Let's See Your Canadian Giveaway Comics from the 1960s/70s
5 5

89 posts in this topic

527 posts

Colonel Sanders was so impressed by McCarron's comics for Ernie Edwards that he ended up commissioning two comics for himself. All of these KFC comics are incredibly rare, as they included coupons for KFC. If you find one, make sure that the coupons aren't missing!

 

Colonel Sanders Comics 1.jpg

Colonel Sanders Comics 2.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
42,088 posts

This thread has been awesome so far!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts
16 hours ago, seanfingh said:

This thread has been awesome so far!!!

Thanks, pal. More to come!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Here is one of the most common of all giveaway comics from the era: "Electric Safety from A to Zap" was given away throughout North America by power companies and even Radio Shack. There are so many variants of this comic from the USA that it's hard to keep track. These were published in 1972 by a group called "Custom Comics." Here are examples from Manitoba Hydro and Ontario Hydro. It is likely that other Canadian variants exist. If you have one, I'd love to see it.

 

Electric Safety from A to Zap (Manitoba).JPG

Electric Safety from A to Zap (Ontario).JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Whereas governments and businesses tended to hire Ganes or McCarron to make comics (if they did not merely re-purpose American giveaways), some interesting one-off giveaways appeared during this era. Here is a particularly obscure comic that was published by the Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen in 1968. Chances are no one here has seen one of these before. This comic was political in nature and was intended to convince the government and the public to prevent confederating a number of trade unions in Canada at the time. Here is "The Confederation Against Confederation" from my personal collection.

Confederation Against Confederation, The.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

I mentioned Malcolm Ater and his Commercial Comics Company in my post about "Where There's Smoke..." Ater's output in the USA was very similar to the work of Ganes in Canada. One of the Ater books that caught me off guard is "It's Best to Know…About Alcohol" from 1961. Unlike "Where There's Smoke..." this was actually a collaborative effort from "The Alcohol and Dug Addiction Research Foundation of Ontario" and the "National Alcoholic Beverage Control Association" in the USA. These usually seem to be available on the market, but one sold cheap on eBay a couple of weeks ago. That seller (popculureplanet) actually took the time to post good quality pictures, which I will re-use here.

It's Best to Know About Alcohol.jpg

It's Best to Know About Alcohol (Back Cover).jpg

It's Best to Know About Alcohol (Interior A).jpg

It's Best to Know About Alcohol (Interior B).jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Here's a Canadian giveaway that is from 1965 and was published in conjunction with the "Canadian Wildlife Service, National Parks Branch." I suspect that this is a Ganes book, but without additional information I cannot verify this beyond a reasonable doubt.

 

Question of Survival, A.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

By the early 1970s, Ganes' comic output essentially ceased. He became an outspoken critic of the Pierre Trudeau government and was also highly critical of the Conservative government too. One of the last examples of Ganes' work that I have been able to find comes from this book, "The National Dilemma and the Way Out," published in 1975. Ganes provides the illustrations.

 

National Dilemma and the Way Out (Illustration by Orville Ganes) Book.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

During the 1970s, McCarron and Edmiston became the kings of Canadian giveaway comics. At the same time, there continued to be one-off groups publishing their own giveaways. Here is an obscure one from 1979 from Delta Web Graphics called "Small Business...The Soul of Your Community." It was commissioned by The Canadian Federation of Independent Business.

 

Small Business The Soul of Your Community.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

This trend continued well into the mid-1980s (which is properly part of the Canadian Silver Age, as defined by John Bell). Here is a comic that was published in 1985 by Graphikel Inc. from Quebec. The creators included Claude Gagné, Gabriel Lalonde and Francine Vernac. This comic was published simultaneously in English as "Hello! Hello!" and in French as "Allô! Allô!" This was a giveaway from Bell Telephones intended to teach children about how to use the technology. Seems a bit dated now!

 

Allô! Allô!.jpg

Hello! Hello!.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

In 1973, the Canadian government commissioned four comics to be given away in the Northwest Territories. These four comics were published by Arctic Comics and featured the eponymous superhero "Captain Al Cohol" and was provided to Inuit children as a lesson about the horrors of alcohol abuse. The story was by Art Sorensen with art by Phil Clark and Dale Austin. Making it difficult for collectors is that these were generally only available in the Northwest Territories and that the four issues are not individually numbered, which leads to confusion. I recently had a chance to look at all four at Library and Archives Canada and they are impressive books. Here are scans of the first two in the series, as well as a splash page.

Captain Al Cohol 1.jpg

Captain Al Cohol 2.jpg

Captain Al Cohol (Splash Page).jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Captain Al Cohol wouldn't be the last superhero designed by the government for the Canadian Territories. Late in the Canadian Silver Age, the federal government published "Super Shamou" in conjunction with the Inuit Broadcasting Company in 1987. Created by Barney Pattunguyak and Peter Tapati, the comic features the art of Nick Burns, who published several other comic books about the Arctic in the 1980s. Unlike Captain Al Cohol, Super Shamou teaches Inuit children about the dangers of sniffing solvents to get high.

This is probably my favourite Canadian giveaway comic. Two versions exist: one in English/Inuktitut and the Other in French/Inuktitut. Half of the comic is in English or French and ends at the centre wrap. Flip over the comic and it is reprinted entirely in Inuktitut. The Inuktitut translation is by Micah Lightstone. Here is the English/Inuktitut version from my personal collection.

 

Super Shamou English.jpg

Super Shamou Inuktitut.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
588 posts
On 5/25/2017 at 3:58 PM, ecgt said:

Here's probably my favourite Owen McCarron comic: "Colonel Ernie Comics" # 2. Ernie Edwards was a close friend of Colonel Sanders and was one of the first franchisees of KFC in Canada. He brought KFC to Halifax and by the time this comic came out had eight locations. He commissioned McCarron to create a comic for him in 1965. This follow-up was published in 1968 and is essentially a photo comic insofar as McCarron used head shots of Colonel Ernie and drew everything else. Ernie Edwards died in 2008 at age 91. His flagship KFC on Quinpool road still exists, though it has undergone several renovations since the 1960s. The "Abdominal" Snowman haunts my dreams592728b613f7d_ColonelErnieComics2.thumb.jpg.44f313c4adefb603a5ba36d8af94eeec.jpg592728c423b44_ColonelErnieComics2(BackCover).thumb.jpg.4a33d74a43b52b0069c1e0c370548b85.jpg

Here are some pictures of the flagship KFC, as it existed when this comic came out:

TownCountry.jpg

Very cool! My mom worked for Ernie Edwards for many years. The Town and Country was located where the KFC/Taco Bell on Quinpool road is. I'll have to ask her is she has seen or is aware of these books.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts
1 hour ago, Tbone911t said:

Very cool! My mom worked for Ernie Edwards for many years. The Town and Country was located where the KFC/Taco Bell on Quinpool road is. I'll have to ask her is she has seen or is aware of these books.

I was pretty sure that the KFC/Taco Bell on Quinpool was where the Town and Country was located. Thanks for confirming. Since your mother worked for Ernie Edwards, this could be a good opportunity to find some of these books. I own Colonel Sanders # 1 and Colonel Ernie # 2. The horrible looking Colonel Sanders # 2 in my post is the only example I have been able to find and I've never seen a Colonel Ernie # 1. Let me know what you find out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

In 1976, this Don Inman comic called "Superkids" was published by the Canadian government's Department of Energy, Mines and Resources in conjunction with The Office of Energy Conservation. There is a French version called "Les enfants formidables." A PDF of the comic has been made available by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, which houses one of the largest number of government comics in the United States thanks to the hard work of Professor Richard Graham, who is a former Eisner Award judge. For your interest, here's a link to the comic: http://contentdm.unl.edu/cdm/ref/collection/comics/id/227

 

Superkids.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

In 1982, the Public Legal Education Association (PLEA) of Saskatchewan commissioned (at least) six comic books by Robert Bedier, Mary Tastad and Helen Ross. All of these comics were funded through a "Summer Justice Grant" from the Department of Justice in 1981. What is particularly interesting is the subject-matter and the fact that these comics were designed for an adult audience (to the extent that the credits pages call these "picture books"). These comics are so rare that I do not have any scans to post here. However, thanks to Richard Graham at UNL, some are available in PDF format. From what I have been able to document, this group produced the following comics (with links to PDFs where available):

1. Break and Enter

2. Discrimination in Housing

3. Drinking and Driving http://contentdm.unl.edu/cdm/singleitem/collection/comics/id/217/rec/2

4. Renting http://contentdm.unl.edu/cdm/singleitem/collection/comics/id/216/rec/1

5. Sexual Assault and After http://contentdm.unl.edu/cdm/singleitem/collection/comics/id/215/rec/1

6. Wife Abuse

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Certainly, there were numerous Canadian giveaways during the Canadian Golden Age, but after the industry collapsed in the mid-1950s with the closure of Canada's last Golden Age comic publisher, Superior, giveaways didn't really disappear. These two "Our Vacation in Ontario" comics are the earliest examples of Canadian giveaway comics that I can identify being published during and after the collapse of the Canadian comic book industry. They were published in conjunction with the Government of Ontario's Department of Travel and Publicity. I believe that the first issue was released in either 1955 or 1956 towards the end of Minister Louis-Pierre Cécile's tenure. The second issue was released circa 1958 during the tenure of Minister Bryan Cathcart. I have no idea who the artist(s) are.

Our Vacation in Ontario 1.jpg

Our Vacation in Canada 1 (Back Cover).jpg

Our Vacation in Ontario 2.jpg

Our Vacation in Canada 2 (Back Cover).jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
527 posts

Super Shamou actually had it's own series of television shorts on the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation (IBC) in the late 1980s as part of the television program "Takuyaksat." One of the reasons why I have become so enamoured with the property is that the television shorts are mostly in Inuktitut (with a little bit of English). Filmed in and around Baker Lake in what is now Nunavut, Super Shamou was part of the IBC's attempt to maintain cultural autonomy in its broadcasting, rather than allowing the Canadian North to become another market for English television programming. IBC was the first Native language television station in North America and still exists to this day. Here are links to a couple of Super Shamou shorts from "Takuyaksat" starring Peter Tapati in the title role. They are super cheesy!

http://www.isuma.tv/ibc/super-shamou-1a-1987

http://www.isuma.tv/ibc/super-shamou-2a-1987

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 posts

Here are a few and I will give more later.  Sorry I can't find the info I have on these books right now.

scan0017-1.JPG

scan0018-1.JPG

scan0013-8.JPG

scan0014-8.JPG

Edited by Juggernaut

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
5 5