Monday, August 31, 2009
Capt. Billy's Whiz Bang, October 1921
Here's an early issue of Capt. Billy's Whiz Bang, the magazine that launched the Fawcett empire. I was kind of bummed when I scanned it because of the complete lack of toons or illustration, but after reading it, I can safely say this is one of my favorite items I've scanned lately. "An Explosion of Pedigreed Bunk." Smokehouse reading? Maybe so, but this little publication is full of rich language and belly laughs. A very cool look at the slang and attitudes of the day, and Capt. Billy himself is quite entertaining. From this roughshod little publication, Fawcett would go into all sorts of different publishing areas. Fawcett's mags from the 30s are amazingly well done, and, of course, their comics are a great mix of fun and intelligent stories.
A bit bigger than a pocket magazine and a little smaller than a digest, I'm sure this one folded away quite nicely. Thanks to McCoy for another sweet edit.
A few links
The wiki for Fawcett. The page begins with some information on Capt. Billy and his Whiz Bang.
Here's the page for the recent reprint About Comics did of issue 30, just four months after this issue here.
Here's a nice, short sort of academic survey of what the magazine was about from William Coyle on a page of studies in American humor.
Some pages. Smokehouse Poetry? I love it. Sure beats the entertainment weekly that currently suits such purposes.
Get the full scan here.
Back next time with some more bullshit.
Oh, yeah! I leave you with an unrestored cover from my collection from a couple months later. Riffing on a theme? Are there more covers out there from around this time based on this gag?