Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Monday, October 25, 2021

practically chicken
Has it really been 25 years since Berkeley Breathed unleashed his strip “Bloom County” on the world?

Well… The article notes that the strip started being carried in 1981. I don’t have a calculator on hand, but my noggin’ says that 2004 minus 1981 equals… not 25.

I’m assuming the “OPUS: 25 Years of His Sunday Best” compilation includes material from a couple of years before Breathed got his syndication deal. Otherwise, someone’s jumping the gun.

Regardless, the strip was ahead of its time, in some odd ways:

Consider: The strip’s oddball cast of characters, who skipped between reality and the surreal, foreshadowed today’s mainstream mix of fiction and truth, even down to their 1989 exit. Prophetically, the original comic strip ended when Trump, the future star of NBC reality show The Apprentice, buys the comic strip and tells Bloom County’s cast: “You’re fired.”

I was a little too young to enjoy “Bloom County” the first time around. I’ve read some of it since, and like it — but not love it. If anything, it’s the kind of strip I like more on a visual level: I think the artwork was wickedly great. The writing was sharp, but tended to meander, especially over the last few years of the run.

My paper, luckily, carries the current incarnation, “Opus”. It’s decent enough, and I’ll enjoy it for as long as it lasts (i.e., as long as Breathed is interested enough to keep doing it).

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 10/25/2004 09:43pm
Category: Pop Culture, Publishing
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  1. [...] os Tuesday, November 02, 2021 BLOG, AND GET A REVIEW COPIES A week ago, I posted a little something about the upcoming release of Berkeley [...]

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  2. [...] e substantial fare throughout the ’80s and into the ’90s and the present day. It’s been noted that Breathed’s satire portended the present pop-c [...]

    Pingback by Population Statistic — 11/07/2021 @ 9:51 PM


    Four years ago, I predicted that Berkeley Breathed would keep cranking out his current strip, “Opus”, for “as long as he’s interested enough to keep doing it”.

    I admit I wrote that facetiously, and figured the mercurial cartoonist would probabl…

    Trackback by Population Statistic — 10/06/2021 @ 10:57 PM

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