I’ve started reading Doonesbury from the very beginning, and I plann to keep going until I catch up to the present day. Here’s the very first strip, from October, 1970.
So far I’m up to December 1970. Over that time, you can see Garry Trudeau quickly improving as a writer and slowly improving as an artist. Within three or four years he’d be doing detailed drawings and sharp satire about Watergate.
The strip was initially published in the Yale student newspaper, when Trudeau was himself an undergrad there, and it’s about as sexist as you’d expect from an Ivy League college boy of the Animal House era. Trudeau evolved quickly on that front too.
I read the strip religiously in high school, then got out of the habit, though I picked it up intermittently over the subsequent decades. I haven’t seen it in years, and I’m keeping away from he current strips for now. I want to catch up with them.