Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Obscurity of the Day: Jeepers
It's been a long time since we covered one of the New York Herald-Tribune's Sunday filler strips here on the blog, so let's rectify that today. As you oh-so-surely recall, from 1942 to 1956 the Herald-Tribune's comic section was punctuated with single-tier sixth page strips. They appeared anytime the section printed a half-page strip and third-page strip on the same page (or equivalent of advertisements).
Some of these strips are pretty forgettable, others (like Harvey Kurtzman's Silver Linings) are minor masterpieces. Fitting well toward the classic end of that continuum is Jeepers by Milt Story, a delightful little fantasy about a doddering old aristocrat, drawn as if he might just have jumped off a Monopoly Chance card, and his devoted servant, Mousely. It was a zany strip that tried to cram as much visual and dialogue humor into its tiny space as possible. The strip appeared just a handful of times in the H-T Sunday section from June 6 1954 to April 10 1955.
I wish I knew more about Milt Story, who exhibits here a great style and flair, but all I can find about him online is that he worked a bit on the Li'l Abner comic books in the 1950s, and designed a few toys. I'm sure there's more to his story, but (I suppose this is a good time to confess), I'm several thousand miles away from my reference library right now and can check him out no further.
Sample strip from the collection of Cole Johnson.
Thanks for the Jeepers.