howtheduck (howtheduck) wrote in binky_betsy,

Kurtis Findlay and Lynn Johnston live stream on actual 40th anniversary

This is where the video is, but I don't seem to be able to get it up directly.

My summary and comments after the cut.

What we have is a series of people popping in on the live stream to talk to Lynn and whole lot of technical difficulties and Kurtis asking Lynn questions in between the people.  Apparently Lynn was supposed to set this up herself and then Kurtis had to come by and rescue her using his phone.

Kurtis plugs volume 3 of the library books.

Lynn first lie is a new one where Lynn claims that she started doing the comments to the comic strip because of the website.

My comment: While the comments were used for the website, the real motivation for starting them was because they were being used for the Treasury editions.

Jenine Elizabeth Everdeen
She met Lynn at the University of Washington Ontario when Lynn signed her “With This Ring” book.  She liked the way Lynn dealt with the issue of stalking with Elizabeth.

My comment: I think this is the first time I have ever heard anyone compliment Lynn on the Howard Bunt storyline, which I consider to be the worst thing Lynn ever wrote.

Lynn says the furthest she went was Japan.   Kurtis asked her comic strip was translated to Japanese and Lynn said it was not.  Her comic strip was in the Japan Times – English language paper.

My comment: I wonder now if this was the case with most of the foreign countries where Lynn talked about her comic strip being published.

Then Lynn shocked me by pitching the Library edition book.  She talked about size / laugh ratio.
Kurtis said the comedy cloud of violence is funnier if it as bigger.

Tammy Jakeman
She is in Cow Bay in Nova Scotia.  She had just dealt with Hurricane Dorian.  She was a mom at age of 20 and a single parent for a few years.  Her youngest came out as gay 5 years ago, so liked the Lawrence story.  Her husband and she are coming up on their 25th anniversary.

Kurtis asks Lynn about the famous people she has met.
Lynn says: Robin Williams.  All the comic strip heroes.  Schulz.  Aragones.   Then she drops in Will Eisner.  She met 3 of the 9 old men of Disney.  Phyllis Diller.  Harry Morgan from MASH.

She told a story about how Phyllis painted all her cupboards red like Lynn’s mom did, so she asked Phyllis if she was English like her mother.  She claims Phyllis said she was.

My comment: Phyllis was born in the United States and had German and Irish ancestry.   Sorry Lynn.  Either Phyllis was lying or you are.

Daryn Grant – He is feeding his boy Findlay (first baby) and is clearly in a rocking chair.  They are very cute.
Lynn said Kurtis Findlay is also doing the stay-at-home dad thing.
Daryn first saw the animated series as a kid.  He met Lynn in North Vancouver at a little tiny store.
Lynn gives a big pitch for Booklovers down on 3rd and St. Georges.
Lynn asks if he finds the comic strip different as a parent versus reading it as a kid.
Kurtis Findlay says April birth is in volume 4, so Daryn might find it to be of interest to him.
Lynn said people threw her a baby shower for April and covered her lawn with flamingos.
Lynn talks about how she wanted to drop kick her kids off a bridge while they were awake, but loved them when they were asleep.  And on that note, we say goodbye to Daryn.

Kurtis talks about the animated show and the 3 segments set at different times.  Lynn talks about how she wrote them with a couple of good writers.  Says she liked writing with other people.  Most taxing was the introduction to each which she claims she ad-libbed.

My comment: I have seen those intros and I am not buying the ad-libbed story.

Kurtis asks her if she did a lot of takes on those intros and Lynn says she didn’t.

Steven Bruce. It appears he is in his car or truck.
It’s Moose.   He used to hang out with her kids in North Bay.  From her expression, Lynn clearly did not recognize or remember him, but says she does.
Moose is in Saskatchewan.   He says she would listen to what they would say.  He has a cartoon when the Grandma had passed and the question was what was your inheritance.  His answer of “her nose” made it into the comic strip.

The comic strip is from 1998, so Aaron would have been 21 years when Moose was hanging around.

Lynn says her best lines were from her family.
Findlay talks about how she spotted someone she knew at the Vancouver Comic Arts Festival and went running out to greet them.
Kurtis asks Lynn what her favorite animated special is aside from The Bestest Present from the 6 animated specials.  Lynn has no answer.  Unknown to Kurtis is that he has removed her usual answer to that question by eliminating The Bestest Present as a choice.

Joan Brock Moe - Wisconsin
Her children about the same age as Elly’s.  She was pregnant around the same time Elly was pregnant with April.
She asks Lynn if her children complained about the comic strip.
Lynn claims that she was considerate of their feelings and got their approval of storylines involving him.  She says Aaron suggested the idea of the nose zit story.

Aaron’s version of this story from Suddenly Silver:
There are two examples I recall where instances from my life entered the strip.  The first was when a good friend of mine, just before the big high school dance, developed what I called a “nuclear zit” on the tip of his nose which was the object of much embarrassment – this in turn happened to Michael during one series of strips. 

My comment: That her story and his story do not match is not really a surprise.

Lynn says mostly they were teased in school.  Aaron said he was so sick of telling people he didn’t know anyone named Martha.  People complained about the Gordon hormone attack being too graphic.
Lynn says all her publishing and syndication came from the states, so she is grateful for the states.
Kurtis Findlay has Lynn talk about Farley.  Says Farley Mowat said he strongly suspected the strip dog was named for him and he forced Lynn to send him a strip.  Lynn says her sister-in-law forced Farley’s death and told her to have him go as a hero instead of being put down.  Farley has a May-December relationship with the dog next door so she can keep a dog in the comic strip.  Lynn was sharply criticized for not having Farley neutered.

She said that at the time she had a “little, black spaniel”.  She says it twice, so I know this is actually the way she talks about Willy.  Lynn says she travels too much now to have a pet.

Tanaya Matchett – Toronto
25 years old.  Started with the animated show like a lot of people.  Her home was dysfunctional.  She considered the Pattersons to be an ideal and something to aspire to.  She asks what was Lynn’s favorite overall story arc.
Lynn says, “Lawrence comes out” is her proudest, but not her favorite.
Michael (Vade)Boncoeur comedy writer in Toronto.   She might have said Vadeboncoeur with the Vade, but she mumbles right before “Boncoeur” so I am not sure.
Lynn tells the old Charles Schulz “I will have Snoopy hit by a bus” story about how he hated when Lynn killed off Farley.  Lynn talks about how Schulz was angry with April for Farley’s death.

Then Kurtis Findlay says, “Maybe mom should have been keeping a closer eye on her.”

My comment: Suddenly I find I am in love with Kurtis Findlay.  He said that right to her face.

Tanaya says she liked how the people were doing real things when the characters were imperfect.
Lynn tells the story about Elizabeth playing with her dollhouse and Elly observing herself via Elizabeth’s play.
Kurtis asks Lynn about her favorite supporting character and she says Gordon Mayes.

Jenine Elizabeth Everdeen
Comes back with a rescue rabbit eating greens and asks why Lynn put a rabbit in the comic strip.
The sound gets really bad and I think Lynn is talking about how she always wanted a rabbit and she likes the way her bunny eats greens.

After Jenine, Kurtis takes it back to Gordon.  Lynn says Gordon came from a rough family.  He was a positive guy.  Lynn wanted to show that you can be successful without going to a university and getting financial backing.

My comment: I guess Lynn has forgotten that one of the running themes is that the Pattersons were Gordon’s financial backers and Gordon was constantly thanking them for their money.

Kurtis is amazed that Lynn kept up with all her secondary characters.
Lynn talks about her muse and then realizes what she is saying and stops.

Dan T Davis – Kansas City, current lives in Boise, Idaho
Dan just celebrated 40th wedding anniversary.
He asks Lynn, “Did you make a conscious decision to have everyone age?”  He mentions Gasoline Alley.
Lynn blames the material because her kids were growing.  About a year into the writing she realized she could not do gag a day.  What if John drops a frozen turkey on his foot? As an example.
She said the hardest part was keeping tabs on how big they were.  Also their physical growth.
She kept everyone in the strip 3 years younger than their real life counterparts.  She claims she let them age first.   She does not say the word “freeze” or “frozen.”
Lynn said her 8-year-old granddaughter now is almost at her daughter’s shoulder.

My comment: No mention of the grandson because… well you know.

Lynn liked April because she did not have to worry about insulting or offending her kids.
Dan asks if other cartoonists liked the aging
Lynn said it wasn’t an issue.  Everyone’s handwriting is a little different.  All cartoonist support each other.  If you have that contract and you are meeting your deadlines you are in the club.
Lynn says that having the characters pushed her out of the licensing market because the characters change.   She told the Pampers and April story.
She said the only licensable character was the dog, but he wasn’t a magic dog who could talk.  She tried greeting cards, but she got pushed into the woman-to-woman stuff which she found to be boring.

My comment: Well, the licensing would not have been a problem with Elly or John and clearly she was getting some Elly action in greeting cards, so it wasn’t just the dog.

Dan T. Davis conversed with Lynn in a personal letter over a book that he wrote.
He said she was so friendly and so wonderful.
Lynn says she likes to open doors for young cartoonists.
She said Don Harron, who is known for the character Charlie Farquharson, told her she had a responsibility to her public to be a nice person.  You can’t be a jackass.

My comment: Except to on-line fans, of course.

Dan T. Davis said his book had a quote from Lynn
He wrote Santa Claus stories.  He says the Lynn quote was that she wanted her grandchildren to read them.  He says the books have done fairly well.  Here he is:

His picture on Amazon threw me off because he is not bald in the picture.   His last book written in 2010 and this is the Lynn quote:

Beautiful books! Well written, and the illustrations are so in tune with your text! I enjoy reading to and working with children and look forward to grand kids some day. Your books will be on their reading list. --Lynn Johnston, creator of the comic strip For Better or For Worse

My comment: I am loving the fact that the Lynn quote was actually a dig at Katie back in 2010 telling her to give her some grandchildren.

Kurtis gives Lynn a bottle of wine with the back half of a pig again.  They are about done when someone else pops in.

Austin Kennedy – She just got back from yoga.  Fox Creek, Alberta, Canada.  3 hours north of Edmonton.
Lynn said she did yoga once with a running track where the men would stare at her, so no more yoga.
Austin read the comic strip in the Edmonton Journal.
Lynn is very complimentary of Edmonton.
Kurtis asks but Austin has no favorite character.
Lynn claims her favorite characters was April.  Then I think she remembered that is not her usual answer and she added that she really enjoyed the dogs.
Lynn asks Austin if she is a cartoonist.  Austin says she did draw as a kid.  Now she is leaning towards acting.
Lynn says you have to be actor to be a cartoonist.
Austin says she will head to Edmonton to do acting and she shows off her collection of Lynn books which is quite impressive.  She has one library edition which someone bought for her.

My comment: This is because the library editions are very expensive compared to Lynn’s older stuff.
Lynn tells Austin she will do well in acting because she is gorgeous.
Kurtis expects Austin was very young and they were well into the comic strip when she was born.
Lynn says the grandfather in the comic strip is Lynn now.

Kurtis asks for final parting words.
Lynn says, “Tell the people you know right now that you love them.” At 72, people she thought would always be there are not.


  • Monday, 22 July 2024

    The one where Liz is determined not to enjoy a trip guaranteed not to be fun for teenagers or small children. Synopsis: We begin the Road Trip Of…

  • Sunday, 21 July 2024

    The one at the campfire where it's charming that April is stooooooooopid. Synopsis: The Pattersons are toasting marshmallows in the back yard and,…

  • Saturday, 20 July 2024

    The one where Elly and Connie wail that their lives are used up and gone because their kids remember shit. Synopsis: As Mike and Lawrence engage in…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.

  • Monday, 22 July 2024

    The one where Liz is determined not to enjoy a trip guaranteed not to be fun for teenagers or small children. Synopsis: We begin the Road Trip Of…

  • Sunday, 21 July 2024

    The one at the campfire where it's charming that April is stooooooooopid. Synopsis: The Pattersons are toasting marshmallows in the back yard and,…

  • Saturday, 20 July 2024

    The one where Elly and Connie wail that their lives are used up and gone because their kids remember shit. Synopsis: As Mike and Lawrence engage in…