A Marmaduke cartoon from September 13, 2006
|Current status / schedule||Running|
|Syndicate(s)||United Features Syndicate|
Marmaduke is a newspaper comic strip drawn by Brad Anderson from 1954 to the present day. The strip was created by Anderson, with help from Phil Leeming (1955–1962) and later Dorothy Leeming (1963–1969), and (since August 2, 2004) Paul Anderson. The strip revolves around the Winslow family and their Great Dane, Marmaduke. The strip on Sundays also has a side feature called "Dog Gone Funny", in which one or more panels are devoted to dog anecdotes submitted by the fans. Anderson, who says he draws on Laurel and Hardy routines for his ideas, received the National Cartoonists Society Newspaper Panel Cartoon Award for the strip in 1978.
- Marmaduke – A Great Dane. Marmaduke lives with the Winslow family and exhibits many characteristics not typically displayed by dogs.
- Dottie – Housewife of the family whose daily life would probably be a lot less of a hassle if she didn't have Marmaduke around.
- Phil – The head of the household. Phil loves his dog despite Marmaduke's antics but, not surprisingly, gets fed up once in a while.
- Barbara – The Winslows' older child.
- Billy – The younger Winslow child.
- Mr. and Mrs. Snyder – The Winslows' neighbors.
- Carlos – The cat that lives in the Winslow family.
Marmaduke continues to be widely syndicated, and is popular with readers: attempts to cancel Marmaduke have drawn protest, such as those by readers of The Toronto Star in 1999, of the Sarasota Herald Tribune in 2007, and of the Chicago Sun-Times in 1986.
Despite this, its longevity and perceived monotony have been noted by satirical publications such as The Onion and have made it the butt of jokes. It has become "a hot source of retro-ironic-subversive humor." For example, a blog called "Joe Mathlete Explains Today's Marmaduke" deconstructs the strip to offer an alternative explanation for what's happening in the drawing. Another blog called "Marmaduke Can Vote" gives each panel a political slant, while "The Marmaduke Project" re-imagines Marmaduke in other forms.
There was one episode of "Garfield and Friends" in which the cartoon was purposely making mistakes, at the end Garfield calls Odie in which Odie was replaced by Marmaduke.
Animated series adaptation
Ruby-Spears produced Marmaduke segments for the 1980 animated series Heathcliff, whose title character was also based on a comic strip character. In this animated version, the male characters were voiced by Paul Winchell and the females were voiced by Russi Taylor.
Motion picture adaptation
A combined live-action/animation Marmaduke movie, in which the Winslows and their dog move from Kansas to California, was released on June 4, 2010.
- Josephson, Joan (July 12, 2009). "History, Great Dane defy rain at Brocton-Portland festival". Evening Observer (Portland).
- Marmaduke, bio at United Feature Syndicate website
- ARENTS AWARD WINNERS, Syracuse University Magazine 1999: "The strip [...] now syndicated in more than 600 newspapers worldwide."
- Garnet Fraser (February 3, 2008). "Web sites mocking comic strips gain following". The Toronto Star: "Marmaduke has arguably spent 50 years retelling the same two jokes – Marmaduke is a dog with some human qualities, and Marmaduke is gargantuan – but the Star's attempt to drop it in 1999 sparked a reader revolt."
- "FROM YOUR READER ADVOCATE". Sarasota Herald-Tribune (AccessMyLibrary). January 13, 2007.
- Our readers show their loyalties, Chicago Sun Times, October 1, 1986
- Laughing at, not with, the comics, Troy Reimink, Grand Rapids Press: "The daily comic strip strikes me as such a moldy, arcane form of entertainment, based on tired jokes repeated ad nauseam until the end of time. We get it: Garfield likes lasagna. Marmaduke is big."
- Some Old Man Still Churning Out Marmaduke, The Onion, March 14, 2008
- Jay Cridlin (October 10, 2006). "Doggone funny at last". St. Petersburg Times. pp. 1E–2E
- Marmaduke Explained
- NPR Story about Marmaduke Explained: " Let's be clear. No one thinks Marmaduke is funny. [...] However, someone explaining Marmaduke – that's funny."
- CNN Article which mentions Marmaduke Explained
- Marmaduke Can Vote
- Marmaduke Project
- The Comic Strip Doctor – Marmaduke
- Owen Wilson to Voice Famous Comic Strip Character "Marmaduke"
- Strickler, Dave. Syndicated Comic Strips and Artists, 1924–1995: The Complete Index. Cambria, CA: Comics Access, 1995. ISBN 0-9700077-0-1.