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Wednesday, Nov 13, 2019

Any comics in your schoolbag?

Comic form an integral part of a child?s growing up. The toons give him wit and teeny heroes. But, do comics still hold the same sway? Watching toons playing pranks is simpler than reading them on and on and on. But, there are some undefeatable comics and heroes one can ever forget.

india Updated: Jan 06, 2006 00:17 IST
Neha Simlai
Neha Simlai
PTI
Hindustantimes
         

Comic form an integral part of a child’s growing up. The toons give him wit and teeny heroes. But, do comics still hold the same sway? Watching toons playing pranks is simpler than reading them on and on and on. But, there are some undefeatable comics and heroes one can ever forget.

Asterix: The only Gaulish village that stands up to the might of Rome created by Goscinny and Uderzo, has a legion of fans though some are unhappy with the comics after the death of the writer Goscinny remains popular with the ‘chota babas’ growing up in nearly all the boys schools. Shiv Sehgal, from La Martiniere finds them fascinating and with his brother, Dhruv has been saving all his pocket money to pick up a set of three comics. 

Speaking of naughty little boys, it becomes essential to mention Bill Waterson’s creation Calvin and Hobbes. The six-year-old Calvin’s take on life, school, parents and everything else finds a sympathetic ear in Hobbes, his worldly-wise tiger (stuffed toy/ invisible friend/ confidante/ alterego).  A bit of trivia from an die-hard Calvin fan: “First published in 1985, it was carried in more than 2,400 newspapers when it ceased publication in 1996.”

Garfield: Jim Davis’ experience of growing up with 25 cats stood him in good stead in the creation of the tubby tabby with a fondness for coffee and lasagne and an aversion for Mondays and the postman. Manta, a college student from Delhi, who is also a great cat lover, has not just named her pet after Garfield, but also thinks that she lives her own life on Garfield terms.

Mad Mag: Though not strictly a comic book, the MAD brand of humour has a cult following. Alfred E Neuman, Dave Berg, the movie satires, Spy Vs Spy, The Lighter Side of and even the Letters to the Editor — tickle the funny bone. 

Tin Tin: A local bookstore owner says isn’t quite as popular as it used to be. He claims children today prefer TV, video games and Playstations and have lost out on the joy of reading. Created by Belgian Georges Remi, the intrepid reporter goes on hair-raising adventures across the world from Peru to the ice caps and even the moon accompanied by his faithful dog Snowy, the hot tempered Capt Haddock, the eccentric Professor Calculus and the bumbling detective twins Thompson and Thomson.

Archie: The life and times at Riverdale High, the all-American school has inspired countless Bollywood flicks including Bobby and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai is still quite as popular as it was when it started. Akanksha, a Class 10 student of Loreto, says that to her and her many friends, “Archie is a phenomenon!”

A classic reflection of the perennial husband and wife conflict is Hagar the Horrible: The tough Viking warrior who does not flinch at sacking and looting countless English castles is meek as a pussycat when confronted with a tantrum from his wife, Helga.

Army: The comics strips with the Army as backdrop include Beau Peep where Mad Pierre, Cook Egon and Honest Abdul conspire to make Beau’s life miserable, Beetle Bailey which chronicles the happenings in Camp Swampy and Sad Sack.

After Mash, these are a lighter way of looking at the serious issue of the army.

Retd Col. Sharma says he follows these columns religiously.

DC/Marvel: An entire spectrum of colourful, costumed heroes with equally colourful histories and bizarre villains. You can pick your favourite from Superman, Spiderman, Batman, Phantom, Cat woman, Mandrake - the list goes on and on.

Tinkle: From Uncle Pai (the man behind Amar Chitra Katha), Tinkle is irresistible for its inimitable Indianness.

Harvey: Casper the friendly ghost, Spooky the tough little ghost, Wendy, the good little witch, poor little rich kid Richie Rich, Little Lotta and Dot among other people the pages of this delightful series.

Hey! Hold on, don’t forget the evergreen Tom and Jerry, the Looney toons - Daffy, Buggs and the gang, the Walt Disney classics, Pingu, the penguin, Billo, Pinky and Chacha Choudhary.