SINCE THE 70S
Robert David Stanton | Flagler Beach, FL | October 15, 2014
I have read your comic strip since the 70s, and have identified with Zonk and Mike and others as my life has progressed. Keep on doing what your doing -- you do keep it real!
Irene | Ontario, CANADA | October 14, 2014
Perhaps the "mindfulness" of the last few years is the new "mellow."
Brian Harvey | Berkeley, CA | October 13, 2014
It's weird seeing Duke as the voice of reason.
THE STRIP TODAY
Maerzie | Florence, WI | October 11, 2014
Kool, sharp woman, that Joanie! I really liked the strip today. Some of the old ones are off the wall though, and I can't figure out what he was getting at. When are some fresh ones coming back? This is politics season, and G.B. Trudeau is one of the best at telling people what's really going on!
GBT has announced that the Doonesbury dailies will continue in Classic mode throughout the run of his political sitcom Alpha House, however long a run that proves to be. Season Two of the show will be released in its entirety for binge-viewing (or more measured consumption) on October 24th. New strips continue to appear on Sundays.
Mary Wickens | East Lansing, MI | October 10, 2014
I am really enjoying the strips from 1979, which was the year I graduated law school. My dad ("Big Ben") and I read the strips together every day until he died in 2009. It brings back such wonderful memories; he'd call me every morning and ask, "Did you read Doonesbury today?" Mr. Trudeau graciously emailed Dad several times when he was ill late in life. Thank you.
Thad Humphries | Charlottesville, VA | October 10, 2014
In today's strip from 1979, the horrors of "mellowspeak" foreshadow the outrage against the 140-character tweet. For language purists, Doonesbury documents 35 years on the highway to hell.
Tony Phillips | Chicago, IL | October 09, 2014
What's interesting is just how it was that "mellow" ballooned out of its tiny place in the dictionary and became a cool word to use, and that was by its indelible association with mind-expanding and relaxing drugs: pot, acid, etc., the elixirs of an age. Once rendered mellow, the mind might take a fancy to Apollo, but just as well might revel with Dionysus. However, when the word thereafter became culturally generalized, it quickly dissolved from use, considered smarmy by the hip, and thereafter, in its death throws, was used sardonically to describe a "slacker" -- a Zonker, a Zipper, or a Zeke. I now can't remember when I last heard the word used in conversation. And whatever happened to "far out" ? Funny how the word "cool" manages to sustain its expanded use decade after decade.
ONLY IN CALIFORNIA
Shooshie | Dallas, TX | October 07, 2014
Classic Doonesbury indeed. I'd nearly forgotten these eras. Fellowship at the California Institute for the Mellow? A mellow fellow? Only in California, of course. Trudeau kept his finger on the pulse of both coasts, and most of what happened in between. But anyone with a pulse at that time was aware of Esalen, Tassajara, and the many retreats, communes and institutes of California, which influenced businesses like The Whole Earth Catalog, or even Apple Computer, which started out a very barefoot organization and is now the most successful company on earth. Later, the birth of global communities such as The Well on the fledgling internet were influenced by the same concepts, places and people.
I enjoyed the various takes in the comics that were already poking fun at them. At one extreme, you had the dark view from Zap Comics, but in the newspapers there was Doonesbury, whose passing characters were always deadpan stereotypes of their respective ages. Anyone researching how the cultural revolution of the 60s led people to California in the 1970s, the Me Generation of the 1980s, and the Internet of the 1990s, would be missing a great resource if they overlooked Trudeau's grand satire. History books tell us something like press releases from the entities of the time. Doonesbury told how we thought about them. One's not complete without the other.
Mark Miller | THE NETHERLANDS | October 07, 2014
I used to hate hate hate mellow, then I learned to relax about it. Love the series though. Once I start reading a Classic strip I can always remember the punchline. How cool is that?
AT A FOOD CO-OP
Don Albertson | Spring Mills, PA | October 07, 2014
I'm not sure I know what mellow is, but I do recall a time when I asked someone at a food co-op about some basic (to me anyway) notions of freshness and hygiene and someone said "Maybe you aren't mellow enough for this co-op." I conclude that while I may be somewhat mellow, I'll never get to be a Mellow Doctor.
Benjamin Smeall | WISCONSIN / BOLIVIA | October 07, 2014
I do remember "mellow." It was, and still is, a very important concept. In fact, is it a reiteration of the worship of Apollo, god of medicine and music. It's an affirmation that balance and moderation are desirable qualities in life. Nothing new. The worship of the god Apollo became the basis for Christianity. It was rediscovered in the Enlightenment of the 18th century that also provided the intellectual justification for the American Revolution, the beginnings of the United States as we now know it.
Ray Lampe | Templeton, MA | October 05, 2014
Today's ten-years-ago flashback strip once again strongly moved me as part of the B.D. wounded warrior story arc. This almost documentary storytelling is unlike anything I know of in this medium. Great praise is due GBT for the artistry and compassion he exhibits in this and all the other non-comic stories he creates, which may be the best presentation of the passing scene available to the segment of world population that absorbs Doonesbury regularly. Moreover, B.D., Melissa, and Toggle are ongoing reminders that we have a continuing obligation of support for our veterans, especially the combat and abuse wounded, in hospitals and living among us.
David Ferrier | Edmonton, CANADA | October 05, 2014
I love how the 10, 20, and 25-years-ago strips on today's Flashbacks page offer a B.D. retrospective. Semi-loquacious to laconic. Before/after helmetectomy. Crass to insightful. Thanks.
Brian Harvey | Berkeley, CA | September 29, 2014
I wonder why we got a Classic yesterday instead of a new Sunday comic...
Even while writing the political sitcom "Alpha House" GBT occasionally needs a vacation. (Filming on Season Two of the show wrapped recently, and all ten episodes will be released on October 24th.) When such vacations occur (as was the case this past Sunday, and will be again next Sunday) the syndicate sends out a fairlly-recently-published "Flashback" strip -- as it has for decades. To clarify, the daily "Classic" series, is an ongoing tour through Doonesbury's past, featuring four weeks of daily strips from each year of the strip's run. The series began in March with the first strips, from 1970, and as of today we are up to 1978.
BRING ME BACK
Jahn Ghalt | Anchorage, AK | September 29, 2014
GBT is a half-generation older than me, but close enough to really bring me back. Arafat was not merely a bad dresser -- a detail which escaped me when, as a 15-yr-old in current affairs class, I read in Time that he had addressed the UN General Assembly wearing an empty holster.
Tiger 69 | Silverton, CO | September 26, 2014
"To do is to be."
"To be is to do."
"Do be do be do."
John Ghalt | Anchorage, AK | September 26, 2014
Only today did I learn that Old Blue Eyes had a hit with "Strangers." I "blame" my mom who played (and played and played) a John Davidson album on which he covered that song.
A SECOND TRY
Maryhelen Posey | Calgary, CANADA | September 26, 2014
I remember the "Strangers in the Night" strip vividly -- I was surprised that Boopsie thought quickly enough, and then grasped the importance of not "enlightening" the other pilgrim. And that made me spend some time kicking myself about superficial judgment of Boopsie, and realizing that I generally leapfrog all the steps that make it possible to keep my mouth shut at the right time. And I regret to say the strip has exactly the same effect on me today. Well, a second try may be more effective. Thanks!
Rev. Dr. Bob Faser | Hobart, AUSTRALIA | September 26, 2014
I'm glad that Boopsie showed compassion to the lady from Perth who showed some confusion over the identities of "The King" and "The Chairman of the Board." But, after all, there were some uncanny similarities, including the fact that Elvis did an absolutely killer cover version of "My Way."
Mary McKim | Portugal Cove, CANADA | September 26, 2014
Thanks for running the "Strangers in the Night" strip. It has always been a sentimental favourite of mine. It really embodies the concept that music is very personal. No one, not even the person who wrote the song, can give a definitive statement of what that song means. What is trivial and laughable to you might be life-changing to me. Such is the power and truth of music.