After 34 Years, Comic Strip Cathy To End: Aack!

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Cathy Guisewite, 1982

© Tony Korody/Sygma/Corbis

In 1976, Cathy Guisewite started a comic strip. Thirty-four years and 30 books later, she is stopping Cathy to focus on family.

Main character Cathy was the consummate everywoman, who constantly felt guilt about work, dating and especially food. Through the past 34 years, she has dealt with new technology, mean bosses and the dating scene, eventually setting down and marrying Irving.

The strip became stuff of pop-culture legend — and sometimes ridicule, as TV shows like 30 Rock mocked the title character’s obsession with chocolate and simultaneous desire to be thin. But Cathy struck a chord with women everywhere, with the strip syndicated to 1,400 newspapers and merchandise brandished with Cathy’s catchphrases.

Guisewite said she’s ending the strip to make time to see her parents, work on new ventures and help her daughter with her last year of high school. Comics pages will be a little less neurotic after October 3, when the last strip will be printed. (See the top 10 long-running comic strips.)