2020 31 Days of Comics – Comic That You Love That You’ll Never Read Again

Seth Hahne, of GoodOKBad fame, came up with this 31 Days of Comics challenge, one of those things where each day of the month you’re given a different category that you then make a choice of a comic to fill that category. I thought it was a lot of fun and I did it in January of 2014 and 2015, but then the other day I thought, “It’s been a while and most of the answers can be different every day.”

We continue with Day 14, which is a Comic That You Love That You’ll Never Read Again

This is a particularly tough category for me (well, the entire CONCEPT of this category is kind of crazy. Comic that you LOVE that you will never read again? That’s such a weird idea. I guess it’s meant for books that were traumatic for you? I don’t think I’ve come across a book I LOVED that was too traumatic for me. Also, for me, in particular, you never really know where an interesting article idea might take me and suddenly you’re re-reading a comic book that you never thought you’d be reading again.

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In any event, I decided to sort of kind of cheat and go back to an area of popular culture that has mostly been replaced by the internet. I don’t say this as a general, “Boo! Hiss! Change is bad!” but just to note that years ago, when I was a kid, pretty nearly every even vaguely popular comic strip routinely had their strips collected into paperback collections. After all, how else were you going to read these strips after they were in their original newspaper forms?

However, of course, nowadays we have all sorts of official ways to read old newspaper strips online. Which is great. It just means that these old books are never really ever going to be re-read by me. I could name any number of them, but I have decided to settle on Beetle Bailey, Mort Walker‘s excellent series about a slacker (before slacker was even a term) who goes into the army and settles into a long military career of basically doing nothing.

Ger Apeldoorn has a bunch of Beetle Bailey strips on his website, so I figured I’d feature a few of them to show you just how good Walker was back in the day (Walker passed away almost precisely two years ago)…

Top notch comedy work.

I really dug Beetle Bailey growing up, and I’m not even against the idea of reading NEW collections of Beetle Bailey comics (as they’ve not done a whole ton of full collections in the United States for whatever reason), but I doubt I’ll ever re-read those old, well worn copies of the collections from my youth.

What’s YOUR pick?

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