January 23rd, 2016

Otto – Part One

by Mort Walker

OTTO OTTO

In 1956, a new character joined the cast of Beetle Bailey. Otto’s official debut is shown in the strip below.

Beetle Bailey daily strip, July 17, 1956. Beetle Bailey daily strip, July 17, 1956.

Mort Walker looked back on the creation of Otto for The Best of Beetle Bailey in 1984. “Every boy should have a dog, as the saying goes, to teach him love, responsibility and to turn around three times before he lies down. Sarge being a boy at heart, deserved a dog. But did he deserve Otto?”

Beetle Bailey daily strip, July 18, 1956. Beetle Bailey daily strip, July 18, 1956.

In the beginning, Otto was a real dog, walking on all fours, communicating with woofs and growls and occasionally threatening to bite someone.

Beetle Bailey daily strip, November 26, 1957. Beetle Bailey daily strip, November 26, 1957.

Eventually Mort fell into the old cartoonist’s trap and humanized Otto, but that wasn’t for a few more years. Stay tooned for the continuing history of Camp Swampy’s favorite canine character.

– Brian Walker

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