Sunday, April 23, 2023

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Compressed Duck!

Here is an untitled one-page gag from DAFFY DUCK # 4 (Dell Comics, Cover Date: January-March, 1956) that I called "Butterfly Tie" for purposes of my personal indexing.

Art is by Warner Bros. animator and Dell and Gold Key Comics stalwart Phil De Lara.  

Here is "Butterfly Tie" once again, when it was later reprinted in BUGS BUNNY # 104 (Gold Key Comics, Cover Date: March, 1966)...

...Reformatted down to HALF-SIZE to allow page space for the required STATEMENT OF OWNERSHIP, MANAGEMENT, AND CIRCULATION, which was once part of the magazine publishing biz.  

Western Publishing rarely indulged in this type of reformatting-shrinkage in its Dell and Gold Key Comics - save reformatting older classic material for reprinting in their later comics digests. 

But here's an example of how they "compwessed a duck" to "conform with wegulations"!   

"I feel the PANEL WALLS cwosing-in!"  

(Click to Enlarge!)

"Wegulations, BAH!"

Monday, April 17, 2023

Separated at Mirth: Bob Hope - "The Monarch Who's Mediocre!"

Surely, at some point, someone must have described BOB HOPE as "The King of Comedy"!  

Whether or not it ever happened, the covers of THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 58 (DC Comics, Cover Date: August-September, 1959)...

...And THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 89 (DC Comics, Cover Date: October-November, 1964)...

...Make a good case for a "Hope Mirthful Monarchy"!  

Check 'em out side-by-side...

Same layout, but different setting! 

Same guy about to jab Bob... once as a Black Knight, and once as a Centurion! 


The adoring females vary slightly, in both looks and positioning!  

But, most strangely of all... these are TWO VERY DIFFERENT STORIES!  One is not a remake of the other!  Each is unique unto itself!

Yet, they not only share the SAME COVER GAG - thus becoming our latest "Separation At Mirth", but also share the same cover LAYOUT and DIALOGUE!  

You won't see that happen very often!  

THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 58 cover is drawn by Owen Fitzgerald. 

THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 89 cover is drawn by Mort Drucker. 

Oh, and lest I forget, if anyone doesn't get the gag in our SUBJECT HEADER ("The Monarch Who's Mediocre!"), here's the inspiration for that!  

"Mickey Mouse as The Monarch of Medioka" - a classic Mouse Tale, by the great Floyd Gottfredson! 

See?  We'd never leave you hanging, now would we?  

...Though we may leave Bob Hope "hanging"... until he "gets the point"...

...Which, regardless of historical era, looks to be any second now!  

Before he yelps in pain, let's say so long and leave you with THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 58 and THE ADVENTURES OF BOB HOPE # 89... Separated at Mirth! 

PS: Perhaps Bob might not have been "stuck with his fate" (...or whatever you call those pointy things), if HE had also been "SUPERMAN'S PAL" like Jimmy Olsen! 

THAT'S the kind of "pal" I'd wanna have! 

Monday, April 10, 2023

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: If Looks Could Kill...

...Okay, well, maybe not kill... but perhaps just enough to "let 'em know you're really, really... REALLY annoyed!"  

Such is the case for Mighty Mouse on the cover of TERRY-TOONS COMICS #63 (St. John Comics, Cover Date: December, 1947), where we find the "Mouse of Tomorrow" having an uncharacteristically difficult day - made only more so by the unwelcome intrusion of Heckle and Jeckle! 

I think it's fair to say that Mighty Mouse (and, by extension, his creator Paul Terry) owe a great deal to both the character and concept of Superman. ...Flying, super strength, cape, tights, trunks, "powers far beyond those of mortal men" (...or mice), etc. 

But, one power Superman has, and that Mighty Mouse apparently lacks (at least in the comics I've read and the cartoons I've seen - which is not nearly all of them), is heat vision! 

Okay, okay... so the cover says "laser-vision", but you know what I mean - so let's move on!  

Judging by the look in his eyes, if Mighty Mouse had heat vision (...or "laser-vision", if you prefer) like Superman, he'd give those birds "a light" they'd never forget.

But he WON'T... because he's MIGHTY MOUSE!  And Mighty Mouse only helps people (...and anthropomorphic variants thereof).  

Say, there's almost a "Separation At Mirth" going on up there!  

Oh, about that "helping thing"... Weelll... maybe not CATS!  

...And, at least in this case... maybe not MAGPIES either! 

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Name That Comedian!

There's something inside LOIS LANE # 50 (DC Comics, Cover Date: July, 1964) that stumps even a grizzled Silver Age maven such as myself...

In an incidental bit that has no impact on the story itself - and, thus, requires no further elaboration on the part of writer or artist - Lois pays a visit to Professor Potter, the Silver Age Superman continuity's version of Carl Barks' all-purpose inventor Gyro Gearloose. 

In our story, Potter has invented a "TV comedian robot", with interchangeable "COMEDIAN HEADS" that perform the routines of the comic whose "head" is attached.  (Click to enlarge!)  

In 1964, I watched ALL those guys... yet, there is one I simply cannot name!

In Potter's hand is Phil Silvers!  Attached to the robot's body is Bob Hope!

On the console TOP are Jerry Lewis and Jimmy Durante!  

On the console BOTTOM are Groucho Marx... and WHOM? 

Drawing a blank (, it's not Mel Blanc!)...

...I asked Esther, whose "facial recognition skills" far outstrip my own - and she thought it might be  Buddy Hackett!  

I don't believe the "mystery head" to be round and fat enough, nor the nose bulbous enough, to be Buddy Hackett!  Surely, the NECK is too thin, in any event! 

But, I really can't figure out who it's supposed to be!  Remember, it must be someone who was famous in 1964!  

The only thing I can come up with is that it could be Bob Denver as beatnik Maynard G. Krebs from the TV series "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis"! 

And then only because DC produced comics based on Bob Hope, Jerry Lewis and Phil Silvers... 

...And also published a DOBIE GILLIS title!  

Only I just don't think so!  

Considering that there were such GIANTS from which to choose - Jack Benny, George Burns, Milton Berle, Henny Youngman, Red Skelton, Jackie Gleason (all of whom could have been easily - and recognizably - caricatured) one wonders how this apparent "mystery man" found his way into this "Pantheon of the Comedy Gods"!  

It's not Dick Van Dyke, or Johnny Carson... I'm really baffled!

You're all invited to send your guesses in the form of comments!  ...Help a Blogger (...and beloved Disney Comics translator and dialogue creator) out won'tcha? 

WAIT!  Perhaps that's not a SHADOW under "the unknown comic's" chin... but a BEARD!  

If it IS a beard, it COULD be "future Gilligan" Bob Denver as Dobie Gillis' pal "Maynard G. Krebs"!

But, would Maynard G. Krebs (or Dobie Gillis, for that matter) be in the same class of comedic fame as the others?  ...Again, I just don't think so!  ARRRGH!  

I'll bet not even the rest of these guys know who that is!