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A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge by Josh Neufeld
Big & Little Questions (According to Wren Jo Byrd) by Julie Bowe
Bitter Seeds by Ian Tregillis
Black Cats and Evil Eyes: A Book of Old-Fashioned Superstitions by Chloe Rhodes
Bruja Born by Zoraida Córdova
Cat Got Your Diamonds by Julie Chase
Classified as Murder by Miranda James
The Clue at Black Creek Farm by Carolyn Keene
Death by Dumpling by Vivien Chien
Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles by Mark Russell and Mike Feehan
It All Comes Down to This by Karen English
The Great Shelby Holmes and the Coldest Case by Elizabeth Eulberg
Kraken by Wendy Williams
The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars Part One by Michael Dante DiMartino and Irene Koh
Mabel Jones and the Forbidden City by Will Mabbitt and Ross Collins
Midnight Without a Moon by Linda Williams Jackson
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Restart by Gordon Korman
Running With Lions by Julian Winters
Weather or Not by Sarah Mlynowski, Lauren Myracle, and Emily Jenkins
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Cybils Update (October 16)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 01)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 08)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 15)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (October 22)
September 2018 Sources
September 2018 Summary

Road Essays
FFCC99: Orphan Uhoria Labyrinth
FFCC33: Orphan Uhoria Blue Highway: A comparison of The Sentinel and Three-Quarters Dead
FFCC00: Orphan Uhoria Interstate: The Polar Express, Waiting for Augusta, and Winterhouse
Road Narrative Update for September 2018

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Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles: 10/04/18

Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles

Back in December my husband saw an article about the upcoming serious comic about Snagglepuss, reimagining him as a gay playwright in 1950s New York. The description and the cover art for Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles by Mark Russell and Mike Feehan alone was enough for us to immediately preorder a copy of the final omnibus. So the short version of this review: did it live up to our expectations. Yes.

Placing Snagglepuss in the era of the HUAAC trials is logical and brilliant. Here's why.

When he was most frequently on TV, it was the 1970s. He was part of the schlock HannaBarbara was flooding children's television with. I most remember him as the host of the Laff Olympics. He was a tall, bright pink maybe mountain lion, and obvious rip-off of the Pink Panther as created by Friz Freleng for the Blake Edwards films. To make matters worse he was voiced with the then camp "gay voice."

Post blacklisting, actors taken down by the HUAAC witch hunt, often found new, much lower profile roles in god awful TV series. TV in the 1950s and 1960s was still a relatively new form of entertainment and it took a while to gain "legitimacy." Rising filmmaking costs, the break-up of the old top down studio to theater distribution system, and the end of the Hays code (replaced by the first version of our modern day rating system) made it tough for Hollywood in the 1970s.

Reimagining Snagglepuss as someone who was as out as was possible in the hyper conservative, very white, very heteronormative 1950s, makes a hell of a lot of sense to anyone who watched his cartoons in the 1970s alongside the live action series staring of Rock Hudson (MacMillan and Wife) and Ironside (Raymond Burr). Both shows were a step down (though with their San Francisco settings, more in tune with their well known but never mentioned sexual orientations) from their earlier roles.

So by using a coded as gay (to be funny) cartoon character to show what life was like for queer entertainers in the 1950s makes a lot of sense. It gives a chance to re-contextualize Snagglepuss in terms of a historical era. It makes a once annoying character understandable and sympathetic.

Five stars

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