A Hot Batch of Dan Gordon’s Cookies

« Take it easy, Shakespeare — TA-AKE it easy! Ya’ll dislocate an iambic, an’ THEN where’ll ya be? » — Cookie raises a fair point

It’s one of the field’s small, fortuitous victories that monumentally multi-faceted animator Dan Gordon (Superman, Popeye, The Flintstones, Huckleberry Hound…) happened to drift into comics from 1943 to the early ’50s, and his output from that period demonstrates he was having a ball as a solo performer, surely a break from the often frustrating assembly-line constraints of the animation world. While it certainly wasn’t the money that lured him to funny books (and his books *were* funny), this is no mere case of slumming or professional doldrums.

He mostly worked for Ben W. Sangor‘s American Comics Group (aka ACG), first on a profusion of ‘funny animals‘ features (Superkatt, Anthony the Rogue, Hubert Hound, Squirmy, Chickie, Scallawag Scottie, Huey Longears…) for such ACG anthologies as Giggle Comics and Ha-Ha Comics, but then…

« Gordon soon expanded his work with human characters when he created high school student Cookie O’ Toole. Marking his debut in the April 1945 issue of Topsy-Turvy Comics, Cookie received his own series of magazines the following year. Unlike the Archie comics that typified the teen humor genre in comics, Gordon’s Cookie stories possessed a strong vitality with a satirical edge. » [ source ]

Cookie’s introduction in the one-shot Topsy-Turvy no. 1 (Apr. 1945, R. B. Leffingwell and Co.) Read it here!

Gordon’s Cookie stories are full of vitality and knockabout visual effervescence. The very colloquial dialogue’s pretty titter-worthy also. And you know, you can read each and every issue of Cookie right here, thanks to the assiduous efforts of the kind folks at comicbookplus.com.

Today, however, I really wanted to salute Gordon’s Cookie cover art, which first drew my attention to his comics work. Here, then, is a gallery of my picks.

This is Cookie no. 4 (Dec. 1946-Jan. 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon. The entertained birdie is a lovely touch.
I’ve always loved that joke, even if it makes very little sense. Here’s where I first encountered it, through Wesley Morse‘s 1962 version.
This is Cookie no. 5 (Feb.-Mar. 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon. Incidentally, Cookie’s sweetheart is Angelpuss. With a name like that…
« Aw, ma! » This is Cookie no. 6 (Apr.-May 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon.
This is Cookie no. 7 (June-July 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon. « Well, I looked for support from the rest of my friends / For their vanishing trick they get ten out of ten. »
This is Cookie no. 8 (Aug.-Sept. 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon.
This is Cookie no. 9 (Oct.-Nov. 1947, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon. Angelpuss is a singularly understanding lass, bless her heart.
This is Cookie no. 12 (Apr.-May 1948, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon. Design-wise, this one’s a particular standout. The totem gets a real workout!
This is Cookie no. 20 (Aug.-Sept. 1949, American Comics Group). Cover by Dan Gordon.

… and before you go, check out Gordon’s action-packed cover for Ha Ha Comics no. 66, which my partner ds featured one bright Tentacle Tuesday last year. « They say he can cook too! »


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