Tuesday, April 6, 2010

14 A. Doonesbury’s Greatest Hits (1978)

According to the entry at Wikipedia, this collection contains 516 daily strips published Jan. 7, 1975 to Dec. 10, 1977 and 80 Sunday strips from Jan. 26, 1975 to Dec. 25, 1977. An editor estimates this as 55% of the printed material from the period.

As noted in the entry for book nine, “Speaking of Inalienable Rights, Amy…,” this treasury completely goes against the industry standard and actually restores some of the material that had been cut from the earlier, smaller books. Of course, they did this while at the same time chopping out material which did previously appear in them, but it remains quite remarkable to me that almost the entire two-month 1975 sequence of Uncle Duke in Samoa is available in print here, and not in a smaller book. Does anybody know of any other comic strip collection that has done this? There are also other small restorations here and there, including a Friday, July 29 1977 strip of Zonker and Duke in the southern California desert, slowly realizing they’ve been duped into a land fraud scheme, which had been cut from book fourteen.

The collection includes a genuinely fascinating foreword by William F. Buckley Jr., who had performed the commencement speech for Trudeau’s graduating class at Yale, and had never heard of Doonesbury before being surprised by the standing ovation that Trudeau received from his fellow graduates when his name was called.

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