Monday, May 15, 2023


Obscurity of the Day: Movie Fan


This fun little single-column panel about movies and moviegoing is so far believed to have had a very short run, but my information on it is far from complete. What I can tell you is that the panel was signed by Al Zere, and ran in the San Francisco Chronicle, the only newspaper I've so far found running it, from December 1 1924 to January 10 1925, just over a month. 

But my guess is that the run was longer. It was distributed by Philadelphia's Ledger Syndicate, and though I did not catch it running in their papers, it was listed as available in the very first Editor & Publisher Syndicate Directory, which came out in October 1924. That would seem to indicate that the run began before the Chronicle picked it up. In that E&P listing it is credited to John Bach, who has several other credits with the Ledger in this era. So did John Bach start the feature and it was taken over by Zere? Without finding earlier examples, I dunno. 

A weird thing about Movie Fan is that there was a strip that went by this same name back in 1921, also distributed by Ledger Syndicate, and also with a very short life. That strip was credited only to "Beeze" -- is that Bach and Zere working together under a cobined pseudonym? To play that old sad song once more, I dunno. 

If anyone finds a longer run of Movie Fan, please let me know!

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