Mandrake the Magician was a syndicated newspaper comic strip, created by Lee Falk (before he created The Phantom). Mandrake began publication on June 11, 1934. Phil Davis soon took over as the strip's illustrator, while Falk continued to script. The strip is distributed by King Features Syndicate.
Mandrake, along with the Phantom Magician in Mel Graff's The Adventures of Patsy, are regarded by comics historians as the first superheroes of comics. Comics historian Don Markstein writes, "Some people say Mandrake the Magician, who started in 1934, was comics' first superhero."
Davis worked on the strip until his death in 1964, when Falk recruited current artist Fred Fredericks. With Falk's death in 1999, Fredericks became both writer and artist. The Sunday Mandrake strip ended December 29, 2002. The daily strip ended mid-story on July 6, 2013 when Fred Fredericks retired, and a reprint of D220 "Pursuit of the Cobra" from 1995 began on July 8, 2013.
|Mandrake the Magician|
1938 Mandrake comic
|Author(s)||Lee Falk (1934–1999)|
Fred Fredericks (1999–2013)
|Illustrator(s)||Phil Davis (c. 1934–1964)|
Fred Fredericks (1964–2013)
|Current status/schedule||Daily and Sunday; concluded; reruns|
|Launch date||June 11, 1934|
|End date||July 6, 2013|
|Syndicate(s)||King Features Syndicate|
|Mandrake the Magician|
|First appearance||June 11, 1934|
|Created by||Lee Falk|
|Team affiliations||Defenders of the Earth|
Mandrake is a magician whose work is based on an unusually fast hypnotic technique. As noted in captions, when Mandrake "gestures hypnotically", his subjects see illusions, and Mandrake has used this technique against a variety of villains including gangsters, mad scientists, extraterrestrials, and characters from other dimensions. At various times in the comic strip, Mandrake has also demonstrated other powers, including turning invisible, shapeshifting, levitation, and teleportation. His hat, cloak and wand, passed down from his father Theron, possess great magical properties which in time Mandrake learns how to use. Although Mandrake publicly works as a stage magician, he spends much of his time fighting criminals and combatting supernatural entities. Mandrake lives in Xanadu, a high-tech mansion atop a mountain in New York State. Xanadu's features include closed circuit TV; a sectional road which divides in half; and vertical iron gates.
Leon Mandrake, a real-life stage magician who had been performing for well over ten years before Lee Falk introduced the comic strip character, and who was likewise known for his top hat, pencil line mustache and scarlet-lined cape, is sometimes thought to have been the basis for the origin of the strip. In actuality, he had changed his stage name to Mandrake to match the popular strip, and then legally changed his surname from Giglio to Mandrake later. The resemblance between the comic strip hero and the real life magician was close enough to allow Leon to at least passively allow the illusion that the strip was based on his stage persona. Leon Mandrake was accompanied by Narda, his first wife and stage assistant, named after a similar character who appears in the strip. Velvet, his replacement assistant and eventual life-time partner, would also later make appearances in the strip along with his real-life side-kick, Lothar.
Lothar is Mandrake's best friend and crimefighting companion. Mandrake first met Lothar during his travels in Africa. Lothar was "Prince of the Seven Nations", a mighty federation of jungle tribes; but forbore to become king and instead followed Mandrake on his world travels. Lothar is often referred to as "the strongest man in the world", with the exception of Hojo — Mandrake's chef and secret chief of Inter Intel. Lothar is invulnerable to any weapon forged by man, impervious to heat, cold and possesses the stamina of a thousand men. He also cannot be harmed by magic directly (fire bolts, force bolts, spell incantations). He can lift an elephant by one hand easily. One of the first African crimefighting heroes ever to appear in comics, Lothar made his first appearance alongside Mandrake in 1934 in the inaugural daily strip. In the beginning, Lothar spoke poor English and wore a fez, short pants, and a leopard skin. In a 1935 work by King Features Syndicate, Lothar is referred to as Mandrake's "giant black slave." When artist Fred Fredericks took over in 1965, Lothar spoke correct English and his clothing changed, although he often wore shirts with leopard-skin patterns.
Narda is Princess of the European nation Cockaigne (ruled by her brother Segrid). She made her first appearance in the second Mandrake story. Although she and Mandrake were infatuated with one another, they did not marry until 1997, which occurred at an extravagant triple wedding ceremony—at Mandrake's home of Xanadu, Narda's home country Cockaigne, and Mandrake's father Theron's College of Magic (Collegium Magikos) in the Himalayas. Narda learned martial arts from Hojo.
Theron is the headmaster of the College of Magic (Collegium Magikos) located in the Himalayas. Theron is hundreds of years old and may be kept alive by the Mind Crystal of which he is the guardian.
Hojo is Mandrake's chef at his home of Xanadu, and the secret Chief of the international crimefighting organization Inter-Intel, in addition to being a superb martial arts expert. As such, he has used Mandrake's help with many cases. Hojo's assistant at Inter-Intel is Jed. Hojo knows 6 languages.
The Police Chief is named Bradley but mostly called "Chief." He has been aided by Mandrake on several occasions. The Police Chief created the "S.S.D." (Silly Stuff Dept.) for absurd and unbelievable cases that only Mandrake could solve. He has a son, Chris.
Magnon is Mandrake's most powerful friend and is the emperor of the galaxy. Magnon and his wife Carola have a daughter, Nardraka, who is named after Mandrake and Narda and is their godchild.
Lenore is Mandrake's younger half-sister. She is a world-renowned explorer.
Karma is Lothar's girlfriend, an African princess who works as a model.
The Cobra is Mandrake's most evil and dangerous foe, apparent from the start of the story. In 1937, the Cobra was apparently defeated; but returned in 1965, wearing a menacing silver mask. The Cobra's main goal is to acquire one of the two powerful Crystal Cubes which increase mental energy. These are guarded by Mandrake and his father Theron. Mandrake learned that The Cobra was secretly Luciphor, Theron's oldest son and thus Mandrake's half-brother. In later years, the Cobra abandoned his silver mask as his face had been reconstructed through surgery. He is sometimes accompanied by his assistant Ud.
Derek is Mandrake's twin brother who was similar to Mandrake in appearance, used his magical powers (nearly the equal of Mandrake's) to achieve short-term personal satisfactions. Mandrake has tried to remove Derek's knowledge of magic; but has never entirely succeeded. Derek has a son, Eric (mother unknown), who has shown no signs of following in his father's footsteps.
The Clay Camel, real name Saki, is a master of disguise, able to mimic anyone and change his appearance in seconds. His name comes from the symbol he leaves at the scenes of his crimes, a small camel made of clay.
The Brass Monkey, daughter of the Clay Camel, with a similar talent for disguises.
Aleena the Enchantress is a former friend of Mandrake's from the College of Magic, a much-married spoiled temptress who uses her magic powers for her own benefit. She sometimes attempts to seduce Mandrake; but fails, and thereafter attempts to cause him trouble.
8 is an old and very powerful crime organization originating in medieval times. They are known to often incorporate the number 8 in their crimes or leave the number 8 as a mark. They are organized like an octopus with eight arms (headquarters) spread all over the world, and one head (the mysterious leader Octon, only shown as a menacing image on a computer screen). Over the years, Mandrake destroys their headquarters one by one. In one of the stories the Octon of 8 is revealed as Cobra; but the name later referred to an artificial intelligence wielded by Ming the Merciless in the television series Defenders of the Earth.
Ekardnam ('Mandrake' backwards) is Mandrake's "evil twin", who exists on the other side of the mirror. Like his world (where the government is run by the "Private of the Armies", and generals do menial work), Ekardnam is an exact opposite, and uses his "evil eye" to work his magic.
The Deleter is an extraterrestrial contract killer who will "delete" anyone for a price, but will inflict justice on anyone who tries to cheat him out of his contract fee.
Nitro Cain a mad bomber who threw sticks of explosives at people, including Mandrake. The Mandrake comic strip appeared in the Australian newspaper "Sunday Telegraph. The series was abruptly withdrawn with the last panel showing that Nitro Cain had blown Mandrake off a horse, with Mandrake exclaiming "Blast you, Nitro Cain", a clever reference to the explosive's blast.
Mandrake had a prominent role in Magic Comics and Big Little Books (published by Whitman) of the 1930s and 1940s. Dell Comics published a Mandrake the Magician issue in their Four Color comic book series with various main characters. The Mandrake issue was #752 and featured original stories by Stan Campell and written by Paul Newman.
In 1966–67, King Comics published ten issues of a Mandrake the Magician comic book. Most of the stories were remakes of past newspaper strip stories and featured art by André LeBlanc, Ray Bailey and others. Mandrake stories also ran as back-up features in other King titles.
Italian publisher Fratelli Spada produced a considerable amount of original Mandrake comic book stories in the 1960s and 1970s. A few of these were even published in the American Mandrake comic book mentioned above.
Mandrake has also enjoyed great success in comic books published in Britain, Australia, Brazil, India, France, Spain, Italy, Yugoslavia, Germany, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Turkey and Sweden (although in the case of the Nordic countries, most often as a backup feature in The Phantom comic books). Mandrake is popular in India through Indrajal Comics.
In 2013, Dynamite Entertainment launched a mini-series, Kings Watch, where (much like Defenders of the Earth), Mandrake and Lothar teamed up with the Phantom, as well as Flash Gordon, Dale Arden and Hans Zarkov. This series pitted the six characters against the Cobra and Ming the Merciless. This was followed by a Mandrake solo comic, written by Roger Langridge and drawn by Jeremy Treece, as part of Dynamite's King: Dynamite series.
An unauthorized Mandrake movie produced in Turkey was made in 1967, Mandrake Killing'in Peşinde (Mandrake Chasing Killing) (also known as Mandrake Killing'e Karşı / Mandrake Against Killing), directed by Oksal Pekmezoğlu and starring Güven Erte as Mandrake.
In 2007, it was announced that Baldwin Entertainment Group and Hyde Park Entertainment purchased rights to make a Mandrake movie, to be directed by Mimi Leder. The two companies own the rights to Lee Falk's The Phantom. Jonathan Rhys Meyers was originally on board the project as the title character with Chuck Russell announced as director. In 2009, Hayden Christensen replaced Rhys Meyers in the title role of the film, with Djimon Honsou co-starring and Mimi Leder directing. Warner Bros announced that they are developing the film version of Mandrake. In June 2016, Sascha Baron Cohen was cast as Mandrake.
In the 1960s, Federico Fellini, a close friend of Falk, intended to make a Mandrake movie, but the project never got off the ground.
In the early 1980s, within two weeks of signing with his first agent, American filmmaker Michael Almereyda was hired by Embassy Pictures to rewrite a script for Mandrake the Magician. He told Filmmaker that upon receiving the assignment, he flew to New York and checked himself into the Chelsea Hotel to work on the rewrite. Three weeks later, he emerged with new draft in hand, but by then the studio had changed heads, and in as little time as his revision took, the project was dropped.
NBC made a pilot for a Mandrake the Magician TV series in 1954, but no other episodes were made. Stage magician Coe Norton starred as Mandrake and Woody Strode as Lothar.
In the animated series Defenders of the Earth (1986–87), Mandrake the Magician teams with fellow King Features adventurers Flash Gordon and The Phantom. Mandrake's best friend and crime fighting partner Lothar also has a prominent role, as well as a teenage son nicknamed L.J. (Lothar Jr.) who was also a martial artist. Mandrake has an adoptive son of Asian blood named Kshin, whom he is training as his apprentice and heir. Peter Renaday provided the voice of Mandrake and Buster Jones provided that of Lothar. The entire series has been released by BCI Eclipse in two DVD sets in America, while Fremantle Media released the entire series on DVD in the UK.
In the animated series Phantom 2040, featuring a future Phantom, Mandrake appears in the episode "The Magician," he is not named in the episode, and is presented as an old friend of that Phantom's father, a magician who helped build a lot of the previous Phantom's equipment. His remarkably well-preserved shape is compatible with the longevity-conferring properties of the Crystals. Peter Renaday once again provides the voice of Mandrake.
The musical Mandrake the Magician and the Enchantress was produced during the late 1970s at the Lenox Arts Festival in Massachusetts. The script is by Falk and Thayer Burch, with music by George Quincy and lyrics by Burch.
Mandrake is a character in the play King Kong Palace, written by Chilean playwright Marco Antonio de la Parra. In the play, Mandrake is now a performer in birthday parties and attempts to seduce Jane, the ambitious wife of Tarzan, in order to satisfy his lust for power.
Mandrake the Magician inspired several other comic characters with magic powers, including Zatara, Kardak the Mystic Magician, Monako, Dakor the Magician, Ibis the Invincible, Mantor the Magician, Sargon the Sorcerer, Zatanna, Mr. Mystic, The Wizard, Mysto, Magician Detective, and the short-lived Jim the Magician (Jadugar Jim in Hindi) by Sudhir Tailang in India.
In Mad #14 (August 1954), Mandrake was spoofed as "Manduck". He lives in a city dump, which he convinces visitors is a palatial home by "gesturing hypnotically". In this story, he matches wits with The Shadow; he, Lothar (called "Loathar"), and The Shadow all gesture hypnotically at each other, and after a huge explosion only Lothar (looking like Manduck) remains. In another issue, Manduck pulls off the trick of turning Loathar into a six-foot-tall blonde woman.
"In Pictopia" (first published in Anything Goes! #2, August 1986) is a short story by Alan Moore and illustrator Don Simpson, which takes place in a limbo world of comic book characters. The main character, Nocturno the Necromancer, is based on Mandrake. The story was reprinted in George Khoury's The Extraordinary Works of Alan Moore (TwoMorrows, July 2003).
New Zealand-born Australian country and western singer Tex Morton had a successful song "Mandrake" recorded in 1941. It was about a rodeo horse named Mandrake who never bucked the same – "Mandrake is a wizard so that's how he got his name".
Professional baseball player Don Mueller, active in Major League Baseball from 1948 to 1959, was nicknamed "Mandrake the Magician" for being adept at consistently putting the ball in play and delivering hits through the infield.
In Italy, a popular saying "non sono mica Mandrake" (i.e. "I'm no Mandrake", meaning "I can't do what's impossible") refers to the magician.
Balarama (literally "Joy of Kids") is an Indian comic magazine published by MM Publications Ltd., of Malayala Manorama group from Kottayam, Kerala in Malayalam-language. It is one of the most largely read comic magazines in India. Starting as a monthly in 1972, it became a fortnightly periodical in November 1984, before finally settling as a weekly in 1999.
Balarama played a major role in the development of children's literature in Malayalam. The magazine also helped to promote reading habit among the Malayalee children. Along with the comics (original or syndicated), the content includes fables, rhymes, literary classics and various puzzles. Much like Disney, most of the artists in Balarama usually work under the restrictions of anonymity. Other members of the balarama family includes the Balarama Digest,a weekly that covers a different general topic in each issue this publication has won critical and public appreciation owing to its rich content and accuracy.
The American comics syndicated by the magazine include Disney comics, Henry, Dennis The Menace and also Batman, The Phantom and Mandrake the Magician, presently discontinued. The popular Children's series Dora the Explorer and Chhota Bheem have been recently included.Comics Revue
Comics Revue is a bi-monthly small press comic book published by Manuscript Press and edited by Rick Norwood. Don Markstein edited the publication from 1984 to 1987 and 1992 to 1996.
As of 2014, it has published more than 300 issues, making it the longest running independent comic book (beating the record of Cerebus the Aardvark). It reprints comic strips such as Alley Oop, The Amazing Spider-Man, Barnaby, Batman, Buz Sawyer, Casey Ruggles, Flash Gordon, Gasoline Alley, Hägar the Horrible, Krazy Kat, Lance, Latigo, Little Orphan Annie, Mandrake the Magician, Modesty Blaise, O'Neill, Peanuts, The Phantom, Rick O'Shay, Sir Bagby, Star Wars, Steve Canyon, Tarzan, Akwas, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
Artists whose work has appeared in Comics Revue include most of the best known names in comics art: Jack Kirby, Milton Caniff, Hal Foster, Charles Schulz, Al Williamson, George Pérez, Roy Crane, Russ Manning, and Burne Hogarth.
In issue #200, Comics Revue featured the only English language publication of "The Dark Angels", the last Modesty Blaise story, by Peter O'Donnell and Romero.
In 2006, it was revealed in Absolute Crisis on Infinite Earths that the Batman stories published in Comics Revue actually happened on Earth-1289.
In October 2009, the magazine re-launched as a bi-monthly title with twice the number of pages and reprinting Sunday strips in color. Each issue now includes at least one complete story.
Issue #300 includes a complete index to all comic strips published in Comics Revue #1-300.David McKay Publications
David McKay Publications (also known as David McKay Company) was an American book publisher which also published some of the first comic books, including the long-running titles Ace Comics, King Comics, and Magic Comics; as well as collections of such popular comic strips as Blondie, Dick Tracy, and Mandrake the Magician. McKay was also the publisher of the Fodor's travel guides.Don Mueller
Donald Frederick Mueller (April 14, 1927 – December 28, 2011) was a professional baseball player who played mainly as a right fielder in Major League Baseball for 12 seasons from 1948 until 1959. He batted left-handed and threw right-handed, and played for the New York Giants and the Chicago White Sox. He earned the nickname "Mandrake the Magician" for being adept at consistently putting the ball in play and delivering hits through the infield.Fred Fredericks
Harold "Fred" Fredericks, Jr. (August 9, 1929 – March 10, 2015) was an American cartoonist, who drew the Mandrake the Magician comic strip from June 1965, taking over for the late Phil Davis. Creator Lee Falk modernized the comic when Fredericks took over the strip, making it more reality-based by focusing less on science fiction and fantasy, and making Mandrake operate more like a secret agent, often helping out the police with cases they could not solve.
Fredericks is also well known for inking The Phantom Sunday strips 1995 to 2000 (pencilled by George Olesen); Graham Nolan succeeded Fredericks when he decided to concentrate fully on Mandrake.
He was also known for writing the comic strip "Rebel" for Scholastic Magazine from 1964 to the early 1990s, and for drawing the following comic books: Nancy, Boris Karloff, The Twilight Zone, Mighty Mouse, Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, O.G. Whiz presents Tubby, Bullwinkle, Mister Ed and The Munsters. Fredericks also inked several comic books for Marvel Comics and DC Comics, including The Punisher War Journal, Nth Man: the Ultimate Ninja, Defenders of the Earth, Daredevil, Quasar and G.I. Joe.
After Mandrake creator Lee Falk died in 1999, Fredericks became responsible for writing the scripts for the Mandrake strip by himself. The Mandrake Sunday page continued until the final (187th) story, "Shadows on Devil Road", ending December 29, 2002.
In 2013, Fredericks retired, and the Mandrake daily comic strip went into reprints from 1995 beginning on July 8, 2013. He died March 10, 2015.Frew Publications
Frew Publications is an Australian comic book publisher, known for its long-running reprint series of Lee Falk's The Phantom. Frew formerly published other comics, including Falk's earlier creation Mandrake the Magician.Hojo
Hojo or Hōjō may refer to:
Hojo or HoJo:
Howard Johnson's, a U.S. chain of restaurants and hotels
A nickname for Howard Johnson
A nickname for Howard Jones
Hojo, a supporting character in comic strip Mandrake the Magician
Professor Hojo, a non-playable character in the video game Final Fantasy VIIHōjō or Houjou:
Hōjō clan, a family of regents of the Kamakura Shogunate
Late Hōjō clan, daimyō in the Sengoku Period
Hōjō, Ehime, a city in Japan
Hōjō, one of the five kata of Kashima Shinden Jikishinkage-ryū
Hōjō, Tottori, a town in Japan (part of Hokuei)
Hōjō Tokiyuki (Scouting) (1858–1929), early Japanese Scouting notable
Hōjō (Inuyasha), a character in the manga and anime series Inuyasha
Hōjō Tsukasa (popularly but incorrectly romanized "Hojo", born 1959), manga artist and creator of City Hunter
Satoko and Satoshi Houjou, from the series Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
Reika Hōjō, from Goshūshō-sama Ninomiya-kun
Go and Rin Hōjō, from Initial D
Kairi Hojo (born 1988), Japanese professional wrestlerIbis the Invincible
Ibis the Invincible is a fictional character, a comic book superhero originally published by Fawcett Comics in the 1940s and then by DC Comics beginning in the 1970s. Like many magician superheroes introduced in the Golden Age of Comics, Ibis owes much to the popular comic strip character Mandrake the Magician. A second Ibis, successor of the first, was introduced in 2007.Kings Watch
Kings Watch is a bi-monthly comic book limited series written by Jeff Parker and drawn by Marc Laming. It was published by Dynamite Entertainment from September 6, 2013 to April 7, 2014. It is a crossover featuring Flash Gordon, the Phantom, and Mandrake the Magician from King Features Syndicate. The trade paperback edition was released on August 13, 2014.Kreskin
The Amazing Kreskin (born George Joseph Kresge; January 12, 1935), also known as Kreskin, is an American mentalist who became popular on television in the 1970s. He was inspired to become a mentalist by Lee Falk's famous comic strip Mandrake the Magician, which features a crime-fighting stage magician. He has always presented himself as an "entertainer," never as a psychic, who operates on the basis of suggestion, not the paranormal or supernatural.Lee Falk
Lee Falk (), born Leon Harrison Gross (; April 28, 1911 – March 13, 1999), was an American writer, theater director and producer, best known as the creator of the popular comic strips The Phantom (1936–present) and Mandrake the Magician (1934–2013). At the height of their popularity, these strips attracted over 100 million readers every day. Falk also wrote short stories, and he contributed to a series of pulp novels about The Phantom.A playwright and theatrical director/producer, Falk directed actors such as Marlon Brando, Charlton Heston, Paul Newman, Chico Marx and Ethel Waters.Leon Mandrake
Leon Giglio (April 11, 1911 – January 27, 1993), better known by his stage name Leon Mandrake, was an Italian-Canadian magician, mentalist, illusionist, escapologist, ventriloquist and stunt performer known worldwide as Mandrake the Magician, albeit simultaneously and unrelatedly to the comic strip character Mandrake the Magician.Lothar (disambiguation)
Lothar is a family name and a given name.
Lothar may also refer to:
Lothar (storm), an extratropical cyclone that hit Central Europe in 1999
Lothar (Metabarons), a fictional robot in Metabarons
Lothar I or Lothair I (795–855)
Lothar, a fictional character and sidekick of Mandrake the MagicianMandrake the Magician (radio)
Mandrake the Magician was an American radio show, broadcast on the Mutual Broadcasting System from November 11, 1940 until February 6, 1942. It was based on the popular comic strip Mandrake the Magician by Lee Falk and Phil Davis.Mandrake the Magician (serial)
Mandrake the Magician (1939) is the seventh serial released by Columbia Pictures. It was based upon the comic strip of the same name.Nakul Shenoy
Nakul Shenoy is an Indian mentalist, mind reader, and psychic entertainer based in Bangalore, India. Fascinated by the comic book hero Mandrake The Magician as a child, he grew up to be a magician and hypnotist. He presented his first public show at age 16 in Udupi and by 2003, he was entertaining corporates in Bangalore with his mentalism show.
He is a skeptic and has used his knowledge of magic to rally against pseudoscientific scams like tri-vortex bangle and mid-brain/third-eye activation. Having presented his first magic show in 1994, he continues to entertain audiences internationally with his mind reading show.
Nakul is the author of 'Smart Course In Magic' published by HarperCollins in 2015 and also holds two US patents in design. He studied the potential of magic as a medium of communication to earn his Master of Science (Communications) degree from Manipal University in 2000. He has appeared on television via NDTV, CNBC, Asianet and has been written about in over 40 media articles including India Today, Times of India, The Hindu, Mint, Business Outlook, and Yahoo.Narda (disambiguation)
Narda may refer to:
Narda, a Philippine rock band
Narda, Hungary, a village in Hungary
Narda Onyx, an American actress
Narda, a character in Mandrake the Magician
Narada, a Hindu mythological character also spelled Narda
Narda, the human that embodies DarnaPhil Davis (cartoonist)
Philip Davis (March 4, 1906 – 16 December 1964), better known as Phil Davis, was an American artist who illustrated Mandrake the Magician, written by Lee Falk. Davis was born in St. Louis, Missouri.
Growing up with one sister and one brother, Davis became interested in drawing when he was six years old. "I had a mania for parades," he recalled. "I drew every parade I could see. My family neither encouraged nor discouraged me. They just accepted my dark fate."While attending Washington University in St. Louis, Davis had a part-time job as a draftsman with the technical department of the local telephone company. By 1928, he was working in the art department of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He left the newspaper to do magazine illustrations and advertising art.
In 1933, Davis met St. Louis advertising agency executive Lee Falk, and the two began their collaboration on Mandrake the Magician. Falk asked Davis to do a dozen panels on spec. Davis did so, and in 1934 Falk went to New York and pitched the concept to King Features Syndicate. The strip was launched June 11, 1934 with Davis illustrating and Falk scripting. One of Davis' assistants was Ray Moore, who later became the first artist on Falk's other comic strip, The Phantom, also distributed by King Features.Radio Patrol
Radio Patrol was a police comic strip carried in newspapers from 1933 to 1950 in the dailies, with a Sunday strip that ran from 1934 to 1946. It was created by artist Charles Schmidt and writer Eddie Sullivan, who both worked for the Boston American. Sullivan was a newspaper reporter who specialized in crime reporting.
Because of the popularity of Dick Tracy, William Randolph Hearst wanted a strip in his King Features Syndicate to compete. The strip, which started in 1933 in the Boston Record, was originally called Pinkerton, Jr., since the main character was a boy named Pinky. (Dick Tracy also had a boy as a key character at the time.) The new strip was popular with Boston readers and the main character shortly became Sergeant Pat, while Pinky grew older quite rapidly. Sergeant Pat was a composite of many of the real-life Boston Police Department officers Sullivan knew personally. When the strip was picked up by King Features Syndicate in 1934, it was retitled Radio Patrol.
The central characters were Sergeant Pat, his partner Sam and policewoman Molly Day. Later retitled Sgt. Pat of Radio Patrol, the strip is notable for its serious tone, with little evidence of the fantastic or supernatural. The realistic bent even included accurate geography in its depictions of Boston and the New England countryside.Whenever artist Charlie Schmidt bought a new car, it was drawn into the strip as Sergeant Pat's new cruiser. One day Schmidt was at his dentist's office. The dentist wanted to know how come he wasn't one of the characters in the popular strip. Schmidt replied, "Because I already have one fat guy in it."
Walter Howey, the editor who assigned Schmidt and Sullivan to create the comic strip, was a personal friend of Hearst, and in Citizen Kane Howey's was fictionalized as Jed Leland (Joseph Cotten).
As with other strips of the period, Radio Patrol was adapted into different media, including a 1930s radio show. The 12-chapter Universal Pictures movie serial, Radio Patrol (1937), starring Grant Withers as Pat, was directed by Ford Beebe and Clifford Smith.
In June 2010, Radio Patrol was added to King Features' DailyINK email service along with other vintage strips, including Barney Google, Big Ben Bolt, The Katzenjammer Kids, Little Iodine and Mandrake the Magician.