Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Saturday, November 29, 2014

MICKEY FINN #10 (1947)

Truth to tell, I read the Mickey Finn comic strip regularly when I was (much, much) younger and I don't remember much about it.  What I do remember is the character of Uncle Phil -- which would be natural because by the time I started reading comic strips Uncle Phil had become the main focus of the strip.

Mickey Finn was created by cartoonist Lank Leonard in 1936.  The strip ran for 40 years, closing in 1976, and reprints from the strip ran from 1936 to 1947 in various anthology comic books:  Famous Funnies, Feature FunniesFeature Comics, and Big Shot.  The character had its own comic book from 1943 to 1949, published first by Eastman Color and then by Columbia.  It ran for 15 undated issues, so its publishing schedule was a bit erratic.  There were also two issues of Mickey Finn from Headline comics in 1952.

Mickey Finn was a small city policeman and the strip was basically Dick Tracy light.  "During most of the strip's run, Mickey sauntered about in a police uniform, just a big, friendly guy, there to help out," according to  Mickey lived with his widowed mother and her brother, Uncle Phil, who's blustery character provided comic relief.  His long-time girlfriend is Kitty Kelly (or, in this issue at least, her name was changed to Kitty King).  By this issue, Mickey has risen to the rank of Sergeant (he would later be promoted to detective.) and his partner and best friend was Tom Collins.

Mickey Finn #10 begins with the birth of Tom's son, then switches gears to a new class of police recruits.  Mickey is assigned to mentor one of the recruits --Willie Muff, the totally incompetent son of a political boss (it's an election year, you see).  While seeking notorious jewel thief Bangor Benny, Willie's ineptitude and cowardice put Tom in danger and Mickey on suspension.  All's well that ends well, and the story is tied up with a neat little bow.  Well, almost.  Because the comic book consists of daily reprints, there are a few loose threads which I assume would be gathered in the next issue.

Mickey is a clean-cut, likable character.  I think you'll enjoy him.

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