Saturday, August 11, 2018

Betty Boop Joker

I just bought a nice Betty Boop joker. Here she is, front and back, what a doll!  And a youngster, printed in 1993.

Betty Boop Joker
Betty Boop Joker

Betty Boop Joker Backside
Betty Boop Joker Backside


But I am all tied up in knots trying to figure out where she should go.  

On one hand, there is a cool old moon joker that I have in the Congress section of my collection. You might well ask: "Why is the Moon Fairy joker in the Congress section?"  This Moon Fairy joker was the joker on one of the first Congress decks that the USPC published, in 1895, so she is there with the early brands like Bicycle. Betty looks great next to the Moon Fairy: they are classy ladies from yesteryear who go together well. (I'm not sure that this is an original Moon Fairy although it does seem to match the example from Hoffman on page 87.)



On the other hand, Betty Boop is clearly a cartoon character and maybe she would be happier in the cartoon character section of the joker collection, next to other simply-drawn characters. Her head to body ratio and round head emphasize her childnessish and every babyishness.   Pooh of course will have to be moved to another page where his style would be a better fit.



A third choice is to recognize that Betty Boop is a sitting joker. I have a large section of sitting jokers including a whole page of jokers with people sitting on crescent moons. Is that where Betty Boop would be happiest?


Lastly, Betty Boop is undeniably a looker and more than a little proud of her curves and charms.  Maybe, she belongs with the other great pinups girls from the erotica joker section?


Update 8-18-18  8:18pm

I just realized that in my section of the pinups, there is another Betty Boop Joker! Here she is:

Betty Boop Joker
Betty Boop Joker 
BTW, the Wikipedia article on Betty Boop is fantastic. She has some historic moments in the history of women in cartoons and in fighting abuse. And I quote:

Betty Boop was unique among female cartoon characters because she represented a sexual woman. Other female cartoon characters of the same period, such as Minnie Mouse, displayed their underwear or bloomers regularly, in the style of childish or comical characters, not a fully defined woman's form. Many other female cartoons were merely clones of their male co-stars, with alterations in costume, the addition of eyelashes, and a female voice. Betty Boop wore short dresses, high heels, a garter, and her breasts were highlighted with a low, contoured bodice that showed cleavage. In her cartoons, male characters frequently try to sneak peeks at her while she is changing or simply going about her business...

Attempts to compromise her virginity were reflected in Chess-Nuts (1932) and most importantly in Boop-Oop-a-Doop (1932). In Chess-Nuts, the Black King goes into the house where Betty is and ties her up. When she rejects him, he pulls her out of the ropes, drags her off to the bedroom and says, "I will have you". The bed, however, runs away and Betty calls for help through the window. Bimbo comes to her rescue, and she is saved before anything happens. In Boop-Oop-a-Doop, Betty is a high-wire performer in a circus. The ringmaster lusts for Betty as he watches her from below, singing "Do Something", a song previously performed by Helen Kane. As Betty returns to her tent, the ringmaster follows her inside and sensually massages her legs, surrounds her, and threatens her job if she does not submit. Betty pleads with the ringmaster to cease his advances, as she sings "Don't Take My Boop-Oop-A-Doop Away". Koko the Clown is practicing his juggling outside the tent and overhears the struggle inside. He leaps in to save Betty, struggling with the ringmaster, who loads him into a cannon and fires it. Koko, who remained hiding inside the cannon, knocks the ringmaster out cold with a mallet, while imitating the ringmaster's laugh. Koko then inquires about Betty's welfare, to which she answers in song, "No, he couldn't take my boop-oop-a-doop away". According to Jill Harness of Mental Floss, these portrayals of Boop fighting off sexual harassment on the animated screen made many see her as a feminist icon.[18]

1 comment:

  1. Some more info on Betty Boop from Wikipedia: Attempts to compromise her virginity were reflected in Chess-Nuts (1932) and most importantly in Boop-Oop-a-Doop (1932). In Chess-Nuts, the Black King goes into the house where Betty is and ties her up. When she rejects him, he pulls her out of the ropes, drags her off to the bedroom and says, "I will have you". The bed, however, runs away and Betty calls for help through the window. Bimbo comes to her rescue, and she is saved before anything happens. In Boop-Oop-a-Doop, Betty is a high-wire performer in a circus. The ringmaster lusts for Betty as he watches her from below, singing "Do Something", a song previously performed by Helen Kane. As Betty returns to her tent, the ringmaster follows her inside and sensually massages her legs, surrounds her, and threatens her job if she does not submit. Betty pleads with the ringmaster to cease his advances, as she sings "Don't Take My Boop-Oop-A-Doop Away". Koko the Clown is practicing his juggling outside the tent and overhears the struggle inside. He leaps in to save Betty, struggling with the ringmaster, who loads him into a cannon and fires it. Koko, who remained hiding inside the cannon, knocks the ringmaster out cold with a mallet, while imitating the ringmaster's laugh. Koko then inquires about Betty's welfare, to which she answers in song, "No, he couldn't take my boop-oop-a-doop away". According to Jill Harness of Mental Floss, these portrayals of Boop fighting off sexual harassment on the animated screen made many see her as a feminist icon.[18]

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