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.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

Let's Go On A Pic-A-Nic

Sunday Crowdpleaser Day.

The Yogi Bear Sunday gags have always been some of the most visited and commented upon posts. I think a book collection of these would sell very well, but I guess there are rights issues that prevent this. Most of the Sundays here (and indeed most of them anyway) were drawn by Harvey Eisenberg. He had been doing a lot of funny and well respected work in the fifties, mostly for the Hanna- Babera Dell comics, but also for other kid's books both at Dell and outside of that. The 'modernisation' of the Hanna-Barbera style had a great effect on the sometimes a bit too cute Eisenberg style. He keeps his flair for composition and comedic action, but it as all just that little bit better designed. The gags themselves, I may have said before, are to me what solid one page gags should be. B.C. may have the upper hand as far as slapstick goes, Peanuts may be the most soulful and Beeetle Bailey may have the best character gags, in Yogi Bear the gag is always king. I remember reading some of the later ones in the Dutch kid's weekly Taptoe in the mid sixties and this may have formed my appreciation of this genre.

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Jergens Is As Good As Mine

Saturday Leftover Day.

I have shown movie ads, I have shown Lou Fine commercial art, but I don't think I have ever shown (or seen) these Lou Fine drawn Jergens ads using a movie rather than a particular spokespercon to endorse the product. I have no date on them but they seem to be early in Fine's career. Maybe even from before he did those movie ads in 1947/48, which you can see if you follow the links.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

London Calling

Sunday Comic Srip Classic Day.

After proving invaluable to Bob Kane's Batman (together with Jerry Robinson), George Roussos was allowed to draw his own series for Detective comics. These are rarely een because the issues they appeared in are so very valuable (and since the character has diappeared, they do not 'deserve' a reprint title of their own). Airwave was known an appreciated in Roussos' direct circle, but outside of that it made very little impression.