The Browne and Walker Show
Tuesday comic strip day.
Today a couple more Hi and Lois strips from the late fifties. I recently read somewhere that Fantagraphics is doing a complete edition of Mort Walker's early sixties Sam's strip, one of the weirdest self referential strips ever done for major syndication. I won't be buying it because it has been reprinted here and there several times (including once in a dutch magazine, so I have a complete set). But I urge you all to check it out. I hope that it will be a great success, just as the Complete Beetle Bailey, out soon from Checker. For now Fantagraphics seems to have had more success in getting such books into the general book stores, where they belong. I hope Checker manages to do the same and the success of this series leads to a reprinting of Mort Walker's other strip Hi and Lois. As I said before, I believe it is gorgeous and the humor far ahead of it's times. I liked it better when it was more than just a family strip, though. In the syndication brochure it was called a satire of modern urban life and that is what I like about it. Check out these samples.
I am starting with an early daily strip. My earliest Sunday is from 1857, but the strip ran from 1954 with a Sunday starting in 1956. As you can see from this daily, after two years Dik Brown'e own angular style had complete given way to Mort Walker's more rounded forms. This golf joke would have worked just as well with Beetle Bailey, which probably explains why the dumb character didn't last long.