Ira Schnapp in DODO & THE FROG, NUTSY SQUIRREL and RACCOON KIDS

Images © DC Comics

These three funny animal titles are similar in many ways: start and end date, origin and contents. Each came out of a previous DC funny animal anthology where the characters were the lead feature. Each was retitled with the Sept/Oct 1954 issue, each was bimonthly for about eight issues, then appeared three times in 1956 and once or twice in 1957 before being cancelled, bringing an end to most of DC’s funny animal titles. All three were edited by Larry Nadle. DODO AND THE FROG came out of FUNNY STUFF. The transition was gradual. Issues 77-79 of FUNNY STUFF included this logo, with the FUNNY STUFF logo shrinking until it vanished with issue #80. I believe Ira Schnapp designed the logo, though it was loosely based on the story logos drawn by the artist inside, Otto Feuer. On this and the other titles Ira lettered many of the covers and lettered about half the stories inside. Some are by Sheldon Mayer, who sometimes did his own balloon shapes that Ira put lettering into.

Issue #81 has an Ira Schnapp word balloon, for example with a rounder balloon shape than usual.

Issue #87 has more Schnapp lettering than most as the book parodies then-popular frontier hero Davy Crockett.

The final issue, #92, has a typical Schnapp balloon and sight gag. Ira lettered these covers: 81-92, twelve in all.

Inside, while Dodo and the Frog usually had at least two short stories, the rest of each issue was filled out with other features from FUNNY STUFF and other similar titles. This is a page from “Blabber Mouse” in issue #80.

A page lettered by Ira from issue #85. The Dodo was not only that by species, but by intellect, with Fenimore Frog usually able to fool him, only to come to a bad end.

A page lettered by Ira from the final issue, #92. The Dodo is about to go extinct again.

Here are the stories in this series lettered by Ira Schnapp. Dodo and the Frog (DF) stories are numbered, as there was more than one.

#80 Sept/Oct 1954: Blabber Mouse 4pp, Dizzy Dog 4pp, DF 4pp (3)

#81 Nov/Dec 1954: Doodles Duck 3pp

#82 Jan/Feb 1955: DF 5pp (4)

#83 March/April 1955: DF 4pp, 4pp (2-3), Doodles Duck 6pp

#84 May/June 1955: DF 4pp, 4pp (2-3), Blackie Bear 4pp, Dizzy Dog 6pp

#85 July/Aug 1955: DF 4pp, 4pp (2-3), Doodles Duck 4pp, Biggety Bear 4pp

#86 Sept/Oct 1955: DF 4pp, 4pp (2-3)

#87 Nov/Dec 1955: DF 8pp, 4pp (1-2), Dizzy Dog 6pp

#88 Jan/Feb 1956: Goofy Goose 6pp, Nutsy Squirrel 4pp, Dizzy Dog 6pp

#89 Aug/Sept 1956: DF 6pp, 4pp (1-2), Biggety Bear 6pp, Bo Bunny 6pp

#90 Oct/Nov 1956: DF 6pp, 4pp (1-2), Bo Bunny 6pp, Nip & Chip 4pp, Custer Cat 4pp

#91 Sept 1957: DF 6pp, 6pp (3-4)

#92 Nov 1957: DF 6pp, 6pp, 6pp (1, 3-4), Doodles Duck 4pp

That’s a total of 198 pages.

This title came from FUNNY FOLKS, which had become HOLLYWOOD FUNNY FOLKS first. Nutsy began appearing in the first issue and was the lead feature by issue #9. Nutsy’s own title ran from issue #61 to #72. Again the transition was somewhat gradual, with Nutsy’s logo on the cover of the previous comic’s last two issues. The logo is by Ira Schnapp, but once more based on the story logos from the original artist Irving Dressler. Later Rube Grossman drew a lot of the Nutsy stories.

The cover of #63 is the first with an Ira Schnapp word balloon.

Issue #65 has one of the larger Schnapp word balloons with two sizes of emphasized words.

Ira also lettered the final cover, #72. Here are all the ones he worked on: 63-65, 67-72, that’s nine in all.

Here’s a page from issue #61 lettered by Ira with a nice selection of signs and large lettering.

I like the fight balloons by Ira on this page from issue #65, sure to amuse most kids.

A page from the last issue lettered by Ira Schnapp. Here are the stories he worked on. Nutsy Squirrel (NS) had more than one per issue, so they’re numbered.

#61 Sept/Oct 1954: NS 6pp, 6pp (1 & 3)

#62 Nov/Dec 1954: NS 6pp, 7pp (1 & 3), Dizzy Dog 6pp

#63 Jan/Feb 1955: NS 4pp, 4pp (2-3)

#64 March/April 1955: Fraidy Cat 4pp

#65 May/June 1955: NS 4pp, 4pp, 4pp, 5pp (2-5), Dizzy Dog 5pp

#66 July/Aug 1955: NS 6pp, 4pp, 4pp, 5pp (1, 3-5)

#67 Sept/Oct 1955: NS 6pp, 4pp, 6pp (1-2, 4)

#68 Nov/Dec 1955: NS 4pp, 6pp (2-3), Bo Bunny 6pp

#69 Jan/Feb 1956: NS 6pp, 4pp, 4pp (1-3), Bo Bunny 6pp

#70 Aug/Sept 1956: NS 6pp (1), Dizzy Dog 6pp

#71 Oct/Nov 1956: NS 6pp, 4pp (1-2), Dizzy Dog 6pp

#72 Nov 1957: NS 6pp, 6pp (3-4), Bo Bunny 6pp

That’s a total of 182 pages.

THE RACCOON KIDS grew out of ANIMAL ANTICS, which previously was renamed MOVIETOWN’S ANIMAL ANTICS. The Kids began in the earliest issue of the previous title, and were the featured series by issue #6, usually drawn by artist Otto Feuer. Once again the transition was gradual, with the RACCOON KIDS logo appearing on the final two issues of the previous comic, #50-51, before taking the entire title with issue #52, above.

Ira Schnapp did this version of their logo, based on the one used on stories by Feuer. He also did the balloon lettering on this and other covers.

Issue #59 is a typical cover with a Schnapp word balloon and an amusing sight gag.

The final issue, #64, is another with a more symmetrical Schnapp balloon than usual. He probably also lettered JELLY BEANS. Ira lettered these covers: 52-55, 59-60, 62, 64, eight in all.

A page from issue #52 lettered by Ira. Note his usual solution for too many words in a panel was overlapping the panel above, as in panel three.

The same thing happens on this page from issue #57, which also has a nicely lettered story title, though that might be by the artist.

This page from the last issue has an unusually large sound effect for Schnapp.

Here are the stories lettered by Ira Schnapp. Raccoon Kids (RK) have more than one story per issue, so those are numbered.

#52 Sept/Oct 1954: RK 4pp (1)

#53 Nov/Dec 1954: RK 6pp, 5pp (1-2), Bo Bunny 6pp, Doodles Duck 5pp

#54 Jan/Feb 1955: RK 6pp, 4pp, 4pp (1-3), Doodles Duck 4pp

#55 March/April 1955: Dizzy Dog 6pp, Bo Bunny 6pp

#56 May/June 1955: RK 4pp (3), Bo Bunny 5pp, Dizzy Dog 5pp

#57 July/Aug 1955: RK 6pp, 4pp, 4pp (1-3), Doodles Duck 6pp, Dizzy Dog 6pp

#58 Sept/Oct 1955: RK 4pp, 6pp (2-3), Bo Bunny 6pp

#59 Nov/Dec 1955: RK 6pp, 6pp (1 & 3)

#60 Jan/Feb 1956: RK 6pp (3), Doodles Duck 6pp

#61 Aug/Sept 1956: RK 6pp, 4pp (1-2), Fraidy Cat 4pp

#62 Oct/Nov 1956: RK 6pp (1)

#63 Sept 1957: RK 6pp, 6pp, 6pp, 6pp (1-4), Nip & Chip 4pp, Biggety Bear 4pp

#64 Nov 1957: RK 6pp, 6pp (1-2)

That’s a total of 194 pages.

More about Dodo and the Frog, Nutsy Squirrel and The Raccoon Kids from Don Markstein’s Toonopedia.

Other articles in this series are on the Comics Creation page of my blog.

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