Knight, Yoe, Terry, Whew!

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Hi Everyone! That beautiful background painting you see up there below Felix is by Milton Knight, one of the last of the rugged American independent Cartoonists! Please go to: http://kck.st/cLaFYo to see Milton’s Kickstarter presentation of his new cartoon: Caprice, Teen of Tomorrow! Milton created Hugo and Midnight the Skunk for independent comic books, and was a key director on the “Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat” TV show some years ago. If you can, give a dollar or two to the production fund for Caprice. The little samples of finished animation are tantalizing and have an unusual take on animated motion that is uniquely Milton’s. He isn’t afraid to exaggerate body parts such as necks, legs and arms to follow through an action. Sometimes the effect is unsettling, but I like it! Milton is cleaning up and inking the action on paper, and then it is put over his backgrounds by aftereffects, I believe. The result is a lot more like his print comics in motion, than traditional cel animation, which looks terrific. Head on over there right now! Give if you can!

My fan and friend, Craig Yoe, who reads this here blog has come out with a beautiful new book on FELIX! The front cover and a sample image (trade ad for the 1927 Felix Daily Strip!) are displayed upstairs. Go to  http://yoebooks.com and order up a copy for yourself. It contains beautifully reproduced selections from Felix’s comic BOOK career, drawn by our own Otto Messmer and Joe Oriolo. These range from the Dells, Tobys to the Harvey comics. Of course, I have a special love for the comic STRIP Felix, but I like the comic books too. It’s FABULOUS FELIX FRIDAY! Head on over there and take a look.

The Terry Picket Sign this time reflects what Paul Terry actually did during the strike, hired outside workers to replace his striking staffers. Can you imagine anybody in the industry today caring  if an animator has experience or not? Now it’s PRICE that determines everything! No seniority, no union, no nothing can protect the American animator from the relentless march of NAFTA, GATT and Outsourcing! And that goes for traditional AND digital! I love the use of barnyard animals and cute cartoon images on these picket signs, with their eye-catching layouts. It’s a “big-city” concept, illustrated by “hick” images. The last in the series next post.

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Felix is from 1-27 to 2-2-1936 this time. Danny Dooit and Felix invade the Chinese gang’s headquarters in search of the diamond and encounter a cobra! In the Sunday, Felix continues to interact with a nutty professor who can broadcast weather in the form of heat and cold. Beautiful Messmer UFA shadows in the 1/29.

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Krazy this time is from 7-15 to 7-21-1940. The action mostly centers around Mimi’s classroom and the connection between her school bell and Ignatz’s brick tossing. The 7-15 is not as clear a scan as the rest of the strips, it came from a different source, so please excuse. I love that odd gag in the 7/18, as Mimi grows “Devil Horns” as she keeps her errant pupils after class.

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Patrick is from 4/18 to 4/23/1966 this time. Suzy and Elsa do a pretty good exchange in the 4/20, and I love Patricks impassioned plea in the 4/23. Mommy saw through it, however. Enjoy your FELIX FRIDAY everyone, heck try Felix ANY day!

7 Responses to “Knight, Yoe, Terry, Whew!”

  1. Charlie Judkins says:

    Hey Mark,

    Wow! Those Terry signs are beautiful! Have you ever spoken to a guy named Red Auguston? He was an animator at Terry’s in the 30s and 40s and one of the key people in the strike. He lives up in New Jersey and may remember something about who drew these. There’s also a silent film of the strike that he shot at the UCLA film archives.

  2. Martin Juneau says:

    Milton Knight is a true unique cartoonist. And those Felix the Cat panels is simply amusing. Thanks for sharing with us! Those stuffs needs to preserved for future generations to come.

  3. Thanks for the plug, Mark! If that strike poster wasn’t at least pencilled by Jim Tyer (who was very important in founding the East Coast union), it was certainly by one who learned from him. The chicken’s face, the ‘crash’ effect, and the lettering of the word ‘means’ say it to me!

  4. Mark says:

    Charlie, Martin and Milton,
    Thanks for your comments! I have heard of Red Auguston, Charlie, but never have spoken with him. I would love to see that film he shot of the Terry strike, maybe I can arrange that with UCLA. Wouldn’t that be a nice bit of cartoon history if Jim Tyer actually drew the Hen picket sign, Milton? I think the monkey sign I ran a few weeks ago might have been drawn by Connie Rasinski. Anyone else have any theories?

  5. Charlie Judkins says:

    Hey Mark,

    The signs would not likely have been drawn by Rasinski or any of the directors, as they remained with Terry during the strike. Terry apparently promised Rasinski, Davis, and Donnelly that if they stayed with him and completed some unfinished films he would give them a share of the money when he finally sold the studio. This was why they were so angry when Terry left them with nothing in 1955.

    Best,
    Charlie Judkins (been working on a Terry book for several years now!)

  6. Mark says:

    Hi Charlie,
    Thanks for lending your expertise on the Terry strike to this discussion. Perhaps Carlo Vinci drew that picket sign. Thanks for telling the story of Terry’s promise to Rasinski, Mannie Davis and Eddie Donnelly. Just shows what happens when you trust management! When was the exact date(s) of the Terry strike? Let us know how your book on Paul Terry is coming along. I would love to read it.
    Mark

  7. Charlie Judkins says:

    Hey Mark,

    Based on research Harvey Deneroff was kind enough to send me, the Terry strike seems to have lasted from around May 16th to November 11th 1947. Harvey did some fantastic research on this around 30 years years ago, and probably would have some interesting things to say as well.

    Also, after checking through Tom Sito’s book Drawing the Line, a few photos show Jim Tyer drawing the “Standard Contract Should Put Him On His Feet” turtle sign, and Larry Silverman wearing the chicken sign you posted above, a possible sign he drew it.

    Another cartoonist prominent in the strike was Don Figlozzi, at the time the head of Terry’s assistant animation department… I wouldn’t be surprised if he made a few signs.

    Best,
    Charlie Judkins

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