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Changes to the Comics pages

Beginning Sunday, The Times will introduce some changes to its Comics pages. These are prompted by the ending of "Cathy," whose creator, Cathy Guisewite, is retiring.

The final "Cathy" is in Saturday's Calendar section. Beginning Sunday, "Stone Soup" will replace "Cathy" in the Sunday Comics. "Stone Soup" currently appears Monday-Saturday.

On Monday, The Times will add the KenKen puzzle as a replacement for "Cathy." "Rex Morgan, M.D." also is being dropped to make room for the new puzzle.

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Comments (15)

Please do not remove Rex Morgan, M.D., or any other comic strip from your pages. Of course, if some die of a natural death, so be it. But Wm. R. Hearst had the good sense not to mess with a successful combination. That's the only reason that Krazy Kat survived. Cheers, R. Reneau

So, how are we going to know what happens to the Mayor and his cancer in Rex Morgan, MD?

Why can't the Times leave the last remaining story/serial comic in the paper?

You guys are only hastening your demise. No wonder the Tribune went bankrupt.

I’m sure I am not the only faithful reader of the LA Times’ Comics pages who is disappointed to learn of the sacrifice of two more slots for daily strips to yet another inane puzzle game that appeals to only a handful of readers. Unless I’m grossly mistaken, I find it hard to believe that there was a large segment of the Times’ readership clamoring for the addition of Kenken to the comics pages.

With the much-heralded impending departure of Cathy, I’m sure many of us Comics readers were eagerly anticipating a new strip in the LA Times. Perhaps the return of a previously-jettisoned strip, such as Agnes, Close to Home, Crock, For Better or Worse, Garfield, Grand Avenue, Heathcliff, Herman, Mister Boffo, Mother Goose and Grimm, Over the Hedge, Pardon My Planet, Sally Forth, Sylvia, That's Life, The Meaning of Lila, Wizard of Id, or Zack Hill.

Or perhaps the addition of a strip new to the Times, such as Arlo and Janis, B.C., Brevity, F Minus, Frank and Ernest, Girls & Sports, Herb and Jamaal, Monty, On a Claire Day, The Born Loser, Rip Haywire, The Knight Life, The Other Coast, Speed Bump, Off the Mark, Rudy Park, Luann, or Pickles.

Instead, the Comics page has again been pared down in favor of puzzle games of limited appeal, advertisements for an LA Times blog (Do you *really* want to encourage *more* on-line reading and less *print* readership?), and advertisements for auto body shops. Seriously, just how many Comics page readers does 1-Day think are smashing up their cars?

I have been a loyal subscriber to the Los Angeles times for nearly 30 years, and the number one reason I continue to subscribe is for the Comics page. It’s the first thing I read every morning (since the “news” is already stale by the time the paper is delivered, thanks to television and the Internet). But seeing as how the daily strips have been reduced from 43 in 2002 (including Dilbert, in Business, and In the Bleachers, in Sports) down to just 30, and the Sunday format taken from 28 down to 23 (and divided into an ad-infested, ridiculous 2-part travesty), I am seriously reconsidering my continued loyalty.

I was shocked this morning to discover that the Times has decided to cut health care on the comics section by discontinuing Rex Morgan, MD in favor of a cheesy puzzle for which I and many readers don't have time.

As a Times subscriber of some 30 years, I have witnessed the decline in quality of the Times, both in content and customer service. This latest decision to not only fail to replace a long running strip, Cathy, with a feature of comparable stature, but to discontinue another long running strip, and one of the last serial strips running, is a further indication of the decline in quality of the once prestigious Los Angeles Times.

A quick survey of the decisions of other dailies (via internet) indicate that Cathy is being replaced all over the country by other examples of the comic art. The Times, however, is playing games with its readers by not only failing to replace a discontinued strip, but by killing off another strip that continues to be drawn!

Your decision is, to say the least, puzzling.

i, too was very disappointed that Dr. Morgan was/is discontnued in the Times for yet another puzzle. I enjoy and do the crossword everyday, but why waste time on another one? To me there are several, if not many puzzles that are just plain "stupid" or junk and I do not see how people can enjoy them. After 40+ years, I may have to tell my husband to cancel our LA Times. That is if I can get him away from the Sports Page. Maybe he will read it online! Linda Bolinger

I know Cathy was leaving but cancelation of Dr Rex Morgan I find unnecessary when there are other strips that make no sense. IE:9 chickweed lane,and LIO. Dr. Morgan had a story line going and I will miss it. Ken Ken is OK but I use it every morning on my computer website.

What a terrible decision to remove Rex Morgan after all these years in the paper. It still was a well done story comic strip. One that I found engaging and insightful. And, it was the last of it's kind in the paper, as a couple others have noted.

Any possibility this could be re-thought? And, return it to the comics.

As in the past, it does not seem to matter what we the readers want in our comics. But I'm paying a lot for a subscription to a paper that continues to make me unhappy. To replace a comic strip with another puzzle is a sad waste.

All I can say is AACK!!! I won't miss "Cathy" (Megan Daum's wonderful column made me realize why I stopped reading it years ago), but why the one remaining serial, Rex Morgan, M.D.? I understand the demise of serials, but they made me a compulsive reader of the comics page. Please bring Dr. Rex back--or even Apartment 3G! But please stop paring down the comics page in favor of puzzles!

Who has it in for the serial comics in the Los Angeles Times? Mary Worth, Apartment 3-G and now Rex Morgan all have been killed off.

And, I have not seen one survey. How about asking the readers what they want, instead of just dumping long read comics. And, even if they don't score well in your precious research data, how about the fact that the page needs variety of choices. Of which, there is now, ZERO serial/story comics left in the Times.

Bring back the good ol' Doctor. Thanks!

no, no, no.......bring Rex back!


What a shame to remove Dr Rex Morgan, M. D. The last serial comic, a story that actually made sense day-to day, and one of the most dramatically drawn strips in the paper. . .very cool Spiderman-like perspective angles that gave emotional strength to the bubble dialog. It must be that no one at the Times understands comic art, or art in general, or they would never even consider removing Rex. It is one of the best strips in the section.

Another reader's comment here also makes note of a point I had not thought of but that is very true: Rex discusses and explains a variety of real life diseases which then informs many readers who might otherwise not even hear of such things. Ironically, the last strip that was so thoughtlessly ripped away was exploring a very important topic in modern medicine for men: prostate cancer. And you guys at the Times yank it. And you're replacing it with an esoteric math puzzle? You've got to be kidding. What are you thinking?
I, too, am not expecting much from the Times these days. I am hoping for much, but not expecting much. This wrongheaded move only cements this sad conclusion.

What a shame.

I expected Cathy to be replaced by another strip, and was severly disappointed to find not only Cathy gone, but Rex Morgan also. We don't need another puzzle on the comics page. Bring back Rex. Yes, the story line is slow, but it is well drawn and tries to stay topical.

One of my favorites of the former strips was Agnes. I also miss Apartment 3G. What are the professor and the girls up to these days?

You "Rex Morgan, M. D." addicts are PATHETIC !

I may be a minority now, but it won't be for long. KenKen is fascinating and addicting. At first it looks intimidating, but once you get the system (and it's simple), hooked! Was doing sudoku, and while there are similarities this leaves that puzzle in the dust. Now I go to the kenken.com website, there's more games there for free, and notice also that Will Shortz is a huge fan, too.


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