September 12th, 2015
by Mort Walker
In a 1984 interview, Mort Walker reminisced about the early days of Beetle Bailey. “In the creation of a strip you’re not sure what the public will like. So you try something and, if it doesn’t work, you try something else. I’m always experimenting with layout, gag styles and art techniques. But mostly, I experiment with new characters.”
Here is a sampling of some early characters Mort introduced that eventually got the hook.
Canteen was always eating and Snake Eyes was the barracks gambler.
Big Blush was tall, innocent and a great attraction to the girls.
Fireball was a neophyte who always seemed to be in the way.
Bammy was a southern patriot who thought the Civil War was still being fought.
Dawg was the barracks slob.
In the next post we will show some early versions of characters who stuck around.
– Brian Walker
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