Cul de Sac by Richard Thompson
Type: Comic Strip
“Classics” for online and mobile only.
Creator, Richard Thompson, won the Reuben for Cartoonist of the Year for 2010.
Cul de Sac chronicles the absurdly wonderful adventures of the Otterloop family. Alice, Petey, Mom and Dad live in the cookie-cutter suburbs not far from the interstate. Here, and at school, their day-to-day life unfolds with simple joys, tiny infractions and wonderful moments of gentle bliss.
Don't take our word for it, see what everyone is saying:
"One of the five best features in any newspaper, period." - The Comics Reporter
"…(Thompson) produces one of the few strips around where nearly every individual panel is standalone delight." - The Onion A.V. Club
"I can't say enough in his favor, so much is my admiration for his work." - Pat Oliphant
"...much-needed jolt of energy to the daily newspaper. We have a real talent here." - Bill Watterson (creator of Calvin & Hobbes)
In addition to this great honor, Thompson has also been the recipient of the National Cartoonists Society’s Magazine and Book Illustration Award and its Newspaper Illustration Award. He also won a Gold and a Silver Funny Bone Award from the Society of Illustrators for humorous illustration. And in 2004, he received the Milton F. “Sonny” Clogg Alumni of the Year award from Montgomery College
in Rockfield, Md.
Cul de Sac first appeared in “The Washington Post Magazine” in 2005 and has been popular there ever since.
Thompson has not strayed far from his hometown of Arlington, Va., where he lives with his wife and two daughters.
Meet the Cast of Cul de Sac
Alice Otterloop Age, 4 years old. Height, 3 feet, 1 inch; bite radius, 2.5 inches; reach, everything in sight. A creature of pure and indomitable will, an irresistible force, she's otherwise a pretty sweet little kid. Alice attends the Blisshaven Preschool, where she struggles with issues such as naptime, speaking out of turn and remembering what a triangle looks like.
Petey Otterloop Petey is 8 years old. Somewhat timid and reserved, he's an immovable object, though there are passions raging beneath his diffident surface. Named King of the Picky Eaters by his mother, who should know. Petey tested as "gifted but not really talented," which doesn't constrain his somewhat gloomy imagination. He also plays the oboe with more enthusiasm than skill, as you might expect.
Peter "Dad" Otterloop Gets into his tiny car almost every day and drives to work. He's Assistant Director of Pamphlets at the U.S. Department of Consumption, Office of Consumer Complaints, whatever that is. Mostly he's baffled by things, Alice and Petey not being the least of them.
Madeline "Mom" Otterloop Drives a van of a color so neutral, it doesn’t occur in nature. She’s capable of doing a million things simultaneously, about five of them well. She’s blessed with a volatile sense of humor and a laugh so loud and contagious that it makes Petey withdraw his head fully into his shirt collar in a blaze of embarrassment.
Ernesto Ernesto may or may not be a figment of Petey's imagination. He's a supervillain-in-training, whose megalomaniacal tendencies have a way of making all of Petey's interactions with him confusing and unpleasant. He is a member of the Future Adults of America and a disgraced former crossing guard.
Andre Chang Andre Chang is a comics enthusiast who loves drawing (and acting out) explosions. He and Petey attended a comics-themed summer camp, and later played on a soccer team together. He's come over to the Otterloop house for a play date, which resulted in Alice holding a press conference to report on the state of Petey's social life. His little sister is Alice's sometimes-best-friend Sophie, but Alice rarely remembers her name.
Bill Watterson, Art Speigelman, Pat Oliphant, The Onion and The Comics Reporter have all given incredible endorsements of Cul De Sac. Given that diverse and august group, I'm not sure what I could say to sway you to make it part of your life, but I will say that Cul De Sac delights me. It makes me feel better after I've read it. The art, the characters, the gentle humor and Richard's gift for capturing life in small moments is genius. Make your life better and read Cul De Sac.