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Walker, Brian. The Comics: Since 1945.
York: Harry N. Abrams, 2002. 336pp. ISBN 0810934817
Jump to Reviews
for 2006 paperback edition
of Brian Walker]
- Front flap, add: "The Comics Since 1945
is the companion volume to The Comics Before 1945 by
Brian Walker, published by Harry N. Abrams in 2004."
- Back flap:
photo - "Photo credit: Fran Collin"
- Back flap: New author bio
- Pg. 7, col. 1, par. 3, last
sentence: "In 1889 Pulitzer added cartoons to the Sunday
World, and in 1893, when he obtained a color press, he launched one
of the first Sunday color comics sections."
- Pg. 9, col. 1, par. 2, first
sentence: "Richard Felton Outcault, the father of
the funnies, had in one short year defined the form and content of
the American newspaper comic feature."
- Pg. 12, Doonesbury Sunday page,
black-and-white art with color art
- Pg. 15, col. 1, last paragraph,
first sentence: "By writing off the
last half- century of comic-strip history, some scholars
overlook the contributions of great talents like..."
- Pg. 17, chapter break, caption
under art: "LOWIZIE from BARNEY GOOGLE AND SNUFFY SMITH by
Fred Lasswell. © King Features Syndicate, Inc."
- Pg. 60, col. 2, par. 1, first
sentence: "Zekley, who drew himself in the strip
- Pg. 60, caption for bottom strip:
"(Zeke Zekley in third panel)"
- Pg. 76, caption for top strip:
"MAD SATIRE - Pogum
(POGO spoof) by Wally Wood, © 1961 E.C.
Publications, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by
permission. Courtesy of David Applegate."
- Pg. 97, col. 1, par. 1, last
sentence: "He founded the Museum of Cartoon
Art in 1974, and served as president of the National
Cartoonists Society and
vice-presidentof the Newspaper Comics Council.
- Pg. 102, col. 2, par. 1,
second-to-last-sentence: "'You must have been looking
through my window, because the same thing happened to me,' she
- Pg. 165, col. 2, par. 3, second
sentence: "In 1984 he told newspaper editors they
had to run Doonesbury at 44 picas in width (7 5/16 inches), instead of
a new industry standard of 38.6 picas (6 7/16 inches), or not
run it at all."
- Pg. 191, credit line under top
strip: "All For Better or For Worse strips
© Lynn Johnston Productions, Inc. Distributed by
Universal Press Syndicate. All rights reserved."
- Pg. 193, For Better or For Worse
Sunday page, 3/31/ 91:
replace black-and- white art with color art
- Pg. 219, chapter break, caption
under art: "CALVIN AND HOBBES by
Bill Watterson. © WATTERSON. Used by
permission of Universal Press Syndicate. All rights
- Pg. 227, col. 2, par. 5, second
In March 1986 the second-most-
profitable syndicate, King Features, under the leadership of
Joe D'Angelo, absorbed the seventh-largest, Cowles (formerly known as
the Register and Tribune Syndicate)."
- Pg. 230, credit line on right
side of panel: "THE FAR SIDE ® by Gary
Larson. © 1982 FarWorks, Inc. All rights
reserved. Used with permission."
- Pg. 230, col. 1, par. 2, last
sentence: "A deluxe, two-volume,
slipcased collection of every single Far Side cartoon (4,081
to be exact), with a comprehensive introduction by Gary
Larson, was published by Andrews McMeel in the fall of 2003."
- Pg. 246, col. 1, last sentence:
"Brady was nominated four times for the Reuben Award in the 1990s and
finally won in 2004."
- Pg. 250, credit line for top
strip: "BETTY BOOP AND FELIX Sunday page by
the Walker Brothers, © 6/16/85 King Features
- Pg. 276, col. 2, par. 2, second
sentence: "Three of the most successful
new features of the decade - Baby Blues, Mutts and Zits -
blended traditional themes with fresh
- Pg. 277, col. 2, par. 2, last
sentence: "Zoe aged slowly and was joined by baby
brother Hamish in 1995 and sister Wren in 2002."
- Pg. 281, col. 2, par. 2, fifth
sentence: "The U.S. Postal Service released
a series of twenty commemorative comic-strip stamps on October
- Pg. 285, Dennis the Menace Sunday
black-and- white art with color art
- Pg. 316, col. 2, last par., first
sentence: "Zits was voted the Best Comic Strip of
the Year in 1999 and 2000 and, in 2002, it passed the
1,000-newspaper plateau and Jerry Scott won the Reuben Award."
- Pg. 322, credit line for bottom
strip: "GET FUZZY Sunday page by Darby
Conley. © 9/17/2000 Darby
Conley. Distributed by United Feature Syndicate, Inc."
- Pg. 323: replace top strip, "Big Nate,"
with "Pearls Before Swine." Credit line:
"PEARLS BEFORE SWINE daily strip by Stephan Pastis. ©
1/31/2002 Stephan Pastis. Distributed by United
Feature Syndicate, Inc."
- Pg. 323: replace third
strip, "Betty," with "Soup to Nutz." Credit line:
"SOUP TO NUTZ daily strip by Rick Stromoski. ©
4/19/2005 by Rick Stromoski. Distributed by NEA, Inc."
- Pg. 326, Blondie Sunday page,
black-and-white art with new color art
- Pg. 327, Doonesbury Sunday page,
color art with new color art
- Pg. 328, col. 1, par. 4, first
line: "American Color - “Andy Olsen"
- Pg. 328, col. 1, under ARTICLES:
two to line thirteen (after: "The following cartoon-related periodicals
are no longer being published:") "Cartoonist PROfiles. 146
issues were published quarterly between March 1969 and June 2005 by
Cartoonist PROfiles, Inc. 281 Bayberry Lane, Westport, CT 06430."
- Pg. 328, col. 1, under ARTICLES,
line 4: "Comic Buyer's Guide. Published monthly
by F + W Publications, Inc. 700 E. State St., Iola, WE 54990."
- Pg. 328, col. 1, under ARTICLES,
line 8: "Editor &
Publisher. Published monthly by BPI Communications,
Inc. 770 Broadway, New York, NY 10003."
- Pg. 333, col. 2, last paragraph,
last sentence: "Fantagraphics Books of Seattle
has published collections of Dennis the Menace, Peanuts, Pogo, Prince
Valiant and Zippy."
Reviews in print:
David A. [review.] International
Journal of Comic Art 5.2 (Fall 2003): 450-452.
Review by Miron Murcury, originally distributed on the Platinum Age Comics discussion list:
Brian Walker's book, The
Comics Since 1945, is wonderful.
This colorful 10”x13” book features comic strips from
the past sixty years in a premium format with color
throughout. The heavily illustrated, decade by decade chapters
offer examples of all types of strips, not just the rich and famous.
Brian Walker's commentary is brief and
informative. The writing is chiefly confined to supportive
paragraphs followed by lots of comic strips printed clear, clean and
For each decade Walker writes about how comics
grew and changed to meet various creative and economic challenges. Light
biographical sketches, information about the syndicates and their influences,
facts and figures about comics circulation, and the comics popularity
ratings among newspaper readers are topics incorporated
into Brian's text. His writing imparts a lot of
information without ever overwhelming the reader.
This is a book of comic strips. The best part about buying
this book are the over 700 illustrations. Generous selections of
daily and Sunday comics are offered like a rich dowry. Most Sunday strips are
reproduced in color. Notable comic strips are richly represented by material
from the first daily through to the most recent computer colored
examples. This book reprints entire comic strip sequences, such
as the death of Farley in Lynn Johnston's For Better or For Worse, giving
readers a feel for individual artist's drawing and writing.
The book begins with cartoons by Outcault, Keane and
Hart that evoke nostalgia and Brian Walker's history of the
American comic strip that is clear and inviting to read. The introduction
The funnies have endured primarily
because comic characters have a universal, timeless appeal. ... Cartoonists
create friends for their readers. Pogo, Charlie Brown, Calvin and Hobbes and Dilbert
are part of a great cultural legacy that is being further enriched every day.
The final panel has yet to be drawn.
Then, for about 315 pages, the author walks with you along a
great library path, illustrated on both sides by the best American cartoon
strips which speak eloquently for themselves. Brian is an excellent guide
along this path. His obvious love of comics cushions the reader, making a
large journey pass quickly.
This book ends with a Cosmos-like spirit of wonder and
appreciation, the acknowledgment that
[i]n the past half century,
thousands of cartoonists have created millions of images that have been enjoyed
by billions of readers. That is but a brief flash of our creative potential.
The words and pictures will continue to captivate us for as long as we have the
desire to be entertained and enlightened.
The Comics Since 1945 is available through your local
independent bookstore or from BudPlant.com for $20.
PS. It had to have been reading the Comics Since 1945 while falling
that brought me the following dream; it couldn't have been the rare
bit of hash I ate.
In this dream Earth had been invaded by aliens who
looked just like Earthlings. The aliens shopped at Bergdorf-Goodman and
Sherwin-Williams and 7-11's just like us. There was no way to distinguish human
from alien. Since this is a post-modern dream, I was aware of movies and how
they tested for aliens. Those tests didn't work in my dream. All Earth
governments were worried. Everyone thought the aliens would defeat us. I could
see, in a newspaper rack, a NYC Post headline, ALIENS WIN!
Gloomy was this dream until...
... It was discovered that alien invaders do not laugh
Aliens don't crack a smile at Dilbert's office
antics or have their hearts affected by Rose's love or Farley's death.
Aliens don't laugh at Calvin and Hobbes.
So, in my dream, squads of soldiers and national guard were
patrolling the streets. At check points the guards held guns and wanted-poster-sized
Sunday comics. To prevent the aliens from laughing just to pass the test,
random pages of meaningless comics-like material were also produced and shown
at check points.
As my dream faded away I smiled to read the 100
point headline of the NY Times national edition, "Comics Save the
World," and the new motto in smaller type, 'All the comics
we can fit.'