Ramblings & Reviews Sally Forth

Sally Forth and the D-Word

From the Comics Kingdom comments section.

I’ve been drawing Jenny (the character in the third panel) pretty much since I started on Sally Forth. For someone to make a comment like this leads me to believe – first of all that they aren’t too familiar with the strip – but mostly that it’s jarring for them to see someone who’s not white in a comic strip.

Let’s back up: When Charles Schulz introduced Franklin in 1968 it was HUGE, primarily because it was in the height of the 1960s Civil Rights Movement – Martin Luther King Jr. had been assassinated just months earlier.

In 2018 mainstream comic strips are still weirdly lacking in reflecting the make-up of our country (and Francesco Marciuliano and I are quite aware of this). The idea of a token character is such a cliche these days (see Token Black from South Park) that Francesco has made a point of not introducing our ONE character of “fill in the non-white here” but a variety of characters. We try not to be overt about it, but for some readers, we’re obviously bowing to our liberal overlords and introducing the dreaded “D-word” – DIVERSITY 😱

I could go on, but deadlines are looming…
To wrap up – That Sally Forth NOT having an all white cast in 2018 can somehow be seen as a political statement is a weird way to look at the ink blots I’ve put down – a Rorschach test that says more about the viewer than anything else.

-Jim Keefe

By Jim Keefe

Jim Keefe is the current artist of the Sally Forth comic strip. From 1996-2003 he was the writer and artist of the Flash Gordon comic strip. A graduate of the Joe Kubert School, Keefe likewise teaches Comic Art. Teaching and speaking engagements include SVA in Manhattan, Hofstra’s UCCE Youth Programs, and most recently the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.