Zits (comic strip)

Zits (comic strip)

Infobox comic strip
title=Zits


caption= Jeremy Duncan and Hector Garcia—best friends
creator=Jerry Scott, Jim Borgman
current=
status=Running
syndicate=King Features Syndicate
comictype=print
genre=Humor,
first=July 1997cite web|url=http://www.kingfeatures.com/features/comics/zits/about.htm|title=King Features Syndicate|accessdate=2007-07-21]
last=

"Zits" is a comic strip written by Jerry Scott and illustrated by Jim Borgman following the life of Jeremy Duncan, a fifteen-year old high school sophomore. The comic debuted in July 1997 in over 200 newspapers and has since become popular worldwide and received multiple awards. As of 2008, it continues to be syndicated by King Features.

The strip is set in suburbia and centers on Jeremy as he tries to balance life while hanging out with his friends, developing an awkward relationship with his on-and-off girlfriend, struggling through school projects, practicing to become a rock god, and tolerating his embarrassing parents. The strip features a variety of core characters that surround Jeremy and supplement his adolescent character.

Origin

By the year 1996, Jerry Scott was already known for "Baby Blues", a comic strip on raising children. [cite web|url=http://www.babyblues.com/junk_drawer/bbhistory.htm|title=Archive: History of Baby Blues|author=Jerry Scott|accessdate=2007-07-21] He realized, however, that his profession as an independent cartoonist was limited to whatever joke he could write up next.cite web|url=http://www.enquirer.com/editions/2000/12/28/tem_zits_drawn_from_life.html|title='Zits' drawn from life|author=Jim Borgman|accessdate=2007-07-21] A friend suggested he begin a strip about a teenager and Scott heeded the proposition and began to draw. Unfortunately, he was unsatisfied with the characters he drew up, as they looked like ones he had drawn before. He mentioned the problem to his friend, Jim Borgman, and the two met to discuss the problem. Over the next few months, the artists corresponded with one another, and eventually hammered out the characters that would soon become the Duncans. King Features Syndicate, already distributing "Baby Blues" and Borgman's editorial cartoons, began running the new comic strip in 1997.

Main characters

Jeremy Duncan

He is named after Jeremy Clyde of the 1960s rock duo Chad and Jeremy.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="pp. 122-123"] Jeremy Michaelcite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 103"|quote=Connie: Are you listening to me, Jeremy Michael? / Jeremy: Yeah. Right. Whatever, mom.] Duncan is an intelligent fifteen-year-old high school sophomore who aspires to be a "rock god". He spends much of his time with his best friend, Hector Garcia and trying to impress his on-again-off-again girlfriend, Sara Toomey. When not at school or with his friends, Jeremy suffers the embarrassment and nagging of his parents, Walt and Connie Duncan. He is mortified of being seen in public with them, as can be seen in the following exchange:

:Jeremy: Mom, will you take me shopping?

:Connie: (With a tear) You don't know how long I've waited to hear those words come out of your mouth!

:Jeremy: To clarify: 'Take me shopping' means I shop, and you wait in the car.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 37"]

He has an uncanny knack for knowing who's calling on the phone and for what reason when it rings, sometimes even before it rings ("Caller ID is for wimps!").

He commonly wears his wrinkled purple shirt, blue jeans, and oversized sneakers. Jeremy spends time restoring a 1962 VW Type 2 van with Hector, which they hope to drive across the country when they turn sixteen.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 133"|quote=Hector: A van for the road trip we're going to take when we turn sixteen! Listen! 'For Sale: 1962 VW van. Fair condition. Needs body work, engine, wheels, etc.' / Jeremy: It sounds like a piece of junk. / Hector: 'Only $300.' / Jeremy: Then again what do "I" know about cars?] Jeremy is also the lead singer and guitarist of his garage band, which goes by many names.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 112"|quote=Pierce: So, does this band I'm supposedly joining have a name? / Jeremy: Of course. It's Goat Cheese Pizza. / Hector: Jughead's Hat. / Tim: Chickenfist.] It was after the band debuted in a Battle of the Bands competition that Jeremy received his first kiss from Sara and the awkward relationship took off. Since then, Jeremy and Sara have endured countless arguments, breakups and reconciliations. For all of Jeremy's quirky, comical flaws, however, he retains a high sense of morality and integrity as can be seen in the story arc where he steals a signpost with his name on it. Jeremy soon returns the sign to the police to free himself of the guilt he feels.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 192"|quote=Hector: You returned the stolen street sign into the police?? Who-o-oa! / Jeremy: I "had" to! It was driving me crazy with guilt!] On another occasion, Jeremy is overwhelmed by a school essay he has to write and all the other commitments he has made. A fellow student, Phoebe, suggests he use a website to pull a bootleg essay off the internet. Despite being swamped by work and exhaustion, Jeremy's sense of ethics overcomes the desire to plagiarize and he spends the night writing the essay himself.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="pp. 235-238"] Jeremy recently received his learners' permit, although it has been suggested that he has had it in the past. Also, Jeremy recently took his parent's car in the night and drove 63 times past his friend Viral's house trying to impress her (which may suggest Sara isn't his girlfriend anymore), being arrested in the process. The weeks that followed that strip mostly featured his parents lecturing and yelling at him. In September 2008, Jeremy apparently moved onto his sophomore year of high school after apparently being a freshman for the last ten years. This change was revealed by his mother reading a list and commenting that she had told him the sophomore year would be hard. His mother is also constantly commenting on the fact that Jeremy's room is constantly becoming a pile, and you can only enter the room by digging a tunnel. He is also known for eating a whole 3 person dinner by himself, without knowing it was supposed to be for his family that night. He was also known to eat a whole ham in one bite.

Connie Duncan

Connie Duncan is Jeremy's forty-three year oldcite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="pp. 122-123"] mother. She is a child psychologist, but would work only part time after Jeremy's birth, and her profession is rarely ever mentioned except in early strips.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 100"] She is also an aspiring writer, having begun work on a book titled: "Coping Effectively with your Teen". Unfortunately, Jeremy constantly interrupts her work with menial requests or by being too loud and she has yet to even finish the first chapter. Besides being the family homemaker, Connie acts the disciplinarian for Jeremy. She is frequently seen waking him up for school, berating him for not following directions, and driving him to various destinations. Though Jeremy does not share much with his parents, Connie is always more than willing to listen to him.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 239"|quote=Connie: Why doesn't Jeremy talk anymore?...All I want is a teenager who communicates! / Walt: To you. / Connie: Well, yeah.] She describes a conversation with him as "trying to coax a smile out of a clam full of Botox".cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 76"] In the strip, she is portrayed a few times as a forgetful .cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 89"|quote=Connie: Jeremy, have you seen my sunglasses?...Oh! Here they are, right here in my hand! I can be such an airhead sometimes.] cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 212"]

Walt Duncan

Walt Duncan is Jeremy's father, an orthodontist who, like Connie, finds it almost impossible to hold a conversation with his son. Walt is absolutely clueless and old-fashioned about technology, especially computers. Despite Jeremy's attempts to explain how to use devices,cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 88"] Walt is unable to comprehend even the most basic functions.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 221"] Walt is shown as having problems with math, able to offer little or no help to Jeremy.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 46"] cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 51"] His interactions with Jeremy's peers cause intense embarrassment for his son, as Walt makes comments such as "What's up, doodsic?", not knowing the meaning behind them.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 185"] He is the designated clothes launderer, often getting into arguments with Jeremy over notes in pockets, socks inside-out, and other pet peeves. Walt constantly wears oversized blue pants, plain white T-shirt, black vest, and a pathetic combover. Walt occasionally reveals memories that attest to a wilder youth. In one instance, Walt recalls how uninhibited he felt one night at a Moby Grape concert. This shocking recollection causes him to forbid Jeremy from attending a similar concert.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 155"] Another time, Walt reveals he has had a peace sign tattooed on his rear end since the late 1960s, which has expanded along with his rear end, and is described to now be the size of a stop sign.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 36"]

Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia is Jeremy's best friend and is a guitarist/vocalist in Jeremy's band. The two spend a lot of their time hanging out, much of it trying to restore the VW van and dreaming about where their future road trip will take them.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 112"] In practice, the two have not gotten far toward repairing the van, as the boys usually end up lying on the roof of the van, talking. Hector dates Autumn, a radical vegetarian who refers to Jeremy as "carnivore", "predator", "vampire", and "flesh-eater" or the like whenever she sees him with meat.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 208"] He has the ability to grow facial hair on command. Hector is from a Spanish-speaking family and lives with his parents, grandparents, and multiple younger siblings.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 19"]

ara Toomey

Sara Toomey is Jeremy's on-again/off-again girlfriend (although right now Jeremy's interest appears to be in Becker). Although Jeremy thinks the world of her, she apparently likes Jeremy a lot, but has thought of him as a "salvageable male".cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 225"] Her parents are divorced and her behavior wavers between kindness and aggravation.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 174"|quote=Jeremy: So, tell me—what's it like having divorced parents? / Sara: First stupidity, and now insensitivity...you're on a roll.] She and Jeremy have broken up many times, but they always seem to make up sooner or later.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 143"|quote=Jeremy: Wow! We just had our first argument, and we're still together!...I think this has been a real turning point in our relationship. / Sara: Speaking of turning points, my mom thinks I should see other guys.] Sara's genuine kindness and generosity is evident in one story arc where she cuts her hair short and donates her ponytail to a charity for children undergoing chemotherapy.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="pp. 197-200"] In a recent strip, Jeremy revealed that he didn't want to date Sara exclusively anymore, but was upset when she wasn't devastated over that fact. [http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/fun/zits.asp?date=20080115] It was recently revealed that Sara has a locker next to Jeremy, to which Jeremy takes delight in "having a locker next to a hot girl" as a good omen for sophomore year. This goes on until he realizes that the "hot" girl is actually Sara, who has a new appearance. She now wears her hair down and wears cooler clothes and accessories.

Pierce

Pierce is another of Jeremy's close friends, and a member of Jeremy's band who, as his name aptly implies, has much of his body pierced. Unlike most of Jeremy's close friends, Pierce's last name has not been revealed and his parents (with the exception of his mother in a picture that he was forced to carry on his chest as well as the incident in which she was believed to have cancer) have not been seen. He explains this early on, before realizing he has to get braces:

:Pierce: "I have a stud in my tongue, posts in my lips, rings in my nose and eyebrows, and twelve earrings on each ear. I defy anyone to find a way to attach more metal to my head."

:Walt: "Pierce, you need braces."cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 240"]

Pierce is worried by this until Walt says "Don't think of it as getting braces... think of it as getting your smile pierced." which makes Pierce so happy, he hugs him. After he gets his braces he shows them off a lot for a while and describes them to Jeremy like they were a work of art.

Despite his rebellious appearance, Pierce is actually very courteous and often tries to help out, but usually fails due to his interests and ideals. He is also very caring towards his pets and toward others, which he fulfills by donating to charities. Once, when Jeremy asked him to purchase a necklace for Sara for him, Pierce bought a necklace with a pair of jeweled skulls with intertwined snakes in the eye sockets, framed by a barbed-wire heart.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="p. 155"] He has also been described as a very polite and cautious driver by Sarah's mom. He began dating D'ijon after she went to see him get his tongue double-pierced. Pierce has the ability to tell what people had for breakfast by smelling their breath.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Random Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2004|isbn=978-0-7407-4669-7|pages="pp. 111-113"]
In one storyline Jeremy saw Pierce wearing unusual clothes and no piercings. Pierce said that he has a personality defect that makes him want to wear unusual clothes. He is very sensitive about his appearance, and when Jeremy tells him he looks like he belongs to a country club he says "So we're hurling vicious insults at each other now, are we!?" But, in a later strip he walks to school with Jeremy and they act like nothing happened, thus proving that he's still the Pierce we know and love.

upporting characters

Chad Duncan

Chad Duncan is Jeremy's older brother by four years. He attends college (the college has been identified in the strip as the University of Notre Dame) and is an overachiever and the object of much jealousy by Jeremy.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 17"|quote=Jeremy: My brother Chad is in college. He's four years older than me and about a million times smarter. Plus, he was an All-State basketball star, valedictorian, student body president and voted 'most likely to succeed.'] In his first few appearances, Chad was said to be the "perfect" child, having his face slightly obscured, and having a more muscular build. He was later re-drawn as having blonde hair like Jeremy, plus a goatee.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Humongous Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2000|isbn=978-0-7407-0013-2|pages="p. 171"] Chad is an occasional character and rarely appears throughout the series, typically showing up during the holiday seasons and leaving abruptly.

Phoebe

Phoebe is one of Jeremy's classmates and is presented as a hyperbolic overachiever, using any means necessary to excel academically and enter a "high-power college".cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 235"] She also consumes massive amounts of caffeinecite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 249"|quote=Jeremy: What are you drinking there, Phoebe? / Phoebe: Grande latte. Want a taste? / Jeremy: What's in it? / Phoebe: Steamed milk...with six shots of espresso. They call it the 'retina rattler'. / Jeremy: And it's available without a prescription???sic] and is constantly padding her college resume.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Zits: Supersized|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2003|isbn=978-0-7407-3307-9|pages="p. 249"|quote=Phoebe: I'm not going to eat my apple...do you want it, Jeremy? / Jeremy: Sure... / Phoebe: 'Organized a food drive for malnourished students' Yess!sic / Jeremy: Padding your college application again, Phoebe?] Interestingly, she has no pupils in her eyes, which she claims is due to selling her soul for a 4.1 GPA.

D'ijon

D'ijon is Pierce's girlfriend and one of Sara's friends. She has a copy of Edvard Munch's The Scream tattooed on her tongue, and occasionally wanders around with Pierce after connecting their respective earrings. Her real name is Dionne; apparently, she started doing the "apostrophe thing" in 7th grade.

Autumn

Autumn is Hector's girlfriend and a strict vegetarian. She is noted for her extreme political and environmentalist actions such as freeing fifty-thousand live crickets in the school to spare them from dissection.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="pp. 177-178"]

Britanny

Brittany is another one of Jeremy's classmates and is notable for being the information pipeline for the freshman class. She is also noted for having the "great gift" of being able to critique the shortcomings of others.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 127"] Despite her negativity, Jeremy has several times sought her advice. In one story arc, while she is giving advice to Jeremy about a Christmas present for Sara, she claims that she "is lucky to be Jewish".

Tim Olsen

Tim Olsen is a shy, moody classmate of Jeremy's and the bassist of the band. His mother had breast cancer and, thinking the chemotherapy would make her hair fall out, Jeremy and Hector shaved their heads as a token of empathy and comfort. It was not until afterward that they discovered she still had all her hair.cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="pp. 39-41"]

The Posse

The Posse is a trio of three girls: Zuma, Redondo, and LaJolla. The three have reportedly been "best friends forever" and "share the same taste in fashion...finishing each other's sentences."cite book|last=Scott|first=Jerry|authorlink=Jerry Scott|others=illustrated by J. Borgman|title=Big Honkin' Zits|publisher=Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC|series=Zits|year=2001|isbn=978-0-7407-1854-0|pages="p. 128"] Also, all three girls are presumably named after beaches in California. Zuma is portrayed in one comic as one very obsessed with being matching between her makeup, clothes and binder.

Richandamy

Richandamy are two characters that are seen in a virtually eternal hug. Generally, the two are referred to by the single name, and one is rarely seen without the other—though their embrace does not go so far as to require both to enter the same rest room—which, aside from a brief breakup, is about the only time they have been seen separately. Their embrace is fodder for much disgust and many cynical comments from the other characters. In recent strips the two have considered themselves one organism.

Viral

Viral is another of Jeremy's classmates and friends. Viral is an over-achiever, tending to do many things at once (being class president, captain of the JV volleyball team, as well as many other activities) or better than normally expected. It has been revealed that Jeremy has a slight crush on her, although he is still faithful to Sara. Viral is a bit like Phoebe (for example, Viral also has a G.P.A. past 4.0) but much more energetic and outgoing. Viral also has been perceived as a perfectionist, as well as attentive.cite web |url=http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/fun/zits.asp?date=20071112| title=Zits| accessdate= 2007-11-12 | author=Scott, Jerry | publisher=Seattle Post-Intelligencer | quote=Jeremy: Hey Pierce, what do you think about Viral? / Pierce: You mean the 4.25 GPA, bar-raising, curve-ruining, club-joining, ubiquitous perpetual motion, super-achieving perfectionist? I have no opinion. / Jeremy: Yeah, I like her, too.] Viral first appeared in the comic strip on November 7 2007.cite web|url = http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/fun/zits.asp?date=20071107|title = Zits|accessdate = 2007-11-15|author = Scott, Jerry|publisher = Seattle Post-Intelligencer ] It is possible that Viral may be Jeremy's current girlfriend, since during the story arc where Jeremy is caught driving past Viral's house 63 times, the Judge references Viral as Jeremy's girlfriend, and Jeremy didn't deny it. [http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/fun/zits.asp?date=20080317]

Becker

Becker, or Rebecca, is a fast-paced girl who is Jeremy's new love interest. They first met in the coffee shop, where she added her phone number to Jeremy's cell phone and talked to him (never letting Jeremy get in a word edgewise) followed by a kiss which causes Jeremy to (as depicted) lose his heart. It appears that Jeremy is infatuated with Becker. She had Jeremy's father as an orthodontist.

Recognition and future developments

"Zits" has garnered a fair amount of recognition so far. The series currently runs in over 1,500 newspapers worldwide. The author, Jerry Scott, received the National Cartoonists Society (NCS) Reuben Award in 2001.cite web | url=http://www.reuben.org/ncs/awards2.asp | title=NCS Awards | accessdate=2007-07-22] The strip itself has been translated into at least eight languages, including German, Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, Finnish and Estonian." [cite web | url=http://borgman.enquirer.com/| title=Jim Borgman at The Cincinnati Enquirer| publisher=Cincinnati Enquirer] Additionally, both Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman received the NCS Award for Best Newspaper Comic Strip two years in a rowcite web | url=http://www.reuben.org/ncs/archive/divisions/strips.asp | title=NCS Awards | accessdate=2007-07-22] as well as the Max & Moritz Medal for Best International Comic. So far, the creators continue to portray Jeremy as a fifteen-year old and they comment that this fact will probably not change. Borgman comments that the strip is inexorably built around the humorous tension of Jeremy living under his parents' rules and that, without this tension, the strip would cease to be humorous. There is some disagreement among them, however, as to how deep the characters should develop. Borgman would like the series to tackle complicated issues such as AIDS, drugs, and premarital sex, while Scott prefers not to "see the 6 o'clock news...on the funny pages."

Related books

"Zits" books come in two formats. The first is as a "Zits Sketchbook" and these are numbered sequentially. They contain approximately one year of collected "Zits" strips. The second format is as a "Zits Treasury". This format combines the material from the two previous "sketchbooks".

*"Zits-Sketchbook #1" auto isbn|0|8|3|6|2|6|8|2|5|083626825
*"Growth Spurt: Zits Sketchbook 2" auto isbn|0|8|3|6|2|7|8|4|8|083627848
**"Humongous Zits: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|0|0|1|3|074070013
*"Don't Roll Your Eyes At Me, Young Man! A Zits Sketchbook 3" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|1|1|6|6|074071166
*"Are We An "Us"?" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|1|3|9|7|074071397
**"Big Honkin' Zits: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|1|8|5|4|074071854
*"Zits Unzipped: Sketchbook #5" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|2|3|2|2|074072322
*"Busted! Zits Sketchbook #6" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|2|6|7|5|074072675
**"Zits Supersized: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|3|3|0|7|074073307
*"Road Trip! Zits Sketchbook #7" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|3|8|1|4|074073814
*"Teenage Tales: Zits Sketchbook #8" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|4|1|4|4|074074144
**"Random Zits: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|4|6|6|9|074074669
*"Thrashed: Zits SketchBook No. 9" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|5|1|1|7|074075117
*"Pimp My Lunch: Zits Sketchbook No. 10" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|5|4|4|3|074075443
**"Crack of Noon: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|5|6|8|4|074075684
*"Are We Out of the Driveway Yet? Zits Sketchbook Number 11" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|6|1|9|9|074076199
*"Rude, Crude, and Tattooed: Zits Sketchbook 12" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|6|3|5|7|074076357
**"Alternative Zits: A Zits Treasury" auto isbn|0|7|4|0|7|6|8|4|8|074076848

References

External links

* [http://www.kingfeatures.com/features/comics/zits/about.htm "Zits" at King Features]
* [http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/fun/zits.asp "Zits" at Seattle Post-Intelligencer]
* [http://www.arcamax.com/zits "Zits" at ArcaMax Publishing]


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