Wednesday, May 24, 2017

80 year Flashback: FUNNY WONDER Whitsun issue 1937

Whitsun was a bigger deal in years past than it is today, and 80 years ago the comics of the Amalgamated Press used it as the theme for that week's issues. I've previously shown the Whitsun issue of Jolly Comic for 1937 (click here) and now here are a few strips from The Funny Wonder of the same week. The comic is scanned from my collection.

Funny Wonder had 8 tabloid-sized pages, all printed in black ink on green paper for 1d. The wonderful holiday theme logo illustration and Pitch and Toss cover strip is the work of Roy Wilson I think. (Might be by one of his imitators but I'm sure it's a Wilson page.) 

Inside, Merry Moments with Marmy and his Ma sees mum and son visiting a fair for the holidays. Note the "Fat Boy" attraction; a depiction of times when the "Freak Show" was a voyeuristic attraction at fairs. Art by Wally Robertson I believe.

Charlie Chaplin had appeared on the cover of the comic for years but by 1937 he was one of the centre-spread strips. Art by Bertie Brown.
Sally, the Sunshine of Our Alley, had a resourceful girl as the lead, and the title of the strip was of course inspired by the 1931 film Sally in our Alley starring Gracie Fields. 
The comic included a cut-out badge for readers to become part of "The Funny Wonder Secret Society", but stipulated that only regular readers could wear it. (That excludes all of us then, unless we have a bound volume of issues to read.)
Fifty percent of the issue was taken up with prose stories and, on the back page, the only adventure strip in the comic; Tim McCoy. Those speech balloons are a bit shouty! 
I hope you enjoy reading this summer issue from 80 years ago. If you have a laptop or tablet, why not sit in the sunshine and enjoy a good read? (22 degrees C here at the moment!)

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