Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Concord Monitor's Great Comics Contest

Above: Comic strip im--- HEY CAT!!!!! HEY!!!!!!! TROUT!!!!!!!!!!!! OUTTA THE WAY!!!!!!!!

Above: Comic strip images by (l. to r.) Tony Murphy and Wiley Miller above the fold!

"The Comics Smackdown Begins" so says Monday's Concord Monitor. It's the CM's Second Annual Great Comics Contest. Staff writer Felice Belman tells us:

"Both 'Shoe' and 'Hager the Horrible' strike us as having run their course. Your first task, as Comics Contest voters, is to decide which of the two will get the ax."

There is no further description of the criteria for a strip "running its course." And then Ms Belman asks readers to pick one of the four strips below to replace the "run their course" strips:

The nice thing about this is that Tony's a friend and it was cool to see his lead character there, on the front page of one of the local papers. His strip is just this month being launched by the Washington Post Writers Group. The nasty thing is that his strip, IT'S ALL ABOUT YOU, the new kid on the block, is competing with older, better known strips. Here are the 4 strips in competition:

• Stone Soup by Jan Eliot

• Rhymes with Orange by Hilary Price

• Non Sequitur by Wiley Miller

• It's All About You by Tony Murphy

And, of course, polls are the absolutely wrong way to go. They are degrading, unscientific and an abdication of the editor's responsibility. Then-National Cartoonists Society President Rick Stromoski wrote about why this is in a letter to the Hartford Courant in October 2006. Here's a link to what he wrote from the Daily Cartoonist Web site.

Factoid: when a strip is on "trial," the paper usually does not pay for the use of the feature. And the syndicate doesn't compensate the cartoonist.


Robert Gidley said...

I think we should be able to vote on everything that appears in the paper. I'd vote against sports--especially the high school stuff, since I don't have kids.

And editorials that I don't like shouldn't appear. And I'd vote against stories with icky violence and for stories with cute kittens and children.

I'm sick and tired of newspaper editors forcing me to read stuff I don't want to.

Let's start voting on all the stories and get a good, clean newspaper!

Mark Anderson said...

Man, I had no idea that they weren't paid for the tryout period... Ugh...

Mike Lynch said...

Robert cracks me up.

Cartooning will break your heart, Mr. Anderson!