Monday, June 28, 2010

The Secret To Understanding Barney & Clyde.

To all those who have been disappointed in the apparent lack of real laughs to be derived from the strip, to those who were expecting belly-laughs, to those who find themselves wondering why this strip is not funny, there is an explanation. It's your fault. You see, Barney & Clyde is not your grandfather's Oldsmobile. It is a completely new form of comic strip. It is a Post-Modern comic strip. That's right. You read it here first. This is the first comic strip of the Post-Modern Era of newspaper comic strippery.

In the Olde Days of William Randolph Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer, when most of the current comic strips were created, the cartoonist did all the work, supplied all the gags, wrote all the jokes. In the Modern Era, cartoonists got away from that paradigm and started writing more naturalistically, but still they were supplying all the humor, doing all the work. Barney & Clyde's creators, seeing how tired and threadbare these forms were, and being naturally lazy, came up with a brilliant innovation in comic strip writing, Post-Modernism. Post-Modern comics require the readers to do the work of the writers. It's not simply a collaboration between the writer and the artist. No! It's a full partnership between the writers, the artist and the readers. The job of the writers and the artist is to provide the setup, the situation, the framework of the joke. You, YOU THE READERS, must provide the actual joke. When you understand that, then the strip becomes hilarious. It is the paragon of strips. But you don't get any of the constipated bunny. The joke's on you, after all.

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