Comic strips in other countries

While reading one of the recent threads on comic strips, it occurred to me that most, if not all, of the strips we were discussing were American. Are strips such as Calvin & Hobbes, The Far Side, Peanuts, etc. read and enjoyed outside the US? Do other countries (especially but not exclusively English-speaking countries) have their own cartoonists whom we would find hilarious here in the USA if we got a chance to read them? Do newspapers in, say, England or Australia or Switzerland or China have a comics page, and if so, what does it look like?

American strips (translated, when necessary, into the local language) are hugely popular in Europe and Latin America. Most Spanish- and French-language newspapers I’ve seen will have about a dozen American strips in translation and a couple of native strips so Americans don’t dominate the medium too completely.

Go.comics has, at the end of its listings, 20 or 30 strips en espanol. Most are familiar to American readers. Some (like Condorito) are hugely popular south of the border, but I’ve never seen them with English translation. Go.comics even has a couple of classic English-language strips that they offer in Spanish, but not English (Mutt & Jeff, Modesty Blaise).

I haven’t seen a UK newspaper in decades, but when I last did, it had mostly American strips plus some local stuff (Andy Capp, Tiffany Jones). There’s an Australian strip called Ginger Meggs; I don’t get the humor, but the artwork is phenomenal.

I can assure you that Calvin & Hobbes, The Far Side, Peanuts are all popular in Britain. Dilbert too, at least among my computer-literate friends.

We have a few of our own too. I understand we export Andy Capp to you.


All those mentioned are known. The current strips in my paper (The Age):

Bristow (Frank Dickens)
For Better or for Worse (Lynn Johnson)
The Wizard of Id (Brant Parker/Johnny Hart)
Zits (Jerry Scott/ Jim Borgman
Non Sequitur (Wiley)

In the other paper (The Herald Sun, which I don’t have in front of me), there’s
Snake Tales
Hagar the Horrible
and some others.

Most local cartooning is editorial. The Age has at least half a dozen.

No cite, but Calvin and Hobbes has gone worldwide. Peanuts I am sure has as well. I would further put money on that Garfield has made it as well.

Peanuts and Garfield are both well-known in the UK. Calvin & Hobbes, Far Side, Dilbert and Doonesbury are all on the second tier of popularity. The latter is printed in the Guardian, which is also home to Steve Bell’s [If…, a similarly-political (although otherwise-dissimilar) strip. These are IIRC the only regular strips in that paper, and it’s only the tabloids that print a lot of them, a mix of American imports and dire domestic creations.

What the broadsheets do have are editorial cartoons, a large single political image on the comments pages. The [url=,1284265,00.html]Guardian]('s is also often done by Steve Bell, and the Independent’s is here.

One of the best-known cartoons, no longer with us, was Giles. There’s some images here:

Yuk. Sorry about that coding!

In Denmark, Calvin and Hobbes and the far side are quite popular. Peanuts is not known. Also popular is the Danish cartoon Wulffmorgenthaler

I don’t know how literally you mean that - maybe it’s not in Denmark but it was when Schulz was alive (it was called “Radishes”)

“Radisserne” to be precise. Yes, it was probably known back then. Some people might now it still. But not like to the degree people know the three other comics at all.

That takes me back.

I think he was 19th in line for Chief Buyer. I remember his boss was Mr. Fudge (GET ON WITH YOUR WORK!) and wherever he went on holiday he could still see the Chester-Perry building.

Anyway, I have a copy of an Andy Capp comic book I bought in Italy.

Well, yeah, but who can’t see the humor in spouse-abusing alcoholics?

Oh, should’ve mentioned, the grandaddy of all political cartoons has to be Punch.

When visiting my familiy in Ecuador, they sometimes bring comic strips (American ones translated to Spanish) that they don’t get. Invariably, it has to do with slang, homonyms, puns, or other play-on words that lose all meaning (and humor value) when translated.

Looking again at my screw-up earlier with the coding, I realise the link to the Steve Bell archive disappeared:

He’s also worth mentioning for his skill at tackling really big events. This was printed the day after the London bombing last year. Unfortunately they don’t have earlier ones online…the only cartoon that’s ever made me cry was the one he printed after the Dunblane massacre. He did a similar thing after 9/11.

As **hawthorne ** noted, there’s a mix of local and foreign (UK, American) strips in Australian papers. The foreign humour isn’t always translatable of course. I’ve never been able to understand what **Doonesbury ** is about or why it’s considered even remotely funny.

Mafalda and friends are popular in various languages other than Argentinian Spanish.

Why Radishes?

For that matter, why Peanuts?