|Current status/schedule||Sundays-only; daily until December 30, 2006|
|Launch date||April 10, 1988|
|Syndicate(s)||Universal Press Syndicate/Universal Uclick/Andrews McMeel Syndication|
|Publisher(s)||Andrews McMeel Publishing|
|Genre(s)||Humor, Family, Satire|
|Image of FoxTrot characters|
FoxTrot is an American comic strip written and illustrated by Bill Amend. The strip launched on April 10, 1988, and it ran seven days a week until December 30, 2006. Since then, FoxTrot has strictly appeared on Sundays.
The strip revolves around the daily lives of the Fox family, composed of parents Andrea (Andy) and Roger, and their children, Peter, Paige, and Jason. It covers a wide range of subject matter, including spoofs of pop culture fads, nerd culture, and popular consumer products.
On December 5, 2006, Universal Press Syndicate issued a press release stating that Amend's strip, FoxTrot, would turn into a Sunday-only strip. Amend stated that he wants to continue doing the strip, but at a less hurried pace. This news was followed by a week-long arc of the characters discussing a "cartoonist" semi-retiring to Sundays only, and what methods he would use to phase out the daily strips. The last daily strip was printed on December 30, 2006. At the end of its run as a daily comic, FoxTrot was carried by more than 1,200 newspapers worldwide. Since moving to one comic every week, Amend has said that it's harder to remain topical because Sunday's deadline is 30 days ahead of publication, compared with just 10-day deadlines the rest of the week. Amend and fellow cartoonist Stephan Pastis have joked that Amend switched to a Sundays-only schedule "so he could spend 18 hours a day playing World of Warcraft."
Characters and story
FoxTrot centers on the daily lives of the Foxes, a suburban family, composed of father Roger, wife Andrea (Andy), and their children: Peter, Paige, and Jason, who live together in the same house. The Fox family lives in a suburban setting. While vacations have taken the Fox family to Hawaii, Washington D.C., the desert, and various amusement parks and campgrounds, Amend says that he has never given a particular location or name for where they live.
In addition to family humor, the strip has many stories built around fandom and popular culture. "Guests" in the strip have included The Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson and former Apple CEO Steve Jobs.
Amend majored in physics at Amherst College, and his knowledge on the subject is sometimes reflected in FoxTrot's frequent inclusion of complex mathematical or physics formulae, usually written by Jason, whom Amend described as "largely an exaggerated representation of [his] own geeky nature." Jason is also used to express Amend's knowledge of computer languages.
Additional characters include Jason's pet iguana Quincy; Jason's friend Marcus and his classmate Eileen Jacobson; Paige's friend Nicole and her classmate Morton Goldthwait; Peter's blind girlfriend, Denise, and his friend Steve; and other friends and classmates of the children and Roger's co-workers. Like many comic strips, FoxTrot employs a floating timeline "for specific reasons and to create specific dynamics between [Peter, Paige, and Jason]."
The strips have been printed in forty-one different books, all by Andrews McMeel Publishing. Of the 41 books, 27 are collections and 14 are anthologies. The anthologies are composed of the two or three previous collections, and include Sunday strips in color.
A daily strip that ran on October 30th, 1990 was the first of a series of Jason tampering with the family's answering machine. . Originally having Jason saying "Hello, you've reached the Satan hotline" and going on to describe animal mutilations, Amend withdrew it from circulation and subsequent books as he later felt it too depraved for a family-friendly comic. Subsequent reruns changed the tampered machine saying "First, a song, a hundred bottles of beer on the wall".
- "FoxTrot to Cease Dailies" (Press release). Universal Press Syndicate. December 5, 2006. Archived from the original on February 10, 2008. Retrieved December 5, 2006.
- Amend, Bill. "About The Strip – About Me". foxtrot.com. Bill Amend. Retrieved July 22, 2010.
- Arvae, Lynn (April 11, 1988). "'FoxTrot' comic strip premieres today". Deseret News. Retrieved December 21, 2009.
- "Hunting fox in suburbia: New comic strip premieres". The Miami Herald. April 10, 1988. pp. 1G. Retrieved December 21, 2009.
- "FoxTrot to Cease Dailies". amuniversal.com (Press release). Universal Press Syndicate. Archived from the original on December 14, 2006.
- "Universal Uclick". amuniversal.com. Archived from the original on December 14, 2006. Retrieved August 26, 2014.
- Booth, John (April 14, 2010). "Interview with FoxTrot's Bill Amend". Wired.
- Pastis, Stephan (February 24, 2007). "Pearls Before Swine by Stephan Pastis for February 24th, 2007 | GoComics.com". GoComics. Retrieved January 25, 2021.
- Amend, Bill (December 26, 2006). "FoxTrot by Bill Amend for December 26, 2006 | GoComics.com". GoComics. Retrieved January 4, 2019.
- Amend, Bill. "About FoxTrot". Original Comic Website. Retrieved August 3, 2013.
- "Bill Amend – Creator Bio". amuniversal.com. Universal Press Syndicate. Archived from the original on January 9, 2011.
- Amend, Bill (2001). Death By Field Trip (p. 87). Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Publishing. ISBN 0-7407-1391-4. Retrieved August 26, 2014.
- Booth, John (April 14, 2010). "Interview With FoxTrot's Bill Amend". wired.com. Archived from the original on June 27, 2020.
- "'FoxTrot' Character Jason Fox to Promote Innovative Educational Calculus Software" (Press release). Wolfram Research. June 8, 1998. Retrieved February 3, 2015.
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