Posts from 28th July 2008

Jul 08

Comics: A Beginner’s Guide: Modern Humour Strips

The Brown Wedge1 comment • 562 views

The second half of the 20th Century was far less rich in great humour strips than the first half. Having said that, there were a couple that rank with the best ever.

The only place to start is with what was by far the dominant humour strip of that era, Peanuts. Charles Schulz throughly earned his place in the hearts of millions around the world, with one of the great casts of characters and some wonderfully subtle comedy writing. Some great humour writers would take pride in a strip being taken as against both sides of an argument; Schulz felt that way about one strip that was taken as in favour by both sides, the issue being prayer in school – I guess this is the difference between a satirist and someone with as much human warmth in his work as Schulz. Perhaps his artistic limitations would have been more exposed in earlier decades, when comic strips were a lot bigger, but he found a style that worked very well for him. Peanuts was a magnificent strip, particularly so soon after he’d found his stride, in the ’60s especially. In Charlie, Snoopy, Linus, Lucy and Peppermint Patty in particular he created some of the best known and most loved comic characters ever.