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January 2, 2015


50 Comics Positives For 2014: Richard Thompson Had Two Giant Books Out

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Richard Thompson quietly and without making a bunch of new comics -- an outcome of his ongoing negotiation with the effects of Parkinson's -- has had one of the great years that any cartoonist ever had. We covered his inclusion in the wonderful Bill Watterson/Richard Thompson exhibit pairing at Billy Ireland Cartoon Library And Museum. We mentioned in passing his attendance of the opening festivities. What we haven't mentioned yet is that 1) this was the year that the complete Cul De Sac came out, with an exhaustive presentation including proto-strips of what many feel is the the great newspaper strip of the 21st Century, 2) this was the year The Art Of Richard Thompson came out, which put Cul De Sac in the context of an extraordinarily accomplished, broader career as a caricaturist and editorial-style cartoonist (of a sort), and 3) money continues to be raised in his name to fight Parkinson's, an effort led by a core group of close friends.

I'm going to make #3 its own thing a bit later on, but those first two, which enable us to have this great newspaper strip as a whole entity and see a bunch of Thompson's work that until this time was the sole pleasure of hardcore collectors, that seems an extraordinary privilege. I don't know many cartoonists who have had one of the best collections and best art books in any calendar year. I know one now, and he is a better man than he is a great cartoonist.
 
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