In December, we asked for your input as we were tasked with creating a new Sunday comics section for 11 Gannett newspapers in the Carolinas to support print production efficiency.
Due to their overwhelming popularity, these top 10 strips have been acquired in: BC, Beetle Bailey, Blondie, Born Loser, Close to Home, Dilbert, Family Circus, For Better or Worse, Hagar the Horrible and Garfield.
You have been asked to decide on the other 14 places.
Your response was amazing. At times it was overwhelming, as almost 90,000 votes were cast on over 13,000 ballots.
The new comics section appears in today’s newspaper. As we tallied the votes and read the hundreds of comments, we could feel your passion about this.
For every Christmas card and “Thank you for letting us vote on this” included with ballots, another 20 made it clear that a subscription would be canceled if it didn’t go as planned. I really hope you don’t and that you enjoy the end product.
The good news first: the new layout has allowed us to increase the total of this newspaper from 21 to 24. And also great: the comic pages from Monday to Saturday are not affected. Well: although this newspaper is losing five of its current comics, it is gaining nine more popular ones.
Those who left are Lockhorns, Pluggers, Shoe, Snuffy Smith and Wizard of Id.
Comics added are Argyle Sweater, Close to Home, Family Circus, Foxtrot, Frank & Ernest, Garfield, Mother Goose & Grimm, Speed Bump, and Sally Forth.
I hope you will open your mind to these new bands. Tens of thousands of comic book fans voted for them.
I know the importance of comic book pages in newspapers. I grew up in a family of journalists. When my son was younger, my mom gave him a book of Family Circus panels that we put together when I was a kid.
For those who like to keep score, the vote put Pickles and Zits atop the leaderboard, by a landslide, with over 10,000 votes each. Hi & Lois, Dennis the Menace, Pearls Before Swine, Baby Blues, Mother Goose and Grimm, Foxtrot, Frank and Ernest, Speed Bump, Jumpstart, Baldo, Sally Forth and Argyle Sweater round out the Top 24, in order of tally votes. .
If you’d like to share your thoughts on this, you can email me at email@example.com or Carolinas Regional Production Editor Diane Fuhrer at DFuhrer@gannett.com.