Timeline – 2005 Part 5

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Beetle Bailey Sunday page digital proof, June 26, 2005.

This episode involves another of Lt. Fuzz’s pet peeves, eating in the office.  When Sarge is banished outside he encounters Rocky, one of the last characters in the strip who still smokes.

Mort Walker picked up the cigarette habit in the Army during the war.  It took him eight months to quit in the mid-1960s.  Around this time he did a story in Hi and Lois in which Hi was trying to give up.  Here is a link to that sequence: http://hiandlois.com/2014/01/04/new-years-resolutions/

In the early days of Beetle Bailey many of the characters smoked.  This strip from 1952 shows Cookie with a butt hanging out of his mouth.

Cosmo, the wheel dealer, was always shown smoking.

Rocky, who joined the strip in the late 1950s, was a tough guy, so of course he smoked.

Even Plato, the intellectual, occasionally had a cigarette.

In this strip from 1965, Lt. Fuzz tries a cigar to make him look more macho but he’s never been a smoker.

Today, very few of the characters smoke. Cookie sometimes has a cigar, if the gag requires ashes to fall into his cooking pot.  Rocky is the last holdout.

Next week we will move on to 2006 in our Timeline series, so be sure to check back.

– Brian Walker

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