Don Markstein's Toonopedia

Don Markstein's Toonopedia (subtitled A Vast Repository of Toonological Knowledge) is a web encyclopedia of print cartoons, comic strips and animation, initiated February 13, 2001. Donald D. Markstein, the sole writer and editor of Toonopedia,[1] termed it "the world's first hypertext encyclopedia of toons" and stated, "The basic idea is to cover the entire spectrum of American cartoonery."

Markstein began the project during 1999 with several earlier titles: he changed Don's Cartoon Encyberpedia (1999) to Don Markstein's Cartoonopedia (2000) after learning the word "Encyberpedia" had been trademarked. During 2001, he settled on his final title, noting, "Decided (after thinking about it for several weeks) to change the name of the site to Don Markstein's Toonopedia, rather than Cartoonopedia. Better rhythm in the name, plus 'toon' is probably a more apt word, in modern parlance, than 'cartoon', for what I'm doing.[2]

Don Markstein's Toonopedia
Type of site
Internet encyclopedia
Available inAmerican English
OwnerDon Markstein
Created byDon Markstein
LaunchedFebruary 13, 2001
Content license
All rights reserved

Comic strips

Toonopedia author Donald David Markstein[3] (March 21, 1947 – March 11, 2012)[3][4] was fascinated with all forms of cartoon art since his childhood. During 1981, Markstein and his wife, GiGi Dane (August 7, 1949 - August 5, 2016), founded Apatoons, an amateur press association devoted to animation. He edited Comics Revue, a monthly anthology of newspaper comics, from 1984 to 1987, and 1992 to 1996.[2] A writer for Walt Disney Comics [5], Markstein based Toonopedia on American and other English language cartoons with the goal of developing the largest online resource concerning American cartoons. Toonopedia accumulated over 1,800 articles since its launch on February 13, 2001.

During 2002, Charles Bowen reviewing the site for Editor & Publisher, said, {{quote|For journalists researching stories, these online resources can be golden. A case in point is Don Markstein's simply amazing Toonopedia, a vast repository of information about comics, past and future. Now, honestly, unless you're a comic book collector or a cartoonist, you're probably not going to put this on your frequent filer's list. However, if you're working on a story that deals with pop culture, that focuses on a particular time period, or that touches on classic villains and superheroes, Don just might become your own personal hero. The site serves up illustrated entries on nearly every comic strip, cartoon, and comic book you can think of, from the world famous Blondie and Peanuts to those ultra-obscure strips, such as The Pie-Face Prince of Old Pretzelburg.

Markstein worked on the staff of the New Orleans Times-Picayune newspaper, writing feature stories for the Sunday magazine section. His freelance credits include weekly restaurant reviews for the Phoenix Business Journal [6], semi-annual previews of comic book publishing projects, science fiction convention program books, scripts for relaxation tapes and computer manuals.[7] His comic book scripts are mainly for licensed characters, including Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, and Eek! the Cat.[2]

He provided editing, design and production for numerous publications, including Arizona Living, Arizona Women's Voice, Comics Interview, Comics Revue, Phoenix, Phoenix Resource, Louisiana Weekly Employer, Scottsdale and Sun Tennis. [8]

In February 2011, Markstein, who had a history of strokes, suffered what his daughter called "an incident that caused him to be in and out of hospitals for several weeks", and the following month "suffered a massive stroke while in the hospital. This caused him to be paralyzed on his left side."[9] He died of respiratory failure in March 2012.[10] In 2012, Markstein's family announced plans to continue updating Toonopedia through new articles written by fans,[9] but the site has yet to be updated since February 2011.


A Prince Valiant Companion, co-edited by Markstein

The subject matter of Toonopedia overlaps with the books Markstein wrote, edited and compiled. A Prince Valiant Companion (Manuscript Press, 1992), by Todd Goldberg and Carl J. Horak, was edited by Markstein and Rick Norwood. It includes plot summaries of the Prince Valiant comic strip from its beginning in 1937 to the 1980 retirement of the strip's creator, Hal Foster, along with additional material on the series and Foster's other work. [11]

Hot Tips from Top Comics Creators (Fictioneer Books, 1994) is a 120-page collection of more 1,000 pieces of advice on the comic-book industry from the first ten years of Comics Interview, plus capsule biographies of 262 comics professionals. [12]

See also


  1. ^ Don Markstein (1947-2012)-Cartoon Brew
  2. ^ a b c About the Author: Don Markstein at Don Markstein's Toonopedia. Archived October 25, 2011.
  3. ^ a b Spurgeon, Tom (March 12, 2012). "Don Markstein, 1947–2012". Archived from the original on March 15, 2012.
  4. ^ Turner, Rodger, ed. (March 12, 2012). "Obituary: Don Markstein". Archived from the original on May 11, 2012. Retrieved September 16, 2016.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  5. ^ Don Markstein, founder of Toonopedia, dead at
  6. ^ Don Markstein (1947-2012)-File 770
  7. ^ LepreCon 29-Program Participants
  8. ^ Don Markstein (1947-2012)-File 770
  9. ^ a b Markstein's daughter, Rachel Brown, in Tano, Duy. ed. "Write Your Own Toonopedia Article". Archived from the original on April 24, 2012. Retrieved January 27, 2012.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
  10. ^ Evanier, Mark (March 11, 2012). "Don Markstein, R.I.P." News from Me. Archived from the original on March 11, 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-11.
  11. ^ A Prince Valiant
  12. ^ ‘Toonopedia’ Creator Don Markstein Dies-Animation Magazine

External links

1900s in comics

This is a timeline of significant events in comics in the 1900s.

1910s in comics

This is a timeline of significant events in comics in the 1910s.

1920s in comics

This is a timeline of significant events in comics in the 1920s.

1946 in comics

Notable events of 1946 in comics. See also List of years in comics.

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Professor Grampy is an animated cartoon character appearing in the Betty Boop series of shorts produced by Max Fleischer and released by Paramount Pictures. He appeared in nine of the later Betty Boop cartoons beginning with Betty Boop and Grampy (1935). He had a starring role in the "Color Classic," Christmas Comes But Once A Year (1936).

Grampy is an ever-cheerful and energetic senior citizen with a bald, dome-shaped head, white beard, and a black nose. One author speculates that Grampy's character design may suggest he is Ko-Ko the Clown in retirement. His primary activities include singing, dancing and building Rube Goldberg-esque devices out of ordinary household items. When presented with an unexpected new problem, he will put on his thinking cap (a mortarboard with a lightbulb on top). In short order the lightbulb lights up and Grampy builds a new gadget to solve the problem.

It is not clear whether Grampy is actually related to Betty Boop, because everyone calls him "Grampy" and he seems to be equally affectionate to almost everyone he meets. There is also some inconsistency as to living arrangements. In some cartoons like Betty Boop and Grampy and House Cleaning Blues he and Betty live in separate houses. However, in The Impractical Joker he lives in an upper floor.

The identity of Grampy's voice actor has been subject to debate. The Fleischer Studios credits Popeye voice actor Jack Mercer as the voice of Grampy, while the character's article on Don Markstein's Toonopedia indicated that standard reference sources didn't name Grampy's voice actor, aside from some isolated mentions crediting Everett Clark for the role.Grampy appeared in nine of the later Betty Boop cartoons in the mid-1930s, often having a larger role than Betty. He also made one appearance without Betty, in the 1936 Color Classics short Christmas Comes But Once a Year.

Green Mask

The Green Mask is the name of two fictional comic book superheroes, both published by Fox Feature Syndicate. Both are in the public domain with some of the original stories having been reprinted by AC Comics.

Howard Purcell

Howard Purcell (November 10, 1918 – April 24, 1981) was an American comics artist and writer active from the 1940s Golden Age of Comic Books through the 1960s Silver Age.

A longtime penciler and cover artist for DC Comics, one of the field's two largest firms, he co-created the Golden Age characters Sargon the Sorcerer and the Gay Ghost (renamed in the 1970s the Grim Ghost) for All-American Publications, one of the companies, with National Comics and Detective Comics, that merged to form DC. Purcell also drew the famous cover of Green Lantern #1 (Fall 1941).

Jesse Santos

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Morty Meekle

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Novelty Press

Novelty Press (a.k.a. Premium Service Co., Inc.; a.k.a. Novelty Publications; a.k.a. Premier Group) was an American Golden Age comic-book publisher that operated from 1940–1949. It was the comic book imprint of Curtis Publishing Company, publisher of The Saturday Evening Post. Among Novelty's best-known and longest-running titles were Blue Bolt and Target Comics.

During its nine-year run, Novelty had a roster of creators that included Al Avison, Dan Barry, Carl Burgos, L.B. Cole, Bill Everett, Al Gabriele, Joe Gill, Tom Gill, Jack Kirby, Tarpé Mills, Al Plastino, Don Rico, Joe Simon, Mickey Spillane, and Basil Wolverton.Although published in Philadelphia, Novelty Press's editorial offices were in New York City.

Room and Board (comic strip)

Room and Board was an American comic strip created by Sals Bostwick on 21 May 1928. He drew it until his death in 1930, after which it was continued by cartoonists like Brandon Walsh, Ben Batsford, Darrell McClure, Dow Walling and Herman Thomas before coming to an end in 1932. It was revived in 1936 by Gene Ahern and syndicated until 1953, following Ahern's Our Boarding House which he drew from 1921 to 1936.

Sam and Silo

Sam and Silo is an American comic strip created by Mort Walker (creator of Beetle Bailey and Hi and Lois) and Jerry Dumas. The series is a "continuation" or a spin-off of Sam's Strip (1961-1963), as it uses the same characters. Dumas was solely responsible for the strip from 1995 and drew it until his death in 2016.

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The Heart of Juliet Jones

The Heart of Juliet Jones is an American comic strip series created by Elliott Caplin and drawn by Stan Drake in 1953. The strip was distributed by King Features Syndicate.The strip was a soap opera, following the prototype set by Mary Worth but elevated by Drake's exceptional artwork. The strip's first storylines were based on a treatment by writer Margaret Mitchell. The figure drawing was characterized by Drake's pioneering use of naturalistic movement and expression, a style he achieved partly through the use of Polaroid photographic reference.

United Feature Syndicate

United Feature Syndicate is a large editorial column and comic strip newspaper syndication service based in the United States and established in 1919. Originally part of E. W. Scripps Company, it was part of United Media (along with the Newspaper Enterprise Association) from 1978 to 2011, and is now a division of Andrews McMeel Syndication. United Features has syndicated many notable comic strips, including Peanuts, Garfield, Li'l Abner, Dilbert, Nancy, and Marmaduke.

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