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Monday, August 13, 2007

A Stand Up Comic

Some of you may have noticed that I've accumulated quite a little file of hate mail over the 10-ish weeks I've been writing for Seven Days. It's amused my friends to no end and horrified my mom. It's OK, Mom. I'm a big boy. I can take it.

While I certainly am not surprised to be the subject of debate/ire, the pure volume of submissions has been somewhat remarkable, as has the vitriolic content of quite a few missives. You should see some of the ones we couldn't print. Yikes! In some ways, it's sort of like how the blog has been received — only more so.  But hey, at least they're reading.

Anyway,  it was a nice reprieve to be spared a public lashing this week in the letters section. However, I was shocked to see a letter bemoaning the comic strip "Herb & Rose," authored by none other than Jazz Guys front-man and occasional Solid State resident Herb Van der Poll. Here it is:

“Herb and Rose.” Is it really necessary? I remember a month or two ago, there was a strip relating to the let-down of the “Spider-Man” movie. I thought, perhaps we’re turning a corner. Perhaps “Herb and Rose” will escape their endlessly self-referential schtick and actually get around to making an interesting, even funny, comic.

Unfortunately, it was a blip. And this week [“Herb and Rose,” July 25] it’s a rerun. A boring rerun.

I understand “Dykes to Watch Out For” is only every other week, but honestly, blank space would be less irritating than this visual exercise in omphaloskepsis.
Solvei Blue

Herb and I obviously don't always see eye to eye on things, but I've been a big fan of the strip since it first began appearing in our little rag. Perhaps because "endlessly self-reverential schtick" is kinda my bread and butter, I've often found the strip endearingly funny.

So Herb and Rose, if you're out there, you have my deepest sympathies and I say, keep up the good work and don't let the bastards get you down. Although the writer does get bonus points for correctly using the word "omphaloskepsis" in a sentence. Well done.



fuck that. Rose's drawing skills are top notch, and Herb while self referential to the point of pathological narcissism is still accessible. Their more recent comic about the Transformers movie was a solid gold knee slapper.

Humors a funny thing though - one persons laugh is another's... not laugh; thank and i think alot of people still want there comics to fall more in line with Ziggy than American Elf.


thank = that


I agree. Fuck thank!

Personally, I loved the Robocop strip a few months ago.

I feel like you can extend Tanner's sentiment to virtually any medium: Comics, movies, music, music criticism . . . ahem.

Lisa Crean

Just today, someone I respect was encouraging me to EMBRACE the hate mail. This person is on the other side of my reviews, and accepts the brickbats along with the plaudits because there is something to learn from both. Although letters-to-the-editor generally don't fall into the praise least when it comes to music and theater critics.

And it would be boring if people were just sucking up to you all the time, right? Personally, I hate the brownnosing more than the ranting and raving.

But I like Herb and Rose! And now I'm reaching for my dictionary to look up that word...


trivia for you Dan... I played the roll of Robocop in that strip.


Damn! We have a celebrity on our midst, folks. That's pretty cool. I just assumed it was Peter Weller.

The hate mail thing is tricky. The perspective I try and maintain is that I spend most of my time criticizing the artistic endeavors of others, so it's only fair that people have an outlet to criticize me. However, it can be tough to keep that frame of mind when the attacks turn personal, but for most part, I think it's healthy to be challenged. Serenity Now!

Mom (Carolyn Wood)

It's okay Dan, I know you can handle it. And what other job would enable you to give such great birthday presents! You know I don't drink beer.
By the way,I'm partial to "Bassist Wanted", especially this weeks'. Is Porter Mason related to us and I don't really look like that, do I?
Love, Mom


Herb & Rose rules.


i too, really enjoy herb and rose. like a lot.


Shucks guys,

I didn't realize this whole discussion was taking place. On behalf of Rose and myself, thanks.

For the record, we thought it was funny.


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