… And a Few Rare Flowers

We continue both our salute to Valentine’s Day and our look back sixty-five years with this collection of strips from February 14, 1956. Here you’ll find a sitcom-friendly installment of The Ryatts (creator Cal Alley was the son of cartoonist J.P. Alley, who won a Pulitzer Prize for Journalism as part of a team at his Southern newspaper who challenged the activity of the Ku Klux Klan) — a whole lotta “*Smack*”-ing with Jeff from Mutt and Jeff — and a pretty straightforward example of the often surrealistic Little Debbie (some excellent work has been done related to this strip, its predecessor, Elmo, and creator Cecil Jensen, and it’s only a Google-search away).

We also offer a lovely Mary Worth (in both sentiment and execution) — George Sixta bringing to the page the fear of every little boy with a crush on a girl in Rivets — and an example of one of the more esoteric strips in comics history, Half Acre Castle (artist John Morris was one of the long list of cartoonists who took a turn illustrating Scorchy Smith for the Associated Press).

Don’t forget to do something nice for your sweetie, on this and every Valentine’s Day! (A nice collection of newspaper comics makes a wonderful gift to go along with flowers or a pleasant card, y’know …!)

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