Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Obscurity of the Day: Granny and Slowpoke

Danish cartoonist Werner Wejp-Olsen, who goes by the pseudonym "Wow", gained his initial entry into the U.S. newspaper comics market with Granny and Slowpoke. The strip was about a cigar-chomping grandmother who lives with her kids and grandkids in something slightly less than familial bliss. Slowpoke is her dog, who provides an interesting fantasy element on occasion (see strip 2 above).

The Sunday and daily strip was distributed by Field Enterprises starting on July 12 1976. The strip got very few takers and the Sunday seems to have been dumped very quickly -- latest I've found is October 31 of that year. The daily seems to have hung on longer, ending on an unknown date sometime in 1977.

The strip shares a lot in common with the current hit feature Crankshaft, both in characters and tone, so perhaps where "Wow" went wrong was in the sex of his irascible senior. Certainly the art is good, and the gags were serviceable if not wildly inventive. I guess America prefers their cranky oldsters on the spear side.

EDIT: Cole Johnson reports that the Sunday ran in the Philadelphia Inquirer until February 19 1977, quite a bit longer than I'd been able to find elsewhere. 


This strip had a much longer run in Scandinavia, for understandable reasons. I think it was produced for several decades even.
I hope this posting doesn't inspire another jihad against Danish 'toonists!
It actually reminds me quite a bit of a current strip, "Lola." ( Except, and I'm admittedly judging from a small sample, "Granny and Slowpoke" seems a lot funnier.
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