Why does Shoe look different? Is someone new drawing Shoe?


Oh, yeah, so, something I missed in how Gary Brookins was retiring from drawing Pluggers. Brookins has also been drawing Shoe, the other comic strip originated by Jeff MacNelly. That’s the more standard comic strip about a newspaper, diner, and politician, only they’re all birds.

According to D D Degg at The Daily Cartoonist, Ben Lansing is supposed to take over the drawing of the strip. I had thought that Brookins was retiring from both strips simultaneously but, looking at the original announcement, it looks like Brookins just said he’d turn over Shoe “sometime in August”. Last Saturday’s Shoe really did seem like a farewell to both, though.

The cast of 'Shoe' reading about how 'Our cartoonist buddy is retiring'. 'Good old Gary, what a sketch!' 'He made his mark!' 'Hard to picture him leaving.' 'But we'll always be drawn to him.' Narrative box: 'From Roz and the entire Shoe team: THANK YOU, Gary! Jeff would be proud.'
Gary Brookins and Susie MacNelly’s Shoe for the 22nd of August, 2020 as seen on GoComics. So you know that the GoComics Master Database was not designed by comic strip nerds, because the “created by” field is one entry for the whole run of the strip. Nobody told them that comic strip artists, writers, or both have been changed out for like a century-plus already! Also because they got rid of the thing where users could put keywords so that you could, later on, search for comics about “word problems” or “Star Trek” or whatnot.

Rick McKee, who’s been sharing Pluggers work with MacNelly, has that strip all to himself now, so far as I know. And because things are always confused, the GoComics page for Shoe gives a credit to Rick McKee right now, even though we’ve still got Brookins-signed strips, and that so far as I know Ben Lansing is still supposed to take over drawing Shoe. I have no explanation for this phenomenon. Comics Kingdom, which also runs the daily Shoe because of the reasons, is still crediting Gary Brookins for the art.

Adventures In Modern Folk Art


It started as a Super Fun-Pak Comix gag on Ruben Bolling’s Tom The Dancing Bug. It’s titled The Comic Strip That Has A Finale Every Day. For some reason it escaped its Super Fun-Pak Comix framing device. GoComics started running it as one more comic strip. It publishes every day, and it’s the same strip every day. It’s been doing so since the start of May.

The comic strip thanks the readers of 'The Comic Strip That Has A Finale Every Day', and the characters all wave. The box promises, tomorrow: goodbye again!
Ruben Bolling, as John Scully, with The Comic Strip That Has A Finale Every Day. Strip from the 29th of June, 2015, if that matters.

As I write this, it has 109 subscribers.

Granted, that’s nothing compared to your big popular comic strips like U.S.Acres Reruns (7,954 subscribers) or Nancy Reruns (1,059 subscribers) or Fort Knox (10,880 subscribers) (not a rerun, but it repeats panels a lot). But, still, 109. I’m almost tempted to subscribe just in case something happens.

Unironically I do see in the comments the start of community-building. It looks like at least a couple people are making up stuff that would have appeared in the strip’s past, filling in characters with names and backstories and all that. That sort of community folk art is one of the things I most like about the Internet.