Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Happy New Year 2019 - with Mutt and Jeff!

MUTT AND JEFF, especially for a comic of its time, often "Broke the Fourth Wall"...

...But here, in a truly unusual Sunday newspaper comic strip reprinted in MUTT AND JEFF # 44 (DC Comics, Cover Date: February/March, 1950), they not only "break the Fourth Wall" - but literally TEAR DOWN Walls 1-3 in celebration of the New Year!  

Below is a panel-by-panel breakdown of the festivities!   Watch the panel borders... um, "lose cohesiveness" (for lack of a better term) as the strip progresses!  

Now I have no idea exactly which "New Year" creator Bud Fisher, (studio assistant and de-facto writer/artist) Al Smith, and the strip's cast might have been originally ringing-in... But, given this is a newspaper strip, reprinted in a comic book with a cover date of February/March - 1950 (which means it would have been on sale in DECEMBER, 1949), it is almost certainly a year sometime in the mid-to-later 1940s!  

In the next-to-last panel, Jeff's PANTS change from orange to blue - or is Mutt just a supernatural contortionist?  You decide!  

And you gotta admit... THIS PANEL BELOW is ONE FREAKY PANEL!  

The tiny table would seem to be Mutt and Jeff's last refuge of normalcy! I'd hide under there too!  Pretty amazing for the 1940s! 

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2019 (and "nineteen-forty-whatever") from Mutt and Jeff, their supporting cast, Esther, Averi, Joe - and TIAH Blog!  

...Especially from Averi! 


Achille Talon said...

Very Melon-esque, isn't it? I love it!

Happy New Year!

Joe Torcivia said...

Indeed, it IS quite reminiscent of Walter Melon, now that you mention it! Mutt and Jeff is something I think you'd enjoy. It's got a lot of (for lack of a better term) "classic humor", "pun humor", and a remarkable amount of "meta" for a strip of it's vintage.

I loved it as a kid in the sixties (when it still ran in a local newspaper, in addition to the last half-decade of comic books which I devoured back then), and it never fails to crack a smile even today!

You'll see more M&J in 2019 - and (as I keep promising) more Walter Melon!

Happy New Year!

Elaine said...

OK, that is very cool, especially for the 1940's! I'm sure someone somewhere has written about the history of just such meta humor in the comics; I'd be interested to read about that sometime.

Happy New Year to Averi and all her family! Happy 8th Day of Christmas! That's "maids a-milking," folks--time to re-watch Fred MacMurray milking the cow in "Remember the Night"--a holiday movie which includes New Year's Eve/Day! This morning I'm exercising to the last half-hour of "Arthur Christmas," which has one of my all-time-favorite female Christmas movie characters, the giftwrap elf Bryony. (Make sure to watch it with Averi in some future year!) And I still have four more days of Christmas to finish my annual re-read of my favorite Christmas comics and short stories.

Joe Torcivia said...


I’d like to read such a history of “Meta in Strips” too!

Enjoy your “extended reading and viewing traditions”! Mine are usually limited to Christmas Eve and the run up to it – and this year had it all scrunched-up to the final hours of Christmas Eve, and the first hour or so of Christmas Day – and was comprised of an abbreviated list of my evergreen perennial favorites: Lost in Space "The Toymaker", The Flintstones "Christmas Flintstone" (the 1964 original that I saw on original broadcast - and probably prolonged my belief in Santa for one more year). Bewitched "A Vision of Sugar Plums" (A more recent addition, but in the same class as "Christmas Flintstone" - and also from 1964!), and Justice League Animated "Comfort and Joy"!

I look forward to the next several years of sharing such things with Averi – starting with “The Coat of Christmas Magic”! Then, once she can better appreciate the humor in it, “Super Goof vs. The Sinister Space Santa”!

Hey, she might as well have Grampa-Joe read her actual words he wrote!

I have no doubt that you will make some suggestions and additions to that list as well!

Happy New Year!