Timeline – 2003 Part 2

Beetle Bailey Sunday page digital proof, January 12, 2003.

The characters shown in silhouette in the Sunday page above are: Beetle and Lt. Flap (panels #2 and #3), Zero (panel #4), Rocky (panel #5), Plato (panel #6), Sarge (panel #7) and General Halftrack (panel #8).

This technique was discussed in a previous post.
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Timeline – 1973 Part 3

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, July 15, 1973.

Beetle Bailey has one of the largest casts of any syndicated comic strip, with the possible exception of Doonesbury. The conflicts that are generated by these distinctive characters are a great source for gag material.

Two characters that don’t often butt heads are Rocky and Plato.
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Timeline – 1971 Part 3

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, February 7, 1971.

The Sunday page above stars Rocky, who is the editor of the Camp Swampy News. As a muckraking journalist, he uses his columns to take pot shots at General Halftrack.

When Rocky first appeared in the strip, around 1958, he was a former thug from a street gang, inspired by the movie roles of James Dean and Marlon Brando. Here’s an early example.
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