Arlo, Janis & Spenser

Plugs for Hire Department

It’s no secret that Robert B. Parker (or at least his Boston private eye Spenser, had a thing for Jimmy Johnson’s Arlo and Janis comic strip. He mentioned the strip frequently in his books, perhaps most notably in Back Story (2003). Even Parker’s successor, Ace Atkins, has Spenser still reading the strip.

In 2005, the cartoonist eventually noticed.

This one comes from May 08, 2005.

And this one comes from March 28, 2008.

And now for something completely weird: “Arlo” was first used in the English language by Edmund Spenser in The Faerie Queene.

According to Nameberry, it’s believed to have been derived from the Celtic word aherlow, meaning “between two highlands.”

The strips are obviously copyrighted, so please, please, please head on over to Go Comics, and read Arlo and Janis every day.


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Thanks to Terry Burman for some great detective work.

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