'Cathy' comic strip comes to an end. AAACK!

Thu Aug 12, 2010 5:14pm EDT
 
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Across America, millions of women are likely screaming, "AAACK!"

Newspaper comic strip "Cathy," which told of the title character's struggles with body image and work/life balance, is retiring after 34 years.

The final strip will run October 3rd, the comic's syndicator said.

The strip's creator Cathy Guisewite said the decision stems from wanting to spend more time with her family including "an 18-year old daughter who needs a full-time mom to help her through her last year of high school" and "beloved parents I want to be able to visit more often."

Guisewite also cites a "creative biological clock, which is urging me to try something else while I can."

"Cathy" first debuted in 1976 and slowly grew to appear in some 1,400 newspapers. Currently it's featured in about 700 papers.

The character, a sort of an alter ego of Guisewite, had fans among women of all ages. The lovable shopaholic humorously struggled with body image, balancing work and a personal life, and well-meaning but always meddling mother. At the peak of frustration, Cathy would yell out her signature scream: "AAACK!"

"Cathy balances truth and humor and speaks to women in a way that few comics have ever attempted," said Lee Salem, president and editor of Universal Uclick, which syndicates the strip.

The comic strips have been collected in over 30 books. In 1992, the National Cartoonists Society honored Guisewite with the Reuben Award. She also received an Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program in 1987.

(Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)