Timeline – 1961 Part 4


Hi and Lois Sunday page color proof, June 25, 1961.

Chip Flagston was about eight years old when Hi and Lois started in 1954. He is the only character in the strip who has aged slightly over the years. By the time this episode appeared he was more of an adolescent, but not quite the teenager we know today.

It is amazing to look back on these vintage Sunday pages and see how much storytelling was possible when there was more space to work with. Over the course of twelve panels, Chip meanders home and then retraces his steps with Hi. After visiting a bakery and a construction site, he shows Hi other stops he made along the way, including a soda fountain, a tree, a telephone pole, a garage roof and a neighbor’s window before bringing the battered loaf back to Lois.

This page provides a wonderful visual tour of the Flagston’s neighborhood. Although they live in a typical suburban development, it must be close enough to town for Chip to walk to all these nearby locations.   Here we get a rare glimpse of what life beyond their back yard looked like. A sense of place is important for a comic strip.

For more examples of graphic storytelling by the great masters – Mort Walker and Dik Browne – stay tooned for our continuing journey through the decade of the 1960s.

– Brian Walker


One thought on “Timeline – 1961 Part 4

  1. You keep saying Chip is the only one to have aged slightly over the years, but the twins also seem to have gone from about 4 to about 8…not as much as Chip, but still significant.

    The ages aren’t mentioned outright, but in the collection “Croquet for a Day,” Dot mentions going to playschool, and there are mentions of Ditto doesn’t take a nap (by which I mean he has a naptime, but does a series of other activities.) They also don’t seem to have the reading skills they have now.

    Anyway, just a thought. Thanks for taking the time to read this.

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