My own earliest “Connie” Sunday comic strip by Frank Godwin: May 12, 1929 (the third Sunday strip) . . .

As of now, it has been established pretty conclusively that the first Connie Sunday comic strip was the one for April 28, 1929.  Allan Holtz pretty well established that, and there are a few things that tend to confirm it.  For one thing, no one has ever produced, or claimed to have seen, any Sunday Connie from before that one.

I don’t have the first or second Connie Sunday (except probably in a foreign version), but I do have the third.  I am not talking about original art.  I have zero Connie original art, except for a couple of little drawings Godwin made for fans.

For the early years, Connie was almost entirely a “gag” strip.  I think most people prefer the science-fiction and adventure years, which really started in 1936.  I do, too, really.  But I love the early strips, too — the art is fabulous, and I think it can be said that the gags were usually pretty amusing.

Also, in the early years, there was no bottom-strip.  The first bottom-strip that accompanied Connie was The Wet Blanket, which probably started on November 1, 1931, more than two years into the strip.  So, for more than two years, the Connie comic-strip was truly a full-page comic strip.  After November 1, 1931, as far as I know, the bottom tier was always a bottom-strip — though sometimes papers would drop the bottom-strip to make room for advertising.

Anyway, you can see from the photo below, of part of the third Sunday Connie strip (the one for May 12, 1929), that Godwin was working with quite a bit of flair and bravura.  The speech balloons and lettering were drawn with a lot of dash, and are in effect part of the art.  This was not really the case for the entire run of the strip.

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—Tom Sawyer

November 21, 2013

(This post was not viewable, starting 11-29 and ending today, 12-13.  I’m making it viewable again as a part of my “reorganization” of this blog.)

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