…It’s the only way to be sure.
I’m having a hard time grasping the fact that Tom Batiuk, the most depressing comic strip author of all time, thinks that there are some things that are depressing that shouldn’t be*. Seems to me he’d be okay with children’s books getting darker and darker, as that’s his own game plan searching for respectability (i.e., award nominations). Shouldn’t children’s books be reality-based and reflect contemporary problems of young people?
Perhaps he’s ticked off that children’s books would follow along his chosen path. Perhaps he thinks I’ve earned this…stupid children’s books haven’t. Stop poaching my territory. Seems like a case of wanting it both ways, but perhaps there’s an alternate explanation in that last panel.
In his offscreen presentation, Tom Batiuk loves him some comic books. But what he loves most is old comic books, the ones he grew up with. Whenever he mentions anything positive about contemporary comic books, I don’t think he ever goes past what a “striking” cover this or that issue has. But he can go on for hours about silver age Flash comics.
So what more natural than, when he wants entertainment, he wants the entertainment he enjoyed as a kid. Absolutely nothing wrong with that. But he should be self-aware enough–at least I hope he is–that while he can say Things are terrible and dreary now, they were so much better years ago, that others can say the same about his own work.
*Though what seems to be distressing Ann here is actually just a description of the Sun.