Tracking the D'bury Universe
We won't post new stories on this page every day, but when we do put something up you have our word: It will be about the strip. Guaranteed.
I have long felt that Doonesbury creator Garry Trudeau hasn't received adequate recognition for his talents as an artist and graphic designer. His strip, which earned a reputation for being poorly drawn in its early days, has been one of the most graphically innovative strips on the comics pages since the mid-'80s. And Garry's art has never been confined to the strip. In 1983, I curated the Doonesbury Retrospective at the Museum of Cartoon Art. While researching this exhibition, I had seen illustrations, sketches, and designs Garry had done for special projects. I knew there was a wealth of other material waiting to be uncovered. So in 2008, I suggested to Garry that we do a book on the art of Doonesbury and, after getting his approval, sent a proposal to Yale University Press...
When viewed as a single, uninterrupted work of historical fiction, the collected Doonesbury reads less like 14,000-plus reasons to chuckle over your morning coffee and more like this era's War and Peace. Trudeau achieves this the same way Tolstoy did: by methodically constructing a large cast of complex and intriguing characters whom the reader comes to care about, then letting the great tsunami of current events envelop them all. The cumulative result is as affecting and richly felt as any narrative produced by an artist of Trudeau's generation...
Federal law enforcement authorities arrested a Northern Virginia man Wednesday in connection with an alleged plot to carry out terrorist bombings at stations in the Washington Metro system. Farooque Ahmed, 34, of Ashburn conspired with people he thought to be al-Qaeda operatives to bomb the Arlington Cemetery, Pentagon City, Crystal City and Court House stations, according to a federal indictment...
Last year, two men showed up in Benson, Ariz., a small desert town 60 miles from the Mexico border, offering a deal.
Glenn Nichols, the Benson city manager, remembers the pitch.
"The gentleman that's the main thrust of this thing has a huge turquoise ring on his finger," Nichols said. "He's a great big huge guy and I equated him to a car salesman."
What he was selling was a prison for women and children who were illegal immigrants.
"They talk [about] how positive this was going to be for the community," Nichols said, "the amount of money that we would realize from each prisoner on a daily rate."
But Nichols wasn't buying. He asked them how would they possibly keep a prison full for years — decades even — with illegal immigrants?
"They talked like they didn't have any doubt they could fill it," Nichols said.
That's because prison companies like this one had a plan — a new business model to lock up illegal immigrants. And the plan became Arizona's immigration law...
A team of planet hunters led by astronomers at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and the Carnegie Institution of Washington has announced the discovery of an Earth-sized planet (three times the mass of Earth) orbiting a nearby star at a distance that places it squarely in the middle of the star's "habitable zone," where liquid water could exist on the planet's surface. If confirmed, this would be the most Earth-like exoplanet yet discovered and the first strong case for a potentially habitable one...
It’s still unclear what contribution the tea party movement –- its grass-roots element, its behind-the-scenes funding apparatus, and the surging national candidates it’s brought forward –- will make to the good of the republic. But one thing for sure: It’s a dream come true for political science departments around the world. It may well do for poli sci what Watergate heroes Woodward and Bernstein did for journalism. Let a thousand doctoral dissertations bloom!...
Critics often look down their lorgnettes at comic strips, but what a singular niche they occupy. Novelists don’t parcel out a single work over an entire lifetime. Broadway plays may enjoy long runs, but the story doesn’t evolve from week to week, much less decade to decade. The best comic strips do all of these things. Garry Trudeau’s “Doonesbury” turns 40 this month. To call it satire is only half right...
Just four years after surrendering power, Republicans recaptured control of the House and made gains in the Senate on Tuesday night, in a major rebuff of President Obama and the Democrats by an electorate worried about the economy and the size of the government...
Among the many firsts in the 2010 elections, it is safe to assume that the following words had never before been uttered about a future member of Congress, “This is a candidate who is probably best known for getting drunk and having sex on television.”...