Sunday, June 27, 2010

1937-38 Hank Porter Comic Strip

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, this Snow White Sunday newspaper comic strip ran for twenty weeks, from December 12, 1937 to April 24, 1938. It actually began nine days prior to the film's colossal premiere at the Cathay Circle Theatre on December 21, 1937 and a whopping month and a half or more before the movie's general public release in February 1938. By the time the film actually appeared in theaters, devoted readers would have already been familiar with the princess, prince and queen. They'd also have had a silhouetted glimpse of the dwarfs marching home from their diamond mine.


-December 12, 1937 - week one...



- December 19, 1937 - week two...



- December 26, 1937 - week three...



- January 2, 1938 - week four...



- January 9, 1938 - week five...



- January 16, 1938 - week six...



- January 23, 1938 - week seven...



- January 30, 1938 - week eight...



- February 6, 1938 - week nine...



- February 13, 1938 - week ten...



- February 20, 1938 - week eleven...



- February 27, 1938 - week twelve...



- March 6, 1938 - week thirteen...



- March 13, 1938 - week fourteen...



- March 20, 1938 - week fifteen...



- March 27, 1938 - week sixteen...



- April 3, 1938 - week seventeen...



- April 10, 1938 - week eighteen...



- April 17, 1938 - week nineteen...



- April 24, 1938 - week twenty...



The strip was illustrated by the talented but lesser-known Hank Porter, a staff artist in the Disney Publicity Art Department from 1935 to 1950. The story was authored by Merrill de Maris, one of several writers credited with the Snow White screenplay.

Hank Porter. Image via Walt Disney's Mickey and the Gang, p 10.

Comics copyright Disney. Images courtesy of the Thom Buchanan collection via The Pictorial Arts blog.

18 comments:

  1. So great that this has been preserved. Thom has a nice blog for those interested in classic illustration, but never saw this on there. Thanks for posting. It nice to be able to see old strips and comics preserved digitally. I no longer have to hide under the covers with a flashlight. :-)

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  2. These are fantastic! Thank you for sharing them with us!

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  3. Yes, I think it's fantastic how the web can actually be used in a positive way to digitally preserve (and share) such wonderful "artifacts" as this.

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  4. Thank you so much, I always wanted to read this comic, thank you so so much !!

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  5. Alexandre-- I'm so glad you liked it.

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  6. thank u --- like this so much --

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  7. It's so awesome that you found this treasure! I also have a digital comic book of Snow White on my iPhone, from Disney Comics. It's much more faithful to the film than this one (mainly because the Prince doesn't play such a big part). If you want it, I can e-mail it to you. :D

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    1. I sent it, check your e-mail. :) hope I got the e-mail address right.

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    2. Vlad, Yes the files arrived successfully. I see what you mean about the updated illustrations. Do you know when this digital version was produced? And where it was sold? Any details will help if I do a future post about it. Much appreciated!

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    3. From what I know, it was produced in 2001, when the Platinum Edition DVD was released. I saw it when I was in Germany, in a newly released collection. The illustrations are the same, but Snow White's face is a bit different at times.

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  8. Prince Buckethead is now my actual favorite piece of Snow White trivia. Thank you so much for sharing this.

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  9. My dad had a couple collected print editions of this: an oversize one by Gladstone and a standard comic book by Marvel, both with the panels re-set into a comic book format. I'd seen it a few times and when I saw the movie, I was a little disappointed that the Prince's role was so different as he actually has something to do during the plot in this version, and it explains why he comes looking for Snow White in the woods rather than just searching for the girl he saw one day and finally finding her again. Of course, the film works fine on its own, but this extra dimension for the Prince is much appreciated.

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    1. That's cool that your dad had those collector editions. Yeah, I find it interesting how the comic deviates from the film. But of course, the movie did have to be cut in quite a few places to get it into the tight finished form that was released in 1937. And numerous original concept ideas never even made it to the animation stage. Thanks for your comment Jared.

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