Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Funny/Not Funny

• How many comic strips would you be willing to pay for? Since I don't get a newspaper (and the local ones have bad comics pages, anyway), I subscribe to and and get my favorite strips e-mailed to me. Maybe I'm a sucker, but I love the convenience. I like knowing that "Get Fuzzy" and "Pearls Before Swine" are waiting for me each day.

Another favorite of mine has been Michael Jantze's "The Norm," but last fall, he quit working with his syndicate and decided to go into business for himself. Or maybe more specifically, Jantze's wife appealed to fans, asking them if they'd be willing to pay for more Norm, essentially bankrolling an online version of the comic. The initial subscriber drive didn't quite meet expectations, but it was apparently close enough for Jantze to go forward and continue the strip. (Here's the story.)

$25 for a one-year subscription. At first glance, that seems a little rich for my blood. But that works out to about 7 cents a strip for the year? (Sure, I did that in my head.) That's a damn good deal, especially if you enjoy a comic strip. And I like "The Norm." It started out as sort of a "Dilbert" imitation, but eventually found its voice as a man trying to figure out who he is, what he wants from life, and trying to navigate that trail from overgrown kid to adult.

• Has anyone else watched NBC's horrible new sitcom, "Committed"? My oatmeal this morning was funnier than this dross. Annoying characters (one with a grating voice) and ridiculous story premises shoehorned into the same, boring, routine sitcom formula. Awful. It looks even worse, following an actual funny show like "Scrubs."