The comic strips on the American comics pages are the only art form whose accidental naming has served to infantilize the entire form. Badda bing. Being called “the funnies” or “the comics” was never originally intended as a literal definition. Badda boom. Nevertheless, this unintended happenstance has over time engendered an audience that is actively hostile to any work that seeks to escape those narrow confines. So inculcated and ingrained has this notion about the comics become that it’s taken as gospel at every level in the industry, from newspaper syndicates to newspapers, readers, and most critics.
From The Complete Funky Winkerbean Volume Four