Sunday, February 28, 2010

Sunday Funnies: BEETLE BAILEY


Created by Mort Walker in 1950, Beetle Bailey is one of the longest running strips in newspaper comics. It's also notable in that Walker himself still has a hand in each daily strip, now assisted by his son, Greg, unlike older 'legacy' strips that have no connection at all to the original creators.
At the height of it's popularity, Beetle branched out from the newspapers into comics, cartoons, and lots of other merchandising. This selection comes from the end of that peak period, when the comics were being published by Charlton.

Writing and art uncredited.
from BEETLE BAILEY #1, January 1970

One of the most popular criticisms of Beetle Bailey is that it's bland and old fashioned. That's a matter of personal taste and opinion, but don't be fooled; the strip has stirred up plenty of controversy over the years. These are excerpts from a 'round table' discussion on comic strips, where Mort himself explains two of the bigger upsets.

from COMICS FEATURE #35, May 1985

from COMICS FEATURE #37, September 1985

I laughed pretty hard at the second interview where Mort's trying to defend himself. Especially at the part about women being able to do comic strips "in between changing diapers". Great defense there.

YouTube Links
I'm not sure if all 50 cartoons are available, but I did find more episodes than I thought I would.

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