Return to home"Of Mice and Magin: A History of American Animated
Cartoons" was authored Leonard Maltin.
(SFC, 7/13/02, p.A19) Comiclopedia: http://www.lambiek.net/artists/index.htm 1539
Apr 17, Tobias Stimmer, Swiss painter, cartoonist
(Comedia), was born.
1751 Sep 13, Henry Kobell,
Dutch painter and cartoonist, was born.
1754 May 9, The first American
newspaper cartoon was published. The illustration in Benjamin
Franklin's Pennsylvania Gazette showed a snake cut into sections,
each part representing an American colony; the caption read, "Join
(AP, 5/9/97)(HN, 5/9/98)
1768 Apr 20, Giovanni AC
Canaletto (70), Italian painter, cartoonist (Rialto), died.
1788 Apr 5, Franz Pforr, German
painter, cartoonist (Lukasbund), was born.
1802 Jul 7, The first comic
book was published in Hudson, NY. "The Wasp" was created by Robert
1808 Feb 20, Honoré Daumier
(d.1879), French painter, sculptor, caricaturist and lithographer,
was born in Marseilles. He painted Crispin and Scapin.
(AAP, 1964)(WUD, 1994, p.369)(WSJ, 3/10/00,
1815 Jun 1, James Gillray
(b.1757), British caricaturist and printmaker, died. He is famous
for his etched political and social satires, mainly published
between 1792 and 1810.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Gillray)(Econ, 12/19/09, p.99)
1829-1833 Honore Daumier created his bust of Comte
de Lameth. Daumier honed his caricaturing skills with a series of
terra-cotta busts that lampooned the right-wing leaders of the court
party. Lameth had fought for the colonists in the American
Revolution and had voted to abolish the aristocracy during the
(WSJ, 3/10/00, p.W16)
1832 Apr 15, Wilhelm Busch,
German artist, was born. He created the precursor to the cartoon
1832 Honore Daumier, French
artist, was imprisoned for 6 months for his barbs against King
(WSJ, 3/10/00, p.W16)
1834 Honore Daumier created his
lithograph "The Legislative Belly."
(WSJ, 5/9/00, p.A24)
1835 The French government
prohibited political caricature.
(Econ, 12/20/03, p.75)
1843 In Britain Punch coined
the term “cartoon" to describe its satyrical sketches.
(Econ, 12/22/12, p.129)
1852 Mar 13, Uncle Sam made his
debut as a cartoon character in the New York Lantern.
1867 May 13, Frank Brangwyn,
painter, muralist, cartoonist (Willam Morris), was born in Wales.
1875 Sep 11, 1st newspaper
cartoon strip, "Professor Tigwissel’s Burglar Alarm" appeared in the
New York "Daily Graphics" newspaper.
1877 Apr 29, Tad Dorgen,
cartoonist and columnist, was born.
1879 Feb 11, Honore Daumier
(b.1808), French caricaturist, painter, died.
(WUD, 1994 p.369)(MC, 2/11/02)
1879 Jun 21, Umberto
Brunelleschi, Italian cartoonist, illustrator (Candide), was born.
1880 Aug 22, George Herriman
(d.1944), cartoonist and creator of Krazy Kat, was born.
1883 Jun 11, Frank O. King,
"Gasoline Alley" cartoonist, was born in Cashton, Wisc.
1883 Jul 4, Rube Goldberg
(Ruben Lucius Goldberg, 1883-1970) cartoonist, was born in San
Francisco. He was known for cartoons featuring absurdly complicated
mechanical devices to accomplish absurdly simple tasks.
(WUD, 1994, p.607)(SFEC, 4/5/98, p.A28)(IB,
1895 May, Newspaper cartoonist
Richard Felton Outcault introduced a new and "distinctly different"
cartoon to the readers of Joseph Pulitzer's New York World. "At the
Circus in Hogan's Alley" set the standard for modern newspaper comic
strips with a zany cast of recurring characters in boisterous plots
printed in a color supplement. Americans loved the cartoon,
especially the character Mickey Dugan, the goofy-looking boy
described as having big ears, a gap-toothed grin and a long yellow
nightshirt. By the summer of 1896, "The Yellow Kid" was so closely
identified with Pulitzer's newspaper that the term "yellow
journalism" was coined to describe the new style of sensationalistic
reporting that characterized the World and many of its competitors.
(HN, 5/18/99)(Econ, 12/22/12, p.129)
1900 Apr 27, Walter Lantz,
cartoonist, creator of Woody Woodpecker, was born.
1902 Nov 16, A cartoon appeared
in the Washington Star, prompting the Teddy Bear Craze, after
President Teddy Roosevelt refused to kill a captive bear tied up for
him to shoot during a hunting trip to Mississippi.
1902 National syndication of
comic strips in newspapers originated when Hearst started selling
the right to reproduce his strips in other newspapers.
(http://tinyurl.com/3bqo2r)(WSJ, 12/29/07, p.A8)
1903 Jun 21, Al[bert]
Hirschfield, cartoonist (NINA, NY Times), was born in St Louis, Mo.
1905 Oct 5, Winsor McCay
(1871-1934), cartoonist, debuted his “Little Nemo In Slumberland" in
the NY Herald. An art book reproducing over 100 of his best pages in
full broadsheet was published in 2005.
1905 Ruben Garrett Lucius
Goldberg (1883-1970), anthropologist aka Rube Goldberg, was hired by
the San Francisco Chronicle as a sports cartoonist. He became
renowned as the comic inventor of complex machines to do simple
tasks. In 1948 he received a Pulitzer Prize for his political
1906 Apr 6, 1st animated
cartoon was copyrighted.
1906 Aug 21, Friz Freleng,
animator (Bugs Bunny-Emmy 1982), was born.
1907 Feb 28, Milton Caniff,
cartoonist (Terry and the Pirates), was born in Hillsboro, Ohio.
1908 May 30, Mel
Blanc (d.1989), voice of Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd, and Porky Pig in
Warner Brothers cartoons, was born in San Francisco. When he died he
had "That's All Folks" inscribed on his tombstone.
(SFEC, 4/11/99, Z1 p.8)(AP, 5/30/08)
1912 Jun 17, Wessel Couzijn,
sculptor, cartoonist (Auschwitz-monument), was born.
1913 Jan 20, Jose Guadalupe
Posada, Mexican cartoonist, died. He had created Catrina, the
Skeleton Lady in her elegant broad-brimmed hat in a satirical
engraving sometime between 1910 and his death. Her image grew over
the years to symbolize Mexico’s Day of the Dead.
1913 Aug 25, Walt Kelly,
cartoonist who created the comic strip "Pogo," was born.
1913 Oct 28, The "Krazy Kat"
comic strip by George Herriman (1880-1944) debuted as a daily comic
strip in the New York Evening Journal.
1913 The Toonerville Folks
comic strip by Fontaine Fox began about this time and continued to
1955. After a few years the strip was often named the Toonerville
Trolley, a funny electric streetcar featured in the strip. Mickey
McGuire was a character in the strip and was played by a child actor
named Joe Yule Jr. in several silent movies. Yule took the McGuire
name for himself, but was sued by Fox. He then changed his name to
(SFC, 11/7/07, p.G8)
1917 Aug 28, Jack Kirby,
cartoonist (X-Men, Spiderman, Hulk, Capt America), was born.
1918 Nov 24, Frank O. King
premiered his comic strip "Gasoline Alley" in the Chicago Tribune.
He aged his characters over time.
(www.toonopedia.com/gasalley.htm)(SFC, 7/8/98, Z1
p.3)(WSJ, 6/20/01, p.A1)
1918 Dec 19, Robert Ripley
(1890-1949) began his "Champs and Chumps" cartoon series in the NY
Globe. By 1929 the sports series turned into “Ripley’s Believe It or
1919 Jun 17, The "Barney
Google" cartoon strip by Billy DeBeck premiered. In 1924 he
introduced a horse named spark Plug to the strip.
1919 Dec 19, The Thimble
Theatre cartoon strip, by Elzie Segar (1894-1938) of Chesater, Ill.,
made its debut in the New York Journal and featured the characters
Olive Oyl, Castor Oyl, and Ham Gravy, who were the comic's leads for
about a decade. Segar added Popeye in 1929.
1919 Movie audiences were
introduced to Felix the Cat. Otto Messmer created Felix for an
animation studio owned by Pat Sullivan, who licensed the character.
A. Schoenhut & Co. of Philadelphia (f.1872) began marketing
Felix toys in the 1920s.
(SFC, 8/31/05, p.G3)
1920 Mar 3, Robert Searle,
cartoonist, was born.
1920 Mar 14, Hank Ketchum,
cartoonist (Dennis the Menace), was born in Seattle, Wa.
1923 Jun 27, Paul F. Conrad,
cartoonist (Pulitzer 1964, 71, 84), was born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
1923 Frank Willard (1958)
created the Moon Mullins comic strip for the Chicago Tribune. The
strip continued with other artists following Willard’s death until
(SFC, 9/19/07, p.G6)
1924 The character Caspar
Milquetoast appeared in the comic strip “The Timid Soul" created by
H.T. Webster. The term milquetoast became a description for a weak,
ineffectual or bland person.
1926 Jan, Walt and Roy Disney
moved to their new studio at 2719 Hyperion in Los Angeles.
1927 Walt Disney (1901-1966)
created the cartoon character Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. He was a
precursor to Mickey Mouse.
(WSJ, 2/10/06, p.B1)
1928 Nov 18, Walt Disney’s
"Steamboat Willie," starring Mickey Mouse, premiered at the Colony
Theater in NYC. It was the first successful sound-synchronized
(TMC, 1994, p.1928)(AP, 11/18/97)
1928 In Denmark Palle Huld
(d.2010) won a competition organized by Danish newspaper that wanted
to send a teenager would-be-reporter around the globe. For 44 days
the 15-year-old traveled to North America, Japan, Siberia and
Germany, and was greeted by 20,000 people upon his return to
Copenhagen. Herge, the pen name of Belgian author Georges Remi,
heard of Huld's journey which reportedly inspired him to create
Tintin, the globe-trotting reporter.
1929 Jan 17, The first Popeye
character appeared in the Thimble Theater cartoon strip by Elzie
Segar (1894-1938) of Chesater, Ill.
1929 Aug 21, Marie Severin,
comic book artist, was born. In the 1950s she worked for the Federal
Reserve Bank of New York as it began publishing educational
1929 The Buck Rogers comic was
1st introduced. A radio show followed from 1932-1947. Dick Calkins,
co-author of Buck Rogers, died at 67. In 1988 Lorraine Dille
Williams authored "Buck Rogers: The First 60 Years in the 25th
(SFC, 9/2/02, p.D8)(SFC, 4/13/05, p.G4)
1929 The "Tarzan" comic strip
first showed up in newspapers.
(SFC, 3/30/97, Z1. p.2)
1929 Georges Remi (1907-1983),
Belgian author and illustrator, created the cartoon character Tintin
under the pseudonym Herge for the children’s supplement, Le Petit
Vingtieme. Herge wanted to draw cartoons about the Wild West of
America, but his publisher ordered that the new fictional reporter
be sent to the soviet Union and then to Belgium’s colony in the
6/24/06, p.98)(Econ, 12/20/08, p.82)
1930 Aug 9, A forerunner of the
cartoon character Betty Boop made her debut in Max Fleischer’s
animated short "Dizzy Dishes."
1930 Sep 8, Cartoonist Murat
"Chic" Young (d.1973) introduced the cartoon strip "Blondie." In
2005 it was written seven days a week by his son, Dean, who took
over when his father died, and artist Denis Lebrun.
(AP, 9/8/99)(AP, 7/17/05)
1930 The first cartoon with
sound featured Felix the Cat.
(SFEC, 11/3/96, Z1 p.2)
1930 “Sinkin’ in the Bathtub."
the first cartoon in the Looney Tunes series, debuted.
(WSJ, 6/28/08, p.W6)
1931 Aug 1, Tom Wilson
(cartoonist of Ziggy), was born.
1931 Oct 4, The comic strip
"Dick Tracy," created by Chester Gould (1900-1985), made its debut.
1932 Apr 9, Paul Krassner,
founder and editor of The Realist, cartoonist (MAD mag.), was born.
1932 May 12, Goofy, aka Dippy
Dawg, 1st appeared in 'Mickey's Revue' by Walt Disney.
1932 The Disney short film
“Flowers and Trees" was the first cartoon made in full-color
Technicolor and was the first animated film to win an Oscar.
(WSJ, 6/28/08, p.W6)
1933 Feb 17, Blondie Boopadoop
married Dagwood Bumstead in the comic Blondie.
1933 Vincent T. Hamlin began
his "Alley Oop" comic strip. It was named after words used by French
gymnast and trapeze artists: allez oup.
(SFC, 12/15/01, p.A25)
1933 In Cleveland, Ohio,
Glenville High School classmates Jerry Siegel (b.1914) and Joe
Shuster (b.1914) created the Superman cartoon character.
1934 Jun 9, Donald Duck made
his 1st screen appearance ("The Wise Little Hen"). His distinctive
quack was voiced originally by Clarence Nash.
1934 Jul 26, Winsor McCay
(b.1871), cartoonist, died. His “Little Nemo In Slumberland" was
launched by the NY Herald in 1905. An art book reproducing over 100
of his best pages in full broadsheet was published in 2005.
1934 Aug 13, The satirical
comic strip "Li'l Abner," created by Al Capp, made its debut.
1934 The Popeye cartoon “We Aim
to Please" introduced the catch phrase “I will gladly pay you
Tuesday for a hamburger today," uttered by J. Wellington Wimpy.
(AH, 6/07, p.11)
1935 Jul 24, Pat Oliphant,
political cartoonist, was born.
1937 Mar 26, A 6-foot-tall
concrete statue of the cartoon character Popeye was unveiled during
the Second Annual Spinach Festival in Crystal City, Texas.
1937 Apr 17, Cartoon characters
Daffy Duck, Elmer J. Fudd and Petunia Pig, debuted.
1937 Apr 28, The 1st animated
cartoon electric sign was displayed in NYC.
1937 Dec 21, "Snow White"
premiered as the 1st feature-length color & sound cartoon.
1937 Hal Foster began the
Prince Valiant cartoon saga. He passed it on to John Cullen Murphy
(d.2004) in 1970. Murphy passed it on to Gary Gianni in 2004.
(SFC, 7/9/04, p.B7)
1938 Jun 1, Superman made his
first appearance in D.C. Comics’ Action Comics Series issue #1. The
comic book sold for 10 cents. By 1995 surviving copies sold for over
$75,000. Jerry Siegel (b.1914) and Joe Shuster (b.1914) created
Superman in 1933. In 2001 Bradford W. Wright authored "Comic Book
Nation," a history of comic books. In 2009 a copy of the first
Superman comic book sold for 317,200 dollars at an auction.
6/2/96, p.T-11)(WSJ, 5/23/01, p.A24)(AFP, 3/14/09)
1938 Nov 6, The Red Ryder and
Little Beaver cartoon strip by Fred Harman (b.1902) began appearing
in the Chicago Sun. It went out of syndication in 1964.
(WSJ, 12/23/03, p.D8)
1938 Bugs Bunny made his
premiere in the cartoon "Porky’s Hare Hunt."
(WSJ, 5/4/01, p.A1)
1938 The animated cartoon
“Porky in Wackyland" featured Porky Pig in a Salvador Dali-esque
(WSJ, 6/28/08, p.W6)
1939 May 1, Batman comics hit
the street in Detective Comics No. 27. Bob Kane (d.1998 at 83)
created Batman for DC Comics. The cartoon hero was based on Zorro,
da Vinci’s sketch of a flying man, and a silent mystery movie titled
(SFC, 11/6/98, p.D5)(SFC, 12/14/00, p.C9)(WSJ,
10/25/02, p.A1)(AP, 8/2/10)
1939 May, John Hench (d.2004)
joined Disney as a sketch artist on "Fantasia." He was the official
portrait painter of Mickey Mouse.
(SFC, 2/7/04, p.A21)
1940 Feb 20, The Tom and Jerry
cartoon “Puss Gets the Boot," created by Hanna & Barbera,
debuted by MGM. It went on to win 7 Academy Awards.
1940 Feb 23, Walt Disney's
animated movie "Pinocchio" was released.
1940 May, Batman No. 1,
who made his first appearance in 1939 as a character in Detective
Comics No. 27, was the first solo spin-off for Batman. The debut
included the original appearances by two of Batman's key foes, the
Joker and Catwoman.
1940 Jun 29, In the Batman
Comics, mobsters rubbed out a circus highwire team known as the
Flying Graysons, leaving their son Dick (Robin) an orphan.
1940 Jun 30, "Brenda Starr," a
cartoon strip by Dale Messick, a woman, appeared in a Chicago
Tribune insert. In Dec, 2010, Tribune Media Services announced that
it was ending the feature’s newspaper syndication.
1940 Jul 27, Bugs Bunny made
his official debut in the Warner Bros. animated cartoon "A Wild
Hare." This marked the beginning of the Bugs Bunny series by Fred
"Tex" Avery along with the rhetorical "What’s up, Doc?"
(AP, 7/27/97)(SFEC, 10/5/97, Z1 p.6)
1940 Fawcett Publications spun
off Mary Marvel as a comic character from the Captain Marvel series.
(SFC, 9/7/05, p.G9)
1940 Universal Pictures
introduced Woody Woodpecker in the animated short “Knock Knock."
(WSJ, 6/28/08, p.W6)
1941 Mar, Timely Comics, the
predecessor of Marvel Comics, introduced the "Captain America"
1941 Dec 22, The cartoon
character Archie Andrews, drawn by Montana and written by Vic Bloom,
first appeared in Pep Comics #22. In 2014 Archie Comics said the
Archie character will be heroically sacrifice himself in Life with
1941 Dec, Wonder Woman, a comic
book character created by William Moulton Marston (1893-1947) made
her debut in All Star Comics #8.
1941 Plastic Man debuted in US
comic books. After an accident at a chemical plant gives Eel O'Brian
the ability to stretch and alter his shape, he renounces his
criminal past and becomes the longest arm of the law. Green Arrow
also appeared in US comic books. The Emerald Archer learns his
skills while trapped on a desert island. He later escapes to become
a modern Robin Hood.
1942 Aug 13, Walt Disney's
animated feature "Bambi" premiered at Radio City Music Hall in New
1942 Nov 21, Tweety Bird,
cartoon character, was born.
1943 Aug 30, Robert Crumb, US,
cartoonist (Father Time, Fritz Cat), was born.
1944 Feb 20, The Batman &
Robin comic strip premiered in newspapers.
1944 Jun 25, George Herriman
(b.1880), creator of the "Krazy Kat" cartoon strip (1913-1944),
died. In 2002 Fantagraphics published "Krazy and Ignatz: The
Komplete Kat Comics 1925-1926."
(SFC, 1/18/97, p.D1)(SSFC, 3/24/02,
1944 Sep 13, Heath Robinson
(b.1872), English cartoonist, died. He is best known for drawings of
eccentric machines and "Heath Robinson" has entered the language as
a description of any unnecessarily complex and implausible
1945 Jan 6, Pepe Le Pew, the
cartoon skunk created by Chuck Jones and voiced by Mel Blanc,
debuted in Odor-Able Kitty.
1945 Mar 3, Mystery fans
remember this day as they gathered around the radio set, listening
to the Mutual Broadcasting System as Superman encountered Batman and
Robin for the first time. The cartoon character was created by Joe
Schuster and Jerry Siegel at DC Comics.
(HC, Internet, 3/3/98)(SFC, 7/8/04, p.B9)
1945 Jul 28, Jim Davis,
cartoonist (Garfield), was born.
1947 May 2, William Moulton
Marston (b.1893), American psychologist, inventor and comic book
writer, died. He created the character Wonder Woman, who made her
debut in All Star Comics #8 in December 1941.
1948 Jul 21, Garry Trudeau,
political cartoonist (Doonesbury), was born.
1949 Mar 6, Robert Storm
Petersen (b.1882), Danish cartoonist, writer, animator, illustrator,
painter and humorist, died. He is known almost exclusively by his
pen name Storm P.
1949 France banned children’s
books and comic strips from presenting cowardice in a “favorable
light," on pain of up to a year in prison for errant publishers.
(Econ, 12/20/08, p.81)
1950 Feb 15, Walt Disney's
animated "Cinderella" was released.
1950 Aug 14, Gary Larson,
cartoonist (Far Side), was born.
1950 Sep 4, The Beetle Bailey
cartoon appeared for the 1st time in syndication. Beatle Bailey, the
laziest private in the army, was created by Mort Walker.
(USAT, 8/31/00, p.1D)(SFC, 6/18/96, p.B2)
1950 Sep 5, Cathy Guisewite,
cartoonist and creator of the “Cathy" cartoon strip, was born in
Dayton, Ohio. In 2010 Guisewite said her cartoon strip, begun in
1976, would end on Oct 3.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cathy_Guisewite)(SFC, 8/12/10, p.A12)
1950 Oct 2, The comic strip
"Peanuts," created by Charles M. Schulz (28), was syndicated to
seven newspapers as "Li'l Folks." It started with only four
characters: Charlie Brown, Peppermint Patty (Reichardt), Shermy and
the world's most famous beagle, Snoopy. Schulz announced his
retirement in 1999 with the last Peanuts to appear Feb 13, 2000.
(SFC, 11/29/97, p.C1)(SFC, 12/15/99, p.E1)(AP,
1950 Oct, Hank Ketcham began
his cartoon strip "Dennis the Menace."
(SFC, 9/20/97, p.E1)(SFC, 12/15/99, p.E1)
1950 Charles Preston conceived
the "Pepper and Salt" cartoon for the Wall Street Journal.
(WSJ, 11/2/99, p.A24)
1951 Mar 12, "Dennis the
Menace," created by cartoonist Hank Ketcham, made its syndicated
debut in 16 newspapers.
1951 Jul 26, Alice in
Wonderland, an American animated film produced by Walt Disney, was
released in New York City and London by RKO Radio Pictures. It was
based primarily on Lewis Carroll's “Alice's Adventures in
Wonderland" with a few additional elements from “Through the
1952 Aug, Mad Magazine, cover
dated for October, came out with its first issue. It was co-founded
by Harvey Kurtzman and Will Elder.
(SFEC, 12/20/98, Z1 p.8)(SFC, 3/3/99, Z1
1952 Charles M. Schulz
copyrighted his Lucy character in the Peanuts cartoon strip.
(SFC, 10/22/08, p.G3)
1952 Osamu Tezuka, Japanese
cartoonist, dreamed up Astro Boy and put his b-day at April 7, 2003.
His features soon defined the Japanese style called anime. In 1963
Astro Boy was imported to the US and 10-min. episodes ran until
(SSFC, 4/13/03, p.C4)(WSJ, 1/15/04, p.B1)
1953 John Werthan authored
"Seduction of the Innocent," which linked comic books to juvenile
delinquency. This led to the creation of the Comics Code Authority.
EC Comics withdrew "Tales From the crypt" and many other titles.
(SFC, 1/21/04, p.D2)
1953 Speedy Gonzalez, a cartoon
mouse with a Mexican accent, debuted in the US.
1954 May 2, Walt Disney and
associates announced plans to build a $9 million Disneyland on a
160-acre tract, once part of the Rancho San Juan Cajon de Santa Ana,
in Orange County.
(SFC, 4/30/04, p.F5)
1954 Dec 23, Safeway stores in
the Bay Area announced they will stop welling comic books and
pocket-size books due to their emphasis on horror, crime and sex.
(SFC, 12/24/04, p.F2)
1955 Mar 1, The SF Chronicle
reported that a Univ. of California survey found that Americans
spend more money on comic books that all the country’s elementary
schools and high schools spend on textbooks.
(SFC, 2/25/05, p.F4)
1955 Jun, The Detroit centered
12 O’Clock Comics with Soupy Sales went national on the ABC network
(DFP, 7/28/96, p.F8)
1955 New York Gov. Averell
Harriman signed legislation that prohibited the distribution of
lurid comics, banned their sale to people under the age of 18 and
banned such words as “crime," “terror," “horror," and “sex" from
comic book titles. In 2008 David Hajdu authored “The Ten-Cent
Plague: The Great Comic Book Scare and How it Changed America."
(WSJ, 3/14/08, p.W2)
1956 Jan 13, Lyonel Feininger
(b.1871), American-German painter, died. His work included the
woodcut "Kreuzende Segelschiffe" (1919) and the pen and ink wash
"Three Ghosts" (1953). A catalog of his prints was made by Leona
Prasse (1897-1984), late curator of prints at the Cleveland Museum
of Art. Feininger published comics for the Chicago Tribune from
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyonel_Feininger)(HT, 5/97, p.60)(WSJ,
1956 May 20, Max Beerbohm,
caricaturist, writer (Yet Again), died.
1956 Julius Schwartz (d.2004),
Gardner Fox and Carmine Infantino revived the Flash, mothballed
since 1949, for DC Comics.
(SFC, 2/13/04, p.A28)
1956 DC Comics introduced
Batwoman with the alter ego Kathy Kane. The character was killed off
in 1979. In 2006 DC Comics revived Batwoman as a lesbian.
(SFC, 6/1/06, p.A2)
1957 Feb 5, Joseph Benson
Hardaway (b.1895), animation director and voice actor, died.
Nicknamed "Bugs," he was instrumental in naming the character "Bugs
Bunny" when, while working on the film short "Hare-um, Scare-um," an
animator handed him a model sheet of the rabbit character.
1957 Mr. Magoo, a near-sighted
cartoon character, won his 2nd academy award.
(WSJ, 7/31/97, p.A1)
1957 MGM closed its cartoon
studio in a panic over diminishing audiences due to television.
William Hanna and Joe Barbera (1911-2006) formed their own company
and began making cartoons for TV. The Hanna-Barbera TV cartoon
program "Ruff & Reddy" began.
(SFC, 6/3/97, p.B4)(WSJ, 12/21/06, p.D8)
1957 Terrytoons produced the
"Tom Terrific" cartoons series until 1959. Lionel Wilson (d.2003 at
79) was the voice. It ran on Captain Kangaroo.
(SFC, 5/31/03, p.A20)
1958 Feb 17, The comic strip
"B.C.", created by Johnny Hart (1931-2007), 1st appeared.
1958 Pierre Culliford (Peyo),
Belgian cartoonist, created the gnomelike Smurfs for publisher
Charles Dupuis (d.2002 at 84). Hanna-Barbera turned it into a US
cartoon program in 1981.
(SFC, 12/3/02, p.A24)
1959 Albert Uderzo and René
Goscinny introduced their comic characters Asterix and Obelix in the
magazine Pilote. A book followed in 1961. Comic books in France are
known as bandes dessinees (BD).
(Hem., 4/97, p.103)(Econ, 12/23/06, p.72)
1960 May 25, Benoît van Innis,
Belgian cartoonist, painter, (New York Post), was born.
1960 Sep 30, The Flintstones, a
cartoon about the domestic life of a stoneage family premiered on
TV. It was the 1st prime time animation show and continued in prime
time to 1987.
(MC, 9/30/01)(SFC, 7/27/05, p.G2)
1960 The magazine Hara-Kiri was
founded as a monthly French version of Mad.
(Econ, 12/20/03, p.76)
1961 Phil Frank began a daily
cartoon for the State News, the student newspaper of Michigan State
(SFC, 6/16/05, p.E2)
1962 Cartoonist Charles Shultz
(b.1922) authored “Happiness Is a Warm Puppy."
(SSFC, 11/25/12, DB p.46)
1963 Mar, Spider-Man was
introduced by Marvel Comics with 700 copies. It was written by Stan
Lee and drawn by Steve Ditko. Their character was first introduced
(SFC, 7/8/04, p.B9)(SFC, 2/15/14, p.E4)
1963 Dan O'Neill presented his
Odd Bodkins cartoon strip in the San Francisco Chronicle.
(SSFC, 1/11/04, p.M2)
1965 Morrie Turner (1923-2014)
unveiled his “Wee Palls" (1965) cartoon strip. He was the first
African American cartoonist to draw a nationally syndicated strip
exploring racial themes during the peak of the civil rights movement
(SFC, 1/29/14, p.E1)
1966 Dec 15, Walt Disney
(b.1901), movie producer, actor and director, died in Los Angeles.
In 1998 a CD-ROM was produced titled: “Walt Disney: An Intimate
History of the Man and His magic." In 2006 Neal Gabler authored
“Walt Disney: The Triumph of the American Imagination."
(AP, 12/15/97)(SFC, 11/4/98, p.E1)(WSJ, 11/3/06,
1968 Jul 17, Beatle's animated
film "Yellow Submarine" premiered in London. The US premiere was on
1968 Sep 14, Al Frueh (b.1880),
American caricature artist (New Yorker magazine), died.
1968 Gary Arlington (29)
founded America’s first comics store on 23rd St. in San Francisco’s
Mission district. The comics sold for 12 cents. Arlington (d.2014)
closed his store in 2003 after 35 years in business.
(SFC, 1/22/14, p.E3)
1969 Sep, Marvel Comics
introduced Falcon, the first African-American superhero, in an issue
of its Captain America comics. In 2014 Sam “The Falcon" Wilson took
over as the new patriotic avenger Captain America.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falcon_(comics))(SFC, 7/18/14, p.D4)
1970 Apr 15, Last Gasp’s first
publication, Slow Death Funnies #1, came out for the first “Earth
Day" (see April 22). Ron Turner founded Last Gasp, a San Francisco
publisher of underground comics and graphic novels.
(SFC, 3/27/10, p.E1)(http://tinyurl.com/ye78lv9)
1970 Dec 7, Rube Goldberg (87),
US cartoonist (Mike & Ike, Pulitzer 1948), died.
1970 Dec 11, Walt Disney's
"Aristocats" was released.
1971 Bill Mauldin (1921-2003),
American soldier cartoonist, authored “The Brass Ring," his story of
the Stars and Stripes newspaper during WWII. Mauldin had created the
cartoon soldiers Willie and Joe.
1971 Disney Corp. filed suit
against the Air Pirates, underground cartoonists led, more or less,
by Dan O'Neill. 2 issues of Air Pirates Funnies had appeared under
the imprint of Hell Comics, a front for Last Gasp. In 2004 Bob Levin
authored "The Pirates and the Mouse: Disney's War Against the
(SSFC, 1/11/04, p.M2)
1972 Sep 11, Max Fleischer
(b.1889), Viennese-born cartoonist, died in California. In the 1930s
he introduced the character of 'Betty Boop' in the "Dizzy Dishes"
cartoons which brought him great fame.
1973 Oct 18, Walt Kelly
(b.1913), US comic strip artist, died. He was notable for his comic
strip Pogo featuring characters that inhabited a portion of the
Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia.
1974 Mort Walker, creator of
the Beetle Bailey cartoon character, opened the National Cartoon
Museum in Greenwich, Conn. The museum moved a few times before
closing in 2002. In 2008 Ohio State Univ. received the collection
and planned to make it available for all to see.
(WSJ, 7/16/08, p.A14)
1975 Jun 16, The cartoon
“Travels With Farley" by Phil Frank (1943-2007) launched in 50
(SFC, 6/16/05, p.E2)
1976 Feb 6, Vince Guaraldi
(b.1928), jazz pianist, died in Menlo Park, Ca. He wrote "Cast Your
Fate to the Wind" and composed for the Charley Schulz "Peanuts"
(SFEC, 10/18/98, DB
1976 Nov 22, Comic strip
"Cathy," by Cathy Guisewhite, made its debut.
1977 Jan 6, William Gropper
(b.1897), painter and political cartoonist, died. He worked for the
radical publications "The Masses" and "Art Front."
1977 Apr 21, The musical play
"Annie" opened on Broadway, the 1st of 2,377 performances. Laurie
Beechman (d.1998) made her debut in the show based on the “Little
Orphan Annie" comic strip. Beechman later played Grizabella for 5
years in “Cats."
(SFC, 3/10/98, p.A17)(AP, 4/21/08)
1977 Nov 13, The comic strip
"Li'l Abner" appeared in newspapers for the last time as creator Al
Capp (1909-1979) retired. He had started the strip 1934.
1977 The animated film “Tubby
the Tuba" was produced by Pixar.
(Econ, 5/24/08, p.107)
1978 Jun 19, America's favorite
lasagna-loving cat, Garfield, created by Jim Davis, first appeared
in newspapers as a comic strip.
1978 Will Eisner (1917-2005)
published “A Contract With God," the 1st serious book-length comic
to describe itself as a graphic novel.
(Econ, 10/30/04, p.86)(WSJ, 1/10/06, p.D10)
1978 Charles M. Schulz
memorialized Christo's work with Snoopy pondering what the Bulgarian
artist would do next. In 2003 Christo created his "Wrapped Snoopy
(SFC, 10/11/03, p.A15)
1979 Nov 5, Al Capp (b.1909),
US cartoonist, died. He is best known or his Li'l Abner comic strip.
1979 Dec 23, SF cartoonist
Marty Links retired her comic strip, Bobby Sox, saying there was no
place for her characters in the modern cartoon world.
(SFC, 12/24/04, p.F2)
1979 John Saunders (d.2003 at
79) took over writing the "Mary Worth" comic strip soap opera from
his father, Allen Saunders.
(SFC, 11/18/03, p.A24)
1983 Haim Saban (b.1944)
founded Saban Entertainment with the rights to a handful of Schlocky
Japanese cartoons. The company recycled foreign shows for kids and
dubbed them into English. "Power Rangers Turbo," and "Ninja Turtles:
The Next Generation" were some of its later programming.
1983 Kenshi Hirokane created
his Mr Shima, a salaryman manga (cartoon) character. By 2008 some 30
million Shima Kosaku books had been sold.
(Econ, 8/9/08, p.65)
1984 Oct 1, Gary Trudeau's
Doonesbury comic strip resumed after a 2-year hiatus.
1985 Feb 19, Mickey Mouse was
welcomed in China.
1985 Feb 20, Clarence Nash
(80), voice of Donald Duck, died of leukemia, in Calif.
1985 Mar 2, The Gordo cartoon
strip, one of the first in the US to celebrate Mexican culture,
ended. Gus Arriola (1917-2008) had begun the strip in 1941.
(SSFC, 2/3/08, p.B1)
1985 Nov 18, Bill Watterson’s
comic strip Calvin and Hobbes began a 10-year run that ended Dec 31,
1995. In 2005 Watterson published his 3-volume set: The complete
Calvin and Hobbes."
1985 Mark Gruenwald (d.1996),
the editor of Marvel Comics issued a 12-comic series, “Squadron
Supreme," as an homage parody to DC Books Justice League of America
featuring Superman and Wonder Woman. The squadron included the
superheroes Zarda and Nuke.
(SFC, 8/29/97, p.A15)
1986 Art Spiegelman published
the 1st volume of “Maus," a collection of black and white drawings
with text that told the story of his father’s survival in the
holocaust. Vol 2 came out in 1991.
(Econ, 10/30/04, p.86)
1986 DC Comics published its
4-issue Dark Knight miniseries. The cover was drawn by writer-artist
Frank Miller. In 2013 the original cover art went up for
auction with bids expected over $500,000.
(SFC, 7/6/13, p.A10)
1987 The animated film “The
Chipmunk Adventure" was produced. It was based on the cartoon
characters created by Ross Bagdasarian.
(SSFC, 5/21/06, Par p.2)
1988 May 3, Milton A. Caniff
(b.1907), US cartoonist (Terry & the Pirates), died.
1988 Jun 21, The Roger Rabbit
cartoon character debuted in the film "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?"
1988 The animated film “Tin
Toy," produced by Pixar, won an Oscar.
(Econ, 5/24/08, p.107)
1989 Jul 10, Mel Blanc (81),
the "man of a thousand voices," including such cartoon characters as
Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Sylvester and Tweety, Tazmanian
Devil, Wile E. Coyote and Roadrunner, died in Los Angeles.
(AP, 7/10/99)(SFC, 1/16/03, p.A19)
1989 Dec 17, The cartoon series
“The Simpsons" premiered on Fox TV.
1990 Oct 7, Grim Natwick
(b.1890), American animator and film director, died. He created
Betty Boop in 1930.
1991 The French satirical
magazine La Grosse Berthe was launched.
(Econ, 12/20/03, p.76)
1992 Mar 4, Arthur Babbitt
(84), Disney animator (Mr. Magoo, Goofy), died of heart failure.
1992 The Turner Broadcasting
System launched US cable TV’s Cartoon Network.
(SFC, 12/19/06, p.B5)
1994 Feb 6, Jack Kirby (76),
cartoonist (X-Men, Spiderman, Hulk), died.
1994 Mar 22, Walter Lantz,
"Woody Woodpecker" creator, died in Burbank, Calif., at age 93.
1994 Jun 11, Jack Hannah (90),
animator (The Flintstones), died.
1994 Jun 15, Disney's "Lion
King," opened in theaters.
1994 Raymond Scott, composer
born as Harry Warnow in Brooklyn, died. He mixed jazz, classical and
klezmer sounds as backdrop for cartoons in the 1930s. In 1991 the
compilation CD "The Music of Raymond Scott: Reckless Nights and
Turkish Twilights" was produced.
(SSFC, 1/4/04, p.E3)
1995 Jan 1, Gary Larson's "Far
Side" cartoon panel ended a 14-year run.
(SSFC, 11/16/03, BR p.17)
1995 Dec 31, Cartoonist Bill
Watterson ended his "Calvin & Hobbes" comic strip.
c1995 A Japanese weekly comic
book featured the story "Initial D," which focused on a drifter
named Takumi, who honed his (car) sliding skills on early morning
runs delivering tofu to a resort hotel in the mountains.
(WSJ, 9/18/03, p.A10)
1995 Yukinobu Hoshino (b.1954),
Japanese manga artist, introduced a comic strip called “The Case
Records of Professor Munakata," an “authority on the study of
folklore, who reveals the invisible historical facts hidden behind
1996 Apr 12, The artwork of
Masamune Shirow was featured in the Japanese animation epic "Ghost
in the Shell." It was set in a futuristic Tokyo of 2029.
(SFC, 4/12/96, p.D-3)
1996 Stuart Levy founded
Tokyopop. It became the largest publisher of English-language manga
in the world. The serialized stories were illustrated in the same
Japanese artistic tradition that produced anime.
(SFC, 1/6/06, p.E1)
1997 Feb 9, Fox cartoon series
"Simpsons" aired its 167th episode, the longest running animated
series in cartoon history.
1997 May 22, The US Postal
Service released a Bugs Bunny commemorative stamp, the first
animated character on a US stamp.
(SFC, 5/22/97, p.A3)
1997 Jul 10, RJR Nabisco
Holdings said it would phase out the Joe Camel cartoon character
used for advertising their cigarettes.
(WSJ, 7/11/97, p.B1)
1999 Feb 23, The Disney film
"Mulan" premiered in China. Only 10 foreign films per year were
allowed into China so as to protect its own industry.
(SFC, 2/24/99, p.E3)
1999 May 10, Cartoonist,
playwright and songwriter Shel Silverstein was found dead in his Key
West, Florida, apartment; he was 66.
1999 May 12, Saul Steinberg
(b.1914), Romania-born cartoon artist, died in NYC. In 2002 a series
of tape-recorded conversations with Aldo Buzzi, translated by John
Shepley, was published. In 2012 Deirdre Bair authored “Saul
Steinberg: A Biography."
1999 Jul, SpongeBob SquarePants
began running as a character on TV.
(WSJ, 10/8/02, p.A1)
2000 Feb 12, Charles Schulz
(b.1922), creator of the Peanuts cartoon, died in Santa Rosa,
California, at age 77. His final cartoon was scheduled to run in the
Feb 13 Sunday newspapers. In 2007 David Michaelis authored “Schulz
and Peanuts: A Biography."
(SFEC, 2/13/00, p.A1)(AP, 2/12/01)(WSJ, 10/12/07,
2000 Feb 13, Charles Schulz’s
final "Peanuts" strip ran in Sunday newspapers, the day after the
cartoonist died in his sleep at his California home at age 77.
2000 Jun 8, Jeff MacNally (52),
Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist, died in Baltimore, Maryland.
2000 Julius Schwartz (d.2004 at
88), comic book editor, authored his biography "Man of Two Worlds:
My Life in Science Fiction and the Comics." He co-wrote it with
Brian M. Thomsen.
(SFC, 2/13/04, p.A28)
2001 Mar 22, William Hanna
(b.1910), animation pioneer, died in Los Angeles. Cartoon characters
that he helped create included Fred Flintstone, Quick Draw McGraw,
Yogi Bear, Papa Smurf, as well as Tom and Jerry.
(SFC, 3/23/01, p.D7)(AP, 3/22/02)(NW, 12/31/01,
2001 Jun 1, Hank Ketcham
(b.1920), the creator of the "Dennis the Menace" cartoon, died in
Pebble Beach at age 81.
(SFC, 6/2/01, p.A1)(NW, 12/31/01, p.108)
2001 Oct 7, Herbert L. Block
(b.1909), Washington Post cartoonist, died at age 91. He authored
"Herblock: A Cartoonist’s Life" in 1993.
(SFC, 10/8/01, p.A20)(NW, 12/31/01, p.109)
2001 Syria’s first satirical
newspaper was founded by cartoonist Ali Farzat. It was shut down by
the regime in 2003 after 104 issues.
(Econ, 12/22/12, p.131)
2002 Feb 22, Chuck Jones,
cartoon animator, died at age 89. His work included Bugs Bunny,
Daffy Duck and Road Runner. His books included “Chuck Amuck" (1989).
(SFC, 2/23/02, p.A2)(SFC, 2/27/02, p.D2)(WSJ,
3/1/02, p.A14)(WSJ, 11/12/05, p.P14)
2002 May 16, David Berg (81),
Mad magazine artist, died. He began his "The Lighter Side of" comic
strips for Mad Magazine in 1961 and continued for 365 subsequent
issues. He also wrote and drew 17 Mad books along with "My Friend
God and "Roger Kaputnik and God."
(SFC, 5/25/02, p.A27)
2002 Jul 8, Ward Kimball (99),
Disney animator, died. He was known as one of Disney’s "Nine Old
Men," the top group of early animators.
(SFC, 7/13/02, p.A19)
2002 Sep, The Charles M.
Schultz Museum and Research Center opened in Santa Rosa.
(SSFC, 9/29/02, p.C1)
2002 Larry Gonick authored "The
Cartoon History of the Universe III: From the Rise of Arabia to the
(SSFC, 11/30/02, p.M4)
2002 Brian Walker authored "The
Comics Since 1945."
(SSFC, 12/29/02, p.M4)
2002-2005 North Korean animators produced parts of
a South Korean cartoon show featuring Pororo, a purple,
(Econ, 7/9/11, p.63)
2003 Jan 20, Al Hirschfield
(b.1903), caricaturist of Hollywood stars, died in NYC.
(SFC, 1/21/03, p.A2)
2003 Jan 22, Bill Maudlin
(b.1921), WW-II era cartoonist, died in Newport Beach, Ca. In 1945
he won a Pulitzer Prize for his war cartoons and authored "Up
Front," a collection of cartoons and an essay on war. A 2nd Pulitzer
followed in 1958. He was inducted into the St. Louis Walk of Fame on
May 19, 1991. In 2008 Todd DePastino authored “Bill Maudlin: A Life
Up Front." On March 31, 2010, the US Post Office released a
first-class denomination ($.44) postage stamp in Mauldin's honor
depicting him with WWII characters Willie & Joe.
(SFC, 1/23/03, p.A2)(WS, 2/22/08,
2003 Jul 20, William Woolfolk
(86), writer for cartoon characters like Batman and Captain Marvel,
died. He coined one of Captain Marvel's signature lines: "Holy
Moley," and authored the 1968 bestseller "The Beautiful Couple."
(SFC, 8/11/03, p.A16)
2003 Sep 6, Jules Engel (94),
animator, died in Ca. He worked on the Disney films "Fantasia" and
"Bambi" and helped found 2 studios that produced Mr. Magoo and
helped give life to Alvin and the Chipmunks.
(SFC, 9/16/03, p.A23)
2003 Oct 3, William Steig (95),
an illustrator for The New Yorker who was known as the "King of
Cartoons" for his award-winning, best-selling children's books
including "Shrek," died.
2004 Nov 13, Harry Lampert
(88), the illustrator who created the DC Comics superhero 'The
Flash' (1940) and later became known for his instructional books on
(AP, 11/14/04)(SFC, 11/17/04, p.B8)
2003 US sales of Japanese manga
comics reached $100 million.
(SSFC, 4/4/04, p.F5)
2005 Jan 3, Will Eisner
(b.1917), comic book pioneer, died in Fla. In 1978 he wrote and drew
his graphic novel “A Contract With God." It was the 1st of a trilogy
that included “A Life Force" (1983) and “Dropsie Avenue" (1995).
(SFC, 1/4/05, p.A2)(Econ, 1/15/05, p.81)(SSFC,
2005 Jan 15, Dan Lee (35),
Pixar animator, died in Berkeley, Ca. His work included the design
of Nemo in Pixar’s animated film “Finding Nemo."
(SFC, 2/1/05, p.B7)
2005 Apr 5, Dale Messick
(b.1906), creator of the Brenda Starr cartoon series, died. The
strip began in 1940 in Long Island.
(SFC, 4/8/05, p.B7)
2005 May 6, Joe Grant (96),
pioneering Disney artist/storyman, died. He was co-story director on
"Fantasia," co-writer of "Dumbo" and designer of the witch/queen
character in "Snow White." Grant remained vital and active at Disney
feature animation until his death.
2005 May 19, Henry Corden (85),
the voice of cartoon character Fred Flintstone, died in Ca.
(SFC, 5/23/05, p.B4)
2005 Jun 29, Mexico released a
series of five stamps depicting a child character from a comic book
started in the 1940s that is still published in Mexico. The stamps
depicted an exaggerated black cartoon character known as Memin
2005 Sep 30, The Danish
newspaper Jyllands-Posten published cartoons of the Prophet
Muhammad. Death threats against the artists soon followed with
protest strikes in Kashmir, condemnation from Muslim leaders
worldwide and even criticism from the UN. The paper refused to
apologize for publishing the drawings, citing freedom of speech, a
right cherished in this northern European country of 5.4 million,
that also refused to prosecute an artist who depicted a crucified
Jesus Christ with an erection. Kurt Westergaard created one of the
cartoons, which featured the Prophet Muhammad with a bomb in his
turban. In 2008 Westergaard offered to sell the cartoon. In 2009
Jytte Klausen authored “The Cartoons That Shook the World."
(AP, 12/9/05)(WSJ, 2/29/08, p.A1)(Econ, 10/31/09,
2005 Richard Branson agreed to
an investment in a Bangalore studio with a focus on Indian religion
and mythology. His Virgin Comics LLC followed soon thereafter.
(WSJ, 1/2/07, p.B4)
2005 Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, a
Columbia-educated Kuwaiti psychologist, began creating a comic book
series called The 99. It was designed to give Muslim kids
superheroes they could identify with as opposed to western icons.
2006 Feb 4, Rage against
caricatures of Islam's revered prophet poured out across the Muslim
world. Aggrieved believers in Syria called for executions, stormed,
European buildings and torched the Danish and Norwegian embassies in
Damascus. In Gaza Palestinians marched through the streets, storming
European buildings and burning German and Danish flags.
(AP, 2/4/06)(AP, 2/4/07)
2006 Feb 17, In Benghazi,
Libya, 11 people were killed or wounded during a riot at the Italian
consulate when police firing bullets and tear gas tried to contain
more than 1,000 demonstrators hurling rocks and bottles. The Libyans
were angry over caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad.
(AFP, 2/18/06)(Econ, 3/26/11, p.32)
2006 May 23, Iran’s government
closed one of the country's top three newspapers, detaining its
editor and cartoonist, Mana Neyestani, for publishing a caricature
that caused members of Iran's Azeri minority to riot in protest.
Amnesty International said in a report in 2007 that 19 people were
reported killed in the unrest and hundreds arrested. Neyestani was
released from jail after 3 months and fled the country with his
wife. In 2012 he published his autobiographical comic book "An
Iranian Metamorphosis," a Kafkaesque story recounting his 2006
(AP, 5/23/06)(AFP, 2/10/12)
2006 Jul, DC Comics
re-introduced Batwoman (1956-1979), alter ego Kathy Kane, as a
(SFC, 6/1/06, p.A2)
2006 Aug 28, Ed Benedict (94),
legendary animator, died in Auburn, Ca. He put life, love and
laughter in TV cartoon characters like Fred Flintstone (1960),
Huckleberry Hound and Yogi Bear.
(AP, 10/10/06)(SFC, 10/13/06, p.B9)
2006 Dec 9, Martin Nodell (91),
the creator of Green Lantern, the comic book superhero who uses his
magical ring to help him fight crime, died in Wisconsin. The first
Green Lantern appearance came in July 1940, an eight-page story in a
comic book also featuring other characters. The character then got
his own series, and Nodell drew it until 1947 under the name Mart
Dellon. After its cancellation in 1949, the series was reborn in
1959 with a revised story line, and it has been revived several
2006 Dec 18, Joseph Barbera
(95), legendary Hollywood animator, died. His characters Fred and
Wilma Flintstone and Scooby-Doo made generations of people laugh.
2007 Jan 8, Iwao Takamoto (81),
creator of the Scooby-Doo cartoon character, died in Los Angeles. He
also assisted in the designs of some of the biggest animated
features and television shows, including "Cinderella," "Peter Pan,"
"Lady and the Tramp" and "The Flintstones."
2007 Feb 8, Joe Edwards (85),
comics artist, died at his home in NY. He worked on the 1942 debut
issue of Archie comics and later created the character Li'l Jinx.
2007 Apr 7, Johnny Hart (76),
creator of the B.C. comic strip (1958), died at his home in
Endicott, NY. He and Brant Parker created the “Wizard of Id" strip.
(SFC, 4/9/07, p.B3)
2007 Apr 15, Brant Parker (86),
collaborator with Johnny Hart on the “Wizard of Id" (1964) cartoon
strip, died in Lynchburg, Va. In 1997 Parker handed the illustration
of the cartoon over to his son, Jeff Parker.
(SFC, 4/9/07, p.B3)
2007 Jul 10, Doug Marlette
(57), Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist and writer, died in a car
accident near Holly Springs, Mississippi.
(SFC, 7/11/07, p.B5)(AP, 7/10/08)
2007 Sep 9, Phil Frank (64),
longtime resident of Sausalito, Ca., and creator of the Farley and
Elderberries comic strips, announced his retirement. His Farley
strip had run in the SF Chronicle for decades.
(SSFC, 9/9/07, p.A1)
2007 Sep 12, Phil y (b.1943),
creator of the Farley and Elderberries comic strips, died from a
brain tumor in Bolinas, Ca. His Farley strip had run in the SF
Chronicle for decades.
(SFC, 9/14/07, p.A1)
2007 Sep 17, Lars Vilks, a
Swedish cartoonist who depicted Islam's Prophet Muhammad with the
body of a dog, said that police have taken him to a secret location
and told him he cannot return home following a death threat from
al-Qaida in Iraq.
2007 Nov 13, Two cartoonists
who depicted Spain's crown prince having sex with his wife were
convicted of insulting the heir to the throne and were fined $4,370
2008 Jan 6, Martha Arguello
(b.1917), the cartoonist known as Marty Links, died in San Rafael,
Ca. She was the creator of the Bobby Sox and Emmy Lou cartoon
strips, which ran in the SF Chronicle for over 35 years.
(SFC, 1/9/08, p.B9)
2008 Feb 2, Gus Arriola
(b.1917), cartoonist, died in Carmel, Ca. His Gordo (1941-1985)
cartoon strip was one of the first in the US to celebrate Mexican
(SSFC, 2/3/08, p.B1)
2008 Feb 12, Danish police said
they have arrested three people suspected of plotting to kill one of
the 12 cartoonists behind the Prophet Muhammad drawings that sparked
a deadly uproar in the Muslim world two years ago.
2008 Feb 10, Steve Gerber (80),
the comic book writer and creator whose signature character was the
alienated, cigar-chomping Howard the Duck, died in Las Vegas.
Gerber, who also co-created Marvel's "Omega the Unknown" and created
the 1980s animated series "Thundarr the Barbarian," suffered from
2008 Mar 19, Osama bin Laden
accused Pope Benedict XVI of helping in a "new Crusade" against
Islam and warned of a "severe" reaction to European publications of
cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad that insulted many Muslims.
2008 Apr 9, Venezuela forced US
cartoon "The Simpsons" off its airwaves, calling the show a
potentially bad influence on children, and filled its morning slot
with reruns of the beach-and-bikini show "Baywatch."
2008 Apr 14, Ollie Johnston
(b.1912), the last of Walt Disney's original team of animators,
known as the Nine Old Men, died. He had worked for Disney for 43
years, drawing characters for animated Mickey Mouse short films
before contributing to such classics such as "Snow White and the
Seven Dwarfs" (1937), "Pinocchio" (1940), "Peter Pan" (1953) and
"The Jungle Book" (1967).
(Reuters, 4/16/08)(Econ, 4/26/08, p.109)
2008 May 15, Will Elder
(b.1921), founding artist at Mad Magazine (1952), died. After Mad he
established himself at Playboy where he produced the “Little Annie
(WSJ, 5/17/08, p.A8)
2008 Jun 27, Michael Turner
(b.1971), comic book artist, died in Santa Monica of complications
related to cancer. His company, Aspen MLT, created online comic
adaptations for the NBC series “Heroes" and published his own titles
(SFC, 7/4/08, p.B5)
2008 Jul 14, David Remnick,
editor of The New Yorker magazine, defended the newest satirical
cover of the magazine by cartoonist Barry Blitt, which depicted Sen.
Barack Obama in Muslim garb and his wife as an Afro-sporting gun
(SFC, 7/15/08, p.A10)
2008 Nov 2, Opus, a politically
beleaguered penguin created by cartoonist Berkeley Breathed,
appeared in the Sunday comics for the last time.
(SFC, 10/27/08, p.E1)
2008 Nov 4, In London A sketch
by Winnie the Pooh illustrator E.H. Shepard titled "Tiggers Don't
Like Honey" fetched 31,200 pounds ($49,770) at auction, well above
the pre-sale estimate of 15,000 to 20,000 pounds ($24,000 to
2008 David Hajdu authored “The
Ten-Cent Plague: The Great Comic-Book Scare and How It Changed
(SFC, 9/7/08, Books p.7)
2008 In Germany the Storch
Heinar (stork Heinar) cartoon character was originally hatched by
members of a group that fights the far right and linked to the
left-leaning Social Democratic Party, which heads
Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania's state government. The bird was
initially meant to combat the rise in popularity of a fashion label
popular with neo-Nazis, Thor Steinar.
2009 May 18, Wayne Allwine
(62), the actor who voiced Mickey Mouse for more than 30 years, died
of complications from diabetes with Russi Taylor, his wife of 20
years and the voice of Minnie Mouse, by his side. He was the third
man behind Mickey's voice. The first was Disney himself, then Jimmy
MacDonald, who became Allwine's mentor and passed him the reins
after voicing the mouse for 30 years.
2009 Jun 2, In Belgium a new
museum, designed by architect Christian de Portzamparc, opened in
Louvain-la-Neuve dedicated to Georges Remi (1907-1983), creator of
the comic book hero Tintin (1929).
(Econ, 5/30/09, p.87)
2009 Aug 31, The Walt Disney
Co. said it is buying Marvel Entertainment Inc. for $4 billion in
cash and stock, bringing such characters as Iron Man and Spider-Man
into the family of Mickey Mouse and WALL-E.
2009 Sep 2, Dutch prosecutors
said they will charge an Arab cultural group under hate speech laws
for publishing a cartoon that suggests the death of 6 million Jews
during World War II is a fabrication.
2009 Sep 26, In Morocco Akhbar
Al Youm published a caricature of a member of the royal family,
Prince Moulay Ismail, cousin of King Mohammed VI. On Dec 29 an
appeal court in Casablanca upheld a four-year suspended jail term
for the chief editor of Akhbar Al Youm, Taoufiq Bouachrine, and
cartoonist Khalid Gueddar.
2010 Jan 1, In Denmark a Somali
man (29) armed with an axe and suspected of links with al Qaeda
broke into the home of Kurt Westergaard (74), a Danish cartoonist,
whose drawings of the Prophet Mohammad caused global Muslim outrage.
The attacker, who was shot and wounded by police, was charged the
next day with two counts of attempted murder. On Feb 3, 2011, the
Somali man was convicted of terrorism.
(Reuters, 1/2/10)(AP, 2/3/11)
2010 Jan 8, Art Clokey (88),
American animator, died in Los Osos, Ca. His bendable creation Gumby
became a pop culture phenomenon through decades of toys, revivals
and satires. Gumby grew out of a student project Clokey produced at
the University of Southern California in the early 1950s called
2010 Feb 25, In Texas a copy of
the 1939 comic book, Detective Comics No. 27, in which Batman makes
his debut, sold at a Dallas auction for more than $1 million,
breaking a record set just three days earlier by a Superman comic. A
copy of the first comic book featuring Superman, a 1938 edition of
Action Comics No. 1, sold on Feb 22 for $1 million.
2010 Feb 26, The Danish daily
Politiken newspaper apologized for offending Muslims by reprinting a
cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad with a bomb-shaped turban,
rekindling heated debate about the limits of freedom of speech.
2010 Mar 10, At least three
Swedish newspapers published a cartoon depicting the Prophet
Muhammad with the body of a dog after an alleged plot to murder
Swedish artist Lars Vilks, who created it, was uncovered in Ireland.
Irish police said those arrested were two Algerians, two Libyans, a
Palestinian, a Croatian and an American woman married to one of the
Algerian suspects. They were not identified by name. On March 13
Irish police said they had released three of the arrested Muslims
and American Jamie Paulin-Ramirez (31) without charges.
(AP, 3/10/10)(AP, 3/13/10)
2010 May 7, Bernard Schoenbaum
(89), cartoonist, died at his home in Queens, NY. His work included
over 300 cartoons for the New Yorker magazine.
(SFC, 5/18/10, p.C5)
2010 May 13, Tribune Media
Service in Chicago said that it will cease syndication of the Little
Orphan Annie comic strip on June 13.
(SFC, 5/14/10, p.A6)
2010 May 14, In Sweden the home
of cartoonist Lars Vilks, who once drew a cartoon of the Prophet
Muhammad as a dog, was hit by a suspected arson attack.
2010 Jun 25, Malaysia banned
three works of political cartoons that criticize the government, but
one of the artists, Zulkifli Anwar Ulhaque (aka Zunar), said he was
obligated to highlight issues other cartoonists would not.
2010 Sep 8, German Chancellor
Angela Merkel praised the bravery of illustrator Kurt Westergaard
(75), a Danish cartoonist who caricatured the Prophet Muhammad, at
an award ceremony honoring his achievements for freedom of speech.
2010 Sep 20, Saudi Arabia’s
Shura Council voted 62 to 56 against a memorandum of understanding
on bilateral consultations with Denmark after several members
expressed unhappiness over the publication of cartoons of the
Prophet Mohammed in a Danish newspaper.
2010 Sep 24, A Malaysian
political cartoonist said he has been arrested under the Sedition
Act and his offices raided by police over his new book,
"Cartoon-O-Phobia," just hours before its planned launch. Zulkifli
Anwar Ulhaque, better known as Zunar, used cartoons to highlight
contentious issues such as the sodomy trial of opposition leader
Anwar Ibrahim and police shootings.
2010 Sep 30, In Denmark
Flemming Rose's "The Tyranny of Silence," a book on the crisis
sparked by a Danish newspaper's publication of cartoons of the
Prophet Mohammed five years ago, hit stores in amid concerns over a
backlash from the Muslim world.
2010 Oct 17, The official
Vatican newspaper said that beer-swilling, doughnut-loving Homer
Simpson and son Bart are Catholics, and what's more, it says that
parents should not be afraid to let their children watch "the
adventures of the little guys in yellow." Executive producer Al
Jean told Entertainment Weekly the next day he was in "shock
and awe" at the latest assertion, adding that the Simpsons attend
the "Presbylutheran" First Church of Springfield. "The Simpsons" is
the longest-running prime-time TV series in the United States and is
now in its 22nd season.
2010 Dec 15, In Japan the city
of Tokyo restricted the sale of manga comics and anime films with
extreme depictions of rape, incest and other sex crimes, despite
industry charges of censorship.
2010 Dec 29, In Denmark 4 men
planning to shoot as many people as possible in a building housing
the newsroom of a paper that published cartoons of the Prophet
Muhammad were arrested in an operation that halted an imminent
attack. The 4 were Swedish residents, a Tunisian (44), a
Lebanese-born man (29), an Iraqi asylum seeker, and a 30-year-old
whose national origin was not released. Police in Stockholm arrested
a Swedish citizen of Tunisian origin, suspected of being linked to
the plot. Denmark freed the Iraqi suspect the next day due to an
apparent lack of evidence. The trial of Munir Awad, Omar Abdalla
Aboelazm, Mounir Ben Mohamed Dhahri and Sabhi Ben Mohamed Zalouti
opened on April 13, 2012.
(AP, 12/29/10)(AP, 12/30/10)(AP, 4/13/12)
2010 The 942-page, 3-volume set
“Gahan Wilson: Fifty Years of Playboy Cartoons by Gahan Wilson" was
(SSFC, 1/24/10, Books p.F4)
2011 Aug 25, Masked gunmen
dragged Ali Ferzat (60), Syria's best-known political cartoonist,
from his car before dawn, beat him severely and broke both his hands
as a warning to stop drawing just days after he compared Syria's
president to Moammar Gadhafi.
2011 Sep 9, In Indonesia the
colorful 137-page comic "I Found the Meaning of Jihad," began
appearing in bookstores authored by former al-Qaida-linked militant
Nasir Abas (42).
2011 Sep 10, Swedish police
arrested four people on suspicion of preparing a terror attack and
evacuated an arts center in Goteborg, Sweden's second largest city
on the eve of the 9/11 anniversary. In December three of the
suspects, of Somali and Iraqi origin, were charged with plotting to
stab to death artist Lars Vilks for depicting the Prophet Muhammad
as a dog in 2007. On Jan 20, 2012, a Swedish court acquitted three
men accused of plotting to murder Vilks.
(AP, 9/11/11)(AP, 12/6/11)(AP, 1/20/12)
2011 Nov 8, Cartoonist Bil
Keane (b.1922) died at his home in Arizona. His "Family Circus"
comics entertained readers with a simple but sublime mix of humor
and traditional family values for more than a half century.
2011 Nov 30, A rare 1938 first
issue of Action Comics, which first featured Superman, was auctioned
online for a record $2.16 million.
(SFC, 12/1/11, p.A10)
21011 Dec 30, Ronald Searle
(b.1920, British artist and satirical cartoonist, died in France. He
survived the notorious Death Railway while a prisoner of war of the
Japanese during World War II. He is perhaps best remembered as the
creator of St Trinian's School and for his collaboration with
Geoffrey Willans on the Molesworth series.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronald_Searle)(Econ, 1/14/12, p.94)
2012 Jan 14, Egyptian telecom
magnate Naguib Sawiris, a billionaire Coptic Christian who founded
the liberal Free Egyptians party, faced trial for tweeting a cartoon
of Mickey Mouse with a beard and Minnie Mouse in a face veil, joking
that the cartoon characters would be forced to dress conservatively
if Islamists took power. The trial was delayed as Sawiris failed to
(AFP, 1/9/12)(AFP, 1/14/12)
2012 Jan, Morocco banned French
the weekly Le Nouvel Observateur when a cover story on the Arab
world included the supposed face of the Prophet Mohammed. The French
weekly l'Express was also banned for publishing a 95-page dossier on
Islam including a face meant to represent Mohammed's.
2012 Feb 18, Morocco said it
has banned the distribution of the Feb 16 edition of Spain's
influential El Pais, as a cartoon published by the newspaper
allegedly tarnished King Mohammed VI's name. Earlier this month
French weekly Le Nouvel Observateur was banned after printing an
image of God.
2012 Mar 2, Danish prosecutors
charged four people with terrorism for allegedly planning a shooting
attack on a newspaper that had printed cartoons of the Prophet
Muhammad. The 4 men from Sweden were arrested on Dec 29, 2010.
(AP, 12/30/10)(AP, 3/2/12)
2012 Mar 3, A Cairo court
dismissed a complaint against Christian tycoon Naguib Sawaris
accused of insulting Islam with a cartoon of Mickey Mouse and Minnie
Mouse in conservative Muslim garb. Hardline Islamist lawyer and MP
Mamduh Ismail said he would appeal.
2012 Mar 28, A Tunisian court
convicted Jaber Majeri (Jabeur Mejri) and Ghazi Beji for posting
images of the prophet purportedly being intimate with one of his
wives. They were sentenced to 7½ years in prison and fined $800. An
appeals court in June upheld the conviction. Beji had fled to Europe
and was sentenced in absentia. On Feb 4, 2014, artists from a dozen
countries launched an online campaign called "100 drawings for
Jabeur" in support of Mejri.
2012 Apr 29, In Zimbabwe Benias
Gwenhamo Madhakasi, who works as a street vendor in South Africa,
was arrested at the Beit Bridge border post on charges of insulting
or undermining the authority of the president. He had cartoons on
his cell phone that showed a bony-looking Robert Mugabe in the nude.
On July 24 a magistrate tossed out the case.
2012 Mar 10, Jean Giraud
(b.1938), French cartoonist aka Moebius, died overnight in Paris.
2012 Jul 6, A South African
newspaper cartoon depicting President Jacob Zuma as a penis drew
condemnation from the ruling ANC just weeks after furor over a
painting which exposed his genitals.
2012 Aug 12, Joe Kubert,
American comic artist and teacher, died in New Jersey. He drew
figures in “Sgt. Rock," “The Haunted Tank" and Enemy Ace." In 1976
Kubert and his wife founded the Kubert School, the nation’s only
accredited trade school for comic book artists.
(SFC, 8/16/12, p.C4)
2012 Sep 10, In India political
cartoonist Aseem Trivedi, whose drawings mock Indian government
corruption, has been jailed in a sedition investigation that was
widely condemned as evidence of political leaders' growing
intolerance of criticism. Trivedi refused bail at a court hearing in
Mumbai, saying he would remain in jail until the sedition charges
against him were lifted. The court then extended his stay in police
custody from one week to two.
2012 Sep 19, A French magazine
ridiculed the Prophet Mohammad on by portraying him naked in
cartoons, threatening to fuel the anger of Muslims around the world
who are already incensed by a film depiction of him as a lecherous
fool. A grenade exploded at a kosher grocery store in a Jewish
neighborhood in the Paris suburb of Sarcelles. One person was
(Reuters, 9/19/12)(AP, 10/6/12)
2012 Nov 28, Spain Rodriguez
(72), Zap Comix artist and influential cartoonist, died in San
Francisco after battling cancer for 6 years.
(SFC, 11/29/12, p.C3)
2013 Apr 24, Lebanon's leading
caricaturist Pierre Sadek (76), died. He was famous for his decades
of work poking fun at politicians.
2013 Victor S. Navasky authored
“The Art of Controversy: Political Cartoons and Their Enduring
(SSFC, 8/25/13, p.F4)
2014 Jan 25, Morrie Turner
(b.1923), cartoonist and the creator of the “Wee Palls" (1965)
cartoon strip, died in Sacramento, Ca. He was the first African
American cartoonist to draw a nationally syndicated strip exploring
racial themes during the peak of the civil rights movement and
(SFC, 1/29/14, p.E1)
2014 Mar 7, Malaysia banned an
Ultraman comic book because it uses the word "Allah" to describe the
Japanese action hero. The Home Ministry said that the Malay-edition
of "Ultraman, The Ultra Power" contained elements that can undermine
public security and societal morals.
2014 Jul 15, Comic book hero
Archie Andrews died in today’s installment of Life with Archie No.
36 as he took an assassin’s bullet aimed at his gay best friend.
Archie first appeared in comics in 1941.
(SFC, 7/16/14, p.F6)
2014 Aug 24, Two New York
comics dealers submitted the winning bid for a rare copy of Action
Comics No. 1, the 1938 book in which Superman first appeared. They
bid a record $3.2 million in an e-Bay auction.
(SFC, 8/26/14, p.A5)
2014 Jill Lepore authored “The
Secret History of Wonder Woman."
(SSFC, 10/26/14, p.P1)