The blow, when it came, was like a swift punch to the kidneys: Dick Tracy, the peerless comic strip detective, doesn’t read newspaper comic strips anymore.
My first thought: They’re still publishing Dick Tracy?
My second thought: Maybe ol’ Dick is right.
Let me fill in the backstory: I was perusing the Interwebs today when I saw a link to a story on Examiner.com in which writer Brian Steinberg notes the current Dick Tracy strip, in which the sharp-chinned cop, when asked if he reads comic strips, replies, “Usually don’t have time.”
At first I thought, “Well, the hell with Dick Tracy. If he’d turn in that two-way wrist radio and get an iPad or even an iPhone, maybe he’d keep up with the news a little better.”
Then I thought, well, to be honest, I’m not reading newspaper comic strips every day either.
Regular readers of this blog might have noticed that I’ve mentioned Steve Roper and Mike Nomad, a long-gone adventure strip along the lines of Dick Tracy, as well as classics like Calvin and Hobbes and the inexplicably popular Family Circus.
But since Calvin hurtled off this plane of existence on his sled, I haven’t spent a lot of time with the funnies.
That’s a shame too. I work for a newspaper and read it, in print and online, every day. But I haven’t paid as much attention to the comics since the heyday of not only Calvin but the Far Side.
So when I realized that I was no better than Dick Tracy in my inattention to newspaper comic strips, I decided to rectify the situation.
Beginning tomorrow, I’m going to take a few minutes and check out the comics, both in print and online. I’m going to find some new favorites. Maybe I’ll catch up on Funky Winkerbean. Are those crazy kids still in high school?
I’ll let you know how the comic strip reading is going.
I can’t promise I’ll read Dick Tracy every day, however, That guy’s attitude is just annoying.