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Fw: [DickTracy] Re: Some Thoughts

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  • syd2918@yahoo.com
    Aaron, thanks for your notes. My remarks on the characters were in the context of Gould s practise of discontinuing use of characters in his strip (arising
    Message 1 of 3 , May 11, 2013
    Aaron, thanks for your notes. My remarks on the characters were in the "context" of Gould's practise of 'discontinuing' use of characters in his strip (arising out of Ray's remarks on Tinky) My point was, that Vitamin was a  prominent example in that respect. Technically, Vitamin's 'image' was not 'seen' after being at B.O.'s bedside, but Tracy did make a reference to Vitamin again (Flattop Jr. storyline) on  5 - 24 - 56. Which I think validates the 21 years. His discontinuation - for a noticably long period is really the point, not so much the exactitude of the time.. But I'll 'confess', I did preface it with the word 'seen'   ;- ) 
     
    Thanks too, for spotting Groovy Grove in those Collins stories. (Good Memory ?  Meticulous research ?)  As I said, I had no recall of him, not surprising, as his contribution in those stories was all background imagery. Had to take a 'refresher' look at those strips, and found his input in verbal exchanges was one word, in that Row Boat - - "Lizz !"  And I'm going to 'suspect' that if he appeared again (did he?) in Collins scripts, there was nothing more memorable or substantial, until 'time' came to make his mark as the 'story' of the week.
     
    In doing the re-read, I also found the sequence telling of the 'break-up' - between Sparkle and Vera. The reaction, as I read it again, seemed "out of character"  . . . seemingly, a 180 degree 'turn around' for Vera Alldid, and mind you, just 2 and a half years after they happily 'pledged' their love for each other) . . . 'one more time'.!
     
    Suddenly, (unexpectedly), in June of '78 we're told . . .
     
    "Her husband, Vera Alldid, the cartoonist, ran off to Mexico for a 'quickie' divorce' . . ."
     
    "Vera couldn't handle fame, Mr. Tracy he became obsessed with money".
     
    "He also had an interest in wine women and song - only Sparkle wasn't the woman".
     
    (See those mid '70s panels 'attached' to appreciate the 'contrast') Note Vera's words !
     
    I've never thought of Vera, Groovy and/or Peanutbutter as being among my favorite Tracy characters, but while things can change, the "relationship" between those two, was easily the most passionate in Dick Tracy. Something readers could feel. So on reflection, Max wrought something very, very 'inconsistent' with the personalities of those characters.
     
     
     
    SYD in Trinidad
     
     
     
     
    -------Original Message-------
     
    From: ksullet
    Date: 05/11/13 04:31:17
    Subject: [DickTracy] Re: Some Thoughts
     
    TV Wiggles takes place much earlier than 1956. I believe Vitamin Flintheart's final appearance is during B.O.'s recovery on December 2, 1950. It'll be almost another *27* years before he'll be seen again.
     
    Sparkle didn't spend too long out of the strip to be fair, brought back as a cast member during the infamous Big Boy's revenge story that saw the death of the Moon Maid. Vera Alldid is mentioned during that story, written out off-screen (contrary to your supposition that these 'mistakes' were given flashy and dramatic corrections). It is also fair to note that Groovy Grove does indeed appear during this same story, showing that Collins didn't have quite the disdain for Grove as he did for Alldid (who didn't even get an on-screen exit...) or the Moon Era (of which I wish he had been less dramatic and more thorough). Groovy also makes an appearance during Haf-and-Haf's return, escorting Zelda back to the station. He's the one who discovers that Lizz has been kidnapped during the 50th anniversary story. It seems that at some point, Collins did have some sort of plan for Grove but lost taste for him, or perhaps simply wanted a good sympathetic character to kill off (recall that he wanted to do similar to Pat Patton). It could also be that he didn't really feel one way or the other about Groovy (sort of like me), and he was simply the easiest character to get rid of in light of an ever expanding cast. Still, in comparison to the Moon Maid and Vera Alldid who were done away with at the first best opportunity, Groovy lasted 7 years into the strip until his death in 1984.
     
    To also be totally fair to Collins, the Moon Era is at the very least divisive (although so is Moon Maid's death), and I don't think anyone really liked Vera Alldid (even his return during the Abner Kadaver storyline didn't seem to be all that well received to me), perhaps not even Gould who pretty much dumped him as well.
     
    I will say that for a man so adamant against the Moon Era, at least in part because of how far removed from realism it was, he certainly didn't turn his nose up at such absurd concepts as human cloning or cryogenics, as long as it gave him an out to return dead characters. I have to say that I remain baffled by decisions like these made by Tracy writers since Gould's retirement. Just goes to show that even though Collins may have considered some of Gould's moves to be mistakes, he was more than capable of pulling a few boners of his own.
     
    Aaron
     
    --- In DickTracy@yahoogroups.com, "syd2918@..." <syd2918@...> wrote:
    >
    > Ray, that statement (below) was so true of many good characters. Perhaps the
    > most esteemed one, might have been Vitamin Flintheart - a 'six-pack'
    > appearance character for earlier stories, yet was "dropped" after August
    > 1956 (TV Wiggles)  - and wasn't seen again for some 21 years, until Max
    > Collins brought him back for that really good Angeltop story (1977- 78)
    >
    > Both Sparkle and Vera Alldid (while still 'love doves'), did not appear
    > after (mid 1975) - in the (obcene phone caller) -  Z.Z. Welz case,  where
    > Vera in trying to persue Welz for those calls to Sparkle, he had earlier
    > been
    >  arrested as the callers murderer. (Turned out Mrs. Welz had minutes before
    > - shot him on the pole)
    >
    > " . . . I doubt that Gould intended for Tinky to become a permanent member
    > of his cast of characters. Tinky was crafted as a sympathetic character for
    > the purpose of her two stories and all loose ends for the character were
    > tied up at the end of the tale. Her purpose in the strip complete, I think
    > Gould pushed the character into the background and thought little about her
    > after her stories."
    >   - Ray Toler
    >
    > Even Groovy faded somewhat into the back ground after1975 when the first
    > poposed marriage to Lizz fell apart.
    >
    > Apparently not a Collins favorite, and my memory may be failing (?)  But It
    > s difficult to recall 'seeing' GROOVY anywhere, or 'doing' anything, before
    > the Collins time to "die" in 1985 (?).
    >
    > Makes you wonder (?) - seems as if, when Max 'thought' Chet had made a
    > mistake' it wasn't sufficent to let the character (or the magnetic
    > inventions) to fade quietly into the background (as Gould was given to do)
    > but rather 'pluck them out' of Gould's 'obscurity', and then agressivly
    > terminate (or banish) them, to 'correct' the errors, 'he thought' - Chet had
    > made. (e.g. Moon Maid, Vera Alldid and Groovy Grove easily come to mind).
    >
    > In local parlance he was "Biging Up" himself.   Not to say like a 'soft
    > spoken', respectful Mike (on changes), but rather like wanting readers to
    > clearly know (elbow in your eye?) - HE was 'now in charge' !   ;- )
    >
    >
    >
    > SYD in Trinidad
    >
     
     
     
     
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  • ksullet
    ... A little of both. You re right, of course, in that Groovy is still fairly much a background character, but as I said, juggling all those characters,
    Message 2 of 3 , May 11, 2013
      > Thanks too, for spotting Groovy Grove in those Collins stories. (Good Memory
      > ? Meticulous research ?)

      A little of both. You're right, of course, in that Groovy is still fairly much a background character, but as I said, juggling all those characters, perhaps Collins simply didn't know what to do with poor Groovy. And I think that his death, at least, was very memorable, and while it may have upset Groovy fans, it was also much better handled than the sudden exit of the other two characters, another indication that perhaps Collins did have a bit more affection for Groovy and did not simply consider him a 'mistake' the way he considered Vera and Moon Maid (and the Moon Era) to be. Indeed, Groovy is a perfectly fine character and has at least a small fanbase, something I don't think anyone can say about Vera Alldid. I'm encouraged by Mr. Curtis's words, I hope they find something really cool for Tinky to do. :)

      > I've never thought of Vera, Groovy and/or Peanutbutter as being among my
      > favorite Tracy characters, but while things can change, the "relationship"
      > between those two, was easily the most passionate in Dick Tracy. Something
      > readers could feel. So on reflection, Max wrought something very, very
      > inconsistent' with the personalities of those characters.
      >

      I can't argue here, my exposure to Vera is quite limited. However, that which burns brightest burns half as long. Success, as Sparkle mentions, could have ruined Vera's personality. That's okay. I greatly prefer her and Junior as a couple to either of the prospective first spouses. Perhaps if Mysta turns out to be real, she can be married off to Vera.

      Aaron
    • Ray Toler
      I for one never liked Vera very much. I always expected Vera to become involved in something shady. Perhaps it was that I thought Gould always drew him with a
      Message 3 of 3 , May 11, 2013
        I for one never liked Vera very much. I always expected Vera to become involved in something shady. Perhaps it was that I thought Gould always drew him with a sneer on his face (or at least that was how I perceived it).

        Ray Toler


        --- In DickTracy@yahoogroups.com, "ksullet" <idesama@...> wrote:
        >
        > > Thanks too, for spotting Groovy Grove in those Collins stories. (Good Memory
        > > ? Meticulous research ?)
        >
        > A little of both. You're right, of course, in that Groovy is still fairly much a background character, but as I said, juggling all those characters, perhaps Collins simply didn't know what to do with poor Groovy. And I think that his death, at least, was very memorable, and while it may have upset Groovy fans, it was also much better handled than the sudden exit of the other two characters, another indication that perhaps Collins did have a bit more affection for Groovy and did not simply consider him a 'mistake' the way he considered Vera and Moon Maid (and the Moon Era) to be. Indeed, Groovy is a perfectly fine character and has at least a small fanbase, something I don't think anyone can say about Vera Alldid. I'm encouraged by Mr. Curtis's words, I hope they find something really cool for Tinky to do. :)
        >
        > > I've never thought of Vera, Groovy and/or Peanutbutter as being among my
        > > favorite Tracy characters, but while things can change, the "relationship"
        > > between those two, was easily the most passionate in Dick Tracy. Something
        > > readers could feel. So on reflection, Max wrought something very, very
        > > inconsistent' with the personalities of those characters.
        > >
        >
        > I can't argue here, my exposure to Vera is quite limited. However, that which burns brightest burns half as long. Success, as Sparkle mentions, could have ruined Vera's personality. That's okay. I greatly prefer her and Junior as a couple to either of the prospective first spouses. Perhaps if Mysta turns out to be real, she can be married off to Vera.
        >
        > Aaron
        >
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