This cartoon sat up among Horace Syke’s kodachrome slides. Bill Holman was artist for the Smokey Stover strip that ran from 1935 until his retirement in 1973. It was a model for a variety of screwball comics, and Holman’s capacity for puns is to be admired. Here’s some of Wikipedia’s summary of Holman’s accomplishment. Although most of the stories in the strip (and the occasional comic book) centered around Smokey’s escapades with his chief, the plots were mainly a framework to display an endless parade of wild humor, sight gags, puns, mirthful mishaps, nonsensical dialogue and fourth wall references. An “anything for a laugh” atmosphere pervaded the panels, and Holman’s continuing inventiveness managed to keep Smokey Stover going for nearly 40 years. Holman often reached moments of surreality that did for comic strips what Tex Avery’s wacky cartoons offered in animation.”

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