May 22nd, 2020
Beetle has always been a dreamer.
In the 1960s and early 1970s a series of Sunday pages featured Sarge’s dreams. Most of these involved Sarge falling asleep after eating too much pizza and having fantasies about being a superhero, playing professional sports, traveling back in time or other such hilarious scenarios. I previously shared all seventeen “Sarge Dreams” episodes beginning with this post.
The second Beetle Bailey Sunday page that featured a dream sequence was done twenty-one months after the first one. This one featured a parody of the opening narration of the 1941 Fleischer Studio cartoon: “Up in the sky, look – It’s a bird. It’s a plane. It’s Superman!” These lines were also used in The Adventures of Superman television program that ran from 1952 to 1958. Superman’s familiar “S” logo appears on Sarge’s Union Suit and his alter ego, Clark Kent, is referenced. In a clever twist on the formula used in subsequent pages, it turns out in the end that Beetle was the one who was doing the dreaming.
Sarge continued to have nighttime fantasies, often induced by overeating, but these episodes became less regular. Mort felt that he had milked this formula for every idea he could think of.
– Brian Walker
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