Famous Comic Strip Artists

November 19, 2011 by staff 

Famous Comic Strip Artists, For nearly five decades readers of over 1,500 newspaper have turned to the comics to find assurance that all is well in this crazy World through the single panel comic The Family Circus . Bil Keane creator of The Family Circus has died at the age of 89 on November 8 of congestive heart failure.

Cartoonist’s often jostle one another in an effort to be edgy, controversial, loud and though a few of them stand out, too often they get lost in the shuffle. Bil Keane stood out by being deceptively ordinary, mining his own family experiences for humor that served as a lifeline for millions whether they were ‘blessed’ with children or ‘blessedly’ single, through a single panel and simple observations. He touched a nerve deep within millions of readers.

To quote… > Yahoo News “”If ‘The Family Circus’ has any social value, it shows parents that their children are normal.”

The late Keane said in a statement provided by King Features, “And if there is a philosophy behind the feature, it’s this: A home filled with love and laughter is the happiest place in the world.”

The Family Circus features a family that has endured through the decades while the very definition of family in America and the World has changed through the years: Daddy, Mommy, their children Billy, Dolly, Jeffy, and PJ, and dogs Barfy and Sam and the cat Kittykat. A few examples of the humor that has kept readers satisfied through the decades: a September 10, 1964 panel shows Mom checking her shopping list posted on the kitchen wall, her crisp clear handwriting enumerating “cereal, tea, soap,” plus a childish scrawl, the s’s reversed, “ice cream, cookies, plastic soldiers,” while a panel from January 22, 2008 reveals Mom not a year older standing at the stove, in the background one of the boys tells his sister “Mommy’s cooking my favorite dinner. It’s called leftovers.”

The Family Circus began on February 29, 1960. If there was a moment when Bil Keane felt confident that his work was reaching a receptive audience it was in the mid 1960s. To quote The Washington Post ““It showed Jeffy coming out of the living room late at night in pajamas and Mommy and Daddy watching television and Jeffy says, ‘I don’t feel so good, I think I need a hug.’ And suddenly I got a lot mail from people about this dear little fella needing a hug, and I realized that there was something more than just getting a belly laugh every day.”

Bil spelt his name with a single L, as noted by The New York Times”“I didn’t always spell my name Bil,” he told Editor & Publisher magazine in 1968. “My parents named me Bill, but when I started drawing cartoons on the wall, they knocked the ‘L’ out of me.”

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