When ever people tell me all syndicated strips suck, I usually warn them about making blanket statements and point them to a few offerings from the syndicates who I believe are in top form and should still be read by everyone, even if you have to do it online. Two of these strips, Pearls Before Swine and Get Fuzzy have been on a collision course all this last week and yesterday’s strip had me thinking all day.
For those who don’t read both strips, Darby Conley of Fuzzy has been placing his characters into the strips from Stephan Pastis of Pearls. It’s been pretty funny in my book. In yesterday’s comic, Pastis calls Conley to challenge him on the thievery and conflict ensues, including the line “Steve, I don’t know what webtoon you do, but I don’t give plugs.” The joke being that Conley was pretending he hadn’t heard of Pearls, there for it must be a web comic that no one cares about.
At first I was a little miffed at this. It seemed like Conley was taking a swipe at comics on the Net, saying they weren’t worth plugging. The more I thought about though, the less it bothered me. First, I have no idea whatsoever how Conley feels towards web comics. It would be unfair for me to assume one way or another based on this strip. Secondly, Conley has painted himself as the bad guy in this storyline. He’s portrayed as such a jerk that a little sympathy flows from the reader to whoever he’s fighting, be it Pastis or web comics on the whole. Third, any publicity is good publicity. A lot more people at least have the concept of web comics in their head and for that we owe Conley thanks for that. That may have even been his plan all along.
Once again, I may totally be over thinking this; Conley may not care one way or another. He may not have put any thought into that line at all. People like me tend to overanalyze this sort of thing. I still dig Get Fuzzy and will someday save Satchel from the pains of living with Bucky.
In the mean time, what do you guys think?