There's been a lot of talk among comic strip readers about the fact that the characters in For Better or For Worse have stopped aging.
Quietly, and with a lot less fanfare, another popular comic strip seems to have also stopped time. I'm talking about one of my all time favorite strips, Baby Blues.
One of the best things about Baby Blues is that we've gotten to watch the characters grow and develop. Zoe and Hammie went through all the various stages that kids experience, and that's what made the strip so funny and realistic for me. They got a year older about every two years. I have just about every Baby Blues book, and I reread them as my son is going through each phase. It always shows me the humor in the situation.
But then, baby Wren was born into the MacPherson house. And time stopped.
The first collection that contains Wren is called Never a Dry Moment and was published in 2003. That means the strips themselves probably appeared in the paper about a year or so earlier. Today, (roughly) six years after Wren was born, she is still a baby. She crawled briefly... about three years ago, but that was about as far as her development went.
Let me give you a little perspective. Since the time Wren was born... I got married, became pregnant, and had a baby who will soon be four years old.
If it was just Wren, I'd be okay with that.... but Zoe and Hammie have stopped changing and developing too. The characters are stuck at ages eight, five and baby. And a lot of the outside characters like the four grandparents, and neighbors Yolanda and Bunny have all but disappeared. The strip has slowly become static. And I have to admit, I've stopped buying the new books, because I feel like they're not as compelling as they used to be.
My friend Cate and I have been watching this trend for a while, and we're curious if anyone else has noticed. Have you or is it just us?