Post by caucasoididiot on Sept 2, 2010 15:59:12 GMT -5
Walt Kelly was perhaps the finest comic strip artist America has ever produced. His strip, Pogo, began as Animal Comics shortly after WWII and was initially absurdist comedy centered on a cast of dialect-speaking animal characters living in Florida's Okefenokee Swamp. As a widely circulated newspaper comic in the '50s and '60s the strip never lost this aspect, but inspired by Capp's Li'l Abner Kelly increasingly turned toward satirical social and political commentary. This sometimes led to strips being killed as too controversial, but in at least one case public outcry forced the paper in question to gracefully admit defeat and move it to the editorial page.
Once asked just what Pogo stood for, Kelly answered that it stood foursquare on the side of gentleness. The strip is refreshing in that it lacks the venom that permeates most similarly themed material today. One never doubted where Kelly stood on the issues he raised, yet the strip was pointed without becoming mean-spirited. Even in its treatment of the likes of "Tail-gunner Joe" McCarthy there was very much a sense of reviling what the man was doing without reviling the man.
The following piece is from The Pogo Poop Book of 1966. It's a sort of special presentation in which the strip's characters play roles in a self-contained story outside the usual setting. If this is your first introduction to Pogo it isn't completely typical, being a bit more darkly humorous than the strip's general run. As a bit of background, the "Jack Acid Society" was Kelly's version of the "John Birch Society." Most everything else speaks for itself, so enjoy!