26 Facts About Li'l Abner


Li'l Abner is a satirical American comic strip that appeared in many newspapers in the United States, Canada and Europe.

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Li'l Abner lived in a ramshackle log cabin with his pint-sized parents.

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Li'l Abner typically had no visible means of support, but sometimes earned his livelihood as a "crescent cutter" for the Little Wonder Privy Company which later changed to "mattress tester" for the Stunned Ox Mattress Company.

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In one post-World War II storyline Li'l Abner became a US Air Force bodyguard of Steve Cantor against the evil bald female spy Jewell Brynner .

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For 18 years, Li'l Abner slipped out of Daisy Mae's marital crosshairs time and time again.

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In 1952, Li'l Abner reluctantly proposed to Daisy to emulate the engagement of his comic strip "ideel", Fearless Fosdick.

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Li'l Abner's had married the inconsequential Pappy Yokum in 1902; they produced two strapping sons twice their own size.

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Li'l Abner had an unfortunate predilection for snitching "preserved turnips" and smoking corn silk behind the woodshed — much to his chagrin when Mammy caught him.

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Honest Abe Yokum: Li'l Abner and Daisy Mae's little boy was born in 1953 "after a pregnancy that ambled on so long that readers began sending me medical books, " wrote Capp.

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Li'l Abner had notoriously bad aim — often leaving a trail of collateral damage in his wake.

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Li'l Abner never married his own long-suffering fiancee Prudence Pimpleton, but Fosdick was directly responsible for the unwitting marriage of his biggest fan, Li'l Abner, to Daisy Mae in 1952.

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Li'l Abner left it at Dogpatch USA so there would be no headaches and problems.

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Li'l Abner featured a whole menagerie of allegorical animals over the years — each one was designed to satirically showcase another disturbing aspect of human nature.

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Publicity campaigns were devised to boost circulation and increase public visibility of Li'l Abner, often coordinating with national magazines, radio and television.

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Capp excelled at product endorsement, and Li'l Abner characters were often featured in mid-century American advertising campaigns.

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Li'l Abner was a comic strip with fire in its belly and a brain in its head.

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Li'l Abner was the subject of the first book-length, scholarly assessment of a comic strip ever published.

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In October 1947, Li'l Abner met Rockwell P Squeezeblood, head of the abusive and corrupt Squeezeblood Syndicate, a thinly veiled dig at UFS.

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Li'l Abner provided a whole new template for contemporary satire and personal expression in comics, paving the way for Pogo, Feiffer, Doonesbury and MAD.

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Al Capp once told one of his assistants that he knew Li'l Abner had finally "arrived" when it was first pirated as a pornographic Tijuana bible parody in the mid-1930s.

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Li'l Abner was parodied in 1954 in the pages of EC Comics' humor comic, Panic, edited by Al Feldstein.

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Li'l Abner's success sparked a handful of comic strip imitators.

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Charlton published the short-lived Hillbilly Comics by Art Gates in 1955, featuring "Gumbo Galahad", who was a dead ringer for Li'l Abner, as was Pokey Oakey by Don Dean, which ran in MLJ's Top-Notch Laugh and Pep Comics.

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Later, many fans and critics saw Paul Henning's popular TV sitcom, The Beverly Hillbillies as owing much of its inspiration to Li'l Abner, prompting Alvin Toffler to ask Capp about the similarities in a 1965 Playboy interview.

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Li'l Abner never sold as a TV series despite several attempts, but Al Capp was a familiar face on television for twenty years.

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Li'l Abner hosted at least five television programs between 1952 and 1972 — three different talk shows called The Al Capp Show, Al Capp, Al Capp's America, and a game show called Anyone Can Win.

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