Hurrah for Popeye Saviour of the Vegetables!
I know that Popeye isn’t an artist,. He isn’t even a real character, but I find him a very endearing little chapppie and seeing as Google is commemorating the creater of Popeye, E. C Segar (Elzie Crisler Segar) b. 1894 – 1938 Illinois), I thought I’d add my twopennorth.
Segar created Popeye as a support character for Olive Oyle, in his comic strip ‘Thimble Theatre’ in 1929. The little sailor so endeared himself that he was brought back by popular demand. Popeye’s cheif characteristic is his strength, which he owes to the eating of spinach. He always seems to have a tin about his person, – where he hides it, heaven knows. I wonder how many children fell for the spinach myth? I did, I’m afraid, and I still eat carrots to help me see in the dark…………….
Read this to see how Segar got the idea about the properties of spinach. Every hero has to have a protagonist, and Popeye’s was the gigantic, meat headed, bearded Bluto. They fought like mad over Olive Oyl, who was more a piece of property to be owned rather than a woman. Poor Olive Oyl, all she wanted was romance and chocolates and flowers, though I think she probably secretly enjoyed the idea of two men fighting over her…..
The above film is my very favorite Popeye film, featuring Bluto as ‘Barnacle Bill the Sailor’. This is the first time I’ve watched this in years (and I mean years!) and I still find it hilarious. Poor Olive Oyl…there’s a moral in there somewhere
Good website about this interesting cartoonist HERE
Lots of interesting facts about the artist, who was only aged 43 when he died HERE