wed 17/07/2019

Doonesbury: The 40th Anniversary | reviews, news & interviews

Doonesbury: The 40th Anniversary

Doonesbury: The 40th Anniversary

I have since grown up with Mike, B D, Joanie and friends – in fact, I see them daily; far more often than I see most of my friends. They speak to me and of me. Some I like more than others, but that's like family too. I roll my eyes when Mr Butts shows up, but then, I roll my eyes when cousin Fred does his ritual drunken wedding dance.

To celebrate the anniversary, Brian Walker has published Doonesbury and the Art of G B Trudeau, and while the text is only intermittently interesting (a lot of it reads as though people handed him their CVs), following Trudeau’s development from his start as a very, shall we say, rudimentary draughtsman, through to the polished, highly sophisticated graphic artist he now is, is fascinating, watching how he called on elements of popular culture and film noir to create his look, and how, further, he then influenced more recent graphic design. So, too, is Walker’s discussion of how the computer has changed Doonesbury, mostly for the better (I beg to differ with him on the matter of the computer-generated lettering).

And while I may be an addict, I’m clearly not alone: there was a shrieking outcry when the Guardian tried to drop the strip when it went Berliner; Doonesbury 40: A Retrospective is riding high on Amazon’s top 1,000.

So yes, I’m Judith Flanders, and I have no plans to 12-step my way out of my addiction.

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