Page 14


Here are some of the most recent cartoons dropped by the Post on the basis of taste. DOONESBURY tr1 .11 S/R, WE BEEN 6E77/A16 A GOT 60 AWAY, MORE HEAT FROM j’Af COMSRESS OVER MAD/N6 THE TAPES. PER1 PEOPLES NAPS a SHOIA41 SP/5/NESS. RECONSIDER.. \\ AND NO THEY SHOILD PEOPLE? MIND THEIR OWN SUS/NESS. \\ I NIMMIMMROMP EL.L,Pi lli tir11141 11111411,’ Ali :it 7 7 y; .e… . teosit. 0 OR j LEONARD, AS MY COUNSEL, I THINK ITS ABOUT TIME YOU TOOK A LOOK AT THESE TRANSCRIPTS OP THE SECRET TAPES… 0 AS YOU CAN SEE, THERE ARE MANY FRANK AND yr…5.5m . CANDID RtMARC510#0.1 .5 co If TAKEN OUT OP SEE ONE CONTEXT MISNr HERS ON CREATE A base ma. 77 IMPRESS/M.\\ “: — –.4741611.V. DOONESBURY Now you see it, now you don’t By Ron Davis “I think Doonesbury represents a new trend in comic strips that are not simply bland little soap operas, but have some kind of bite to them.” Robert Goldsborough, Sunday editor, Chicago Tribune. Dallas Running across “Doonesbury” buried somewhere in the paper was like watching M*A*S*H on a Sunday evening after a bummer of a week. It was a catharsis for the blues and voyeuristic twitting of the establishment nose. Now M*A*S*H has been switched to Saturday night, date night, and “Doonesbury” has as much trouble getting in print as Tommy Smothers did getting on the air. M*A*S*H was moved to make more money, an understandable motive. But “Doonesbury” is in trouble because it laughs at things some newspaper editors don’t think are very funny, like politics. Sometimes when the editors aren’t amused by the strip they throw it away. Which means we never see it. Which editors call editorial discretion. Which readers call censorship. “Doonesbury,” authored by Gary Trudeau, a 24-year-old Yalie, is a counter-culture cartoon trying to make it in the establishment press. Its characters are mostly students of all types who get into the same hassles students have been in since Berkeley. But “Doonesbury” also deals with real persons and events, which carries it a step beyond other satirical strips like “B.C.” or “Peanuts” or “The Wizard of Id.” If Trudeau is aiming at the President, he calls him by name instead of using a pint-size medieval king as a surrogate. This directness scares editors at the 300 that carry the syndicated strip. Humor is not particularly well-understood, but it does have a lot to do with dark, mysterious, and probably grotesque things in the corners of our minds. We can laugh at misfortune, but we stop laughing when we think the misfortune may in fact be our own. When something threatens or appears to threaten our values, it is no longer funny. It is hostile. TRUDEAU MIXES social comment with entertainment. This has Ron Davis is an Associated Press reporter in Dallas. never been an easy thing, as writers and other artists have found for centuries. It is as if there is a region of our consciousness where poking fun is not permitted. Men in power generally do not like to be made light of, just as men who consider themselves guardians of the truth do not want the people exposed to such mockery. Trudeau transgressed one of those boundaries with his Watergate series. Papers across the country cut panels of the strip intermittently. The apparent record is held by The Houston Post, which blocked out “Doonesbury” for all of one week and parts of two others. The Dallas TimesHerald also dropped it a few times. In Atlanta, the Constitution deleted it for a few days, but relented when reader reaction demanded its return. The same thing happened at The Boston Globe. Even October 5, 1973 15