As you know, Lynn Johnston is closing up shop (sorta) this week, putting an end to the Patterson saga in her daily strip For Better or For Worse, though she will be going back in time to redraw older strips and occasionally add new dialogue and such. The Washington Post has an interview with her about her semi-retirement:
What the reflective Johnston, 60, realized was that after decades of her identity and creativity and livelihood being linked to a comic strip, she wasn’t ready to give it up.
“It’s in your blood — it’s part of your life. I don’t want to quit being a cartoonist,” Johnston says by phone from her Toronto studio. “It’s tough to put it down — you still think of gags. And at the same time, I knew I’d be looking at material that I’d want to improve.”
Lest you think it’s all kisses and hugs, the Washington Post also ran this editorial, entitled “Something for Everyone to Hate:”
True Foobsters loved to underscore their particular peeves: The way the characters ate (“smork, chomp, chew, smack”) or laughed with their mouths open and tongues out. Some loved to hate Elly’s obsession with housework, or Deanna’s blankly pretty face and lips. Little things can cause a Foobster to hurl the newspaper to the floor — especially the bad puns in the fourth panel, with those little Fooby bon mots about life. Lynn Johnston may think she has fans, but does she know she has such devoted anti-fans?
“I save up all my vitriol for this piece of . . . art,” says a woman named “Lia,” seen on a YouTube video posted last week, in which she critiques Elizabeth’s nuptial moment and wistfully ponders the end of a very long era.
“I predict [Elizabeth] will become a binge drinker, get a raging case of herpes and will eventually have to leave Anthony,” Lia says, with that special blend of devotion and cynicism unique to Foob analysis.
The strip does seem to spark a certain vitrol that Cathy, say, simply does not. I wonder why that is?
As an added bonus, here’s a Flickr set of Johnston at the recent Doug Wright Awards.