Four-Letter Words in ‘Fuzzy’? Sort Of

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By: Dave Astor

The s-word was implied once and the f-word implied 11 times in today’s “Get Fuzzy” comic.

Darby Conley this week has been doing a sequence titled “Rejected Get Fuzzy Storylines.” Today’s strip opened with the statement: “Get Fuzzy attempts to outdo the South Park episode where they said [here Conley drew a cross-out mark between quotes] 162 times by saying [another cross-out mark] 162 times.” Many readers would guess that the first cross-out mark hid the s-word and the second hid the f-word. Then Bucky Katt is pictured saying “[cross-out mark] you” 10 times — apparently 10 more f-word usages.

“I thought it was very funny,” said Marianne Goldstein, executive director for editorial at United Media, when asked her opinion today. She noted that some cartoonists, such as Conley, have a “unique sensibility newspapers find attractive because it brings in younger readers.” That sensibility can include offbeat, edgy humor.

But United wanted to provide an option to newspapers whose editors or readers might be bothered by today’s comic, so it sent out an alternate “Get Fuzzy” strip. It’s not known how many of Conley’s 500-plus clients decided to use it.

Goldstein did note that if editors were upset, there’d be an indication in comments posted in the American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors’ newsgroup. She has seen no such indication. Goldstein added that United hasn’t received any negative reader reaction to today’s strip.

Bucky Katt has had quite a week. In yesterday’s “Get Fuzzy” strip, he was shown roasting characters from “FoxTrot” and “The Family Circus” over a fire (E&P, Nov. 17).

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