October 27th, 2018

Goodbye to Henry

by Tea

Dear Comics Kingdom fans, we’re sad today to say farewell to an old friend, Henry.

In a world constantly shouting for attention, Henry always chose to say nothing at all – and that’s why we love him.

Created by Carl Anderson in 1932 and syndicated by King Features since 1934, this laconic, laid-back lad has charmed generations of readers with his pantomime antics, appearing in papers around the world and even in his own animated film from Fleischer Studios. When Henry was signed to King Features, Anderson was 70 years old so he hired one of his students, Don Trachte, to assist him in the comics.

One month after the strip was published, the Pictorial Review in New York City ran a piece naming Henry as the 12th most popular comic strip in the country at that time. Trachte thought that Henry helped perk up the solemn mood of the country during the Depression. “I think the pantomime strips have a resurgence every so many decades,” Trachte said in a 1987 interview. “The idea [behind Henry] was it was fantasy, to get people’s minds off the Depression, I think. Carl Anderson often said that, for some freak reason, in the worst economic times he’d have his best luck. He’d been through a lot of economic cycles.”

Alongside a colorful cast of neighborhood characters, especially faithful pup Dusty and sweetheart Henrietta, young Henry’s small adventures inspire a nostalgia for the simplicity and timelessness of childhood, when lazy days last forever and an ice cream cone is only a quarter away. We’ll miss him.

 

 

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