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Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!

Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 02:00 AM
Skivee 21 Apr 08 - 03:09 AM
GUEST,Jack the Sailor 21 Apr 08 - 06:28 AM
kendall 21 Apr 08 - 08:10 AM
Rapparee 21 Apr 08 - 08:43 AM
Rapparee 21 Apr 08 - 08:51 AM
Mrrzy 21 Apr 08 - 09:02 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 21 Apr 08 - 10:49 AM
RangerSteve 21 Apr 08 - 11:24 AM
RangerSteve 21 Apr 08 - 11:27 AM
Donuel 21 Apr 08 - 11:29 AM
Bill D 21 Apr 08 - 11:41 AM
john f weldon 21 Apr 08 - 11:45 AM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 21 Apr 08 - 11:56 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 21 Apr 08 - 12:42 PM
Bill D 21 Apr 08 - 12:56 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 21 Apr 08 - 01:30 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 01:30 PM
Skivee 21 Apr 08 - 01:34 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 01:40 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 01:42 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 21 Apr 08 - 01:56 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 02:01 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 21 Apr 08 - 02:08 PM
Skivee 21 Apr 08 - 02:34 PM
John on the Sunset Coast 21 Apr 08 - 02:35 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 03:02 PM
Skivee 21 Apr 08 - 03:18 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 03:30 PM
GUEST,Chief Chaos 21 Apr 08 - 03:40 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 03:43 PM
kendall 21 Apr 08 - 04:19 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 04:23 PM
Skivee 21 Apr 08 - 04:32 PM
Joe Offer 21 Apr 08 - 06:55 PM
Rapparee 21 Apr 08 - 07:05 PM
McGrath of Harlow 21 Apr 08 - 07:23 PM
CarolC 21 Apr 08 - 07:59 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 08:00 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 08:06 PM
Bill D 21 Apr 08 - 08:45 PM
Severn 21 Apr 08 - 08:53 PM
Bill D 21 Apr 08 - 08:57 PM
Little Hawk 21 Apr 08 - 09:56 PM
Charley Noble 21 Apr 08 - 10:01 PM
Rapparee 21 Apr 08 - 11:39 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 01:08 AM
john f weldon 22 Apr 08 - 01:23 AM
CarolC 22 Apr 08 - 02:36 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 22 Apr 08 - 10:54 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 22 Apr 08 - 11:02 AM
Marion 22 Apr 08 - 11:23 AM
john f weldon 22 Apr 08 - 12:18 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 12:30 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 22 Apr 08 - 01:06 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 01:14 PM
Rapparee 22 Apr 08 - 01:17 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 22 Apr 08 - 01:22 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 01:24 PM
Bill D 22 Apr 08 - 01:25 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 01:39 PM
Amos 22 Apr 08 - 02:45 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 02:50 PM
frogprince 22 Apr 08 - 03:02 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 03:03 PM
Don Firth 22 Apr 08 - 07:30 PM
Don Firth 22 Apr 08 - 07:42 PM
GUEST 22 Apr 08 - 07:47 PM
WFDU - Ron Olesko 22 Apr 08 - 08:16 PM
Little Hawk 22 Apr 08 - 08:36 PM
Charley Noble 22 Apr 08 - 09:16 PM
Don Firth 22 Apr 08 - 09:18 PM
Rapparee 22 Apr 08 - 11:39 PM
Little Hawk 23 Apr 08 - 02:14 AM
John on the Sunset Coast 23 Apr 08 - 06:46 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 23 Apr 08 - 10:13 PM
Rapparee 23 Apr 08 - 10:25 PM
Severn 23 Apr 08 - 11:25 PM
GUEST 23 Apr 08 - 11:54 PM
GUEST 23 Apr 08 - 11:55 PM
Little Hawk 24 Apr 08 - 12:09 PM
clueless don 25 Apr 08 - 09:06 AM
Little Hawk 25 Apr 08 - 11:54 AM
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Subject: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 02:00 AM

This is good for a few chuckles:

Are these the five worst or weirdest comics ever? If not, well, they're close.

The guy who put the page together refers to them as the five most unintentionally hilarious comics of all time. I tend to agree. They're the ones I think of right away in that sense.

Little Orphan Annie was also really, really strange. Maybe it rates as number 6. Enjoy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Skivee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:09 AM

I am shocked, SHOCKED I SAY!
How is it possible that "Nancy" was not at the head of the list, followed by "Henry"?????????


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: GUEST,Jack the Sailor
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 06:28 AM

And that matt Groening thing with the weird rabbits.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: kendall
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:10 AM

Zits
Dilbert


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Rapparee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:43 AM

Buster Brown
The Yellow Kid


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Rapparee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:51 AM

Little Nemo in Slumberland
The Katzenjammer Kids


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Mrrzy
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 09:02 AM

I just *love* Zits, sorry, Kendall.

And Rex Morgan, MD, has a warm spot in my heart for no other reason than my Dad would read it in the International Herald Trib to get an idea of American-ness.

But Nancy, and Henry, definitely. Mark Trail, top of the list.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 10:49 AM

While this is all very subjective, I think it a bit unfair to include Little Nemo, Buster Brown or The Yellow Kid. These are, after all, the comics that were the pioneers; the art and storylines were certainly a product of their time--Gay 90s/early 20th century--and sensibility. We've come a long way, baby, from then.

I'm a bit surprised to find Mark Trail here. Sixty years ago Trail was the premeire comic fostering conservation and ecology (which I differentiate from today's environmentalism). It was a strip, a comic book, a juvenile radio program, and was used in radio PSAs. I guess it doesn't go far enough in today's world.

Rapaire, how do you feel about The Captain and the Kids?

My favorite unintentionally funny comic, Capt. Tootsie. He started as an advert for Tootsie Roll candy, and graduated to his own comic book for a few issues. Sort of sounds like the current Cavemen TV show.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: RangerSteve
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:24 AM

Little Nemo had some of the best artwork of any comic. My only problem with the strip is that I've had dreams like that, too, always caused by prescription medications. It isn't pleasant.

I've never read Rex Morgan, but the description is hilarious.

Thanks, LH, you've made my day.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: RangerSteve
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:27 AM

Just remembered - worst strip in my opinion is "Ziggy" I'm waiting for the day he commits suicide.
"Family Circus" comes in a close second. "Cute" just doesn't describe it. It's so sweet, I believe that reading it can lead to diabetes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Donuel
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:29 AM

The Phantom


One white guy out to reform the evil middle east.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:41 AM

"Buck Rogers, in the 21st Century"!!

It was my fantasy as the age of 9-12....but then my brain developed a bit.

"Priscilla's Pop" Does no one remember the 'mashed potato sandwiches'? And Priscilla praying for a horse?


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: john f weldon
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:45 AM

Gee, it's hard to pick a worst. Most of the current ones are worse than the older ones.

One guy I remember was Johnny Malotte, Mark trail's stereotypical Quebecois sidekick. Around Halloween they'd put cut-outs of Mark & Johnny on the back of cereal boxes, for a really cheap costume.

Family Circus, i agree, terrible, but I hate anything wholesome.

I have to strongly disagree about Dick Tracy. Chester Gould was totally screwy, but that made the strip fun. I still have collections which I reread with pleasure. He included strange personal messages about magnetism. His villains were wonderfully grotesque, and their demises were particularly gruesome. I still have nightmares about his strips; what higher praise could there be?


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:56 AM

Wow! There are some classics being ripped a new one here! I guess it is a matter of taste, but to see Dick Tracy, Buck Rogers, the Phantom and Little Nemo on these lists is startling to me!

While they may not have stood the test of time, they all opened doors for others and created many fond memories. They are also products of a period in time, much like folk songs.   If someone were to write "Barbara Allen" or "Streets of Laredo" today they would be laughed off a stage at amateur night, yet each are remembered fondly for a variety of important reasons - much like these strips.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 12:42 PM

Donuel, you just don't understand the concept of the Phantom. He isn't just one white guy trying to reform the middle east. That's Geo Bush you're thinking of. No, the Phantom is one immortal (seemingly; he's been around since the 16th century) white guy trying to keep peace somewhere in Africa among the jungle tribes, and trying to keep evil white folks away from the tribesmen. Along the way he fights pirates, spies and assorted other world baddies. The Phantom is also considered the first of the comics' masked, costumed, (super)heroes, a Zorro in purple tights.

The Phantom is my all-time favorite comic strip [there, I've said it!] since I was about age five, in spite of its probable political incorrectness. It is still going, but I would like to find strip reprints from 1945/1946. So far, no success.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 12:56 PM

In Buck Rogers, one naughty race of aliens had a very strange language. I remember it suddenly dawning on me what they meant when they pointed their Super-gravity dehydrating cosmic ossifiers with the Positronic Snarkle at Buck and screamed "Givei Tuem!"

I think that was about the time my brain took a turn upwards.

Yes, Ron...I was influenced by the strip, and I suppose it would not really be included in my 5...or even 10 worst. I could pick 10 out of TODAYS paper.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:30 PM

If you are interested in comic strip history, check out this website: Barnacle Press

Some fascinating subjects.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:30 PM

Of course "Nancy" and "Henry" and other unfunny and repetitive tosh like that is absolutely DREADFUL stuff! But it's not unintentionally hilarious stuff, and that was the point of the article in the link that I posted at the start of this thread.

I wanted to have the thread title say "Homage to 5 Most unintentionally hilarious comics of all time" but I could fit all that in the title box, darn it!

Look, people, stay on subject please. This thread is not an attempt to nominate the 5 worst comics of all time. There are simply too many competitors for that.

No, this thread is about comics that are meant to be taken seriously, but are in fact unintentionally hilarious.

I think there are hardly any comics left in today's newspapers which are intended to be taken seriously. They are all intended to cause a momentary laugh, a chuckle, something along that line...though most of them fail miserably at it, I'd have to say.

Comics now are a pale shadow of what they once were. There was a time when you had adventure comics, soap opera comics, sci-fi comics, medieval romance comics, pirate comics, seafaring comics, aeronautical comics, spy comics, jungle comics, intrigue in the Far East comics, it was an incredibly rich field of possibilities. Comics in those days were often meant to be taken seriously as adult stories and they had storylines that could run on for six months, a year, even several years before reaching the conclusion of that story! They were like graphic novels.

It was a different world.

Now, in the context of that world there had to be some serious comics that were a bit...ummm...strange...a bit twisted.

I think that "Mary Worth", "Rex Morgan M.D.", "Dick Tracy", "Mark Trail", and "Gil Thorpe" all rate as more than a bit strange...and the guy in the article I linked to tells you why in a most amusing fashion. ;-) He nails it.

In my opinion, "Little Orphan Annie" was also more than a bit strange in a number of ways: the incredibly rightwing views of the mysterious Daddy Warbucks, who once deliberately arranged for an A-bomb to go off in some "evil" Eastern European commie state (never identified), thus killing a lot of "evil" anti-American people.......the bizarrely stiff and very, very poor artwork, the round empty eyes on people, the cardboard characterizations......that weird dog "Sandy" who went everywhere with Annie and never said anything but "Arf!"...   yup, that was one hell of a weird comic, to say the least. Unintentionally hilarious, and a bit creepy at the same time.

As for Dick Tracy, what a macabre excercise in sado-masochistic fantasy! I think the author must have been a very odd fellow.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Skivee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:34 PM

John Weldon has corrected my error. The "Correct and Proper List Of The Five Crappiest Cartoons Of all Time" should consist of :
1) Nancy
2) Henry
3) Family Circus
Once we get those three out of the way then we pretty much don't need the other two slots filled.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:40 PM

Yes, true, Skivee...but that is not what I intended this thread to be about...as I have explained in my lengthy post prior to yours.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:42 PM

By the way, I would like to add that I think "Zits" is a pretty good comic. It's a funny take on teenage vs parent psychology, pretty much right on the mark, I'd say. It's one of the better comics around nowadays. Most of them are terrible.

The last truly great comic in recent times, I think, was "Calvin & Hobbes".


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 01:56 PM

Henry is/was funny. A cute cartoon for the time, and it still brings up a chuckle or too. Certainly not "dreadful" in my estimation.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 02:01 PM

Okay, it's a matter of personal taste...

But DANG IT, Henry is not the kind of comic this thread is even supposed to be ABOUT! Henry is not unintentionally hilarious. Henry is a comic which intends to be amusing, and that is about all it intends.

Gil Thorpe, Rex Morgan, Dick Tracy, Mary Worth, and Mark Trail ARE the kind of comics this thread is supposed to be about. They are NOT intended to be hilarious at all...but they are anyway. Unintentionally so. They purport to be serious stories.

I guess I am going to have to get a Joe Clone to change the title of the thread, am I?


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 02:08 PM

LH - don't blow a fuse. The thread has drifted and you should not try to stop it.

The other comics you mentioned are also personal taste.   Like any fantasy, the subject matter also requires the reader to suspend belief and accept the premise. When the reader fails to suspend beliefs, then it becomes funny - to that reader.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Skivee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 02:34 PM

LH, I didn't think you blew a fuse.
You are correct. My critiques may be off topic.
I included my offerings because though they were intended as humorous cartoons, they generally failed to get even a raised eyebrow from me, let alone an actual laugh.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 02:35 PM

Little Hawk - I can understand your problem with Orphan Annie or Dick Tracy; they were problematic even when they were popular. Rex and Mary are the comic equivalent of One Life to Live what whatever the soaps du jour are, and who takes those seriously? I'm not sure why Trail or Thorpe seem to be a problem...but OK.

If I had a teen-ager, I'd paste Zits on the bathroom mirror everyday. Viva Mutts!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:02 PM

Thorpe is mainly a problem because it seems to be perpetually stuck in about the year 1957...but it is also clear that it's all still supposed to be happening in today's society, right now, 2008. I remember reading Gil Thorpe back in the early 60's and enjoying it immensely. There was a great story line going at one point with this new teacher at Gil's school, a young dark-haired, very clever and good looking gal with just a bit of "Beatnik" sensibility about her. Well, more than bit. She was a very cool kid...probably about 24 years old. So she created a sensation at the school, because all the teenage guys thought she was extremely "hot", as the saying goes, yet they couldn't throw her off balance one bit when she was teaching...but the more elderly staff members were suspicious of her and looking for a good excuse to fire her, despite the fact that her teaching skills were extremely good. She wore a beret when outdoors, dressed in black mostly, and drove an old rattletrap of a car that a bunch of the male students had to give a good push down the street once to get it started.

All this was played up to pretty good effect as the elderly fussbudgets on staff grew more and more scandalized by this "serpent" in their midst, but could find no legitimate grounds for ejecting her from their ranks.

So Gil starts getting interested in her and they end up dating, and he discovers that she is quite an admirable person. He eventually has to come to her rescue against the united forces of her bitter enemies on staff.

It was a darned good story, and it fit the mood of the times. The trouble with Gil Thorpe now is that it is miles and miles away from the mood of the times, so it seems out of kilter on account of that.

I wish I could find a reprint of that storyline from way back then, I'd love to see it again.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Skivee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:18 PM

I guess my favorite Gil Thorpe was when he helped the FBI stymie a bunch of students who were making hydrogen fusion weapons in the science club. If he hadn't tackled that kid at the last moment, the whole town could have been turned into smoking rubble.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:30 PM

Holy mackerel!!!! And in Milford! Whodda thunk it? Yeah, Gil is always there to rush into the breach when action is needed, and he leads with either his jaw or his haircut...either of which is rock solid like a block of granite. The man is unstoppable.

I think the oddest fish ever to appear as a "hero" in the comics is Rex Morgan M.D. The man is truly creepy. I think that shaking his hand would be probably be a bit like unexpectedly reaching out in a darkened room and grasping a cool, dead squid.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: GUEST,Chief Chaos
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:40 PM

I think I have to nominate the Far Side for the "5 best unintentionally hilarious" comics.
Although Gary Larson did intend for us all to get a laugh out of the bizarre scenes portrayed, the "unintentionally hilarious" comes from people trying to figure out just what some item in the panel did as in the "cow tools" panel, missing artwork (legs that were unintentionally left off of characters (under a table)), or from Gary's attempts at realism.
The last is evident in the "When Dog's Dream" panel where Gary drew a dog howling on top of the carcas of an overturned car that the dog had caught after chasing. Gary wanted to include the car's differential (gears that take input from the drive shaft and transfer it to a car's axle) and the only place to put it was just under the dog. There was public outrage as it looked to some like the dog was having sexual relations with the car!
Some people just have dirty minds. Talk about unintentionally hilarious!


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 03:43 PM

Wow. That is a good example indeed. As you say, some people just have dirty minds.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: kendall
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 04:19 PM

All my favorites were dumped by the new owners of the Portland papers.
The Wizard of Id.
Calvin & Hobbs
The Far Side
Herman

Others just died out:
Snuffy Smith
Pogo
Mandrake


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 04:23 PM

Gary Watterson had the wisdom to discontinue Calvin & Hobbes while it was still fresh. He apparently felt that he was running out of ideas, and the time was right to stop the strip. It was an amazingly good and original comic strip, and you see various fragmentary imitations of it all over the place now in the behaviour of characters in certain other comics.


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Subject: RE: BS: Homage to 5 worst (?) comics of all time
From: Skivee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 04:32 PM

What was the one about the fashion designer? "Wee Willie Winkee"? Something like that.
And "Apartment IIIG"...which was esentially "Mary Worth" but with 30% less meddlesome-old-woman content.
I weep when I consider all the inkfish that were boiled down for these pointless turds.
The humor is derived from the cornball out of touch style.
I should have them on my previous list.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Joe Offer
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 06:55 PM

In my book, nothing can beat Mark Trail for stupidity.
I can't wait to read him every day, so I can see what predictably dumb thing he's going to do next - and prove my predictions correct.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Rapparee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 07:05 PM

So...modern cartoons, huh? How about Sheldon, about a 10-year-old billionaire software wizard? Or Wondermark? But I'll bet you're not ready for this'un, a real golden oldy.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 07:23 PM

Putting Little Nemo is this list is just weird. Here's a YouTube with some 1911 animation of the characters. (Click forward to 8 minutes in to see this if you are in a hurry.)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: CarolC
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 07:59 PM

Hey!

Don't be dissin' Mark Trail!!!


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:00 PM

Ha! The thread has the right title now. Good. Carry on, chaps. No use listing your "worst" list of comics here anymore, because that's not what it's about. Not Nancy. Not Henry. Not Garfield. Not Family Circus. Nope, this thread is about comics that never meant to be funny...but they are anyway.

Review the classics in this category: Mary Worth, Dick Tracy, Rex Morgan (M.D.), Gil Thorpe, and Mark Trail....and Little Orphan Annie. All of them go about telling lengthy (and presumably serious) stories. All of them do it in the oddest ways. They weren't meant to be funny, but they sure are!

"Arf!" (that was Sandy)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:06 PM

Carol, go up to the very first post and click on the link. ;-) Read it.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:45 PM

I wish I could even 'sorta' draw...I'd do a cartoon strip about a Canadian with an Indian name trying to herd cats....


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever
From: Severn
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:53 PM

Actually, one of the oddest and definitely the slowest moving, plot wise (Yes, even slower than Mark trail!) was the late, unlamented "Smilin' Jack" about an aviator.Each day's first panel had to reprise the previous day's last panel. Among the recurring charactors were a guy called Downwind whose face you never saw and a fat guy whose shirt buttons were always popping off and being caught by his pet chicken.

Winnie Winkle was the designer of ugly fashions. Brenda Starr got tiresomely wierd at times.

I always loved the Phantom for the "Old Jungle Sayings" printed at the bottom of the panels, such as "Ghost who walks cannot die!" and "Phantom rough on roughnecks", and the fact that whenever he was dresses in his trenchcoat, fedora and shades anonymity outfit and was trying to board a commercial aircraft and was told that he couldn't bring a dog on the plane, that he just needed to say, It's not a dog, it's a wolf." in such a chilling tone that suddenly it was OK for the canine to board.

For years, the artist who drew Rex Morgan could only draw one shape of face for all of the charactors.

If there was a difference between the Chester Gould stylings of Dick Tracy and Gravel Gertie & B.O. Plenty, how about the discrepancies between Nancy & Sluggo and Aunt Fritzie Ritz and then again to her boyfriend Rollo.

Those sadistic Katzenjammer Kids were never completely controllable by Der Captain and Der Inspector (of what, I never knew), but I'm sure a few ladies from the local PETA office could set them straight on animal care issues. Still, when annoyed, I still like to say "Vot Der?...Gifs moider ven catches der breath!" to this day. And they might have been the one of the only examples of German humor around (or were they supposed to be Dutch?).


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Bill D
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 08:57 PM

...except for "Heinrich Schnibble" routines in the Saturday Evening Post. "Gespachletten der SchnortenZoomers"


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 09:56 PM

The marvelous Katzenjammer Kids were German, initially, but with the advent of the war they were hastily renamed and converted into Dutch boys! Typical idiocy one sees in wartime....mustn't let anything interfere with stirring up national hatred of the Germans, right?

Well, in time they reverted back to the German names and became Germans again.

Yes, the Brenda Starr comic did get very, very weird at times. No doubt about that. I guess it should be added to the list.

The one soap opera style comic that did not get the least bit weird, but remained totally sensible and rational, looked great, and had great stories and characters was "Mary Perkins, Onstage" about a career actress in theatre. Darned good comic, extremely well drawn and written. Its heroine, who had a solid and successful stage career but never became famous, was probably the most realistic and sympathetic character of her sort ever to grace the Sunday pages. I still remember that one fondly.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Charley Noble
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 10:01 PM

It's by reading comics such as Mary Worth and Rex Morgan, MD, not to mention Mark Trail, that I've learned how to function in this insane world. I am eternally grateful to their creators, and their dutiful doppelgängers.

Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Rapparee
Date: 21 Apr 08 - 11:39 PM

Please remember that Alley Oop, Prince Valiant and others still stride across the comic pages. Papers are reprising Bloom County and Calvin & Hobbes.

As for other comics -- "Our Boarding House with Major Hoople" appeared every Sunday in our local paper, as did "Bringing Up Father" (with Jiggs and Maggie). There was also "Gasoline Alley" (still running), "The Teenies", and "Smokey Stover."

Let's not forget "Terry and the Pirates" either.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:08 AM

Yes. The oddest thing about "Terry and the Pirates" was the peculiar facial geometry of the characters...particularly the women. Oy! Those gigantic lips! Those razor sharp cheekbones! Those extraordinary foreheads! Scary stuff...but the 40's cool sensibility was certainly there. You could almost taste it.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: john f weldon
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:23 AM

Thanks to McGrath for pointing out some of Windsor McKay's amazing achievements. He wasn't the first animator, but he was the first really good one. In animation he is regarded as one of the Saints.

Alley Oop could be pretty dull, but he inspired an unforgettably silly (and secretly very rude: he was a mean motorscooter!) 50's pop song.

Our Boarding House; terrible drawings, but one great character, the greatest BS artist of all time, Major Hoople.

Gasoline Alley, the opposite. Dull stories, but amazing artwork (in the early days).

I am currently rereading my Herman collection. A total mix, sometimes dull, but sometimes brilliant. And almost no formula.

I don't think anyone's mentioned my favourite, although it comes from long before even I was born. Thimble Theater, which spawned Popeye. Long rambling stories, wild adventures, and the early Popeye wasn't nearly as sweet, (or as smart) as he later became.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: CarolC
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 02:36 AM

I did read it, LH. Like I said... don't be dissin' Mark Trail!


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 10:54 AM

I was just referred to a site, garfieldminusgarfield.com. The resultant strip is more hilarious than the original in a strange sort of way.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 11:02 AM

sorry, that website should be:   garfieldminusgarfield.tumblr.com


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Marion
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 11:23 AM

Along the same lines as that garfield without garfield comic is the Neitzsche Family Circus, which pairs Family Circus panels with Neitzsche quotes. I like it.

Marion


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: john f weldon
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 12:18 PM

One of my retirement projects has been to attempt to revive some of the spirit of earlier comics & comic strips with a new comic book series. Not a "Graphic Novel" and not much angst; just stories that are fun. (And of course loaded with my own prejudices and opinions.)

Ashcan Alley


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 12:30 PM

Carol, what you really need to do to get to the very soul of what Mark Trail is all about is find Frank Cho's parody of it in Liberty Meadows where Mark reappears as "Mark DeRail", pipe firmly and gracefully poised in lips, hair and jawline oh so perfect. Try an upscale comics store and you may find it in the hardbound book which is a collection of numerous past episodes. It's a must read. ;-)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:06 PM

I wholeheartedly agree with LH on Liberty Meadows. In my opinion,Liberty Meadows is the finest strip going, but too few newspapers picked up on it.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:14 PM

Liberty Meadows is great. Its only flaw is that Frank Cho has an obsession with udderly enormous breasts on women and he draws their breasts WAY too large! It's horrifying. He draws breasts that are individually bigger than the poor woman's entire head, for God's sake! It's gotten worse by the year. I fear that Brandy and Jen will soon develop irremediable back problems, and it will all be due to the fact that Frank Cho's mother didn't breast feed him when he was an infant.

Sad! ;-)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Rapparee
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:17 PM

Some of what I consider some of the finest strips IN PRINT:

Liberty Meadows
Get Fuzzy
Zits
Pearls Before Swine
Sherman's Lagoon

There's an entire new world of comics on the World Wide Web, and many are very, very good indeed.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:22 PM

I enjoy his drawings!! :)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:24 PM

I tend to agree with that list, Rapaire.

Most of those comics are good because they have a certain amount of "edge"...or because they perfectly expose the extreme character flaws and/or blind spots of some of their characters.

The hermit crab Hawthorne in Sherman's Lagoon for instance...what a completely egocentric and vicious little bastard he is! Hilarious! Utter malevolence contained in such a tiny form. I used to love the episodes where he would creep up on a wading "hairless beach ape", look at the guy's toe appreciatively, open up a claw, poise it for one delicious instant, and then CLAMP! down. He does it with such total panache.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Bill D
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:25 PM

We had Liberty Meadows here for awhile, but it was cut..oh...4-5 years ago. I never quite got into it, anyway.

What we have now is "Brewster Rocket- Spaceguy", which is either totally DUMB..(as the hero appears)..or a wicked parody on humanity in general.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 01:39 PM

You need to read Liberty Meadows from its beginning, sequentially, to really get the drift of it. I suggest looking at the hardbound collections of past episodes.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Amos
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 02:45 PM

Yeah, I'd say Terry was right up there with Mark Trail for unintended humor.

But Little Hawk, if I may, why are you being so pedantic and didactic?

Haven't you got a better soap-box tucked away in your closet for public occasions? This one is beginning to splinter from too much arm-waving.


A


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 02:50 PM

Why do you care?


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: frogprince
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 03:02 PM

A great moment in comic history occurred when someone, somehow, switched the captions between the days Far Side and a single frame Dennis the Menace. Dennis sat at the table with his parents, looking at his mother with a little smile, and saying "I can just see your little shrunken head in a museum someday".


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 03:03 PM

LOL!!! What a perfect moment.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 07:30 PM

Of the five strips shown on the web site,I would leap to the defense of "Dick Tracy." The "artwork" in the panels shown was not done by Chester Gould, the cartoonist who originated the strip. Gould's work was pretty primitive, but it was a whole lot better than that shown on the web site (looks like the work of some semi-talented high school kid trying to copy Gould's work, but still not getting it).

At the age of about six, "Buck Rogers in the 25th Century" turned me on to comics and to science fiction in general. At the time (late 1930s), there were two different people doing the art work. Whoever did the Sunday strips was quite good (CLICKY #1), but whoever did the dailies set the style that most people associate with the strip (CLICKY #2), which was pretty goofy in a lot of ways, including anatomically.

I copied the drawings (in the Sunday strip) initially, then started drawing my own stuff. I got serious. Got books on professional cartooning, what materials to use, art books and such, and around twelve or thirteen, I had chosen my career. I was going to draw comic strips. In particular, I studied the drawings of Hal Foster ("Prince Valiant") and Alex Raymond ("Flash Gordon"), and Burne Hogarth ("Tarzan"), probably the best actual illustrators in the field (I got a copy of Hogarth's Dynamic Anatomy. Excellent!).

I got a look at some of the first of Bob Kane's "Batman" strips (first published when he was eighteen – CLICKY #3), and if I do say so myself, at the age of fourteen, my stuff was a lot better (in terms of anatomy, line-work, general panel layout, etc.) than his.

I learned the hard way that I could waste a lot of time, ink and paper by drawing the strip as I made up the story. I managed to get my hero into predicaments that I couldn't get him out of without doing something ridiculous and unbelievable. So I started writing the story ahead of time. I'd write a sentence or two describing the drawing in each panel (like distance "camera angle," etc.), and write the dialog for the speech balloons. The scenarios looked like movie scripts. Problem was, I got so interested in the stories that I didn't get around to going back and doing the drawings. I wound up deciding to become a writer instead. And other things attracted my attention. Along came folk music. But I still draw the occasional irreverent cartoon from time to time.

In the 1950s, comics kind of fell on hard times. The EC comics brouhaha, and then the development of Marvel Comics style "bull-pens" where all of the artists have to draw the same style. No individuality. You could always identify Chester Gould's stuff, or Milton Caniff's (CLICKY #4), or Burne Hogarth's, or Hal Foster's, or Alex Raymond's. But you look at a Spiderman or any other Marvel comic book you can't tell who the artist is. Actually, one person writes the story, someone else pencils the drawings, someone else does the ink work, and another person does the color. Assembly line. (Boo! Hiss!)

I agree about "Mary Perkins, Onstage." Kind of a soap, but very well drawn, interesting stories, likable main character (early strip).

Don Firth

P. S. Not Michelangelo or da Vinci, but a Classic, nevertheless.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 07:42 PM

The real Dick Tracy:   CLICKY.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 07:47 PM

Don - Batman first appeared in 1939 when Bob Kane would have been 25 years old. The photo you show features Batman hitting the Joker, who debuted in 1940.    Kane actually did little of the drawing, but took much of the credit.   In fact, much of the Batman character was created by Kane's partner Bill Finger - a man that Kane screwed out of much of the credit (and money) that was due.   There is also some dispute over who created the Joker.   Kane certainly played an important role in Batman's creation, but it was more of a team effort.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: WFDU - Ron Olesko
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 08:16 PM

sorry, that we me writing about Bob Kane. I lost my cookie.   Quick, fire up the Bat Signal!


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 08:36 PM

Don, you are quite right about Chester Gould's art in Dick Tracy...far better than the abominable stuff presented on that website. Gould had a quite memorable and unique style in his art, and it suited the stories well. It was kind of emotionally hard and "cold" looking...much like many of the stories themselves.

The thing that was weird about Dick Tracy was the psychology of it, the unnecessarily gruesome and graphic deaths, the bullets that would go right through a person and come out the other side, distorted and tumbling in the air, the weird criminal characters with their awful faces and strange quirks. There was something really twisted about that comic, but it kept you curious and coming back for more, I'll say that.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Charley Noble
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 09:16 PM

When it comes to artwork I give points to Prince Valiant, although I must confess that I find the current story line oh so boring.

Two newer comics that I follow are Chickweed and Luann, and Wondermark.

Mark Trail gets read each day but it's partly because the characters are so absurd and the plots are so lethargic. Gee and golly, I can frequently anticipate what the next scene will be, and what animal the speech balloon will be issuing from.

I do wish there was a decent reprint of the 1940's vintage Terry and the Pirates. I still lust for the Dragon Lady.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Don Firth
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 09:18 PM

Right, Ron. I got my information, erroneous obviously, from an article that came out concurrent with the release of the "Batman" movie (Michael Keaton). Don't trust movie releases. But my stuff was still better on a number of counts than the drawings in the first comic books.

I was always rather fond of Batman, though, because he didn't have superpowers. He was just good at what he did.

Little Hawk, I think Chester Gould really lost it about the time Diet Smith got into it and started inventing all kinds of gizmos. The wrist radio was okay, but when Diet Smith discovers "the power of magnetism" and various characters start levitating, that stretched the "willing suspension of disbelief" to the breaking point. And Junior's girl friend, the Moon Maid, who could point her finger and zap someone with a laser beam? I mean, Chester, what the hell are you smoking!??

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Rapparee
Date: 22 Apr 08 - 11:39 PM

Don't forget Overdue Media's "Unshelved" comic. And as another good comic, let me inject "Baldo."


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 02:14 AM

Agreed, Don. The advent of Diet Smith was the point at which Dick Tracy descended into madness... ;-)


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: John on the Sunset Coast
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 06:46 PM

If you are referring to "9 Chickweed Lane", Charley, I agree with you. It's very good, but sometimes I feel like a voyeur reading it. Somehow the main characters jumped from 14 to 18 years old, and some of the storylines are pretty racy for family comics pages.

BillD, I think Brewster Rocket is about the level of what my friends and wrote when we were in (what is now) Middle School. Its pretty lame.

Of the comics currently in the LA Times, I only read about six on a regular basis: Mutts, Zits, Candorville, For Better or Worse,
9 Chickweed Lane, Crankshaft and Pearls Before Swine (gotta love them lame-o crocodiles.) OK, seven.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 10:13 PM

The drunk guy in the Mary Worth strip exerpt in the article is obviously Captain Kangaroo! And we thought he only carried carrots and keys in those big ol' pockets of his! I'm shocked! I always thought Mr. Greenjeans was the one with a drinking problem!


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Rapparee
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 10:25 PM

Bee-Dubya, you know darn good and well that the Captain was carryin' on with Mr. Greenjeans, just like Clarabell (who later WAS Captain Kangaroo) was carryin' on with Buffalo Bob and with Howdy Doody. Princess Summerfall Winterspring was doin' it with Chief Thundermug or whatever his name was, and Heidi Doody was gettin' it on with Mayor Phineas T. Bluster AND Dilly Dally and sometimes at the same time. Cap'n Kangaroo was powerful GLAD when he got his own show and only had one guy he had to worry about. The unspoken problem with the Howdy Doody bunch was not only splinters, but arboreal warts -- an STD (Sexual Tree Disease).


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Severn
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 11:25 PM

Howdy Doody was a knotty boy? As well as being strung out?

I remember when Kangaroo, Midnight and Video all graduated from OCS together as Second Loo-tenants, but I thought we were dealing with officers such as Major Hoople and his boarding house tenants waiting for the loo....

The same boarding house where they' were both drawn and quartered.


And the funny looking drawings referred to a bit earlier of the George Wunder drawn Terry & The Pirates came after original artist Milton Caniff left the strip and started on Steve Canyon, whose rendering of the Dragon Lady was by far the better one.

Of course Steve Canyon got wierd when they focused on Poteet and Onion Ringg and their studies at Maumee University. That began to lose me.

And of course, coming into the game late, I had to get my dad to explain why so many of the strips were named for people they were no longer about. Steve Roper never did much in his strip once Mike Nomad came along, and the strip originally started out as Chief Wahoo. Buzz Sawyer was all about Roscoe Sweeney, Barney Google was still co-billed with Snuffy Smith though he only rode through the holler on Spark Plug once a year. And, of course Sam Driver took over Judge Parker at a later date in the same fashion. There were probably a few others, too, but it used to bother me that I was reading strips named after charactors no longer figuring in the stories.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 11:54 PM

Don Firth gave us a link to Prince Valiant. I remember that when I was a kid, PV was the front page feature of Puck the Comic Weekly, and took up about 2/3 of the page. Each panel was an picture worthy of being a book illustration ala Howard Pyle. It is a marvel that Hal Foster could do one page each week, even with the help of inkers, and letterers that he probably had. To this very hour, it is still, IMO, the best illustrated comic bar none.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: GUEST
Date: 23 Apr 08 - 11:55 PM

Sorry again, but 11:54 is from JotSC


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 24 Apr 08 - 12:09 PM

Mad Magazine once did a hilarious parody of Prince Valiant (of Thule). They renamed him "Prince Violent of Drule", and his primary gift was that he went around hacking people in two with the Singing Sword. He killed literally thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, frequently killing the wrong people for the wrong reasons, because he was not terribly smart. He was more dangerous to the society of his day than the Black Plague.


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: clueless don
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 09:06 AM

Sounds like Thrud the barbarian!


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Subject: RE: Most unintentionally hilarious comics ever!
From: Little Hawk
Date: 25 Apr 08 - 11:54 AM

Or Groo the Wanderer.


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