June 3 2008

Jim Davis Calls Garfield Minus Garfield “Fascinating”

garfield minus garfield

When I first wrote about Garfield Minus Garfield, I thought for sure that the strip’s original creator, Jim Davis, would eventually shut the strip that removes his beloved cat down.

Sure, it’s silly on some levels, and you wonder how long this can last before Jim Davis, the creator of the comic strip, tries to shut it down. One hopes he will just leave it alone as it has probably brought his strip more attention than it has gotten in years

Well, in a New York Times article about the comic strip, Jim Davis not only admits to occasionally reading the derivative of his work, but to finding it “fascinating”. He also said that he is flattered by it rather than peeved, but he also sees that some of the strips work better than others.

Mr. Davis, who has been drawing Garfield for 30 years, said that “Garfield Minus Garfield” has actually prompted him to take a different look at his own work. He compared Mr. Walsh’s efforts to the cerebral approach of Pogo, the comic strip by Walt Kelly.

“I think it’s the body of work that makes me laugh — the more you read of these strips, the funnier it gets,” Mr. Davis said. As for Garfield himself, “this makes a compelling argument that maybe he doesn’t need to be there. Less is more.”

I am floored by this. Utterly, and amazingly, floored. We are in a day and age where people are sued at the drop of a hat for even remotely looking at someone else’s copyrighted work, let alone wholesale copying of it. I have to applaud Mr. Davis for not only taking this in the manner it was meant, but to also having the ability to see that it might teach him something about his own work.

In case you haven’t already done so, do make sure to swing by the site, and check out this amazing take on a comic strip, and know that the creator has no problem with it.

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July 31 2008

A Tale Of Two Books