Appearing in more than 1,000 newspapers, FoxTrot is one of America's most-read comic strips. Key to the strip's huge following are its razor-sharp parodies of pop culture and current events. Meet ten-year-old Lord of the Rings nerd Jason Fox and his high-school freshman sister, Paige. Jason can't believe he and his sister are both vying for front-row seats to the release of the movie. There's no denying that things will never be the same with heartthrob Orlando Bloom's involvement in Jason's favorite series. Don't forget their underachieving older brother, Peter. With three strong adolescent personalities in one household, colorful stuff often hits the fan; dad Roger usually ducks to avoid it, while mom Andy tries to keep it from staining the rug.
Orlando Bloom Has Ruined Everything lampoons memorable moments from 2003 and 2004, such as the East Coast blackout. In the FoxTrot version, an "ink outage" renders several days' strips only partially drawn. "I called Funky Winkerbean. He says the ink's out over the entire grid," Jason reports.
In another series of strips, Jason's latest money-making scheme involves creating an animated film to rival the box office blockbusters of Pixar and Dreamworks: "It's the tender story of a leech's search for his missing son. I'm calling it Finding Hemo.
The success of FoxTrot has yielded consequences creator Bill Amend may never have imagined. The strip has been used as a question on the game show Jeopardy! and as an answer in the New York Times crossword. It's a fitting irony that FoxTrot has become a fixture of pop culture, the very phenomenon it parodies with such keen wit.
Bill Amend was named Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year by the National Cartoonists Society in 2007. He creates FoxTrot cartoons for Sunday newspapers and maintains an online presence at foxtrot.com. He lives in the Midwest, with his wife and two children.
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