Last year, The Far Side fans were pleasantly surprised by the news that cartoonist Gary Larson was getting ready to bring back his beloved comic strip The Far Side. That news first came in September of last year. Now the promise has come to fruition. Larson updated The Far Side website with three new The Far Side strips for readers to check out. Readers will see that The Far Side's signature humor is still intact. These new installments, however, are not the typical ink on paper artwork but seem to have been created digitally. You can read the three new The Far Side strips at The Far Side website here.
Larson also penned an open letter in the "New Stuff" section of TheFarSide.com, revealing what his relationship with art has been like since retiring in the mid-1990s and what drew him to bring back the series in some form. He did note that this section of the website is not a complete resurrection of daily The Far Side comics, but a place for him to explore, experiment, and try out new things as an artist.
"The day after I retired from syndication, it felt good not to draw on a deadline," Larson writes. "And after moving on to other interests, drawing just wasn’t on my to-do list. Things change. But then a few years ago—and returning to the subject at hand—something happened in my life, and it started with a clogged pen....Despite my retirement, I still had intermittent connections to cartooning, including my wife’s and my personal Christmas card. Once a year, I’d sit myself down to take on Santa, and every year it began with the same ritual: me cursing at, and then cleaning out, my clogged pen."
He continued, "So a few years ago—finally fed up with my once-loyal but now reliably traitorous pen—I decided to try a digital tablet. I knew nothing about these devices but hoped it would just get me through my annual Christmas card ordeal. I got one, fired it up, and lo and behold, something totally unexpected happened: within moments, I was having fun drawing again. I was stunned at all the tools the thing offered, all the creative potential it contained. I simply had no idea how far these things had evolved. Perhaps fittingly, the first thing I drew was a caveman."
Larson concluded his letter (which you can read in full here), that he's ready to get started on this "New Stuff" section, writing: "So here goes. I’ve got my coffee, I’ve got this cool gizmo, and I’ve got no deadlines. And—to borrow from Sherlock Holmes—the game is afoot."
The original version of The Far Side ran from 1980 to 1995, was not only a huge hit in the world of newspaper strips but became a cottage industry unto itself, with t-shirts, coffee mugs, greeting cards, and more. The New York Times previously that Larson's comic likely generated about $500 million in revenue at the time, a sum that would no doubt be higher if adjusted for inflation.
(Cover photo By Glen Martin/The Denver Post via Getty Images)
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