Early Sarge – Part 2

The Beetle Bailey Sunday page debuted on September 14, 1952 (see previous post). The unusual episode below, which shows a typical day in the life of Sargeant Orville P. Snorkel, ran in newspapers thirteen months later.

Beetle Bailey Sunday page, color proof, May 10, 1953.

Beetle Bailey Sunday page, color proof, May 10, 1953.

This is the only time that Sarge’s wife ever appeared in the strip. In fact, Sarge has been a confirmed bachelor with no children ever since. The army is his family.
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The First Sunday

This is the first Beetle Bailey Sunday page, which was published on September 14, 1952.

Beetle Bailey Sunday page, color proof, September 14, 1952.

Beetle Bailey Sunday page, color proof, September 14, 1952.

Mort Walker was excited about this new development. “Now I had a chance to ‘embellish’ my drawings,” he recalled in an interview. “I put in an incredible amount of work into drawing uniforms, military vehicles, buildings, etc. Everything needed to look real and true to life.”
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King Features Makes an Announcement

After Beetle Bailey joined the army and the daily strip started to sell better, King Features was encouraged to launch a Sunday page. Here is the sales brochure from 1952.

King Features sales brochure, front side, 1952.

King Features sales brochure, front side, 1952.

King Features sales brochure, back side, 1952.

King Features sales brochure, back side, 1952.

This was scanned and restored by Bill Janocha and Neal Walker from the original brochure in our archives. It may be the only example in existence.
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