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  "He does wonderful work. A strip needs good characters—and that's what Jump Start has."—Charles Schulz, creator of Peanuts

  Joe and Marcy Cobb are the quintessential young married couple complete with a baby, two busy careers, and eccentric parents. An eminently likable pair, Joe and Marcy juggle their relationship, their jobs—he's a police officer, she's a nurse—and raising their daughter, Sunny. Robb Armstrong's characters are so popular that many readers of Jump Start tell him that they identify with the Cobbs.

  In fact, Jump Start features issues familiar to readers of all colors. From buying a home to volunteer work to handling the demands of parents and baby, Joe and Marcy manage life's challenges with aplomb. "Don't say that word, Sunny! " Joe intones, correcting their daughter's newly discovered use of foul language. "Bad, bad, bad, bad," corrects Marcy in agreement. In the next frame, however, Sunny's trash-talking up a storm in church. "Next time we won't react so strongly," Joe says, embarrassed. "It's too late for next time," says Marcy, cringing in the pew.

  Still, Armstrong approaches many African-American-specific issues and does so in a decidedly humorous way, and he bases the strip on his own life. While discussing a movie they've heard everyone likes, Marcy tells Joe, "It's a shoo-in to get overlooked for an Oscar! " To which Joe responds, "That good, huh?"

  Robb Armstrong offers a unique perspective that strikes a chord with audiences hungry for a positive, authentic portrayal of middle-class African-Americans. Jump Start's humor crosses all lines because it's just that: appealing, realistic, and downright funny!

Jump Start

By Robb Armstrong


  Now that baby Zoe is a full-fledged mobile toddler, everyone can sit back and heave a big sigh of AAAAACCCH! The indefatigable MacPhersons are bringing up baby in a wild-eyed, yet true to life.

  Darryl and Wanda, a typical stretched-to-the-limit couple, struggled with the demands and joys of first-time parenthood in classics such as Guess Who Didn't Take a Nap? and I Thought Labor Ended When the Baby Was Born. The MacPhersons found parenthood more rewarding and frustrating than they ever expected. Through it all they adapted to this new addition to their lives with aplomb and severe exhaustion.

We Are Experiencing Parental Difficulties...Please Stand By is a Baby Blues collection from creators Rick Kirkman and Jerry Scott. In the pair's lovingly realistic way, the book captures the continuing challenges Darryl and Wanda face as Zoe begins to walk, talk, and take over the remote control. It's a natural growing-up progression that Baby Blues fans have watched with rapt interest.

  Mothers love the strip because they can relate to Wanda's continued surprise at how her days have changed, from career woman to Mom, especially as she faces the prospects of adding another bundle of joy to the MacPhersons' already busy household. Dads laugh knowingly as Darryl tries to help out and hold down a demanding job. Everyone cherishes the little Zoe for making childhood antics (even the obnoxious ones) so adorable.

  Artist Kirkman and writer Scott obviously know about parenting—you can see it in every strip they produce. In this book, they provide another delicious view of life's most precious mixed blessing.

We Are Experiencing Parental Difficulties...Please Stand By

By Jerry Scott