Template:POV-check Barney & Clyde is a daily newspaper comic strip created by Washington Post columnist Gene Weingarten, his son Dan Weingarten, and cartoonist David Clark. Syndicated by The Washington Post Writers Group, it debuted on June 7, 2010. It appears in The Washington Post, The Miami Herald, The Detroit Free Press and many other newspapers.
Barney & Clyde is believed to be the first American comic strip created by a father-son team. On Father's Day 2010, Gene Weingarten wrote about the unusual genesis of this collaboration.
Characters and story
Barney & Clyde is about an unlikely friendship between a billionaire and a homeless man. The title characters are J. Barnard Pillsbury, owner and CEO of Pillsbury Pharmaceuticals, a multinational drug company, and Clyde Finster, of no permanent address. In early 2011, Clyde revealed to Barney that they had been classmates in grade school. Other prominent characters are Lucretia Pillsbury, Barney's trophy second wife; Cynthia Pillsbury, Barney's iconoclastic 11-year-old daughter from his first marriage; and Dabney Mountbatten IV, Clyde's homeless, and lawless, sidekick. Clyde's cute companion rabbit is named Adolf. When panhandling, however, Clyde refers to Adolf by his "stage name," which is Fluffykins McNeedsahug.
In 2011, Florida resident Horace LaBadie began suggesting scripts to the creators, and in time he became a frequent contributor to the strip, and remains so. The Weingartens invented a street denizen named Horace, who "tells arcane jokes no one understands," a reference to LaBadie's penchant for clever but uber-sophisticated gags, often with outdated references.
"Barney & Clyde" traffics in street-corner philosophy, painful puns and wordplay, and economic inequities in society. The comic portrays homelessness as a relaxed way of life that is superior to having a regular job, shelter, and the ability to buy food. Clyde often pontificates on the superior nature of the homeless, glossing over the real problems faced by the homeless; for example, mental illness is played off as harmless eccentricity. Clyde is sometimes seen digging through garbage cans in a leisurely manner, although he is never shown with half-eaten or rotting food as a source of sustenance. The strip is popular with the homeless, who do not seem to regard it as patronizing or unrealistic; it appears weekly in "Street Sense," the Washington D.C. newspaper produced for, and by, the homeless. The strip's creators hint broadly at an unstated but profound plot subtext that will never be publicly revealed, certainly not in a Wikipedia article. "Barney & Clyde" also shamelessly pursues meta-humor in comics, as with the example below, which appeared on April 1, 2012.
(After reading the cartoon, it should be read again, backward.)
- ↑ "Barney & Clyde". [[wikipedia:The Washington Post Writers Group|]]. http://www.postwritersgroup.com/comics/bcl2.htm. Retrieved May 19, 2011.
- ↑ Weingarten, Gene (June 17, 2010). "Gene and Dan Weingarten, drawn together by their comic strip, 'Barney & Clyde'". The Washington Post. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/06/17/AR2010061706694.html. Retrieved May 19, 2011.
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