A New Fantasy Comics Page

Every so often we like to pick a date and look at what some popular strips were offering on that particular day. Sometimes, like now, we use this space to assemble those strips into a fantasy comics page.

To the best of our knowledge no newspaper ever featured exactly this collection of strips in their pages, but if they did, this is what they would have served up to their readers on November 5, 1943:

•  Chester Gould proved his dauntless detective did not discriminate in the pursuit of justice—Dick Tracy was as willing top tussle with a dame as he was with a man.

Barnaby used Mr. O’Malley’s timely intervention to end political shenanigans in the Baxters’ hometown in Crockett Johnson’s winsome fantasy series.

• The Caped Crusader literally swings into action at the end of his first five days as a comic strip hero: Batman and Robin officially debuted November 1, 1943.

• Another hero who took inaugural bows on November 1st ended up in a dogfight over the Pacific. Roy Crane’s incredible depiction of air and sea battles made Buz Sawyer a new must-read in newspapers across the country.

• When it came to imparting a sense of the Pacific War, no cartoonist resonated with his readers the way Milton Caniff did. Here, his neo-aviator, Terry Lee, wrestles with that demon, Green-Eyed Envy, in Terry and the Pirates.

• While Terry is daydreaming about winning his girl, Abner Yokum is seeking to avoid being taken to the altar by his gal, unaware that Bet-a-Million Bashby has arranged to rig the game by planning an ambush in the form of the irresistible Patricia Hallroom, as Al Capp prepares to begin his memorable 1943 Sadie Hawkins Day antics.

The high degree of alliteration connected to these six strips also tickled us. Consider: there are three “B”s involved (BarnabyBatmanBuz), and four “C”s (Caniff, Capp, Crane, and Crockett).

We hope you enjoy this sampling of exceptional cartooning talent as much as we did! Click on any strip for a larger version.

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Abner

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