In October 1907 Hearst star cartoonist Fred Opper, or his editor, decided that it was time to put that irascible mule Maud out to pasture for awhile (well, not quite -- she continued to make semi-regular guest appearances in Opper's Happy Hooligan
). Opper was then faced with creating a new Sunday funnies feature to appear in the space usually reserved for And Her Name Was Maud
. His first attempt was King Jake
, a formulaic tale of a dour king and his new jester, Sam Tub. Most of the strips in the series follow the bare-bones plot seen above -- Sam peppers the king with jokes to no avail, but then a little unintentional physical comedy has the king ROFLing.
ran in the Hearst Sunday sections of October 20 1907 to January 12 1908.