The L.A. Times redid its Sunday comics pages this weekend and moved Peanuts and Doonesbury inside, with the revived Opus by Berkeley Breathed new on the front (after a ten-year hiatus). The Doonesbury strip on Schwarzenegger that was tossed inside returned to the Gropenfuhrer theme and mentioned (link fixed) the H word. Could that be why it was shrunk and moved to the bottom of page 4? (Update 1:30 p.m.: No, writes Sherry Stern, the Times' Assistant Editor, Features. Click on [MORE] below for her response.)
Among other things, I oversee the comics now and wanted to explain to you and your readers that moving and downsizing Doonesbury had nothing to do with Trudeau's politics. Here's the explanation. (Hope it's not too convoluted.)
On Sunday we added Opus to our Sunday lineup. Because of the size restrictions on Opus, we had two choices -- drop two Sunday comics to make room for Opus or drop only one by putting four comics onto the front page of the comics.
Because it's so tough to cut any comics, we opted for the second plan. We wanted to put Doonsbury on the top of page 2, but found out that Trudeau's syndicate does not offer it in that size. The only other size was the smaller one, which only fit into the format on page 4.
We are again requesting from Trudeau's syndicate to offer Doonsbury in the size that would allow us to put it atop page 2. We await their response.