Monday, November 03, 2008

"I learned it from watching you, Dad!"

Berkeley Breathed, artist and creator of the increasingly less-focussed comic strip Opus (aka Bloom County III: The Search For Royalties), explains its demise in Sunday's paper as being caused by the mean political tenor of the nation, and... um... "snark":
"Berkeley goes on to discuss how the 24/7 “all snark, all the time” culture of the 24/7 media, coupled by its simultaneous political correctness bothers him immensely."
Ah. And here Bloom County, which was my generation's Doonesbury, had been so above the fray, never mocking or poking fun at political figures or stereotyping various demographics. (This is me, rolling my eyes.)

I'd say "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen," but it feels weird to say it to a guy standing there with a flamethrower in his mitts.

10 comments:

Robb Allen said...

Well, there goes my desire to get a Dan Fogelburp tattoo...

My wife made me put all my Bloom County books away since my oldest daughter started reading them. Oddly, because she didn't want to have to explain the snark.

Brian J. said...

Yeah, backlist sales of topical cartoon books like Bloom County and whatnot must suck. In the last couple of years, I've reread some of the 80s Bloom County books, and a lot of the material really was only chuckle-worthy in a nostalgia way.

Contrast with Calvin and Hobbes, whose humor is timeless and whose author can stay retired, living on continuing royalties.

Anonymous said...

I haven't seen the funny since 98 or so when he stopped drawing the first time. It appears I really didn't miss much, although I can still get a grin or two flipping through my collection.

Gmac

bedlamite said...

I always used to ask telemarketers if whatever they were selling came with a free pocket diaper steamer or turnip twaddler. Most were confused, only one ever laughed.

José Giganté said...

I stopped reading after he quit the first time, it appears to be a good decision. I absolutely love the first run of Bloom, it is classic for me. Gephardtization is a real word to me.

Nathan Brindle said...

Yeah, just to pile on, he hasn't been funny since his first retirement.

I think there are a lot of current cartoonists who are going to be greatly surprised and disappointed when their political satire doesn't hold up well in future book sales.

On the other hand, that's what they get for turning the "funnies" into yet another left-wing editorial page.

Matt G said...

This from the author of the strip that had Opus speculating on which was the lesser of two evils as a VP nominee in the 1988 presidential race? ("Codger or dodger.")

It was finely-wrought snark, made with old-world craftmanship. And now he wants out?

crankylitprof said...

"Billy and the Boingers forevvvvveeeerr, baybee!"

I miss the original "Bloom County." "Outland" and "Opus" never did much for me.

TJP said...

Gee, I always thought Breathed made the funny version of Doonesbury. Maybe I was just a latecomer? By the time I started reading Doonesbury in the 80s, it was already little more than ink inside the template of a mature leftist establishment.

One gave us a talking cigarette named Mr. Butts. (Bet you didn't see that coming.) The other gave us the Unshorn Sisters of the Apocalypse.

Ol' Berke is getting on in years and has mellowed out. That's all.

John B said...

If you can't stand the heat......
Can't you see one of Breathed's sylph like sirens saying that to a guy wearing flame resistant gear, and holding a flame-thrower.

A slinky siren with strawberry blonde hair...

capcha=bratops the giggles will continue until Tam picks up her gun, AND takes me over to the range, what were YOU thinking.

actually the giggles will continue on the range, but who will hear...