Over the Hedge

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Over the Hedge
Over the Hedge Comic.png
Comic strip header
Author(s)Michael Fry
T. Lewis
Current status/scheduleRunning
Launch dateJune 1995; 23 years ago (June 1995)
Syndicate(s)United Feature Syndicate
Genre(s)Humor, Gag-a-day

Over the Hedge is a syndicated comic strip written by Michael Fry and drawn by T. Lewis.[1] It tells the story of a raccoon, a turtle, a squirrel, and their friends who come to terms with their woodlands being taken over by suburbia, trying to survive the increasing flow of humanity and technology while becoming enticed by it at the same time. The strip debuted in June 1995.[2]

Main characters[edit]


RJ is a raccoon[3] con artist. He takes pride in being extremely apathetic. He apparently envisions himself as an intellectual; however, his "facts" are obviously false. He is sometimes shown without a brain, using his brain cavity to store his "hanky" and breath mints. He loves to burgle human homes for food, as well as watch them and their televisions through the windows. He enjoys commenting on human life, and has studied humans and knows their ways of getting food, and even has slightly imprinted on them.

He was shown to care for Clara even before she was born (after he learned that babies can hear some things outside of the mother from Verne) by reading The Hunchback of Notre Dame and singing a horrible version of "Stairway to Heaven". RJ is shown to have the ability to expand to fit a massive amount of food, and is known as "that horrible raccoon kid" on Halloween. His favorite food is Twinkies.[3]


Verne is a cautious, easy going, lactose abhorrent turtle who is reflective and prone to allergies. Verne is a true renaissance turtle, an intelligent and quick witted observer with a deep spiritual side and a tingling feeling in his tail when something is not right. He is one of the most caring characters (second to "The Tree That Knows Stuff"), but he sometimes lacks basic common sense.

His proudest achievement is gathering all of the air conditioners out of Suburbia, and shouting, "LET THE GLOBAL COOLING COMMENCE!!!", just as RJ was about to plug them all in. He is a computer nerd, and he once "broke" the Internet. Most recently his shell was used as a hotspot for Queen Izzy, the Ant Queen, and her ant subjects, forcing him to first wear a Lucky Charms cereal box, and then a utili kilt


A hyperactive squirrel, Hammy is the least intelligent, though also the most lovable character in the strip, spouting random comments at random moments. His comments usually state an unusually short lecture on a topic of little interest to the other characters.

The character started the strip as "Hammy". He was later renamed as "Sammy", a continuity error that was assigned a fanciful explanation when the film was in production.[4] In December 2005, the character swapped places with his duplicate, also named "Hammy," from the other side of a mirror.[5] RJ has addressed the character as "Hamilton".[6]

Film adaptation[edit]

A computer-animated film adaptation, written by Travis Gibbons and T. Lewis, and produced by DreamWorks Animation and distributed by Paramount Pictures, was released on May 19, 2006 (June 30, 2006 in Britain). The film adaptation features RJ befriending a group of woodlanders (two of whom are Hammy and Verne) and introducing them to suburbia, with an ulterior motive of helping him replenish the food supply he stole from a bear.

Bruce Willis, Garry Shandling, Steve Carell, William Shatner, Wanda Sykes and Nick Nolte star as RJ, Verne, Hammy, Ozzie (an opossum), Stella (a skunk), Lou and Penny (porcupines) and Vincent (a bear), respectively. The film is also notable for containing Avril Lavigne's first major film role, as Heather, Ozzie's continuously embarrassed teenage daughter.

The film grossed $155,000,000 in the United States and $180,000,000 overseas, making the gross $336,000,000. It received a 75% "Certified Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes, a 6.8 rating on IMDB, and a 67/100 on Metacritic, indicating favourable reviews.


  1. ^ Michael Fry (June 15, 2012). "About - Comment Reply". Over the Hedge. Retrieved September 15, 2018. I write the strip and T draws it. I’ve never drawn any part of Hedge except once when I redrew a strip to depict some design alternative that I don’t remember. T ignored it. T does a great job. These days I just leave him alone.
  2. ^ "OVER THE HEDGE - Movie Production Notes...CinemaReview.com". Cinemareview.com. Retrieved 27 August 2017.
  3. ^ a b Michael Fry (w),  T. Lewis (a). Over the Hedge. May 3, 2018, United Feature Syndicate.
  4. ^ Fry, Michael; T. Lewis (14 May 2005), Over the Hedge, retrieved 9 October 2010
  5. ^ Fry, Michael; T. Lewis (15 December 2005), Over the Hedge, retrieved 2 August 2010
  6. ^ "Over the Hedge by T Lewis and Michael Fry for Jul 14, 2016 - GoComics.com". Gocomics.com. 14 July 2016. Retrieved 27 August 2017.

External links[edit]