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Hello everyone. Since the groop has been a little quiet lately, I have decided to bring up a topic that has concerned me for quite some time. Perhaps this issue will develop into a Groop discussion and provide temporary fodder for the mailing list.
I would like to know if there are any long-time Groo fans who liked the comic better before the regular appearance of Rufferto. I have always loved the Groo comics and will continue to purchase and read them but I am a Groo purist and I do not care much for his loyal spotted companion. I wouldn't mind Rufferto as an occasional character (like the minstrel, for example) but I understand he could not exist believably in that role. My friends and family enjoy the Pacific issues best and really like everything prior to Rufferto's first appearance. (I like the issues depicting the origins of Groo and Rufferto but I feel that more often than not, he weakens Groo's role in a given tale).
According to the December 1984 issue of "Amazing Heroes", Sergio once felt this way as well. The following is a direct excerpt from this article:

Aragones feels he has strong reasons for avoiding regular supporting characters. "When you have a hero," he points out, "it's very easy to have a sidekick because then the hero doesn't have to do anything but solve their problems. Groo is humor, though. A hero like Groo is so stupid that whatever sidekick he'd have would eventually become the leading character while Groo would become the second banana. even if Groo had a pet, the pet would have to be brighter than him, so automatically that pet would become the leading character. A sidekick could never be that dumb, so characters have to come in and out.
"Groo has to be a loner. If you're bright, you need a character who's dopier than you are to show you're the hero. You rescue them, save them constantly. If you're the dopey one, though, your sidekick is in trouble."

--Amazing Heroes #61 (December 15, 1984)

I am aware of Sergio's relationship with his dog the reasons he introduced Rufferto into the life of Groo and ultimately, I accept anything he and Mark do with the comic. I am a supporter of the Groo comic now and forever but did anyone else cringe when the last 4-issue series featured Rufferto's name in the title . . .?


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