Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Special New Year Cul de Sac Posted Two Whole Hours Early

Or two whole days early if you're in Samoa.

Happy New Year


When I was a kid we'd watch Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians ring in the New Year,  brought to us in living black & white from the Waldorf Astoria. The highlight was catching sight of a drunken middle aged reveler dancing on a table top, crazed by all that sweet jazz. To my mind this is what sophisticated adults did. Not my parents, who were perfectly content to stay at home and laugh at the silly party hats and drunken antics of the swells. But we knew how to have a good time: at midnight we'd step out the front door and bang pot lids together and ring a little bell and yell Happy New Year, often enough to a dark and silent neighborhood.

We still do it, but now there are so many fireworks and such going off our racket just blends into the general din. The above Cul de Sac is from 2006 (?). Note that Petey's got a trombone, which turned into an oboe soon as I realized how hard a trombone is to draw.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Hello Bakersfield, CA: Updated Some More

Cul de Sac just started in the Bakersfield Californian, where it replaced the beloved English strip Fred Basset. Many readers are so far unimpressed.  I haven't seen such instantaneous dislike for Cul de Sac since the strip started in '07 (and it makes me feel young again!). My view is that you have to give a comic strip ten years to fully infiltrate you consciousness, and till then your opinions are shallow and worthless. Unless, of course, you like the strip at first sight*.

Update:

Really though, this post is a little self-serving: preaching to the choir and making fun of unadventurous Fred-Basset-loving fuddy-duddies who only ask for a pleasant chuckle and don't need some yacky kid strip foisted on them. So let's just say I'm happy and proud to that my strip is available to actual newspaper subscribers in Bakersfield CA! And I'm very happy to say that CdS just started in the Oakland Tribune. From what I hear the strip was picked up because an editor and his kids saw it online and liked it. That's the best I can ask for and an unheard-of way to get into a paper. So I'm damn grateful and I wish I'd quit grousing.

Another Update:

My friend Mike Rhode tells me the Sunday CdS is starting in the Morning Call of Allentown PA, where it replaces Fred Basset, of course. In the comments on this post, David W outlines Fred Basset's sordid history; how it was put into a decade of reruns after the creator's death and, worse, how it's been drawn by an anonymous and uncredited artist for the past 11 years. There's even this. So I'm suddenly a liitle less sympathetic to unadventurous Fred-Basset-loving fuddy-duddies.
*Thank you, Alex in Oakland!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Saint Santa, Again

Wouldn't this make a great all-purpose charming though slightly offensive Christmas card?

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Goodbye, Kim Jong Il!

If it's not too much to ask, could everyone on the planet with internet access print this out, construct it as shown and display it in an appropriately wacky place for the next few days? I think it'd be a nice gesture.

See also here.

Friday, December 16, 2011

If You're in San Fransisco or Even Slightly West of the Continental Divide...

... then please visit the San Fransisco's Cartoon Art Museum, where the fabulous exhibit Black and White and Read All Over: Comics of the New Millennium opens this weekend. Here's a bit from the museum's description-
  
The Cartoon Art Museum is proud to announce its latest exhibition, Black and White and Read All Over:  Comics of the New Millennium, a showcase featuring nine comic strips introduced between the years 2000 and 2010.  From talking animals to beleaguered cartoonists, childhood fears to childhood nightmares, the perils of adulthood to the trials of arrested development, the nonsensical to the political (which often goes right back around to nonsensical), the modern comic strip page really does include something for everyone.
Original comic strips on view live and in person in the exhibit are:
My thanks to Andrew Farago, consummate comics curator, cartoonist and cool guy, for squeezing me in among this august group. Again, the place to be is Cartoon Art Museum at 655 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94105, (415) CAR-TOON, (415) 227-8666.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Perhaps the Ultimate in Loungewear

Now available exclusively on our Cafe Press site! Excellent for lounging, swaddling and bundling.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Support the USPS & Team Cul de Sac with these Lovely Stamps

Thanks to Mike Rhode, Barbara Dale and David Hagen. you can now send your Cul de Sac cards with Cul de Sac stamps! Barbara Dale's stamp has been revised to lighten it up so you can see Alice better, and David Hagen volunteered his artwork for stamp #3. Collect them all! It's for charity!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Yesterday's Cul de Sac, December 3 2011 and Tomorrow's. December 5 2011

I fretted with this thing and rewrote and photoshopped the dialogue so many times that I was sure it had unraveled into hopeless incoherence. The object of Alice's mockery, the cheesy uplifting TV special full of easy epiphanies, seemed obvious when I started out. But with each little piddly adjustment it grew more unnecessarily complicated. At one point I added "childlike sense if wonder" to Alice's rant, diluting it even more.

So I decided to do the whole thing a second time figuring, if you're gonna fail, make it look intentional. This time the subject is"childlike sense of wonder". And this one was harder to do than the first;  each drawing and each bit of text are separate bits hammered together in photoshop (Alice in the third panel looks awfully familiar, no?).

Thankfully one person grasped what I was flailing at, here (scroll down a bit). Now I don't have to make a third attempt at this.