents complained about naughtiness in Agnes and got it moved back to the main comics pages, so maybe we can complain about smugness in Frazz and achieve the same results? Bring him back to the grown-ups - "smug" beats "stupid", any day. Put Garfield on the Kid's page, since the youngsters are that strip's main fans anyway.

Posted by: seismic-2 | July 8, 2009 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Please, please move Frazz back to the main funny pages. Maybe I'm hopelessly intellectual, but I enjoy it enough that I don't want to miss a day, and resent having to look it up online to keep up with the story line.

The second cartoon above (the one that defines the purpose of sports) does strike me as a bit heavy-handed in its moralizing, but in a good cause; I can't help thinking that if parents and coaches took it to heart, kids' lives would significantly improve. Generally, I like Frazz because it's smart, fresh, and amusing, but I also appreciate the solid values underlying the strip.

Posted by: nvanative | July 8, 2009 6:58 PM | Report abuse

Please please move Frazz back!! I especially love it's references to Frazz's physical fitness. Where else can you see a story line that occasionally involves running, biking and swimming as well as moral questions?

Posted by: MSluvs2run | July 8, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is a consistently good strip and belongs on the regular comics page. Though it has kids in it, it's really more for adults. Put Garfield or Peanuts on the kids page. Then again, why have a kids page at all? Let everyone pick and choose what they want to read from one comics section!

Posted by: allenofwoodhaven | July 8, 2009 7:43 PM | Report abuse

This strip is too adult in copmprehension level for the children's page. What a strange choice. I love it for it's wry and often subtle humor.

Posted by: NameWithheldAtUsersRequest | July 8, 2009 8:22 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is not a kids' strip! Move it back to the regular page in place of a real kids' strip, like Big Nate or Garfield

Posted by: eandab2003 | July 8, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is a key component to your future readership. Let's not get too carried away here, but when I introduced my kids to newspaper reading and the comics (always start your day with a laugh or it may never happen) they loved Frazz. They are 9 and 11, and while Family Circus is funny, Garfield too; it was Frazz that they really enjoyed.

Now, we break open the daily paper; read some comics; solve some puzzles; and talk about the stuff they see in the paper. The Kid's Post is great, but there is something special about reading the paper together with your family (children too). Frazz belongs in the Daily Paper - every day. Let's see if Judge Parker can hack it in the Kid's Post.

Overall, you did a good job gleaning the comics, but Frazz is an essential.

By the way, the Internet News sucks in comparison to the print edition to a daily newspaper when you are reading it with your family. My print news authority is the Wash Post and my TV news comes from Jon Stewart and the Daily Show!!!

Posted by: phillynets | July 8, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

Echoing all the positives above -- Frazz is most definitely an adult strip, and belongs on the comics pages. It's without a doubt one of our six favorites. It is absolutely bizarre that the comics editor placed Frazz on the [worthless] kids page.

Posted by: pltrgyst | July 8, 2009 11:46 PM | Report abuse

I love that Frazz. Move him back to the regular comics pages! He should be in the paper every day, in the same spot.

Posted by: pbwg | July 9, 2009 12:05 AM | Report abuse

Fraz is a great strip. Not a kids page cartoon.

Posted by: terryhendrickson | July 9, 2009 2:36 AM | Report abuse

Frazz is NOT a 'kid's' comic! To put recycled Peanuts in the regular comics and expect us to read it again for the 50th time shows that the comics editors do not listen to their readers. We have been asking nicely for Frazz to go back to the regular pages for a long time, trade with Peanuts please! PLEASE

Posted by: 2old2readcomics | July 9, 2009 2:46 AM | Report abuse

With all the layoffs and buy-outs that are seemingly monthly occurrences at the Post these days, maybe some day WaPo will wind up with a comics editor who actually **reads** the comics. Right after they attend to that flying pig thing, of course.

Posted by: seismic-2 | July 9, 2009 3:46 AM | Report abuse

Like all other one note characters in comic strips with mildly annoying tics (kids who point their finger at the sky every time they open their mouths, etc.---what the hell is THAT all about?), Frazz seems to have a rather high opinion of himself and his own opinions. But that said, it's still better than 90% of the strips out there, and has about as much business on the Kids' Post page as Zippy or Judge Parker. Of course it should be restored to its regular spot and printed seven days a week.

Posted by: andym108 | July 9, 2009 5:49 AM | Report abuse

Though I cancelled my subscription to the WP so I don't personally care where it is physically, I HATED it on KidsPage. I agree with the comment put Peanuts or something similar there. Frazz is not Trix.

Posted by: Ravyn | July 9, 2009 6:07 AM | Report abuse

I hereby add my vote to the unanimous commentary above: Frazz is an excellent strip, and does not deserve to be banished to KidsPost.

Unfortunately, the Comic Editors at the Washington Post have a tradition (going back several decades) of disregarding readers' opinions. It takes a deluge of real letters (on paper), representing a measurable percentage of paying subscribers, to get those editors off of their high horses. I fear that this batch of digital opinions (including mine) will merely be forwarded to the bit bucket and ignored.

Posted by: kilby | July 9, 2009 6:14 AM | Report abuse

I do NOT want Frazz moved back to the regular page! Unless I get a signed statement that they will move Garfield or Peanuts or FC or Dennis to the Kidspost instead.

Knowing WaPo history (and I really like the paper!) they'll put Frazz back and move Get Fuzzy or Pearls to the Kidspost in its place.

Posted by: filfeit | July 9, 2009 7:15 AM | Report abuse

Can we organize the strips? One section for adultish (soap opera) strips, 1 for actual funny strips, 1 for politcal strips (preferably on the editorial pages Candorville hint hint). I mean, if Dilbert is in business, why is Candorville on the comics page?

Posted by: keepandbear | July 9, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Frazz definitely belongs on the regular comics page. If anything has to be moved to the Kids' Page, it should be Peanuts. Kids' Page readers are the ones least likely to have seen these reprints the first time they ran.

Posted by: DCArtist71 | July 9, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

"I mean, if Dilbert is in business, why is Candorville on the comics page?"

FYI Dilbert hasn't been in the Business section for many months, possibly because the Post no longer has a separate Business section!

Posted by: andym108 | July 9, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

There are only two "must keep" toons: Frazz and Dilbert.

Posted by: ooogah | July 9, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

I would add Rhymes with Orange as a "must keep".

Posted by: eandab2003 | July 9, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Why bother commenting on the strip one way or the other? It's obvious the Post's comics editor doesn't give a damn.

Posted by: drewdane | July 9, 2009 10:49 AM | Report abuse

I agree with the bulk of the comments above. Frazz is a great strip that doesn't belong on the kids page. Garfield or Peanuts would be most appropriate for that space. And, I miss Frazz on Fridays and Saturdays now. The poster who stated that Frazz is 'independently wealthy' must not actually read the strip - he's a janitor.

Posted by: halel | July 9, 2009 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Frazz is OK, I can take it or leave it; please put it back and move or (preferably!) delete Garfield, Lio, Peanuts; and bring back Piranha Club and For Better and For Worse.

Posted by: dandysmom | July 9, 2009 9:44 PM | Report abuse

Frazz presents valuable interaction between adults and kids that can be appreciated by both. I think there's some value to highlighting the strip on Kids Post, but the continuity factor argues more for moving it back to the regular comics page and moving a "stand-alone" comic to Kids Post in its place.

By the way, apropos of the depth of content in Frazz shown in the example strip on the web page, sports are important, but in the end they don't matter. Frazz does a nice job of presenting this truth in a humorous way.

Posted by: Techsan68 | July 10, 2009 6:28 AM | Report abuse

Funny to see this comment:
"I especially love its references to Frazz's physical fitness. Where else can you see a story line that occasionally involves running, biking and swimming as well as moral questions?"

Which actually is one thing I HATE about Frazz -- Mallett often draws an equivalence between being fit and being moral.

Posted by: proxl | July 14, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

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