Missing Chuck Jones comic strip recently uncovered!

Today is Chuck Jones’s birthday. If he were still alive today, he would be 108! On his birthday, I have made it an annual tradition to take Chuck Jones: The Dream That Never Was off my bookshelf and re-read my introduction. It is hard to believe that this book came out 9 years ago! I […]

Screwball Sunday: George Swanson on Screwball Cartooning, Part 1

In the fall of 1930, George “Swan” Swanson wrote and illustrated an illuminating essay on comic exaggeration in cartoons. His pointers succinctly outline his methods and provide insight into the art of over-the-top screwball cartooning. His lessons work as well today as they did 90 years ago. Chapter 12 in LOAC’s Screwball! The Cartoonists Who […]

Screwball Sunday: A Crazy Cat in George Herriman’s 1903 Jolly Jackies Farce

“Kitty! Kitty!” by George Herriman, September 6, 1903 Freshly hired as a staff cartoonist at the New York World, George Herriman scored an early success with his January-to-November 1903 Sunday series, Two Jolly Jackies, about the misadventures of two sailors on shore leave. “Jacky” was a popular term for a sailor, coming from “Jack Tar,” […]

Screwball Sunday: A Double Bill: Holman’s “Smokey” and “Spooky”

Smokey Stover and Spooky, August 8, 1936 For a while, Bill Holman’s silent Spooky topper strip enjoyed as much space as his top, um, Bill-ed star: Smokey Stover. Readers in 1936 were treated to two fine comics, each a celebration of nutty, over-the-top comedy. Today’s Screwball Sunday comic comes from Smokey Stover’s first year of […]

Cause for Celebration! The Complete CORTO MALTESE by Hugo Pratt is finally available in English!

“Simultaneous waves of joy and sadness surround Hugo Pratt’s Corto Maltese: Mu – The Lost Continent,” says Jeff Vaughn at Scoop. “There is good cause for celebration in that this dreamlike, frequently surreal installment of the adventures of Pratt’s title figure and its excellent new translation by Dean Mullaney and Simone Castaldi. The remorse that […]

Screwball Sunday: Ving Fuller’s Doc Syke Meets a True Son of the Beach

Doc Syke – July 8, 1945 I have a friend who is a family doctor and we occasionally meet for coffee. Once, in perhaps a not-so-subtle hint, he told me how acquaintances tended to solicit free medical advice, to his great annoyance. After silently changing my mind about asking him to look at a little […]

Screwball Sunday: Professor Hamsniff Goes One Down and Two Across in Ahern’s “Squirrel Cage”

The Squirrel Cage July 4, 1937 by Gene Ahern Poor Ches and Wal. When they aren’t torturing each other with corny and surreal jokes in the panels of Gene Ahern’s sublimely ridiculous comic strip, The Squirrel Cage, Ches and Wal are deeply annoyed by the presence of other eccentrics in their proximity. Usually their foil […]

Screwball Sunday: Frederick Opper Tears Down the Presidential Candidate, Screwball Style

“Puck’s Life of Garfield”by Frederick Opper (Puck, September 8, 1880) Politics can certainly be pretty screwball. In fact, one of the primary antecedents to screwball comics is the political cartoon. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the comics Frederick Opper created for the Puck weekly. In today’s Screwball Sunday comic, I’ve selected a wonderful […]