M. SCOTT MORRIS: Comics? Yay! Readers unite over funnies

By M. Scott Morris/NEMS Daily Journal

I’ve been getting my hands dirty with Felder Rushing and Tracy Proctor. Their faces graced an advertisement for a gardening event in the May 15 edition of the Mighty Daily Journal. Northeast Mississippians have cut the ad out and mailed it to me.
Technically, readers cut out the comics survey that’s on the other side of Felder and Tracy. (If you don’t want to get your hands dirty with ink from the newspaper, take the survey at NEMS360.com.)
I’ve been compiling your opinions on “Peanuts,” “Dilbert” and the rest. For each strip we run, you get an option of “always,” “sometimes” and “never.”
We could’ve spiced things up with categories like “never, when my mother-in-law is in town,” “sometimes, when Sunday falls directly after payday,” or “always, except when hungover.”
Maybe simplicity is best.
I’m a comics fan, and I’m glad to know so many others are, too. This big ol’ world of ours tends to separate us in many different ways, but count me among guys like Carl L. Nance Jr., an 86-year-old from Ripley.
Nance named “Dilbert” as his least favorite comic strip, and didn’t stop there. He underlined “Dilbert” and added five exclamation points. Each exclamation point was bigger than the one that came before it.
That’s passion, and I love it.
I feel the same way about “Peanuts Featuring Good Ol’ Charlie Brown.” It’s a great strip, but I want it gone!!!!!
Hmmm. I felt a disturbance in the Force. Has the world found another way to separate us?
Early returns on the survey show most of you always read “Peanuts.” It doesn’t matter that its creator, Charles Schulz, is dead and gone to the Great Funny Pages in the Sky.
There are living and breathing cartoonists out there who could use Schulz’s slot to build their own followings that might, in theory, continue after their deaths. Think about that.
Don’t worry, though. There’s a 93 percent chance “Peanuts” will survive. I wouldn’t be heartbroken if that happens. Does that make us friends again?
There are comics in the Mighty Daily Journal that have never elicited a grudging smile from me, much less a chuckle.
So far, some of the ones I dislike are big winners in the survey, and my favorite is a big loser.
I couldn’t disagree with Nance more about “Dilbert” – five exclamation points, indeed.
On the flip side, it’s good to know people have strong opinions about the comics.
We might not see eye to eye on local, state or national politics, and we might not agree on “Dilbert” vs. “Peanuts.”
But we’d never want to read the Mighty Daily Journal without the comics. Funny stuff is good stuff. We care, you and I. We can build on that.
Before we go our separate ways again, let’s tip our hats to Felder and Tracy. I can’t help thinking they’ve brought us all closer together. Thanks, guys.

M. Scott Morris is a Daily Journal entertainment writer. Contact him at (662) 678-1589 or scott.morris@journalinc.com.

Click here to take the NEMS Daily Journal comics survey.