- John Darling
:"This article is about the comic strip; for the brother of Wendy Darling, see
John Darling (Peter Pan)."
"John Darling" was a
comic strip, created by Tom Batiuk, about a talk showhost. It appeared from March 25 1979to August 4 1991.
John Darling was originally a supporting character in Batiuk's strip "
Funky Winkerbean". Popular with readers, he was spun-off into his own strip. The original artist was Tom Armstrong, who left the strip in 1985 for his own creation, "Marvin", though he did return to draw the final three weeks of the strip. His replacement was Gerry Shamway. Stan Lyndealso contributed to the strip in its first year.
Much of the strip's humor came from Darling's quirks and occasional displays of ignorance; in one strip, he interviews musician Prince, asking him "Exactly which country are you a prince of?"
Batiuk had a contractual conflict with his syndicate over ownership of the character, so he stunned readers by killing off Darling, leaving the syndicate with a largely unusable property. Darling was shot by an unknown assailant in the second to last strip.
In "Funky Winkerbean", a character named Les Moore wrote a book on Darling's murder and solved the case in a 1997 storyline, celebrating "Funky Winkerbean"'s 25th anniversary; the murderer was revealed to be Peter Mossman, alias Plantman. Darling's daughter Jessica appears in "Funky Winkerbean" as a minor character.
* Strickler, Dave. "Syndicated Comic Strips and Artists, 1924-1995: The Complete Index." Cambria, CA: Comics Access, 1995. ISBN 0-9700077-0-1.
* [http://www.toonopedia.com/darling.htm Toonopedia entry]
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