Posts Tagged ‘comic strips’
“The problem with Internet quotations is that many are not genuine.”
- Abraham Lincoln
As we engage the elements of epistemology, we might recall that it was on this date in 1937 that Hal Foster debuted his long-running comic strip Prince Valiant in the Days of King Arthur, or more familiarly Prince Valiant. Foster had earlier distinguished himself drawing Tarzan; when he pitched his original idea to William Randolph Hearst, the baron was so impressed that he (uncharacteristically) gave Foster full ownership of the strip.
The Arthurian saga is clearly meant to take place in the mid-Fifth century, but Foster juiced both the story and its setting with anachronistic elements: Viking longships, Muslims, alchemists and technological advances not made before the Renaissance all play roles; while many of the the fortifications, armor and armament used are from the High Middle Ages.
The strip continues to this day, now in the hands of Mark Schultz and Gary Gianni… and is available on the verisimilitudinally-challenged internet.
Readers will recall that before the exquisite Calvin and Hobbes, Bill Watterson drew political cartoons…
Before that, he drew for his college newspaper, The Kenyon Collegian…
These and more, from every stage of Watterson’s wonderful career, at Rare Bill Watterson Art.
As we remember that this was why we used to subscribe to newspapers, we might send birthday smiles to another Ohioan, humorist and cartoonist James Thurber; he was born (in Columbus) on this date in 1894.
Q. No one has been able to tell us what kind of dog we have. I am enclosing a sketch of one of his two postures. He only has two. The other one is the same as this except he faces in the opposite direction. – Mrs EUGENIA BLACK
A. I think that what you have is a cast-iron lawn dog. The expressionless eye and the rigid pose are characteristic of metal lawn animals. And that certainly is a cast-iron ear. You could, however, remove all doubt by means of a simple test with a hammer and a cold chisel, or an acetylene torch. If the animal chips, or melts, my diagnosis is correct.
- The Thurber Carnival (1945)
“If there is a Huckleberry Finn of comic strips, this is it”
- Lee Salem, President of Universal Press Syndicate (as quoted here)
It’s been 15 years since Bill Watterson decided to retire “the terrible tyke” and his tiger. Now thanks to Cleveland.com, the first interview with Calvin’s creator since 1989.
There’s even a peek at some of Watterson’s pre-strip work as an editorial cartoonist. For instance:
As we await the commemorative stamp that’s due out this summer, we might recall that it was on this date in 1957 that the first nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Nautilus (SSN-571), logged its 60,000th nautical mile– thus matching the endurance of the fictional Nautilus described by Jules Verne in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
The decline of the daily press in the U.S. is a problem of many dimensions– among them, the question of the funny papers: if newspapers fail, where will one get one’s comic strips? The likely answer, one reckons, is the web… and happily, there are several sites featured earlier in (R)D– e.g., here– stepping into the breech.
But what of history? Where will one find the best strips of the past? Happily, the web is responding here too. Mr. ilovecomix (Steve Cottle) has created a wonderful archive of daily and weekly strips from throughout the history of the comics.
From the sublime…
to the ridiculous…
Visit ilovecomix and revel in the ink!
As we choke back our chortles, we might remark that this is the birthday (1815) of George Boole, the British mathematician and philosopher who developed what’s now known as Boolean Algebra (Boolean Logic) and was one of the fathers of symbolic logic… thus was (with an eye to each of those contributions), a central contributor to the foundation on which all of modern computing is based… and thus, on which the web (if not the narrative logic of the comics it makes available) depends.