Critical Comics

Browse Exhibits (15 total)

Foxy Grandpa Shows the Boys Up-to-Date Sports

Two boys participate in and more importantly challange their Grandfather to different sports. Routinely, Foxy Grandpa not only meets their challenges but far surpasses them. Published by M.A. Donohue & Co. of Chicago in 1908.

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Buster Brown, Mary Jane, and Tige

Richard Felton Outcault’s Buster Brown, Mary Jane, and Tige was published in 1906 by New York: Frederick A. Strokes. Published in the Era of Invention, this particular comic book follows Buster Brown and his comrades on various adventures of the early 1900’s. Outcault first published the Buster Brown series in 1906 and continued to create new strips up until 1921. Buster Brown, Mary Jane and Tige is a 32-page comic book with color illustrations.

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Charlie Chaplin in the Army

Charlie Chaplin in the Army was published in 1917 by M.A Donohue & CO in Chicago. This comic book, a collection of twenty-two Charlie Chaplin comic strips, was created by Elzie Segar (1894-1938), the comic illustrator who also invented the character of “Popeye.” This comic was one of the Charlie Chaplin comic series that was first published in Chicago Herald as a request from Essanay Studio who wanted to utilize Charlie Chaplin’s fame as a marketing campaign. Each comic strip in this comic tells a variety of humorous stories of Charlie Chaplin’s interactions with the other characters. Charlie Chaplin in the Army is a 20-page comic book with illustrations.

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New Adventures of Henry Dubb

These strips depict the "adventures" of Henry Dubb, a hapless who rejects all oportunites to better his social situation - unions, socialism, etc. Dubb's "adventures" thus recount the victimization and violence of captialism in early-twentieth century America. Created by the American cartoonist and political activist Ryan Walker, Henry Dubb was one of Walker's most sucessful cartoons and lasting figures.

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Neues Einmaleins

A German comic that helps readers learn the multiplication tables. Text by Ferdinand Feldigl, images by Lothar Meggendorfer.

Published by Schreiber in Eßlingen near Stuttgart in 1800 and 1899. 

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Foxy Grandpa Flip Flaps

This comic follows the adventures of a conniving grandfather as he outwits his grandsons in a series of silly scenarios. Published by Donohue in Chicago in 1905.

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Ain't it a Grand and Glorious Feeling?

This comic consists of short stories following a married couple in the 1920s.

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Charlie Chaplin's Comic Capers's_comic_capers_01.jpg

Charlie Chaplin’s Comic Capers by E.C. Segar (Elzie Crisler) was published in 1917 in Chicago, Illinois through M.A. Donohue & Co. Publishing. Prior to being published in a bound comic book, “Charlie Chaplin’s Comedy Capers” was a comic run in the Chicago Herald throughout 1915 and 1916 by a couple different artists including E.C. Segar. Originally the comic was inspired by the various roles taken on by the film star and comedian Charlie Chaplin himself. In 1916, Chaplin starred in twelve two-reel comedies that included “The Floorwalker,” “The Fireman,” “The Vagabond,” “One A.M.,” “The Count,” “The Pawnshop,” “Behind the Screen,” “The Rink,” “Easy Street,” “The Cure,” “The Immigrant,” and “The Adventurer." Chaplin's ability to fill a variety of roles on set is reflected in the comics as he goes from being a farmer to a doctor to a soldier throughout the course of the comic series. 

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The Mischievous Monks of Crocodile Isle

A comic about two monkeys that live through several adventures with different animals in and around the Nile. It's a comic strip in black and white and color, faturing 6 panels per page. The paper is fragility and has a rough, abrasive texture, which had lost it's flexibility. According to the only copy available of this comic is the one at MSU. Published by J.I. Austen Co. in Chicago in 1908.

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Keeping up with the Joneses

An American comic strip that depicts the lives of Ma and Pa McGinis as they struggle to "keep up" with the lifestyle of their unseen neighbors, the Joneses. Written by  Arthur R. "Pop" Momand, Keeping Up With The Joneses ran from 1913 to 1938 and popularized the well-know catch phrase "keeping up with the Joneses."

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