Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

May 30, 2012

Go, Read: Funky Winkerbean Turns 40

Congratulations to Tom Batiuk on the occasion of his Funky Winkerbean turning 40 years old, which is celebrated via the kind of newspaper-ready profile that one might have seen back in 1972. I know that a lot of folks make fun of that strip for the bizarre way in which some of the storylines unfold, and it sometimes can seem just as weird as if a long-running TV show once devoted to gags and generally innocuous narratives started working its way through some of the most ruthlessly depressing plots in the world, something akin to following a 70-year-old Arthur Fonzarelli through a struggle with dementia. Still, what comes through in that profile is a creator that wanted to tell a different kind of story and so he did, managing to do so without losing his work's fundamentally profitable position within the newspaper (although one apparently dropped the strip during the extended cancer storyline). Good for him. As the feature sort of gets at, it's nearly impossible to think of Funky as a potential legacy strip at this point, which I think is to Batiuk's credit.
posted 5:06 am PST | Permalink

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