Sunday, February 20, 2011
Sparky Watts #1: Dot Dash sparks Sparky, Sparky heads for Hitler!
I've featured several Sparky Watts stories by Boody Rogers, and you can find them by clicking on "Sparky Watts" in the labels section at the bottom of this posting. As a kid comic book fan I read in a fanzine about Sparky Watts--a superhero wearing glasses, without costume--and thought, ugh, boring. It wasn't until I was well into adulthood that I actually saw a Sparky Watts comic and instantly fell in love with Rogers' cartoon style and funny characters.
Sparky Watts began his career in newspapers after Boody Rogers went on his own. He had been an assistant to artist Zack Mosley on Smilin' Jack, which is probably why Boody's girls look a lot like Mosley's sexy female "de-icers." The Sparky Watts comic strip only lasted two years, until Rogers was drafted, and then continued as a comic book feature in Big Shot Comics. When Rogers returned from service he drew the comic book stories until they ended in 1949. This the first part of the 39-page Sparky Watts story in Sparky Watts #1, 1942, a compilation of the newspaper continuity.
The comic has Sparky Watts regulars Doc Static, sister Sue, Dot Dash and Chinese refugee (and Asian stereotype, sorry, readers), Yoo Hoo. But no Slap Happy, the boxer who gave meaning to "big foot cartooning."
Second part tomorrow: Sparky Watts in bed with Hitler! And following that, we have the Skyman story from Sparky Watts #1 on Wednesday, followed on Friday by The Face.