Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Garfield debuts (?)


Four silent penultimate panels today (all found thanks to Ugliness Man.)

Garfield by a thousand hired hands (debut)
Monty by Jim Meddick
Overboard by Chip Dunham
Red and Rover by Brian Bassett

This is Garfield's debut on the watch? How can that be? I'm blessed in the fact that my local paper dropped Garfield a couple of years ago. (It was a masterful drop on the L.A. Times' part: Mutts was doing a special month-long Holiday series in addition to its regular strip. The Times announced Garfield would be replaced temporarily by the Mutts holiday special. Well, Christmas came and went, the Mutts special ended and, in a Christmas miracle to end all miracles, Garfield just never came back. Ho, Ho, Ho!) Anyway, I don't see Garfield everyday, and it seems that most of the readers here entirely avoid it--and definitely don't search it out. So I never hear about Garfield's SPPs. But not today. Thanks, Ugliness Man.

Monty is unique in that it's a five-panel SPP strip. The silent penultimate panel normally occurs in three or four panel strips. (And, really, I don't know what the significance is. I just notice these things.)

And what about the Pearls Before Swine/Get Fuzzy experiment:

Well, first of all, I'm not counting it as an SPP. The zebra is waking up in the penultimate panel., so it's not just silent reaction. But, as far as what I think about what Darby Conley is doing--I don't know. I like artists playing with their media. I like artists challenging their audiences. But, I have mixed feelings here. In just the past month we've had the Pearls Before Swine/Baby Blues cross-over, Foxtrot doing Boondocks, and, currently, La Cucaracha doing Boondocks. It's meta-joke after meta-joke on the comics page. It's all starting to look like an undergrad studio art course. And coming right on the heels of a week and a half of Bucky's booger saga, it might be too much. Just tell a joke, Mr. Conley. I mean, you're not doing Zippy the Pinhead. All you need to do to make us laugh is draw Satchel with a broken flower pot on his head. It works everytime.

3 Comments:

Anonymous Ugliness Man said...

For the record, I don't actively read Garfield, but it's in one of my local morning papers, so when I noticed it, I looked up the URL to provide a link. I despise it just as much as you.

And regarding the whole meta thing, I usually like such things because I like just about anything that can cause readers to say "wtf?" and still be at least somewhat funny. I'll never forget the April Fool's day some years ago where all the comic artists drew each other's strips. And the Blondie anniversary with the zillion-strip crossover last year was pretty cool, too.

3:28 AM  
Anonymous Ugliness Man said...

Okay, I guess there's something non-standard about the HTML in these comments, that was supposed to read "...I don't actively read Garfield..." with "actively" in italics...

3:30 AM  
Blogger Matt Guerrero said...

Darby Conley's always had a way of over-thinking his strips. He's a Douglas Adams fan, maybe we can blame that.
But comparing him to latter-day Bill Griffith? That's just mean.

9:57 AM  

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