Monday, August 19, 2019

Sixties Satire

Monday Surprise!

In an effort to get more new visitors, I have decided to change my line-up. Lately I have been posting three times a week, usually on Mondays or Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Starting from yesterday I will use the Sundays for posting scans of strips I have already shown before. There will be less somentary and more good stuff. On Mondays, I am doing only new strips. Stuff you have never seen before. So from now on, every Monday will be a surprise. Come by often not to miss it. Saturday will remain a random days, filled with oddities or one-offs.

Today I am sharing the first month of Daily and Sunday strips from one of the funniest and most satorical newspaper strips from the early sixties. City Hall was written by an artist using the pseudonymn Donoby. It was drawn by Dave Gerard, a prolific cartoonist who started in the early forties. He is one of the first cartoonists to work in a 'modern' style, not based on the cartoon courses that informed so many of the otehr artists of the thirties and fifties. In the fifties he started a kids strip called Will-Yum, that was funny as hell. The only reason that it is forgotten seems to be that the fifties belong to Dennis the Menace and in the sixties Bud Blake's Tiger took over where Will-Yum left off (in a rimilar, but even more modern style). Grard was probably looking to top up his income, when he took over the art chores for City Hall as well. After a year or so Gerard left the strip and it was continued by a Don Cole, with the characters the same, but drawn in a more offbeat style. My guess is that Cole is actually Donoby and tried to sell the strip on his own to the John F. Dille syndicate, who had also represented Gerard's first daily cartoon Viewpoint as well as Will-Yum.

What makes City Hall so special, is it's satirical tone. Not as brutally satyrical as satire would become in the seventies and later, but more of the gentle Mort Sahl/Bob Newhart/Dick van Dyke Show style. Combined with Gerard's gentle style, it really works for me. I am glad to have found a source for most of the strips (in the first few months there are no saturdays or Sundays) and hope to show more (if not all of them). Like many of the best strips of that period, it's like a little sitcom on paper.


blog van michel said...

It's funny with great characters.

Sweetspot said...

A fun read. Thanks for sharing.