The Stacks, G-G

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Ahoy! Welcome back to our second dip into my long-forgotten "Archive Selects" folder. While I'd planned to span another stretch of the alphabet with today's entry, looks like we've hit a bit of a roadblock, resulting in a detour down Grand Avenue. It'd be nice if we could stay on schedule and get the H out of here, but we're going to have to take the long way. This dang monorail construction is never going to end!

 

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Grand Avenue, by Steve Breen and Mike Thompson, is about as wry as a comic can be without being actually, actively mean-spirited. This makes sense-- each of the creators keep their pencils sharp through their respective work as editorial cartoonists, a fact that almost led me to type something about "the whetstone of satire," which, we can agree, would be a terrible thing to say.

 

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Gag-wise, Grand Avenue is consistently snappy and refreshing. I can't tell you how good it is to finally find a legitimate reason to describe something as "snappy." Sure, I've used it in other instances, but the only other time it was an accurate summary was when I served as a character reference for my turtle roommate's job search. I'm not proud of this joke, but going through it together made our bond stronger, Dear Reader.

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Ah, the scenic route. This is a pretty nice street; all that cross-hatching really ups the property value. Next week: more letters, worse jokes! 

 

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--Dave

 





GoComics Staff Pick: Buni by Ryan Pagelow

Thanks to Raegan, our Manager of Permissions, for this week's Staff Pick!

  

Buni by Ryan Pagelow
gocomics.com/buni

 

I love the cartoon Buni because the character of Buni is so full of happiness and joy. Even while things are going badly around him, he always sees the brighter side of life. While sometimes annoying, his happiness blinds him to the crazy, dark world around him. With a cast of shady characters and his unrequited love for the female Buni, it’s fun to find out who or what is out to get Buni next.

 

 

Buni by Ryan Pagelow

 

 

Add Buni to your GoComics homepage!

 

 

ABOUT: Buni is a dark comic about an optimistic bunny with terrible luck. Always positive, Buni doesn’t understand that the cute world he lives in is really out to get him, whether it’s at the hands of mafia teddy bears, garden gnomes or zombies. However he remains undeterred, even when it comes to the girl he loves who clearly has a boyfriend and is uninterested in Buni. ­­The comic’s simple dialogue-free format is designed for an international audience and was one of the 10 finalists in the Comic Strip Superstar contest.





September 2014 Twitter Q&A Schedule

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Join us Fridays at 1:30pm CT on Twitter for Q&A sessions with our talented GoComics creators!

 

During these one-hour live-tweet sessions, we invite a cartoonist(s) to answer a set of core questions, then field queries from the public. We encourage our fans to take part in these Q&As. To participate, tweet questions, or simply follow along, using the designated event hashtag.

 

Now, mark your calendars!

 

THE LINE-UP: 
 
• 9/5: Donna A. Lewis of Reply All and Reply All Lite
 
• 9/12: Dana Simpson of Heavenly Nostrils Phoebe and Her Unicorn
• 9/19: Piers Baker of Ollie and Quentin  
 
• 9/26: Chip Sansom of The Born Loser
 
  




GIVEAWAY – BIG NATE PRIZE PACK

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Sharp pencils, blank notebooks and young minds ready to learn -- it’s back-to-school time! We’re giving away TWO prize packs featuring our favorite sixth-grader, Big Nate!

 

Prize Pack #1

-       Signed Big Nate print

-       “I Smell a Pop Quiz”

-       Big Nate boxed set, which includes “Big Nate: In a Class by Himself” and “Big Nate: Strikes Again

 

Prize Pack #2

-       Signed Big Nate print

-       “I Smell a Pop Quiz”

-       “Big Nate: Here Goes Nothing

 

We will randomly select one winner for each prize pack. To enter, comment on this blog post and include your FIRST and LAST names. Limit one entry per person. This contest will end on Tues., September 2nd at 10 a.m. CT. The winner will be announced that day on this blog. Sorry worldwide comics fans, this giveaway is open to U.S. and Canada residents only.

 

P.S. You have until Sunday, Aug. 31 to enter the Big Nate Super Fan Sweepstakes for a chance to appear as a drawn character in the next Big Nate novel! Enter here!





GIVEAWAY: LIMITED EDITION PEARLS BEFORE SWINE PRINTS – WINNERS ANNOUNCED

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Thank you to all who entered to win a limited edition Pearls Before Swine print!

 

We’ve randomly selected three winners!

 

Congratulations to Jason Erwin, Gianfranco Goria and Paul Gesting! Please email us at rewards@gocomics.com with your shipping information and phone number. Please note: You must contact us by Tuesday, September 2 or your prize will be forfeited.

 

To those of you who didn’t win, never fear! You can order your very own special edition print by clicking here





Happy National Dog Day!

Roger A. Caras once said, “Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.” With dozens of comics featuring fuzzy, four-legged friends, the GoComics family certainly agrees!

 

In honor of man’s best friend, we’re celebrating one of our favorite lesser-known holidays: National Dog Day!

 

The relationship between Red and Rover makes us say, “Awww” on a daily basis.

 

Red and Rover by Brian Basset

 

We have a feeling Sophie and Doug’s friendship will only continue to grow as the years go on.

 

Dog Eat Doug by Brian Anderson

 

Have you stopped by Pooch Café lately? It’s the best place to catch up on the neighborhood gossip.

Pooch Cafe by Paul Gilligan

Fred Basset keeps us smiling with antics that every dog owner can relate to.

 

Fred Basset by Alex Graham

 

Dogs of C-Kennel brings us a cast of howl-inducing hounds.

 

Dogs of C-Kennel by Mick & Mason Mastroianni

 

Though he’s loving, Marmaduke finds himself in trouble a bit more often than the average dog.

 

Marmaduke by Brad Anderson

 

And who could forget about Snoopy? (By the way, have you seen our 8-bit Snoopy keeping watch over GoComics headquarters?)

 

Peanuts by Charles Schulz

 

Happy National Dog Day! Be sure to check out our “Dogs in Comics” Pinterest board for a collection of our favorite canine comics!





COMICS SHERPA: EDITOR'S PICKS

This recurring LAUGH TRACKS feature highlights individual Sherpa strips and panels that for one reason or another caught the fancy of the aide de sherpa. It could be anythng; the drawing, the writing, the humor, the coloring, that they tried something interesting, or that it's a new step for that particular creator.

 

We hope this quirky sampler will alert you to features you might not yet have noticed amid Sherpa's abundant, ever-changing, and eclectic mix, and that it gives Sherpa creators a modicum of helpful feedback.

 

 

Candace 'n' Company  8-22-14

 

 

 

Onion & Pea  8-22-14

 

 

 

 

Winding Roads  8-22-14

 

 

 

 

 

Misc Soup  8-23-14

 

 

 

 

Batch Rejection  8-24-14

 

 

 

 

Bushy Tales  8-24-14

 

 

 

 

Frank & Steinway  8-24-14

 

 

 

 

Suburban Wilderness  8-24-14

 

 

 

 

No Place Like Holmes  8-25-14

 

 

Small Nerdy Creatures  8-25-14

 

 

 


A complete list of all the Sherpa features can be found here.

 





BAM! POW! BLING!

Hip-hop detail panelsSpeaking of hip-hop. I mean, speaking of comics. I wasn't aware of the first volume of Ed Piskor's graphic novel The Hip-Hop Family Tree, until I began seeing stories about the second, which was published last week.

 

Check out Daniel Genis' story over at The Daily Beast story: "Bam! Pow! Bling! Hip-Hop's History Gets the Graphic Novel Treatment."  Genis explains that the first two volumes comprise the "prequel," and subsequent volumes will each cover one year.

I thought this comment was particularly interesting: "Ed explained to me that while a sampling a beat is a well-known device in rap music, he samples colors. He would find old fliers and comics with urban themes and when he noticed something that just looked right, he scanned it in and added the hue to his palette. Perhaps that is why the books look so authentic; they could be artifacts from the era."

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Also this: "Rose Porché, who is 54, lived through the birth of hip-hop intimately, dancing at the very block parties that Piskor had drawn. She was amazed by how well the artist had captured the moment, and so were her friends sipping on beers in paper bags. They were equally amazed to learn that Ed Piskor was white, but not a word was said about cultural exploitation or appropriation. Piskor’s work was taken at face value, not an attempt to cash in on a fad for subculture or the meddling of an outsider. In fact, Rose said, “Reading this, you would think he was there, he was listening, and he was black. The fact that he’s a white boy who is only 32 is impressive.”

 





Building Snoopy!

The GoComics team had a blast assembling a larger-than-life, 8-bit Snoopy in our front windows last week!

 

 
 

As our Kansas City friends and Royals fans will notice, Snoopy is proudly rooting for our hometown’s baseball team! If you happen to be in the area, stop by the GoComics headquarters (1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106) and snap a photo with Snoopy! Don’t forget to share it with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.





Weekend Faves (August 24)

 

On A Claire Day by Carla Ventresca and Henry Beckett
On A Claire Day by Carla Ventresca and Henry Beckett

I'm not crying...I just have something in my eye.

--Julie

 

Dark Side of the Horse by Samson
Dark Side of the Horse by Samson

Lucky for Horace, according to my spam folder, there are extra-hot local singles waiting for me RIGHT NOW!
--Elizabeth

 

Reality Check by Dave Whamond
Reality Check by Dave Whamond

Math class just got interesting.

--Julie

 

Pearls Before Swine by Stephan Pastis
Pearls Before Swine by Stephan Pastis

Sometimes I'd like to live in Pig's brain.
--Elizabeth

 

Ten Cats by Graham Harrop
Ten Cats by Graham Harrop

There are kiddie pools, and there are kitty pools.
--Lucas





Meet Your Creator: Guy Gilchrist (Nancy, Random Acts of Nancy, Today’s Dogg)

A cartoonist, musician and volunteer, today we hear from Guy Gilchrist!

 

Greetings from my cabin studio in the beautiful, green rolling hills of Tennessee just outside Nashville, Music City! I moved to Nashville from Connecticut about nine years ago. I really love it here. As a writer of comics, books and songs, I can't think of a better place to be.
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Being a cartoonist is a pretty solitary profession. So, it's a lot of fun for me to get out into the music community here in Nashville every once in a while. I've had the chance to appear on the Grand Ole Opry several times. That's certainly been a dream come true. Just like this incredible life that I've had in cartooning.

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I know it's really corny to say something like that. But I'm a corny person. If you read the Nancy comic strip, then you will certainly agree with me on that.

 

I really have been incredibly blessed. Since I was 20 years old, I've made my living writing and drawing. The last 19 years I've had the pleasure to work on Nancy.

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My first big break was when I was about 20 and I got a job with Weekly Reader Books. I wrote and drew a comic book called Superkernel. That publisher also let me create game books and joke books and gave me my first taste of writing for children.

 

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The great Mort Walker saw my work for Weekly Reader and gave my name to Bill Yates, comics editor at King Features, when Bill told Mort they were having trouble finding someone that Jim Henson liked for a proposed comic strip version of his hit show.

 

I submitted samples and worked for free for one year before finally getting that job. Of course, that completely changed my life. I still have absolutely no idea how I was so blessed to be picked for The Muppets.

 

Photo[9]
Guy with his brother Brad

I worked with Jim for about seven years. He was everything you ever hoped he would be. You know, when you really idolize someone and you hope that if you ever met them that they would be all that you hoped that they would be? Well, Jim Henson was everything I could've ever dreamed of and so, so much more. I was pretty young, about 24, and he really became my creative father. He gave me a lot of leeway and allowed me to make decisions about the characters and about the project that I worked on. He gave me the chance to work on Fraggle Rock, and was in on the creation of the Muppet Babies. After that, I went on to a career of writing and illustrating a bunch of children's books, and handling the creative chores behind many of the world's biggest cartoon licenses.

 

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I don't know how other people who have found success feel, but as for me, whenever I sort of step back and really think about it, I keep thinking that day I'm going to get a knock on the door and it will be the "Art Police" and I'll be under arrest for impersonating someone who knew what they were doing!  

 

These days, my days and nights are a jumbled-up mix of writing and drawing the comic strip, writing and performing music, and traveling all over the United States doing motivational speaking and creative workshops.

 

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When I was a kid, my mom was a single mom and she used to take me to work with her when she worked in a diner. She used to grab some paper placemats and pencils and open the newspaper to the comics section. She would sit me at a table over in the corner where I wouldn't bother anybody and tell me to draw everything that I saw on those comic pages. I did. I could've never dreamed that almost six decades later, all that drawing would turn into such a cool, blessed life. If you ever read anything that I've done over the years, I want to thank you. I owe everything to the folks who have read my cartoons and put up with me all these years. Thanks so much. See you in the Funny Papers!

 

Read Nancy, Random Acts of Nancy and Todays Dogg, or follow Guy on Facebook and Twitter!





Twitter Q&A with Bob Weber Jr. and Jay Stephens

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This week, we were delighted to host a Q&A with Oh, Brother! creators Bob Webber Jr. and Jay Stephens! If you missed out, check the widget below.

 

 

 

 

ADD OH, BROTHER! TO YOUR GOCOMICS HOMEPAGE!

 

ABOUT: Oh, Brother! stars the sibling duo of Bud and Lily, who humorously interact within the leafy confines of their middle-class suburban home and neighborhood. Whether they are playing together in the family room or running amok in the schoolyard, Bud and Lily elevate the act of one-upmanship to Code Red levels. Lily is the quintessential slightly older and far more sensible sister. She takes it upon herself to look after her uninhibited, prank-loving younger brother, Bud. While Lily wins the occasional battle with her cool-headed maturity, Bud is intent on winning the war with his brazen brand of mischief. Despite their obvious differences, Bud and Lily love each other deeply and have a strong sibling bond. 


Pure and simple, Oh, Brother! speaks to the mischievous inner child that exists in all of us." 





A STRIP TO REMEMBER

On March 3rd the daily Doonesbury launched its Classic series, which started with the first-ever strip and has been marching its way through the seventies at a four-weeks-from-each-year clip (with new Sundays).

 

Today's 1976 strip, which showed Joanie and Rick, after weeks of courtship amid Ginny Slade's congressional compaign, in bed together peacefully happy and naked, is a classic Classic that provoked an earth-moving rumble and stir. Over 30 papers dropped it, including the Boston Globe, which was picketed by M.I.T. students bearing signs reading, "Joanie, we forgive you."

 

You can read an extended revisiting of the whole storyline -- including the memorable three-strip-wordless sequence which culminated with today's strip -- by clicking over to this newly-posted FAQ.

 

8-22-14 Classic Doonesbury, Joanie and Rick

 





He wanted to be Royal

Royal snoopy


Great job Lindsay, Chris, Joel and Julie -- aka the GoComics marketing team! For those of you who don't know what's going on here, it's a little dog I like to call Snoopy and he's wearing a hat from a baseball team here in Kansas City called the Kansas City Royals or is it pronounced Ropals? I can never tell with the KC accent. It's quite endearing though.


-JG

 





COMICS SHERPA: EDITOR'S PICKS

This recurring LAUGH TRACKS feature highlights individual Sherpa strips and panels that for one reason or another caught the fancy of the aide de sherpa. It could be anythng; the drawing, the writing, the humor, the coloring, that they tried something interesting, or that it's a new step for that particular creator.

 

We hope this quirky sampler will alert you to features you might not yet have noticed amid Sherpa's abundant, ever-changing, and eclectic mix, and that it gives Sherpa creators a modicum of helpful feedback.

 

 

 

Bushy Tales  8-19-14

 

 

 

Cartertoons  8-19-14

 

 

 

 

8-19-14

 

 

 

 

 

8-19-14

 

 

 

Regular Creatures  8-19-14

 

 

 

 

8-19-14

 

 

Buns  8-20-14

 

 

 

 

Cleo and Company  8-20-14

 

 

 

Don't Pick the Flowers  8-20-14

 

 

 

 Jim & Sarah  8-21-14

 

 

 

Leadbellies  8-21-14

 

 

Misc Soup  8-21-14

 

 

 


A complete list of all the Sherpa features can be found here.

 





The Stacks, A-F

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Earlier today, I dug up a half-remembered folder on my computer that I made a few weeks after I started working here. Based on the volume of different comics I see in an average day, I realized pretty quickly that I'd need some mechanism through which I could preserve particularly delightful comics for my own enjoyment that didn't involve scrapbooking. Thus, I made a folder called "Archive Selects," and tossed everything in there that struck me as worthy of inclusion.

 

A few weeks after that, they assigned me a lot more work to do, and I sort of forgot about nuturing my collection, leaving it to languish for quite a while its quality fermented. In a good way.

 

 

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Obviously, we have a lot of comics around here. We add new ones all the time! It's great, lemme tell you. But once those comics aren't new, we corral them into our Archive, where they wait patiently for some distant week when their creator goes on vacation, so that they might be hefted up into the sun once more, chosen as that week's batch of reruns. It just breaks my heart every time I have to pull a vacation week; all those little cartoon eyes peeking expectantly up at me. Poor things. I wish I could rescue each and every one of you.

 

In an effort to boost our Archives' collective morale, we'll trot out some of the best stuff I saved lo those many years ago to Archive Selects. Today? A through F. Next week? I'll have to check a dictionary, but I think we start at "G."

 

Yum. Please enjoy some highlights from Born Loser, The Buckets, Drabble and Ferd'nand. Then go read them every day. Deal? Deal.

 

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Great, great, great. Hey, how about nine Ferd'nand strips to send you on your way? He's little and silent and foreign, so he won't make much fuss.

 

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Stay frosty,

Dave





Taking on the #IceBucketChallenge

Yesterday, we shared a video of Nick Galifianakis nominating GoComics cartoonists to take part in the ALS #IceBucketChallenge.

 

Acting as a stunt double for Bill Watterson, Calvin and Hobbes editor and former Universal Uclick/GoComics president Lee Salem accepted the challenge!

 

 

 

 





GoComics Staff Pick: Richard's Poor Almanac by Richard Thompson

Thanks to our editor Josh for this week's Staff Pick.

 

In the history of comics, one man — just one man — accomplished a feat once thought … unaccomplishable. One man — one cartoonist man — through his amazing work inspired the very great and very private Bill Watterson to come down from his mountain villa or out of his igloo or whatever and say stuff to people about things he likes, on the record. That man was …

 

Hang on. I suppose, technically speaking, Watterson gave Pearls Before Swine his stamp of approval when he teamed up with Stephan Pastis and drew some Pearls strips earlier this summer. Fiddlesticks. Blows some of the drama out of my premise. Okay, starting over:

 

In the history of comics, two men — just two men — blah blah blah one of them the aforementioned Pastis blah blah blah — that other man is … Richard Thompson. Okay, that's all set. End intro.

 

You know Richard Thompson from the divinely lovely, now-legendary comic strip Cul de Sac. But before Richard was regaling us with tales of Alice and Petey Otterloop and the rest, he was wowing Washington post readers with Richard's Poor Almanac, a hidden gem of a weekly cartoon that offered humorous wisdom inspired by pop culture, society, politics and more. The Almanac has it all: reading lists, vacation tips, weather guides, restaurant closings and all kinds of other info you never knew you needed but should never have lived without. Read Richard's Poor Almanac and be the wisest and most fully entertained you you can be.

 

Richard's Poor Almanac

 

 

ADD RICHARD'S POOR ALMANAC TO YOUR

GOCOMICS HOMEPAGE

 

 

Richard's Poor Almanac





To be young, gifted and opinionated

Though I often think of GoComics as a happy place I can go to read comics and escape the world's insanity, it's also a great destination to get a little perspective and a dry, humorous outlook on many of the big stories and issues currently setting our world aflame. The GoComics Editorial roster includes Pulitzer Prize winners and heavyweights like Pat Oliphant, Tom Toles and Signe Wilkinson, but I often find myself turning to some of the younger voices for both unconventional styles and an extra degree of outrage.

 

Here's a smattering of recent offerings from three of my favorites, starting with this trio from Darrin Bell.

 

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And from Matt Bors...

 

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and from Jen Sorensen

 

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Nick Galifianakis ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

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You’ve probably seen the #IceBucketChallenge videos spreading like wildfire across social media, which are raising awareness for ALS. A few of our GoComics creators have recently been challenged to take part!

 

In the video below, Nick and Zuzu creator Nick Galifianakis nominates Richard Thompson (Cul de Sac), Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine) and Calvin and Hobbes cartoonist Bill Watterson (with Lee Salem, C&H editor and former Universal Uclick/GoComics president, as Watterson’s stand-in).

 

Will these talented cartoonists accept the ALS #IceBucketChallenge? Stay tuned…

 

WATCH THE VIDEO HERE! 

 






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