In response to the letter titled "Keep serious issues out of the funny pages," there are three, not two, forms of comic strips. There's the gag-a-day and the adventure strip, as mentioned. But halfway between is a form called short continuity. Here the cartoonist pursues a theme for a few weeks. Usually it's a current topic about which the cartoonist feels more or less passionate. This form blends humor and drama, but doesn't lend itself easily to a daily punch line.
Although the writer believes this form has no right to be on the funny pages, it's as legitimate a style of expression as the others, and is especially popular when the readers find the subject interesting and the characters appealing.
A newspaper cartoon syndicate receives thousands of submissions each year, from which only two or three are launched. These fortunate few are too experienced, knowledgeable and talented to "cop out" by wandering off on a whim because they can't think of a "joke" that day.
Ted Hibbard Buffalo