Thursday, April 20, 2017


It musta been a few weeks since I reviewed a collection of 1937 vintage FRECKLES Sunday comics in these pages. Time seems to go by so woosh-like these anymore that its hard to tell. Anyway, this particular presentation of strips taken from three mid-fifties issues of the FRECKLES comic book (which culls various late-forties/early-fifties strip storylines refitted for magazine consumption) shows just how much the title progressed from its kiddie kapers origins through Freckles as an adventuresome teenager right before the strip changed into a gag-a-day feature that I will dwell even more upon whenever my next HIGH SIX will happen to materialize, probably more later than sooner.

Most of the characters that were prevalent in the earlier FRECKLES comics like Ossie, the kid with the koala face, are long gone. The action here is strictly high school hijinx closer to ARCHIE than HAROLD TEEN with some typical teenage stories popping up in the mix. Nothing that's gonna make you jump up and shout in ecstatic glee mind you, but they do show that sorta suburban slob-styled banality that sure comes off swell next to the modern day deca-drama that makes up a good portion of living, ifyaknowaddamean.

Some nice sagas are reprinted here including one featuring some new teenage neighbors putting on heavy duty Southern airs in order to impress the Yankee rubes, Lard Smith reprising his role as "The Moan" in yet another crooner spoof (this particular saga also introduces Livermore, the English butler who eventually became the Pop Tate of the strip when he opened "The Crumpet Hut"), and a rather funny series of strips dealing with those old bid for a box lunch and eat it with the gal who made it auctions, a practice that I think would never see any serious revival in today's sexually ambiguous world.

Not only that but some FRECKLES Sundays are reprinted as well as are a few HECTOR's, the "topper" strip featuring a friend of kid brother Tag which naturally has more of the old Freckles as a child strip sorta feel. Also padding out these mags is BRENDA BREEZE, a neat pseudo-pantomime strip featuring this sexy fifties-kinda gal who gets into those funny sitegag situations that you used to see plenty of at least until the funny pages began to "mature" much to our detriment. And of course you get the two pages of text which was so outta-place that the ghouls in the EC horror titles used to joke about 'em, but if Bill Shute can read 'em maybe you can too!

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