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Timeline – 1972 Part 3

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, August 27, 1972.

In 1967, Dr. Bonkus the camp psychiatrist, debuted in Beetle Bailey. He was short in stature with a bald head and an unruly moustache.

As Mort Walker explained in The Best of Beetle Bailey, “Every camp has a psychiatrist and no camp needs one more than Camp Swampy. Of course they got the psychiatrist they deserved, Dr. Bonkus, who could use a little help himself.”
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Timeline – 1970 Part 2

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, June 21, 1970.

In 1984 Mort Walker mused about “Philosophy in the Comics” in The Best of Beetle Bailey. “Al Capp once said, ‘You can’t draw a picture of a dog without making a statement on the condition of dogs.’ All cartoons therefore contain observations on mankind and society. Some cartoons are just more obvious in this regard.”
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Timeline – 1970 Part 1

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, May 24, 1970.

In the 1984 book The Best of Beetle Bailey, Mort Walker explained one of the major themes in the strip.

Beetle Bailey has been studied by sociologists for the way authority is represented. Americans feel that authority should be questioned, not blindly followed, and people in authority in this country accept this resistance as an inalienable right. In Europe and many Asian countries, the class system and regal sovereignty are so deeply ingrained many citizens never question an order. In Italy there is a soldier comic strip where the private always ends up in jail for things that Beetle does routinely. Beetle and Sarge play the game, Sarge doing his job imposing authority and Beetle doing his resisting it.”
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