Wednesday, November 17, 2021


From the Sub-Basement of the Archives: Radiotoon


If there were a prize for the most cryptic cartoon feature ever, it has to be Radiotoon. Cryptic, that is, until you read the lengthy instructions for decoding the cartoons.

Radiotoon actually looks like someone's conception of radio waves emanating from a hodgepodge of sources, which is pretty cool and quite inscrutable. But all will be revealed, kids, when you listen to Uncle Kay-Bee on the radio. He will give you a list of numbers and if you draw lines between them a cartoon will be revealed. In other words, this is just a connect-the-dots puzzle, but the connections must be made by following the 'radio waves' from number to number. 

Usually the hidden pictures in connect-the-dots puzzles are pretty easy to figure out just by looking at the pattern of dots, but in this case, with all those 'radio waves' obfuscating things, the revealed picture will really be a surprise. Nicely done Ralph Reichhold, creator of this feature. 

Being an activity feature, Radiotoon sadly doesn't qualify for Stripper's Guide, but I couldn't resist showing you this neat feature. It ran in the Pittsburgh Press on Sundays in 1927.


Hello Allan-
I can't find any transcriptions of Unc's instructions, and it'll be quite a wait until they rebroadcast him, so I tried doing the puzzles on my own. But I had to chuck in the towel, as I developed a case of Venn poisoning.
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