I Love the 80s: Bloom County

While there were no cartoons on Saturday, there were the Sunday comics. This was much less exciting when you think about the line up of "reading" available-Family Circle (groan), Marmaduke (wince), Garfield (occasionally entertaining), Peanuts (nostalgic), Beatle Bailey (why?), Andy Capp (stop, please I beg you), Dick Tracey (brain function shuts down) among others. There was nothing really FUNNY about the funny pages any more...until Bloom County.

Bloom County literally was the 80s running from December 8, 1980 until August 6, 1989. I loved it from the very beginning. The anxiety closet, Bill the Cat, DeathTongue, Night of the Mary Kay Commandos, the Zygorthian raiders, Steve Dallas working at DC comics, the reveal of a Pregnant Spuds Mackenzie, the Basseslope, Binkley's late night terrors about celebrities, Ronald Ann's Headless doll, and Cutter Johns' wheelchair/spaceship adventures. It was a brilliantly funny strip. But what was most impressive about the strip was the meta aspect of it. For example, at one point the characters went on strike and their roles were "recast" by scabs. There were also PSAs ("stereotypes: the language of hate"), and even censorship (the strip was "pulled" for using the s word- snugglebunnies)

I love Bloom County. In fact I still have an "Anxiety Prone" t-shirt in my closet featuring a terrified Binkley. Unfortunately, despite the popularity of Bloom County, Berke stopped the strip and began Outland, which only ran on the weekends. While I tried to like Outland, it quickly degenerated into cockroach jokes and never evolved the way Bloom County. Eventually many Bloom County characters found their way back to Outland, but the moment had passed.

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