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Comics: Two more subtractions and one big addition

Brewster Rockit: Space Guy!

Brewster

On Monday, The Times instituted its second change this month to the Comics section. Because of a reorganization of the section, which included the addition of a second advertisement, two more strips have been removed: “Home and Away” and “Brewster Rockit: Space Guy!” Earlier this month, “Cathy” retired and “Rex Morgan, M.D.” was cut to make room for the addition of the KenKen puzzle.

However, there also has been an addition this week on the comics front. For the first time, a selection of comics is available on latimes.com. “Rex Morgan” and “Brewster Rockit” are among them. So are others that readers ask about, such as “Mary Worth” and “Sally Forth.” (But readers have been disappointed to discover that “Home and Away” is not included in the prebundled package to which The Times subscribes. However, the strip is available on the website of its syndicate.)

As of Tuesday morning, about 15 people, most of them “Brewster Rockit” fans, had e-mailed The Times to protest the cuts.

For a sampling of the response, keep reading...

“I wasn't at all upset when you removed ‘Rex Morgan,’ a strip that tediously plodded along.  But you've just deleted another of my favorites –- ‘Home and Away.’  With all the dreary news, the comics are the last part of the paper that I read.  They kinda get me back into a good mood.  There are so many good cartoons that you could bring back: ‘Sally Forth,’ ‘Shoe,’ ‘Andy Capp’ and ‘The Wizard of ID,’ to name a few.”
-- Barry Ulrich, Claremont

---

“I enjoy reading the print L.A. Times and hope that I pass the joy on to my kids. Just as my parents did with me, I recently introduced the paper to my eldest, a second-grader, by reading the comics together.  Our family was very disappointed to see that our favorite strip, ‘Brewster Rockit,’ has been missing this week and that the comic section has been getting increasingly smaller.  ‘Brewster Rockit’ was one of the smartest strips in your paper.  We sincerely hope that you bring ‘Brewster Rockit’ back.”
-- Janet Ho, Anaheim Hills

---

“We'll keep this simple. Bring ‘Brewster Rockit’ back to your comics page. Drop one of the ads, drop the idiotic ‘Chickweed Lane,’ drop whatever (but not, we hasten to add, ‘Zits,’ ‘Pearls Before Swine’ or ‘Get Fuzzy’), but bring back the Space Guy.”
-- Bill and Ann Courtney, Long Beach

---

“You have been running Snoopy for a thousand years.  It was OK the first time, old the second time and downright old now.  Yet you keep that and get rid of ‘Brewster Rockit,’ which is actually funny. What gives?”
-- Leslie Brown, Thousand Oaks

---

“So, ‘Times change, and The Times changes with them.’  This is translated,  by my long experience as an L.A. Times reader, into the following thought:  ‘As the times squeeze the finances of The Times, The Times squeezes the comic strip page.’
-- Jack E. Oakes, Santa Ana

-- Deirdre Edgar

 

 
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Comments (26)

This is unbelievable. Obviously Publisher Hartenstein has too much on his plate, because he is one of a four person committee running the Tribune company, who owns the LA Times. Editor Russ Stanton, well, I don't really know what he does, except continue to agree with the cutting/downsizing of the Times comics page(s).

Seriously??!! I want Rex Morgan back in the paper. But, I guess you want me to go to your website to get more unique visitors (customers) that way. Whatever.

The print version of the Times and you are only aiding in it's burial.

That's a really good point. Cartoons aren't as fun when seen online. They should really be retained in print.

Brewster Rockit was the cleverest strip in recent memory and you dumped it to make room for more ads. Who do you think is going to read those ads if our favorite comics are no longer there to lure us to the page? And believe me, I'll be going to Yahoo comics rather than reward the LA Times comics website with my presence. Common guys, do we really need those Peanuts reruns?

Chickweed Lane is brilliant, charming, and literate.

If you were going to make it so inconvenient to read some of the comics, why couldn't it have been the one's that are horrible? Marmaduke, Family Circus, Dennis the Menace, Ballard Street, Blonde, Crankshaft, and Mutts run the same jokes over and over again (big, human-like, disobedient dog; the kids are cute in their innocent, ignorant questions; Dennis is mischievous, and stressful to Mr. Wilson; some old people are quirky; Dagwood is sleepy/hungry/lazy; Crankshaft is a bitter, destructive old man; and animals are cute, respectively) while comics such a "Brewster Rocket" and" Home and Away" were actually entertaining. I greatly applaud you for cutting "Cathy", but I mourn the loss of "Rex", who despite, moving slowly, was fun to ridicule.

So "Mutts" with it's stale one joke stays but the creative and funny "Brewster Rockit" goes? Doesn't make sense.

Lose that hack Trudeau and the Mexican guy and bring back Rocket.

I like the idea of that comics selection on the site, but is there a comic on their that's less than 40 years old? WHere's Dilbert , Pearls Before Swine, Foxtrot, Garfield, Pooch Cafe, Get Fuzzy, Lio, Cul de Sac?

Online should mean MORE relevant to this century not less.

can i vote for 'none of the above' ?
they all sound disappointing, and i've looked at them all before i commented.

definitely time to retire dead strips - peanuts, please.

Snoopy, Dennis the Menace, etc have had their day, now are outdated. Mostly overrated anyway. Get rid of them to make room for fresh new work.

I am deeply upset by Brewster Rockit Space guy's removal. Brewster is one of my all time favorite comic strips! Get rid of Mutts. That strip got old thirteen years ago.

I realize that Mutts has a loyal fan-base, but the only way the paper is EVER going to bring new readers in is if they update their comics pages with cartoons that are actually FUNNY.

Save brewster rockit. The funniest new strip in many years. Cut the size some of your headlines and subheads in the entertainment section, move the crossword to another page, and we could have lots more comics. Even keep the unfunny ones you seem to love more than a funny 1 like brewster rockit.

It is very sad what the Times is doing to it's once proud and very strong selection of comic strips. They just don't get it.

You are quickening your demise with the print edition. Long-time strips like Rex Morgan, should stay in print, since most of it's readers will like to read it there. Move the younger appealing ones to the website.

Congrats. How much down will your circulation be this time, next year?

Bring back Brewster Rockit!!

I second the call for dropping 9 Chickweed Lane. This comic has seen better days. Now, it's just boring.

Good riddance Brewster Rocket. One of only two that I don't bother reading.
Chickweed Lane is for anyone with a modicum of literacy and should be the last one dropped. Hopefully you have enough readers who finished high school to appreciate it.

I don't remember any poll about which strips to drop. I vote f0r restoring in order: Home and Away, then Brewster Rockit. Both have points of view that are rarely represented in the comic pages. Take away Tundra which is badly drawn and rarely funny and Prickly City which appears to be a Republican vehicle.

On a different note, ever since the Times shrank its pages, certain comics have been hard for us older people to read - those with a lighter typeface or with a lot of type. The San Franscisco Chronicle has solved this problem neatly by printing the daily comics in color. Why not the Times? And the color makes the strips more interesting.

Bring back Brewster Rockit Guy! I don't get it? Who in their right mind would choose Peanuts or Blondie, old and stale, over Brewster, one of the funniest strips since Far Side retired? That is just insane.

As the "Official" Officer of Communications for The Official Brewster Rockit Fan Club, I am writing in protest to the dropping of the Brewster Rockit Comic Strip.

Having a subscription, and not having Brewster to look forward to, I have CANCELED my subscription in protest, and have notified the OBRFC to follow suit.

BRING BREWSTER BACK, or Pam Mae Snap!

Bring back Brewster Rockit!! And Sally Forth!

Good riddance to Home and Away! Peanuts and Dennis the Menace could disappear too.

The comic section became less funny with the removal of 'Brewster Rockit'. It was one of the good comics left. I can't believe this comic got the ax and yet the VERY unfunny and stupid 'La Cucaracha' is still being printed. I know the Times is being PC because it's a "Latino" comic and we can't offend Latinos. This was a dumb move. Well it's just another dumb move in a series of dumb moves this paper has made

Okay. Rex Morgan is gone. I can live with that. I can check in on him online once a month and not miss a plot point.

But Brewster Rockit? My entire family loves the space guy. Drop Chickweed Lane. Drop Prickly City! Drop Bliss!!

But bring back Brewster Rockit. How else will we know the condition of Binky's spleen?

Hey! Brewster was one of the best comics you had!

Okay. It took me a days to get to you. I'm back in college because I'm trying to learn more so I don't lose my job. Since I'm back in school and sometimes the LA Times gets stacked up until I can get around to them.
Well, I did get around to it and I found Brewster missing.
I really enjoyed that strip.
So let's bring it back!
Thanks!
-dave

Bring back Brewster Rockit!!!!!!!

"Brewster Rockit" was one of the more witty comics strips. For that matter, the Comics section in general is like usually the best part of the paper, and usually the dessert I look forward to reading. "Brewster Rockit" is one of the possibly 10 strips that I read on a regular basis. I'm sorry to see it go. I have not adjusted yet to reading the news online, and doubt I ever will.


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