Blowback_toon

Blowback

A clean, well-lit place to vent

Please feel free to contribute to this frequently-updated forum, which posts selected commentary on our favorite comic strip. If you’d like your critique to be posted, please note that civility, if not approbation, counts. Click here to submit a comment.

HISTORY
Elijah Lachance | Ouagadouogou, BURKINA FASO | March 15, 2014

As someone born in 1987, I am yet a younger generation. I think I learned just about all my history from reading Doonesbury and Pogo and then asking questions and looking things up. When I went abroad with the Peace Corps, I brought all the books and comics from Pogo and GBT I could find with me, and my friends think I'm some sort of genius history buff as a result. I can't wait to start watching Alpha House and getting caught up on what's been happening while I've been away from the Internet for two years. To GBT and Walt Kelly, a million thanks from this millennial.

FAVORITE
John Halbert | Los Angeles, CA | March 14, 2014

The "25 Years Ago" strip on the Flashbacks page today is one of my favorite mistakes in the history of Doonesbury. When Honey hires J.J. as an artist to do murals on Donald Trump's yacht, they act like they've never met -- despite the fact that they were college roommates.

A YOUNGER GENERATION
Maryhelen Posey | Calgary, CANADA | March 14, 2014

Wonderful to see that Pogo got to yet a younger generation than mine! I was born in 1942, hence too young to appreciate Pogo when it came out. But my brother collected all the comics, and later the collections of the strips, so when I got old enough to re-read Pogo as not just a bunch of neat animals talking gibberish but hilarious political and social satire, there they were. My brother still has them -- I'm working on him to leave them to my son!

WALT KELLY
David Hallett | St John's, CANADA | March 14, 2014

Apart from being slightly older (b. 1959), I had the absolutely identical experience with my father's Pogo books. GBT has ably carried on Walt Kelly's keen and hilarious analysis of the U.S. I think of both GBT and Kelly as great American patriots because they refuse to whitewash their nation and its foibles, idiosyncracies, and inconsistencies while still believing in its founding principles.

POGO
Mark Miller | Amsterdam, NETHERLANDS | March 14, 2014

Born in 1960, I learned things from my father's old Pogo books. It was the Doonesbury of its time. I understood nothing but the jokes.

BORN IN THE LATE '70s
Saira | Dorchester, ENGLAND | March 13, 2014

As someone born in the late '70s, everything I know about what happened in the years leading up to and immediately following my birth comes from reading my parents' old Doonesbury books. How nice it is to see those old strips again.

GOOD FRIENDS
Carol | Boulder, CO | March 13, 2014

Thanks for these wonderful oldies. I'm totally loving taking the time machine back, and seeing my good friends back in the day.

THE PASSING YEARS
S.B. Carter | Stanford, IL | March 12, 2014

I, too, am about the same age as the original Doonesbury characters. Everyone else is is reflecting on the emotional growth and maturation of the first generation. Although I spend a lot of time on a college campus, it was today's strip that brought home another facet of the passing years. Mark had no ass back then.

OLD STRIPS
Jeff Cohen | Atlanta, GA | March 12, 2014

I just love the old strips. Keep them coming.

GO!
Ray Lampe | Templeton, MA | March 11, 2014

To all the daring protestors of every generation: Thank you. When I was the age to join the fray, I was a passive liberal and didn't even know it. I thought everyone wanted fairness in the world. Now, nearing 80, I don't have the chops to knock heads any more but cheer from the sidelines, sign petitions, and donate to causes. Go, Megaphone Mark!!!

COINCIDENCE
Don Albertson | Spring Mills, PA | March 11, 2014

By a curious coincidence, students at the Papua New Guinea University of Technology (a.k.a. UNITECH) are demonstrating for the reinstatement of their Vice Chancellor (roughly equivalent to a President of a US university) just as the replay/flashblack strips show Mark demanding the ouster of Walden's President.

MEGAPHONE MARK
Brian Harvey | Berkeley, CA | March 11, 2014

I think I'm about Mark's age. I was like him back when he was "Megaphone Mark"; a figure of fun, crazy, extremist -- immature, supposedly. Everyone said I'd turn conservative when I got older, with a mortgage. I bet they said it to him, too. But neither of us did. Maybe a little less eager to throw our aging bodies into a brawl, but still on the left. Mike got less obnoxious, B.D. got way more insightful, but Mark, while older and wiser, is the one most recognizable in these early strips. Makes me feel good.

DOONESPEOPLE
Ilyn | Providence, RI | March 10, 2014

Thank you for these beautiful cave drawings, which are helping us better understand modern-day Doonespeople.

ANTI-SMOKING
Paul Hawkins | Wooster, OH | March 09, 2014

Let me see if I have this correct. You're anti-smoking, yet pro-pot Thank gawd you don't have to light up brownies! Or chewing tobacco, another annoying and very addictive habit...

LOSS OF INNOCENCE
John Ghalt | Anchorage, AK | March 07, 2014

GBT's got ten years on me, yet this week's Flashbacks evoke in me a sudden loss of innocence. As an 18-year-old freshman, 4,000 highway miles from home, I was walking along within the local State College when I saw a very athletic student bent over his textbook. "A scholar athlete," I thought, "nothing strange about that." But on closer approach I saw his intent expression, brow furrowed with effort -- mouthing words, with agonizing deliberation.

IN THE EARLY 70s
Paul Baumgartel | Riverside, CT | March 07, 2014

I started following the strip when I attended Yale in the early 70s -- I even spoke (briefly) to GBT on the phone once (unrelated to the strip; I was trying to reach his roommate!). These Flashbacks are really special to me and I'm glad that they're being presented. Although I miss the new daily strips, I completely understand GBT's motivation for the hiatus and wish him all the best for "Alpha House" and other ventures. At least we still have Sundays!

WOW
Baris | Istanbul, TURKEY | March 07, 2014

Wow. B.D. and Mike are actually writing papers. By hand.

OUR FRIEND THE BEAVER
Christian Ellegaard | Copenhagen, DENMARK | March 07, 2014
"Our friend the Beaver" is one of my all-time favorite strips. It's often used as a reference to college degrees that aren't worth the paper they are printed on.
RERUNS
Shelley | Meota, CANADA | March 07, 2014

I've been reading Doonesbury almost since it started. I am now 51 and have learned a lot about the politics of your country. You've made me laugh, cry, and angry, often at the same time. Thank you for the reruns. They will educate a new generation on the history of some very turbulent years.

VERY INTERESTING
McAlvie | Baltimore, MD | March 06, 2014

The Classic Doonesbury flashbacks have everyone feeling nostalgic and having their own flashbacks to their first experiences with the strip. Me? Doonesbury has been a part of my life for so long that it's as if it was always there. I'm looking forward to looking backwards -- but I think it's also going to be very interesting for relative newcomers to see Mike and B.D. before they were the responsible adults. For example, Alex gets a lot of grief here in the Blowback section, but when you see how far the older generation has come, Alex is already ahead of the game.