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November 14, 2020


At the 50th anniversary of Doonesbury's comic-strip debut, I was reminded that Helen and I were among a group that saw the cult favorite, but box-office bomb, Broadway show at the Biltmore Theatre on a Nuggets trip in December 1983.  

I never figured out why the show didn't do better. 

Mark Linn-Baker was Mark, Gary Beach was Uncle Duke and Kate Burton (Richard's daughter) was J.J. The music was by Elizabeth Swados and Garry Trudeau bravely did the book and lyrics. 

The above are from our window card poster and Playbill collections. 

I had the soundtrack on a cassette (no, not 8-track) but recently found an LP on eBay and had it transferred to CD. I'm singing along (not well) with "Just a House."

Of course, it's also on YouTube here:

If they can do semi-annual revivals of "Gypsy," you'd think they could have done one revival of "Doonesbury." When Broadway is back, I hope it's on the list. 

What brought this on? Here's an interview with Garry Trudeau in AARP Magazine.  


The first Doonesbury strip, October 1970 


Garry Trudeau in AARP Magazine 


In June 1983, on another trip to New York, I wrote a tongue-in-cheek column outlining Andrew Lloyd Webber's next musical -- Billy, about on-again, off-again Yankees manager Billy Martin