Thursday, May 30, 2019

Mickey Klar Marks's Zany Giraffe

Mickey Klar Marks donated her papers to the University of Southern Mississippi, and an inventory is online. These are not records like William Woolfolk's notebook, but rather copies--I suppose carbons--of her scripts, with a notation on each as to the publisher who bought it.

For comic books Marks wrote mostly fiction text pieces, but she did write a few comics stories. The Zany Giraffe series in Novelty's, later Premium's, Frisky Fables is hers. Although the installments were published without titles, these are her working ones. The only byline on each was "art by Jim Adams."

Frisky Fables v1 #3 Zany Engineers a Rescue
The story hook in each episode is that Zany is the only one who can solve a problem for the forest creatures but since giraffes have no vocal cords, it takes some effort to get his idea across.

Zany Giraffe's strip appeared on-and-off. I believe these are all of the strip's original appearances. There are a handful of scripts in the USM collection that seem to have gone unpublished: Zany Earns a Badge; Zany Giraffe, American; A New Twist; and Zany Takes a Stand. I can't reconcile any with the Spots story. [UPDATE: It wasn't labeled as a Zany story in the collection; here's Marks's working title replacing my description. The character is named Spots in the published story itself; Spot is the dog in Novelty's Speck, Spot and Sis series.] However, the collection of papers may not not complete; there are some bylined text pieces of hers published whose typescripts are not at USM (at least under the published titles).

Zany Giraffe in Frisky Fables
written by Mickey Klar Marks

Win/46 v1 #3  Zany Engineers a Rescue
Apr/     v2 #1  Zany Solves a Mystery
July/     v2 #4  Zany Furthers Education
Sept/     v2 #6  Zany Almost Talks
Oct/     v2 #7  Zany and the Tigers
Nov/     v2 #8  Zany Starts a Trading Post
Feb/47 v2 #11  Zany Debunks a Ghost
Apr/     v3 #1  Zany Sticks His Neck Out
May/     v3 #2  The Taffy Pull
Aug/     v3 #5  Spot Sees Spots Before His Eyes
Oct/     v3 #7  Zany Giraffe Becomes Mayor
Dec/     v3 #9  Zany Helps Heat a House
Feb-Mar/49 v4 #7  Zany Stars in a New Role
Aug-Sept/     v5 #3  Zany Turns Nautical


  1. i've made printouts off the site back in 2002 and every so often added credits to the GCD. Many of the comics still aren't in the GCD. Two of her Timely humor Annie Oakley's have been tentatively ID-ed for example. Who she sold the stories to is interesting, for example Beck-Costanza (misspelled by USM) bought some.

    1. I see that a certain number of the text pieces in the USM collection were published anonymously. I looked for a couple of the ones sold to "Bech and Cortaza" or "Bill and Cortazar" (USM acknowledges with "(?)" that those are the best they can decipher the studio name) and I found those pieces anonymous too--in Anglo-American comics.