Category Archives: Screwball

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 […]

Screwball Sunday: Hoban’s Non-Heroes: “Needlenose Noonan” and “Dis-Continued Stories”

Below: Dis-continued Stories/Needlenose Noonan by Gus Mager – December 9, 1934 There’s a lot of guff to lamp in this four-color fish wrapper, to briefly speak in the breezy, slangy style of Walter Hoban’s inept lawman. Hoban created Needlenose Noonan at the end of his career. With about a quarter of a century of experience […]

Screwball Sunday: A Publishing War on Main Street — Gus Mager Caught in the Crossfire

Main Street by Gus Mager – July 22, 1923 Why did Gus Mager create a syndicated Sunday comic page that looks so much like George McManus’s Bringing Up Father? Although no record has been found of Gus Mager stating that Main Street was ever meant to emulate—and at times lampoon—the flagship strip of King Features […]

Screwball Sunday: The Subversive Fool in Frederick Opper’s “King Jake”

King Jake by Frederick Opper – January 5, 1908 King Jake is a comic strip about the nature of humor. Specifically how what can be a real knee-slapper to one person is infuriating to another. And we, as the reader, get to observe both the jokester and his victims entwined in a series of causes […]

Screwball Sunday: It’s Summertime and the Combs are Exploding—W.R. Bradford’s Jingling Johnson and Dr. Domehead (1916)

Below: Bradford’s Funny Folks, Philadelphia North American (August 20, 1916) Here’s a rare screwball treat: a never-before-reprinted Sunday page from the intrepidly idiosyncratic cartoonist, Walter R. Bradford. The topic of this page is sweltering summer heat, which is something many of us can relate to these daze. When this strip appeared in August 1916, temperatures […]

Screwball Sunday: Social Distancing in 1902 with Eugene “Zim” Zimmerman

Below: “A Sardonic Soliloquy” Judge, January 17, 1903 From roughly 1890 to 1910 Eugene “Zim” Zimmerman enjoyed national prominence as the star cartoonist for Judge magazine. Emulating its predecessor, Puck, each issue of the humor weekly was stuffed with cartoons and funny prose. Much of the content was topical, reflecting both political and social issues […]

Screwball Sunday: Ving Fuller and the Unofficial Betty Boop Strip

Ving Fuller created the first newspaper comic strip adaptation of the wildly popular animated character, Betty Boop—sort of. The strip was called The Original Boop-Boop-A-Doop Girl and the byline read “by Helen Kane.” The first five strips are drawn by Ving Fuller, who even signed his name on most of them. The below cartoon was […]

Screwball Sunday: Milt Gross and the Moose-ick of Nize Baby

Below: Nize Baby – February 20, 1927 Nize Baby may be one of the few, if only, comic strips a cartoonist based on their own bestselling book. When publisher George H. Doran unleashed their modest orange hardback book entitled Nize Baby, in April of 1926 it became a bestselling sensation and catapulted Gross to national […]

Screwball Sunday: Rube Goldberg, Dadaist

There are five rare early Boob McNutt Sundays in full-color reprinted in Screwball! Today’s page is one that is not in the book. It is of special interest because the last panel was cut out, trimmed, and pasted into the famed 1921 magazine, New York dada, edited by Marcel Duchamp and Man Ray. Note the […]

Two Eisner Award Nominations for LOAC and EuroComics!

Comic-Con International has just announced the 2020 Eisner Award Nominations! We are so pleased to announced that we have received two nominations this year! BEST COMICS RELATED BOOK:Screwball! The Cartoonists Who Made the Funnies Funny, by Paul Tumey (Library of American Comics/IDW) BEST US EDITION OF INTERNATIONAL MATERIAL:Gramercy Park, by Timothée de Fombelle and Christian Cailleaux, translation […]