Holy Ursine Secret Identity! Could the smarter-than-the-average Yogi Bear be a clever disguise for a super hero? Well, not quite. But Yogi does reveal his persona as Bat Bear in the weekend newspaper comics 50 years ago this month. Batman had already been on ABC for a year at that point. We also get food gags and a native Indian stereotype punchline.
“Thump-a Boob A-Bump Chuck”? What kind of rock song had lines like that? And “Go Go-A-Diddle Doodle?” Did Ned Flanders write those lyrics? Rock music was treated like mere noise in a lot of pop culture in the pre-hippie ‘60s, likely by writers who were the bee’s knees over ‘20s jazz that was denounced by their parents as leading society in a gin-filled bathtub straight to Satan. Anyway, the January 1, 1967 comic featured Ranger Smith’s niece with a ten-inch waist groovin’ on the jump whap-a bla-bla and not paying attention to anything around her. Mr. Ranger’s named after Bill Hanna in this comic.
A way to bear’s heart is ... well, it didn’t work again this time, Cindy. Apparently, Yogi drove a car over to Cindy’s place in the January 8th comic.
You know how it is. Someone hands you their phone and asks you to take a picture with him but you don’t know how it’s supposed to work. Yogi has that problem in the January 15th comic. We presume that’s Mrs. Smith in the opening panel. A lot of solid colour backgrounds in this one.
“Injun-unity”?? Let’s see some comic try to get away with that punch line today. Well, let’s see a comic today give a weapon, no matter how fake, to a child. (Funny how all this stuff was acceptable 50 years ago but rock music wasn’t). At least the kid is talking in full sentences and not like-um braves do on TV set, ugg. This comic is from January 22nd.
In 1961, there was a Yogi Bear episode called Batty Bear, where Yogi sent away for a Bat Guy costume that he used to pilfer pic-a-nic baskets. This comic from January 29th is different. Yogi’s being helpful, rescuing a defenceless kitten from a bulldog. Why’s Ranger Smith rolling his eyes? Yogi’s just indulging in a little fun. That ranger’s such a wet blanket. This is Boo Boo’s only appearance of the month.
Click on any of the comics to make them bigger. Richard Holliss graciously supplied the colour comics from his own collection.