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  1. #1
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Default I Yam What I Yam And That's All What I Yam- Popeye The Sailor Appreciation



    I figured since there are appreciation threads for DC and MARVEL characters, I figured it's time to give American comic(strips)'s first action (super) hero his own appreciation thread especially since the character celebrated his 90th Anniversary several months ago. So open your cans (or packs) of Spinach and let's celebrate the one eyed he-man, Popeye The Sailor Man.



    A refresher for newcomers:

    Created by E.C. Segar, the one eyed Sailor made his first appearance in Thimble Theatre comic strip, which began on on December 19, 1919 first appearing in the New York Journal and syndicated by King Features Syndicate. The main characters of the strip were originally Olive Oyl and her then fiancee Harold Hamgravy, who was often attracted to other women who were considerably wealthy and depicted as a slacker who preferred getting rich quick rather than earning money honestly. The strip later introduced other characters including the rest of the Oyl family which consisted of Olive's older brother Castor Oyl, who was always coming up with get rich quick schemes and would eventually become the strip's protagonist for a couple of years and their parents Cole and Nana Oyl. While starting as a gag strip like most comic strips at the time, the strip would later start using story lines (it is considered by many to be the first strip to use this formula) that usually involved Castor coming up with get rich quick schemes, which involved going on adventures, dragging Hamgravy along with him with Olive herself tagging along despite the objections of both her brother and her boyfriend, it was during one of these adventures where the one eyed sailor made his debut on the January 17, 1929 strip where he was initially created as a minor character for a story line.

    Initially hired by Castor Oyl and Ham to crew a ship for a voyage to Dice Island, the location of a casino owned by the crooked gambler Fadewell. Castor intended to break the bank at the casino using the unbeatable good luck conferred by stroking the hairs/feathers on the head of Bernice the Whiffle Hen. Weeks later, on the trip back, Popeye was shot many times by Jack Snork, a stooge of Fadewell's, but survived by rubbing Bernice's head. After the adventure, Popeye left the strip but, due to reader reaction, he was quickly brought back. Popeye proved so popular with readers that he was made a permanent member of the main cast. As time passed, Popeye would later get top billing in Thimble Theatre and the strip was taken up by many more newspapers as a result. Initial strips presented Olive as being less than impressed with Popeye, but she eventually left Hamgravy to become Popeye's girlfriend and Hamgravy left the strip as a regular, Castor Oyl continued to come up with get-rich-quick schemes and enlisted Popeye in his misadventures. Eventually, he settled down as a detective and later on bought a ranch out West. Castor has seldom appeared in recent years.



    Over the years, new characters would be introduced like Popeye's arch nemesis for Olive's affection, Bluto, Swee'Pea Popeye's adoptive child he found in the mail. Other regular characters in the strip included J. Wellington Wimpy, a hamburger-loving moocher, Eugene the Jeep, a yellow, vaguely dog-like animal from Africa with magical powers, Poopdeck Pappy, Popeye's father who's a spitting image of his son minus the moral compass, the strip's main antagonist the Sea Hag, a powerful witch who tries to destroy Popeye and Alice The Goon, a monstrous creature who debuted in the strip as the Sea Hag's henchwoman but would eventually become an ally and friend of Popeye and co. and would become Swee'Pea's babysitter. Popeye proved to be extremely popular worldwide as well, for example after Mussolini came to power in Italy and banned all American comic strips, but Popeye was so popular the Italians made him bring it back. Popeye was of course a star of several adaptations, most prominently the animated shorts produced by Paramount, first animated by Fleischer Studios and later Famous Studios, his popularity grew during the Great Depression and would eventually eclipse Mickey Mouse in popularity for a while.


    Eventually the strip's name would change to Popeye in the 1970s and remains one of the longest running strips in syndication today.



    Last edited by BBally; 08-17-2019 at 09:21 PM.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  2. #2
    Fantastic Member dimo1's Avatar
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    Segar was pure genius.
    I love Popeye, thanks for reminding readers.

  3. #3
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dimo1 View Post
    Segar was pure genius.
    I love Popeye, thanks for reminding readers.
    No problem, while Segar isn't usually mentioned among the greats of the comic industry, he was a major influence on several future big name comic creators, names ranging from Charles M. Schulz of Peanuts (Charlie Brown and Snoopy) to the man many comic aficionados argue was the greatest comic book creator in the entire genre Will Eisner.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

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    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Last edited by BBally; 08-13-2019 at 02:41 PM.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  5. #5
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    The character also had a number of video games under his name notably the highly successful Arcade game and the NES port done by Nintendo supervised by Shigeru Miyamonto himself who was a fan of the character (his first attempt to make a game failed because he couldn't get the rights however in a twist of fate that led to the game being redesigned as Donkey Kong, which was not only the debut of the title Gorilla but also of Nintendo's mascot Mario)

    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  6. #6
    Long Live the Legion! Paul Newell's Avatar
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    The Fantagraphic collection of the Segar strips are fantastic. Also the best run I've ever read out of any of them.
    DRINK!

  7. #7
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  8. #8
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Along with being one the earliest characters to have his their own theme song, the Spinach theme is basically the originator of the Power Of The Song trope that we would see in superhero media, shounen, magical girl and giant robot anime and tokusatsu hero shows. Considering how popular Popeye is in Japan, I wonder is that was on an influence on the use of insert songs played during actions scenes in anime series and movies.
    Last edited by BBally; 08-17-2019 at 04:10 PM.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  9. #9
    Mighty Member Shadowras's Avatar
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    I grew up with the cartoon and still read the strips on comics kingdom.

  10. #10
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    Popeye is one of my personal favorite cartoons and that was before I knew it was originated as a comic strip series. Truly a great tale of the underdog and eating Spinach to defending the weak and helpless. At least that is how I viewed him as a kid and into my own adulthood to this day. A wonderful cartoon series to watch on a good day.

  11. #11
    small press afficionado matt levin's Avatar
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    Some great images, and lots of good information, BBally! thank you! I grew up with Popeye in B&W on tv and full color Sunday morning in the Funnies. I even like Altman's movie version--!
    Age/Bronze, Age/Reptiles, Alex&Ada, Anne Bonnie, Astro City, Bone, Briggs Land, Cerebus, Criminal, Courtney Crumrin, Eleanor & the Egret, Fables, Fatale, Fell, Grass Kings, Green Valley, Goon, Gotham Midnight, Groo, Hellboy, Hillbilly, Incognegro, Jack Staff, JL8, Jonah Hex, Kane, Lazarus, Little Nemo, Lone Wolf, Next Wave, Popeye, Powers, Princess Ugg, Resident Alien, SiP, Squirrel Girl, Stray Bullets, 10G, Thief of Thieves, Tuki, Usagi, Velvet

  12. #12
    Superfan Through The Ages BBally's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matt levin View Post
    Some great images, and lots of good information, BBally! thank you! I grew up with Popeye in B&W on tv and full color Sunday morning in the Funnies. I even like Altman's movie version--!
    I like the Altman movie too, I think Robin Williams was a really good live action Popeye (interesting that Williams had a long lasting friendship with Christopher Reeve since junior College and we all know the number of connections and references between Popeye and Superman).

    Also Big News, WB announced a number of home video releases for September including Popeye The Sailor: The 1940's Volume 3.

    https://www.blu-ray.com/news/?id=25578

    https://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=320600

    Last edited by BBally; 08-17-2019 at 06:19 PM.
    No matter how many reboots, new origins, reinterpretations or suit redesigns. In the end, he will always be SUPERMAN

    Credit for avatar goes to zclark

  13. #13
    Mighty Member Angilasman's Avatar
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    One of my happiest used book store finds recently was finding Fantagraphics' Popeye vol 5. For some reason it went out of print faster than the others and it was fetching enormous prices used online. What was horrible about it is that each of the spines on the 6 volumes has a single letter which, when the set is complete, with spell 'Popeye.' I dreaded having 'Popee' on my shelf for eternity!

    And I only paid like 10 bucks for it!

  14. #14
    small press afficionado matt levin's Avatar
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    Y'know? I'm so grateful for happy news, let me applaud your find, and wish you lots and lots of happiness reading it.
    Age/Bronze, Age/Reptiles, Alex&Ada, Anne Bonnie, Astro City, Bone, Briggs Land, Cerebus, Criminal, Courtney Crumrin, Eleanor & the Egret, Fables, Fatale, Fell, Grass Kings, Green Valley, Goon, Gotham Midnight, Groo, Hellboy, Hillbilly, Incognegro, Jack Staff, JL8, Jonah Hex, Kane, Lazarus, Little Nemo, Lone Wolf, Next Wave, Popeye, Powers, Princess Ugg, Resident Alien, SiP, Squirrel Girl, Stray Bullets, 10G, Thief of Thieves, Tuki, Usagi, Velvet

  15. #15
    Mighty Member Angilasman's Avatar
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    Imagine an eternity of 'POPEE' !

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