Sunday, December 12, 2010

On Losing Brenda Starr

JAN: I just found out the Chicago Tribune Company has terminated the Brenda Starr comic strip, which will no longer be appearing in your Sunday funny pages.

Now Brenda Starr was a pretty awful comic strip, sexist and out of date, even thirty years ago when I tried to read it because my brother called me Brenda Starr. (Not because I had red hair, twinkly blue eyes and a voluptuous figure, but because I was in journalism school).

But Brenda Starr was a reporter, so I feel a very personal sense of loss, even though I never read her much and when I tried, was weirded out by the androgynous friend of hers with the hat (Was her/his name Hank?).

Nonetheless, her comic strip passing means an era is over. The twinkle is out of Brenda's eyes for good.

Anyone else care??

HALLIE: Me, me! I saw that in the paper yesterday and I hoped we'd get to talk about it. I didn't actually read it but I loved the idea of her. For me it was definitely the twinkles and curves.

JAN: Yes, that's exactly what it was the IDEA of her. As if a female newspaper reporter was glamorous. Love that idea.

RHYS: Newspaper reporter WAS glamorous! The trench coat and note pad--very sexy.
I'm afraid I've never found most comic strips funny. I rather think they were the pre-TV answer to sitcoms--little slices of life to entertain without too much effort needed.

JAN: I think you are right Rhys -- I don't find them that funny or that exciting, but think of how many feature length movies they've inspired!! (Did Brooke Shields play Brenda Starr? or am I imagining that?)

Anyone else out there going to mourn the loss of our glamour girl?


  1. OH, I'm so sad about Brenda. For a million reasons.

    Lots of people call me Brenda Starr--my mom did, before I was even a reporter. She must have known something I didn't. Sometimes it's teasing, sometimes it's affectionate. But I always liked it.

    Brenda also reminds me of Charlie McNAlly--or Charlie reminds me of Brenda, or it's all of a muchness.

    I mean--it was a silly comic strip--who even understood Basil and the black orchid and weird Hank and I never know who was good or who was bad, but it still--was a thing. An institution of the glam reporter who was a real journalist who cared about peopleand her stories and her honor.

    So, far as I'm concerned, no matter what the comic syndicate says, BRENDA LIVES.

    That's the headline.

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  3. Maybe we should both dye our hair red in support!!

    The twinkle in the eye thing, I'm not sure about.

  4. You already have it, Jan! (The twinkle, I mean..) xo

  5. I will miss Brenda Starr. I was a fan. Still have a thing for black orchids and eye patches. Maybe that's why I like pirates.

    I knew there was a reason I like Charlie McNally, Hank.

    As for dying my red...Sorry, I'm blonde and staying that way. I did the red thing once in high school and hated it. I wonder if Brenda was the influence on that?

  6. I"ve looked horrible with hair a lot less red than Brenda's. You need the twinkly blue eyes to pull it off (Brenda and Lucy had it down)

  7. I was saddened to hear this news about my old pal Brenda. We share a name, and used to share a profession. And 20 or so years ago, I wrote for a Kennebunk Maine newspaper called the Star. So yup, there were lots of Brenda Starr jokes, pretty much every day, even though I'm hardly the glamour girl type.

    I will miss her, and Basil, too.

    Brenda B. in Maine