Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's Goon Day!

It was on this date 75 years ago, that a weird, tall, nude, hulking character appeared on a ship chartered by Popeye and his old pal, Bill Barnacle. The odd creature, a slave of the Sea Hag, was there to kidnap Prof. Cringly, because he was one of only a few people to know the secret location of Plunder Island.

Today is the 75th Anniversary of the first appearance of Alice the Goon. Out of all the characters that Elzie Segar created, besides Popeye, Alice has to be my favorite. Why? I can say for sure but there is something about the appearance of the Goon that is simple, yet complex - silly, though frightening.

When Alice first appeared it had been reported that children at the time were frightened of the Goon and parents would threaten their kids if they misbehaved by saying, "The Goon will get you if you don't watch out!"

Alice, being a slave of the evil Hag, fought Popeye in a terrific climatic battle only to stop fighting when Alice's young baby shows up. Realizing that Alice is a female and mother of her odd race, apologizes to the Goon for fighting a female (something he has sworn against). When the Sea Hag orders the Goon to "finish the job", Olive Oyl shuts the old witch up by laying a right cross across her chin.

After a couple of years, Alice once again reappears, this time in a dress and hat. Once again a slave to the Hag, the Witch orders Alice to kidnap Popeye's adopted son Swee'pea, so she can use the baby to manipulate Popeye into doing her evil wishes. When Alice sees the young "infink" (as Popeye calls him) she immeadiatly falls in love with the baby. She feeds him, changes him, and craddles him to sleep. When the Sea Hag tries to take the baby out of Alice's arms, the angry Goon pops the witch on her chin and sends her fleeing for safety.

As Alice is craddling Swee'pea, who has fallen in love with the Goon as well, Popeye arrives home and is shocked at what he sees. He tries to throw the Goon out, but can't do it due to Swee'pea's protests. So Alice becomes Swee'pea's official "baby-sitter".

It is because of Alice and Segar that I came up with a name for her child (now an adult) and named him Alex. And how I got my internet alter-ego.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love alice. loved her since I was a very young child. I've thought bout her image...lo and behold... my son brings his new girlfriend home, I knew she reminded me of someone......think,think..... Alas, it was Alice. I will submit a photo of her at a later date if you are interested.