Wednesday, December 19, 2007

HEROESCON ADDITION :: Richard Thompson Brings Cul De Sac To HeroesCon!

Holy Mackerel! Just added to the HeroesCon 08 Guest List is cartoonist Richard Thompson, the creator of the strip Cul de Sac and Richard's Poor Almanac newspaper strips, both for the Washington Post! "Cul de Sac"--which Todd and I have recently discovered here in the office and are APE over--is a shockingly well-crafted strip, the story of a suburban family and their, er, hijinks. While Cul de Sac is funny--and plenty funny at that--what makes it so fun to read is the mix of loose, energetic art with a spot-on sense of timing and all-around knowledge of what makes comics "work." Todd insists he's been telling me to read Cul de Sac for "like months", but it took a profile by Comics Reporter scribe Tom Spurgeon to make me take the plunge. Who can trust Todd? You shouldn't.

While Cul de Sac and its older brother, the acerbic editorial strip "Richard's Poor Almanac", are currently published in the Washington Post, next year it'll be syndicated in a number of papers nationwide--including our own Charlotte Observer! So if you are an Observer reader and like what you see when it starts, be sure and be vocal about it so they keep it around! And don't miss the chance to welcome Richard to his very first HeroesCon next summer!

9 comments:

Robert Ullman said...

This is great news! My friend Mike introduced me to Richard at SPX and I've been following his strip ever since.

Andy Mansell said...

Now can we doa strip panel? please? That strip is a gem!
Perfect topic-- Marcus HAmilton,Richard thompson on writing about kids/for kids... it's a thought....

Dustin Harbin said...

But is Cul de Sac really "for kids"? Not that it's inappropriate for kids, but it strikes me as being in that grey area that's funny to kids, but where adults enjoy the gags most completely. Another example: Calvin & Hobbes. I still wonder if THAT strip was actually aimed at kids, although who can say what Bill Watterson is aiming at ANYone.

Rob, I'm totally jealous that you met this dude at SPX. Thanks so much for the introduction. Not!

Andy Mansell said...

You have three options with cartoons about kids-- either show it from the point of view of the parents-- Baby Blues, hi and lois, Blondie or foist adult beliefs and vocabulary on the kids-- successfully--Calvin and Peanuts-- or let the kids be kids: dennis, cul-De Sac, One big Happy. To me those are the most challenging and the hardest to provide consistent humor because of the boundries they set for themselves. Marcus keeps succeeding because--like his predecessor, most of the comics can be read by little kids and adults differntly and humorously at the same time. Cul de Sac veers a little closer to calvin, but the kids remain kids.
This is a worthy topic for Mr Spurgeon or yourself to engage these creators in. STRIPS RULE!!!Thanks for listening.

Dustin Harbin said...

Hm. Well, I don't this I DISagree, necessarily, but I think your second two groups are pretty close. For instance, I would consider most of the humor in Calvin AND Cul de Sac to be "adult" humor, only insofar as it's very sophisticated. This is not to say that a kid couldn't get it, or shouldn't get it, but I think the target of his jokes is usually an adult mind.

For instance, the current story about decorating the house for Christmas. What kid is going to "get" these jokes about anemic bushes and the "dad-must-decorate-alone" thing?

I would say, in quasi-rebuttal to your points, that Cul de Sac is successful BECAUSE of its boundaries, and strips like Hi and Lois and other "kid" strips are far less successful because they're trying to please everyone, and therefore end up a little, er, watery. Cul de Sac retains its (occasionally barbed) point by being "adult" without ever EXCLUDING a young reader, which I think is an important distinction.

I hope all that didn't sound really dumb.

richardcthompson said...

Thanks for the invitation, and I look forward to seeing you all there, and you too, Rob!

Andy Mansell said...

Richard-- if you can't already tell from the BLOG, we cannot wait to meet you! Your strip is fantastic.

Jason Wheatley said...

Yeah, but what about Family Circus? Now there's a strip!

"Pasketti and meatbulbs." Oh, Jeffy...

Shawn Reynolds said...

If you guys haven't seen Richard's version of the Heroes logo then you should check out his blog. While you are clipping coupons, Apple Brown Betty recipies and the lastest Family Circus. Pizza on Earth and good will to men!