Month: December 2013
Dear Readers, this is my wonderful neighbor’s granddaughter’s cat. Her name is Scout, and she wants to wish you the happiest of Mew Year’s. She has about the sweetest face you could ever look at, and we love to play games together. I sweep my neighbor’s patio for her a few mornings a week, and little Scout likes to watch me out of the sliding glass doors. At first she seemed fascinated by the broom I sweep with, but now I’ve found out that she really loves to watch big sycamore leaves floating down in front of her face. The pose above is Scout watching a leaf I’ve suspended just out of camera range. If ever you’re feeling blue or out of sorts in the Mew Year, just remember this sweet kitty face and brighten up!
Here’s another friendly kitty face, Felix, from 2-12 to 2-18-1934. Felix shares a home with Danny and Chip Dooit and their folks. I like the 2-14 gag as Chip tries to find the CWA (Civil Works Administation) and the NRA (National Recovery Administration), two of President Roosevelt’s Depression era government agencies, on the radio! Chip should try the fireside chats! I like the expression Danny uses as he fills up Felix’s glass in the 2-16: “Y’can’t walk on one leg, y’know-“, it sounds like a saying that bartenders used to use to get their customers to buy more poison. In the 2-17, suspicious-looking characters are on the loose, so “Thrills, Pathos, Humor and Suspense Start Next Week”! The Sunday page has Felix trapped on the planet Jupiter, 300,000,000 miles away from Danny and Chip and OMIGOSH a Bear! He scares away the bruin with some of Jupiter Pluvius’s weather making machines.
Krazy, from 2-23 to 2-28-1942, continues the “Home is Jail” theme started in last week’s strips. Pupp is increasingly hot under the collar as Ignatz stubbornly refuses to leave the Jail, calling it home and even ordering fresh bricks delivered to his cell by Kolin Kelly. At last in the 2-28, Offissa Pupp figures out that he can “extradite” Ignatz back to his home under the custody of Magnolia and the kids, and keep him there as if he was in Jail.
Myrtle by Dudley Fisher is from 11-16 to 11-22-1947 this time. One of the main threads this week is that Myrtle and Sampson are maturing physically. Fisher spins three days of gags out of Sampson’s voice changing, and in the 11-20, Myrtle puts on a pair of her Mom’s high heels and does some pageant walking in front of Sampson. Bingo adds doorbell-ringing to his bag of tricks in the 11-21, as he lures Freddie out of the easy chair by hitting the button from outside the front door. Bingo also is good at opening doors and going through bureau drawers as we’ve seen in previous weeks.
Here’s the January 1964 Yogi Bear Sunday pages, 1/3rd page versions. The first two use essentially the same idea, Yogi freezing objects to keep the kids entertained, winter gags. The 1-19 strip is promoting Yogi’s feature cartoon; “Hey There, It’s Yogi Bear” by showing a Hollywood premiere for the film at the Grauman’s Chinese theater. You’ll have to look at the strip to see where they put Yogi’s foot prints, just click the thumbnail to enlarge. You can really see Harvey Eisenberg’s layout and lettering in the 1-26, as the school kids whomp the easy going bruin with snow balls. I love the twisted left leg on Yogi in the fourth panel, it gives the impression of a really twisted pose without getting into realistic anatomy, just an overall pleasing shape to the bear’s body. If you want to see the 1/2 page versions of these strips in black and white next year, just check in at Yowp’s blog ( www.yowpyowp.blogspot.com ) from time to time and he will post them.
I’m so happy that more of you readers are leaving comments. I don’t get on to social media very much, so this is my way of finding out what you are interested in, so don’t hesitate to write something, all three of you! Again, the best of Mew Years to all you cats, we’ll catch you on the flip side of midnight!
Smee blows up real good in the next to the last strip in the 4 week continuity, Peter Pan’s Christmas Story, originally published 12-19 to 12-24-1960, written by Frank Reilly and Drawn and Inked by Manuel Gonzales. I hope all my readers have just as delightful a Christmas as Santa, Peter Pan and Walt Disney wished you 53 years ago!
Felix ran originally from 2-5 to 2-11-1934. Felix gets one of his rare “Thank You”s in the 2-5, as Danny’s Mom proffers him a huge feed. There are gags about streamline car chassis, silly goats, little pups with Mickey Mouse ears and how not to mess up a newly painted floor. The Sunday page really gets cosmic as Felix’s balloon floats higher and higher, until he is hit by a comet and ricochets to Jupiter! I wonder if the 1938 Paul Terry cartoon, “Just Ask Jupiter” may have been inspired by this Felix page?
Krazy Kat is from 2-16 to 2-21-1942, and has some solid “hoomerous kontinooittee” throughout the week. Ignatz has been thrown in Jail so often that he thinks of it as home, much to Pupp’s disgust. Not even a visit from the Kounty Tax Collector can force the “mice” out, Ig’s wife sets up “micekeeping” and Offissa Pupp gets thrown out on his back in the 2-21. Garge’s art on the 2-21 is especially beautiful, I love panel 3, as Krazy looks around the corner of the building, and panel 4 looks like it was one of Herriman’s famous “scratched out” originals, in which he used the Bristol board like scratch board to indicate the speed lines as Ig throws Pupp down the path. Folks, I hope I’ll be back for a New Year’s post, until then, stay out of the Egg Nog! Have a hot Tom and Jerry instead.
Here’s the next two weeks of the Peter Pan’s Christmas Story strip, which ran 11-28 to 12-24-1960. It was written by Frank Reilly (who became manager of the Disney comic strip department) and drawn by Manuel Gonzales who did the second to the 24th strip. Floyd Gottfredson did the first one (see the last post). From 1938 to 1981, Manuel Gonzales pencilled and/or inked the Mickey Mouse Sunday page, alternating with Gottfredson for the first few years. He went by the nickname “Gonzy” in the comic strip department. Peter Pan’s Christmas Story was the first of 10 Disney Christmas daily strips. A few of the other story lines were: Pinocchio’s Christmas Story (#2, 1961, Gonzales inked, Chuck Fuson pencilled), The Three Little Pigs Christmas Story (# 4, 1963, Gottfredson pencilled and inked), Cinderella’s Christmas Party (#5, 1964, Gottfredson pencilled, Gonzales inked), Bambi’s Christmas Adventure (#6, 1965, Guillermo Cardoso and Gottfredson, pencilled and inked), Santa Claus in Never Land (#9, 1968, Cliff Nordberg pencilled, Gonzales inked) and A Quest For Christmas (#10, 1969, James Swain pencilled, Gonzales inked). I don’t know #3, 7 or 8’s titles, nor whether the Christmas strip continued after 1969. I miss the days of annual Christmas daily stories, if you go over to the Stripper’s Guide page, http://strippersguide.blogspot.com/ Allan is running an unusual Christmas strip from 1937, called “Santa Claus and Company”, drawn by Royal King Cole and distributed by King Features Syndicate, who also distributed the Disney Christmas Strips.
Here’s the Myrtle strip from 11-9 to 11-15-1947. I love the 11-12 strip which refers to post-war food shortages, as Bingo chases a rabbit for a between-meals snack; “Wipe that smile off your face, Kid–this ain’t no dress rehearsal!” There’s something very theatrical about that line.
Very soon, we’ll have the fourth week of the first Disney Christmas Daily Strip right here! The Cats will return as well, they are out Christmas shopping this time.
Sorry I don’t have the exact dates, but the Post-Dispatch deleted them. I always thought that Mr. Smee and Doc of the seven dwarfs had a strong resemblance facially, and here the comic strip artists make a story point out of it. I have no idea who drew these, but they are not bad. I’ll try to post the rest of the story before Christmas, it has three more weeks to go.
Krazy, this time from 2-9 to 2-14-1942, features the Kat’s Kuriosity for the whole week. I love Offissa Pupp’s reaction (in the 2-14) to Krazy’s admission that Ignatz’s square package contained a brick!
Felix finally beats the nasty mice who played havoc with the Christmas toys in the strips from 1-29 to 2-4-1934, and succeeds in getting Danny’s toy plane restored to him. In the Sunday, Felix’s balloon ascension rises close to the Sun. Felix roasts a passing bird, but the Sun’s heat burns it to a cinder.
In Myrtle this time, from 11-2 to to 11-8-1947, there is no real continuity. Myrtle experiments with making her skirt longer in the 11-5, but it restricts her football kick, so she shortens it up again. Myrtle does an extremely cartoony rise in the air in the 11-8, as she anticipates a raise in allowance from her Pop. I’ve included the Sunday from 11-2 this time. It features the great 3/4 downshot layout that Dudley Fisher did so well. It spreads out the storytelling, and you can read the dialog in the large panels in any order you want and it still makes sense. I love the back of the garage busting out in the second panel.
Seems my big mouth has got me in a lot of hot water over at Cartoon Research. I wrote a review of the new Mouse short, “Get A Horse!” that picked a few design nits, and managed to annoy a few folks. Now I’m an official Disney naysayer and someone is using the negative parts of my review to support yet more negative arguments! If you read the review, it’s really not that much of a slam. I really like the cartoon in a lot of ways, not just whole hog. That’s the trouble with criticism on the Internet, it’s repeated by other posters and blown up all out of proportion. I also made a comment on Animation Scoop about President Obama’s visit to Dreamworks. I likened the quick demo of the CG animation process that Dreamworks showed to Obama, to a digest tooled for an ADD person. I’ll never forget when I visited the Disney Studio in 1963, a gentleman named Bob Youngquist spent nearly 45 minutes showing me how he drew a wolf character from “The Sword In The Stone”, and then ran the scene on his Moviola for me! I was really impressed with Mr. Youngquist’s dedication to his painstaking craft, and his patience with a 15 year old cartoon fan. I was just wondering aloud if President Obama was similarly impressed with the painstaking efforts of the Dreamworks CG animators, or if they just made it look like a three-ring circus with actors posing for the Mo-Cap. For that comment, I was labelled a Nazi by an Internet troll. Seems I insulted persons with ADD syndrome, for that I apologize as well. I ain’t no stinkin’ Nazi, and I probably won’t do much opining on the ‘Net for the forseeable future. See you very soon.