Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Double Date with Judy and Debbi

Swing with Scooter 20, the Summer 1969 Special, wasn't the only time DC reused story material from A Date with Judy.

A Date with Judy 1, Date with Debbi 1--'Heap' story

They had gone to that well in late 1968 for the first few issues of Date with Debbi. Here, at least, they didn't redraw reprints; they bought new scripts and art, but the scripts were rewrites of 1947-48 Judy stories. Both A Date with Judy 1 and Date with Debbi 1 open with a letter to the reader from the main character, introducing the characters pictured around the page edges: parents, boyfriend, little brother, rival, and Judy/Debbi..

The liberated woman story in Debbi 2 is the one that veers the furthest from the original, but still, the writer obviously saw the emancipated woman Judy story.

Alvin Schwartz was the first writer on A Date with Judy, and wrote her stories cited here; Graham Place drew the originals. I can track one writer on early Date with Debbi stories without being able to put a name to him or her; it doesn't seem to be any of the ones already known on the strip: Henry Boltinoff, Steve Skeates, Barbara Friedlander, or John Albano. Samm Schwartz was the first artist, but even by issue 2 the powers that be decided that some Schwartz faces had to be reinked. By issue 3 new artists began arriving.

DATE WITH DEBBI Stories with

"Detention's the Thing" DWD 1 (Jan-Feb/69)
  Story 1, ADWJ 1 (Oct-Nov/47)
"Eeeek—It's a Heap" DWD 1 (Jan-Feb/69)
  Story 3, ADWJ 1 (Oct-Nov/47)
"Who's Blue?" DWD 2 (Mar-Apr/69)
  Story 4, ADWJ 1 (Oct-Nov/47)
"I'll Be Suing You" DWD 2 (Mar-Apr/69)
  Story 2, ADWJ 1 (Oct-Nov/47)
Story 3 (Liberated Woman), DWD 2 (Mar-Apr/69)
  Story 2, ADWJ 2 (Dec-Jan/48)
"The Cave-Man Cometh" DWD 3 (May-Jun/69)
  Story 2, ADWJ 3 (Feb-Mar/48)


  1. That's pretty amazing. Especially since they don't seem to be cherry-picking the best Judy stories from the whole run -- they just started from Judy #1 and went forward. I assume their original plan was to just keep on going until they ran out of Judy stories -- I wonder why they quit?

  2. And it was something you'd expect to see more from Mort Weisinger than from the first Debbi editor, Dick Giordano--which makes me think the idea was imposed on him.

  3. Martin: Steve Skeates asserts that Tippy Teen also recycled Judy stories. Can you check it out?

  4. I will be looking into that; some of the Tippy stories do feel familiar.