Talk:78: Garfield

Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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I disagree with the original author of the article, I don't think Garfield is poorly written. However, to avoid any greater conflict, I decided to keep it as it is. Does everyone else think it is "poorly written"? --Pnariyoshi (talk) 21:56, 28 January 2013 (UTC)

There was certainly controversy sparked within the comic writing community when Bill Watterson, the creator of Calvin and Hobbes, quit early because he felt that cartoonists targeted their comics at too wide a market to be meaningful and funny. This was at the gestation of the internet, when the only funding that a cartoonist could find was from newspapers looking for something to fill the back page, and had to follow the newspaper's guidelines for neutrality to avoid offending anyone. Watterson called other cartoonists "sell-outs" for dumbing down their work for the mass-market, and he quit in disgust at his own newspaper's attempts to cull the philosophical speeches that were ever-so-common in Calvin and Hobbes. Since then, widespread corporate culture has made Dilbert a hit, and we ourselves are discussing XKCD here. Watterson would be smiling right now. [[User:Davidy22|Davidy22

He wouldn't. In an interview with the curator of the Billy Ireland Cartoon Museum in Cleveland, he explained that webcomics, while boundary-pushing, are 1) not as easy to access and 2) a solitary experience, as opposed to a family passing a newspaper around the table and offering different interpretations. (Let me point out that while we do share our comments, we get no immediate feedback, and our conversations are anonymous, not as casual as a family talking). It is interesting to note that Calvin and Hobbes has now run more than twice as long in repeats as in first-run. 14:38, 6 March 2018 (UTC) ]][talk] 00:44, 29 January 2013 (UTC)

Wow, that was incredibly instructive. I'm actually very excited about this discussion. While I do agree "dumbing down" something that was originally intended for a specific niche is what ruins a lot of media (besides comic strips, I feel it commonly ruins TV shows, Movie adaptations etc), I think it would be unfair to call it "poorly written". I think a better word would be "unexciting", "lacking passion" or "having lost it's first love". Making a strip appeal to a wide range of people is not always as easy as it seems, especially without making it come down to bathroom/sexual jokes. While I do feel that Randall sometimes gets very close to the border of "distasteful", I think xkcd still maintains its roots and it is pretty funny and smart. --Pnariyoshi (talk) 02:25, 29 January 2013 (UTC)
Hi there, I'm the original author of the page in question. I do not mind if it is changed or even removed. 02:08, 20 April 2013 (UTC)

I definitely agree that Garfield isn't poorly written, but it is basically lacking in creativity at this point. The underlying point remains however, and that is that the 'mainstream' all suffers from that same mass appeal sickness, which is rather outmoded in the modern era. -- Crazedhatter (talk) (please sign your comments with ~~~~)

I don't have a particular opinion on whether this page says Garfield is "poorly written" or not, but I do think that most of the people arguing against it are undermining their own points. Pnariyoshi: If a piece of writing is unexciting and passionless, is this not grounds on which one could say it is "poor?" Crazedhatter: If a piece of writing lacks creativity and is outmoded for its own era, is that not also grounds on which one could say it is "poor?" If we all agree that there are serious artistic flaws with Garfield's writing, then why are we quibbling about synonyms? Call it "poor." 15:13, 9 October 2013 (UTC)

Is this appeal possibly made with the 'Death of Garfield' plot-arc in mind (which, while not a great series of strips, was moderately interesting for its as Garfield not written for mass appeal)? I only ask because it would seem a relatively futile challenge were it not for the fact that Jim has actually strayed this way before; also, both xkcd's parody Garfield and the Death of Garfield series are horror-themed. 01:14, 21 October 2013 (UTC)

What is happening in the last picture of Garfield? I mean the line across its face. As if there were two different photos on top of eah other, where the upper one was half removed. Maybe a suggestion from Randall that it is time to reveal the true Garfield... 16:50, 2 December 2014 (UTC)

I think that's just part of the surreal aspect. --Calion (talk) 11:30, 28 February 2023 (UTC)

Davis did this once, a long time ago. You can read it here. Of course, they kept the series running after that, though Davis has stated multiple times he's indifferent about Garfield and only made it as a way of making money. -- 14:40, 23 December 2014 (UTC)

In my mind, the Twilight Zone narrator spoke the text boxes... Fabian42 (talk) 11:16, 11 June 2018 (UTC)
Wow! That definitely counts as exactly what Randall was suggesting! Thanks for the link!--Calion (talk) 11:30, 28 February 2023 (UTC)

Funnily enough, these kind of surreal Garfield comics recently rose in popularity on places like

i find it possible this was inspired by the garfield strip that aired on january 7th 2002: . very similar pose and weird half-different face-- 13:47, 15 October 2022 (UTC)