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.

BUMMED
Mark Brickley | Carpinteria, CA | December 01, 2010

Doonesbury is the "psychedelic frosting" on my daily LA Times breakfast. Since Prop 19 (pot) failed here in CA, I bet Zonker's bummed...

A FINE DAY
D2 | Haverford, PA | December 01, 2010

It's a fine day in America when the most trusted news source for the under-35 generation is "The Daily Show," and the most trusted news source for old eggheads is "Doonesbury." A fine day indeed.

RE "A SANE LOOK"
Maryhelen Posey | Alberta, CANADA | December 01, 2010

The 11/27 Blowback from Disabled Vet from a Previous Century reminded me how much Stars and Stripes has grown up since the 1950s. When my brother was in Korea (just after the armistice), my mother sent him all the "funny strips" from four newspapers (Iowa City Press Citizen, Davenport Democrat, Des Moines Register, and Chicago Tribune) every week. This made him the only one on the post who had Beetle Bailey, which Stars and Stripes refused to carry as "subversive"! A long drop from the Bill Maulden days, that was.

RE "A UNIVERSITY"
Katherine Yagle | Middletown, CT | December 01, 2010

There's also another Wesleyan College.

A RECENT DUST-UP
Roger Fox | Richmond, CA | November 30, 2010

The current Zonker storyline ties in perfectly with a recent dust-up over the founding of "Dolphy Day" at little LeMoyne College in Syracuse, New York. In 1971 a ragtag group of what ultimately would be referred to as slacker types started "Eric Dolphy Day." Dolphy Day was to be celebrated on the first pleasant day of Spring by declaration (in Syracuse: no mean trick) by the cutting of all classes and engaging in one's favorite consciousness expanding, um, pasttime. The day was originally named after "The Eric Dolphy Memorial Barbecue" on Side Two ("Side Two?" Ah, vinyl!) of Frank Zappa's Weasels Ripped My Flesh. The LeMoyne mascot was The Dolphin. Eric Dolphy, the great jazz player, was irrelevant but for his euphonious name.

The floating holiday continues to this day. Sadly it has been co-opted by The Administration. Every student is now given The Day off and most people just get drunk. And then, in an amazing misunderstanding of their own cultural history, the school recently commissioned and then dedicated a sculpture on campus of the still dead Eric Dolphy who, wonderfully and ironically, had nothing to do with this little bit of anarchy. Zonker is lucky his legacy at Wesleyan has remained untarnished.

A UNIVERSITY
Justin Raymond | Middletown, CT | November 30, 2010

As much as I appreciate the national recognition your recent shoutouts have gained Wesleyan, I am inclined to point out that Wesleyan is a University, not a college. Being elitist left-wing nutjobs, the distinction means a lot to us students.

Editor's Note:

Wesleyan is indeed a university, but it also has a college -- whose undergraduates are the ones responsible for celebrating Zonker Harris Day.

THE BEST
Joan Hall | Los Angeles, CA | November 30, 2010

Congratulations on 40 years of the best of all comic strips. I feel sure I have read nearly every one (I am 81). What is especially amazing to me is how Trudeau remains so up to date on the cultural effects of the day; the same applies to military lingo. I save this strip for last to read each morning. Great way to start the day. Many thanks.

WISDOM AND CHUCKLES
Alice Sousa | Gilroy, CA | November 30, 2010

Thank you for many years of wisdom and chuckles -- an oasis in a sort of kind of wild world. God bless you.

MIND READER
Cindy Miller | Tallahassee, FL | November 30, 2010

I have been desperate to say thank you thank you thank you. Garry Trudeau, you are a longtime friend and ally and mind reader. Every day, we read you and comment on it and are amazed with how you are capturing so many things. We love the characters and feel we know them. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

LIVING IN JAKARTA
Zoanne Leavy | St. Louis, MO | November 30, 2010

Happy 40th. From 1983 to 1986, I was living in Jakarta. Newsmagazines from home were often covered in black ink by the censors. However, the Embassy got the Singapore newspaper and it carried Doonesbury. That's how I got the news from home. It was really good to be able to see what the current issues were. Thanks for "staying the course."

SINCE THE YALE DAYS
Gretchen Mamis | Watertown, MA | November 30, 2010

I just wanted you to know I've been a camp follower since the Yale days. I still have my Joanie Caucus t-shirt and my Duke action figure. I get a lot of my political insights from the strip, and have been known to change newspapers just for access. Thanks for being. xoxox

MUCH
Fran Rogers | Bedford, TX | November 30, 2010

Doonesbury has given us so much over the years: poignant moments (Lacey Davenport); downright hilarity (White House bubbles); and insight into our culture (all the rest). Please keep on keeping on.

HILARIOUS
Gary Ely | Huntsville, AL | November 30, 2010

Our politics couldn't be farther apart, but I love the strip. You are hilarious. I have been a regular reader from day one (you still haven't converted me).

WESLEYAN
Jesse Rosenblum | New York, NY | November 30, 2010

It's not Wesleyan College! It's Wesleyan University. Pistols at dawn, sir.

ALL OVER AGAIN
Cindy Ash | Phoenix, AZ | November 30, 2010

I wasn't sure I was going to get 40: A Doonesbury Retrospective -- after all, this 'dinosaur' (I prefer 'experienced veteran') has read every comic since 1972. But when I started browsing through the book in the store, I realized there were whole sections I didn't remember (especially from the 90s for some reason). Did I really not read these? Or did I just get old enough not to remember reading them, and so now am enjoying reading them for the first time all over again? Either way, I brought the book home and spent an enjoyable few hours catching up with the early life of Alex, Mike and Kim's relationship and how Duke found his son. Thanks for the laughs all over again!

MORE THAN 20 YEARS
Steen Elmue | Herlev, DENMARK | November 30, 2010

For more than 20 years, Doonesbury has given me an entertaining look into American lifestyles and politics. It's always fun, always intelligent, never indifferent. Keep up the good work.

SPOT-ON
Dick Brandlon | Portland, OR | November 30, 2010

I've been aboard since BD and Zonker were "students." l have lived through Fearless Fosdick, Pogo and Bloom County. Nonetheless, I have not encountered such spot-on satire on such a variety of topics and political regimes. My sincere thanks and congratulations.

MORE OR LESS DAILY
Debra Minz | Foster City, CA | November 29, 2010

I have read Doonesbury more or less daily for about 25 years. I feel like I know his characters. I don't relate to B.D., but I actually cried when he lost his leg and they pulled off his helmet. He had lived a charmed life, and his luck came to a disturbing end. Mr. Trudeau has mocked and honored both the left and the right, but the most important thing he has done is humanized both sides of the political divide. I am reminded just about every day that there are good people who don't hold the same political believes that I do. What a great gift. I just wanted to say thanks.

THE HIDDEN MESSAGE
Howard | Ottawa, IL | November 29, 2010

Having perused some of the negative comments about the soldiers playing video games compels me to write about the hidden message -- that our young men and women overseas are just that, young. Teens are still in the realm of fantasy and fun. They are interested in the same things their civilian counterparts are. Asking them to risk their lives on a day-to-day basis and then watching them play video games when they are on free time isn't asking too much.

SKINNY OLD DOONESBURY BOOKS
Emma Lee | Lake Oswego, OR | November 29, 2010

If I could exaggerate what the value of this strip is maybe I would, but that is entirely impossible. I've been buying skinny old Doonesbury books from the library used book store, and rereading. They would be an asset to a history class, I am serious. They bring up situations I have forgotten. My adult son says they are an excellent history source, also. I've been reading since the beginning pretty much -- gotta have it every day. It is entirely wonderful. May it go on for 40 more years, though some of that will have to be without me!