January 5, 2014

New comics coming to Eagle’s lineup

Beginning Sunday, The Wichita Eagle is adding new comics to both the daily and Sunday lineup.

Beginning Sunday, The Wichita Eagle is adding new comics to both the daily and Sunday lineup.

Changes in our comics are being made largely as the result of our most recent comics survey.

It was time to reassess our comics. Several were in reruns, and others were no longer being drawn by their original creator. Sometimes, readers still want to keep those comics. In other cases, it’s time to open those spots and give new artists a chance to build an audience for new comic strips.

Nearly 2,000 readers took our comics survey or sent e-mails commenting on new strips that we were testing.

Readers feel strongly about their comics. They just don’t all feel strongly about the same comic. Strips about family life – “Pickles,” “Zits,” “Baby Blues” and “For Better or For Worse” – remain the most popular with readers. Classic strips, such as “Blondie” and “Family Circus,” also remain popular.

After two 8-year-olds wrote that their favorite strips were “Judge Parker” and “Beetle Bailey,” we decided to add more comics for kids.

The new comics joining our pages are:

• “Red and Rover,” by Brian Basset, about a 10-year-old boy, Red, and his dog.
• “Frazz,” by Jeff Mallett, a comic about a custodian and the elementary school where he works. “Frazz” was suggested by several readers.
• “WuMo,” by Danes Mikael Wulff and Anders Morgenthaier, one of the most popular strips in Europe. It’s been gaining popularity in the United States since it was introduced in November.
• “Dogs of C Kennel,” the antics of dogs and their animal friends waiting to be adopted from a shelter. It’s drawn by Mick and Mason Mastroianni, the same family of artists who produce “B.C.”
• “Argyle Sweater,” a panel cartoon by Scott Hilburn featuring off-beat humor. “Argyle Sweater” will appear Monday-Saturday.

We’re also adding “KidSpot,” a puzzle for children, to the Sunday comics.

Four of the comics being replaced – “Speed Bump,” “Mother Goose & Grimm,” “Jump Start” and “Hagar the Horrible” – received fewer than 4 percent of the votes in the survey.

“Get Fuzzy” also is being replaced. That strip has been in reruns for more than six months. We hope you enjoy the new comics.

Comments or questions? Reach us at comics@wichitaeagle.com or call 316-268-6557.

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