Sunday, October 2, 2022


The start of a wonderful romance

This is the answer to the trivia question in issue 913 of the newsletter.

What’s the significance of this Popeye cartoon?

It’s the beginning of a love story when Popeye got his first kiss from Olive Oyl. “Oh, Popeye,” she explained after popping a kiss on Popeye’s cheek, “I imagined you were my lover.” It appears from the next frame that Popeye was not at all bothered by the gesture.

Olive Oyl was the first character in the comic strip that was first called Thimble Theatre.

Popeye debuted on January 17, 1929 as a minor character. He was initially hired by Castor Oyl and Olive Oyl’s then-boyfriend Harold Hamgravy to crew a ship for a voyage to Dice Island, the location of a casino owned by the crooked gambler Fadewell. Castor intended to break the bank at the casino using the unbeatable good luck conferred by stroking the hairs on the head of Bernice the Whiffle Hen. After the adventure, Popeye left the strip but, due to reader reaction, was brought back and soon became the main character.


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