Monday, November 23, 2009

It's A Mum, Mum, Mum, Mum World

Monday Cartoon Day.

As you may know, I am quite a fan of silent strips, especially ones from the fifties and sixties in the 'modern' cartooning style. Louie is one of the few who is not 'modern' but manages to win me over by the pure force of the gags. Others from the fifties, such as Pedro, are a bit to gentle for my taste. I will be devoting more posts to this subject, but for now let's introduce one of the weirdest of the silent strips (excluding the Dutch masterpiece from the same period, Professor Pi by Bo van der Born), Mr. Mum. Drawn by cartoonist Irving Philips, according to the Lambiek website (who get all their information from various published sources, so caution is always necessary), it started in 1958 and ran until 1974. My samples are all from the early sixties, but I'll look around for more. The Sundays they show, also have actual gags, as opposed to mine, which are solely based on the strip's premisse: that Mr. Mum is a curious man in a weird world, who never get involved, but only observes with ever growing amazement. The start here is the cartooning style, not the gags per sé. Philips worked for Esquire, which may account for the fact that I didn't see a lot of his work in my own cartoon collections, which cover just about every magazine except Esquire.

April 1/15 1964:

The Sundays didn't seem to have a point or a story. It's just Mr.Mum walking around in a strange world...

Jan 22 1961:

Jan 31 1961:

March 5 1961:


Runs.with.Ferals said...

Never heard of this Mr. Mum b-4, great stuff ! What the heck is in the background of that single-panel strip where he's in the bunny outfit ? This artist, whether consciously or not, sneaks in a lot of phallic & vaginal imagery (or I need therapy).

Smurfswacker said...

Did I miss a hidden meaning? I thought the bunny cartoon was one of the more straightforward ones. The old cartoon cliche of a rabbit being followed by lots of baby Mr. Mum is at a costume party in a rabbit suit and he is also being followed by baby rabbits.

Runs.with.Ferals said...

Yeah~ I get the whole foreground scenario~ but the background scene puzzles me ! That weird giant flower thing ? I never get to go to parties like that !