The Ominous Octopus

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sis Sez By Marge And Ruth Plumly Thompson

I've read the Wizard of Oz books on and off for years, so I was familiar with some of the work of Ruth Plumly Thompson, who continued the series after Frank Baum. Likewise, I'm familiar with the work of Marge, who was the creator of Little Lulu. But I never knew they'd done a cartoon feature called Sis Sez till I happened to run across it on a Wizard of Oz site.

                                                                            SIS SEZ

Reblogged from http://hungrytigerpress.blogspot.com/




Sis Sez could be an older version of Little Lulu. And she could perhaps be an inhabitant of the land of Oz, although the setting of her adventures appear to be our own familiar world, if somewhat further back than the world of today.
Let's take a look at the artist and writer on this feature. First the artist-

Marge (cartoonist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia



The first Little Lulu from the February 23, 1935 issue of The Saturday Evening Post.
Marjorie Henderson Buell (December 11, 1904–May 30, 1993) was an American cartoonist who worked under the pen name Marge. She was best known as the creator of Little Lulu.
Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Buell was 16 when her first cartoon was published. In 1925, she created her first syndicated comic strip, The Boy Friend, which ran through 1926. Marge was friends with Oz author Ruth Plumly Thompson and illustrated her fantasy novel King Kojo (1933).

 Little Lulu begins

Hired by The Saturday Evening Post in 1934, her first Little Lulu drawing appeared on the back page of that weekly in 1935. Little Lulu replaced Carl Anderson's Henry, which had been picked up for distribution by King Features Syndicate. Little Lulu was created as a result of Anderson's success, as noted by Schlesinger Library curator Kathryn Allamong Jacob:
Lulu was born in 1935, when The Saturday Evening Post asked Buell to create a successor to the magazine’s Henry—Carl Anderson’s stout, mute little boy—who was moving on to national syndication. The result was Little Lulu, the resourceful, equally silent (at first) little girl whose loopy curls were reminiscent of the artist’s own as a girl. Buell explained to a reporter, “I wanted a girl because a girl could get away with more fresh stunts that in a small boy would seem boorish.”[1]


In 1935, she married C. Addison Buell. The couple had two sons, Fred and Larry, and lived in Malvern, Pennsylvania.
The Little Lulu panel continued to run weekly in The Saturday Evening Post until December 30, 1944. Buell retained the rights, unusual for the time. In 1950, Little Lulu became a daily syndicated comic strip. Buell marketed Little Lulu widely throughout the 1940s.[2] The character appeared in comic books, animated cartoons, greeting cards and more. Little Lulu comic books, popular internationally, were translated into Arabic, Dutch, Finnish, French, Japanese, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish and Greek.


Buell also did illustrations for Country Gentleman, Ladies' Home Journal and Collier's. Buell stopped drawing Little Lulu in 1947, and the work was continued by others, while she kept creative control. Sketching and writing of the Little Lulu comic book series was taken on by John Stanley, who later drew Nancy and Sluggo. Buell sold her Little Lulu rights to Western Publishing when she retired in 1971.
She died of lymphoma in Elyria, Ohio in 1993.
In 2003, an original 1930s watercolor of Little Lulu by Buell brought $584.00 on eBay.


In July 2006, Buell's family donated the “Marge Papers” to the Schlesinger Library at Harvard University. The papers include a collection of fan mail, comic books, scrapbooks of high points in Lulu’s history and a complete set of the newspaper cartoons. Buell's son Larry is a professor of American Literature at Harvard, and her son Fred is a professor of English at Queens College.[3]

 External Links



  • Taylhardat, Karim. La Pequeña Lulu/The Little Lulu & M. Henderson, Madrid, Spain: Ediciones Sinsentido, 2007.

and then the writer. 

Ruth Plumly Thompson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Ruth Plumly Thompson (27 July 1891 – 6 April 1976) was an American writer of children's stories.


 Life and work

An avid reader of Baum's books and a lifelong children's writer, Thompson was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and began her writing career in 1914 when she took a job with the Philadelphia Public Ledger; she wrote a weekly children's column for the newspaper.[1] She had already published her first children's book, The Perhappsy Chaps, and her second, The Princess of Cozytown, was pending publication when William Lee, vice president of Baum's publisher Reilly & Lee, solicited Thompson to continue the Oz series. (Rumors among fans that Thompson was Baum's niece were untrue.)[2] Between 1921 and 1939, she wrote one Oz book a year. (Thompson was the primary supporter of her widowed mother and invalid sister, so that the annual income from the Oz books was important for her financial circumstances.)[3]
Thompson's contributions to the Oz series are lively and imaginative, featuring a wide range of colorful and unusual characters. However, one particular theme repeats over and over throughout her novels, with little variation. Typically in each of Thompson's Oz novels, a child (usually from America) and a supernatural companion (usually a talking animal), while traveling through Oz or one of the neighboring regions, find themselves in an obscure community where the inhabitants engage in a single activity. The inhabitants of this community then capture the travelers, and force them to participate in this same activity.
Another major theme has elderly characters, most controversially, the Good Witch of the North, being restored to "marriageable" age, possibly because Thompson herself never married. She had a greater tendency toward the use of romantic love stories (which Baum usually avoided in his fairy tales, with about 4 exceptions). While Baum's child protagonists tended to be little girls, Thompson's were boys. [4] She emphasized humor to a greater extent than Baum did, and always considered her work for children, whereas Baum, while first and foremost considering his child audience, knew that his readership comprised all ages.
Thompson's last Oz story, The Enchanted Island of Oz (1976), was not originally written as an Oz book.

External links

                                                                       More Links


Little Lulu Fan Site:
Little Lulu ( Toonpedia ):
 Ruth Plumly Thompson Biography:
 Hungry Tiger Talk:
The Wizard Of Oz:

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