Thursday, February 12, 2009


News of Yore 1949: Inky Introduces Garish Funnies

Phila. Inquirer Introduces 'Rotocomics'

(E&P, 3/19/49)

PHILADELPHIA — Roto comics will make their initial appearance in the Philadelphia Inquirer Sunday, March 20. The supplement is the first product of the Inquirer's new, huge rotogravure building.

The St. Louis (Mo.) Post-Dispatch has been printing comics in colorgravure more than a year.

The Inquirer, however, not only is making use of a process which gives vivid reproductions of the artist's work, but has also registered with the U. S. Patent Office the word, "Rotocomics." Inquirer management hit upon the use of the word as a trademark several years ago but kept it secret until needed.

Bold and attractive display, in hobo-style lettering, is given to the word Rotocomics. Name of paper, date, etc. are in secondary position.

The addition of Rotocomics brings the number of rotogravure sections in the Sunday Inquirer to six. The others are Today, Everybody's Weekly, Parade, Books and Gold Seal Novel. The news and classified sections are the only sections of the Sunday Inquirer printed in black and white letterpress.


Hello Allan----If you are of a certain age, and lived in the Philadelphia area, you fondly remember the Inquirer's funnies with those big multicolor cartoony letters spelling out "ROTOCOMICS" at the top, with Dick Tracy on the cover. They were shiny, with deep colors, on different paper than on any other comic section. They ran this section up to the mid-60's.(The trouble was, the Bulletin had much better comics!) Can you reproduce the cover of a Rotocomics section here? Thanks!----Cole Johnson.
The Bulletin's comics weren't better, they were just more up-to-date: Peanuts and Beetle Bailey as opposed to the Inquirer's Dick Tracy and Little Iodine. The Inquirer had a nameplate announcing that it incorporated the long-defunct Public Ledger, and its mindset never got beyond the 1940s. I think ROTOCOMICS ran at least till the late 60s.
Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]