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Chicago Spanking Review Special Series

The Humorama Spanking Cartoons!

#115 - Cut-Away Fly Swatter Spanking

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man about to swat fly on woman's behind

From Joker (December, 1954). Scanned from the collection of and posted by the Web-Ed on 11/23/2012 click to double-size).

Readers who have been following the Humorama Series know that we have dated the first Humorama spanking cartoon as coming from July of 1955 (we have dubbed it Secretary Spanking #26, which we hope isn't too confusing - we obviously could not and did not present these cartoons in chronological order). We're going to stick to our assertion that this was indeed the first true Humorama "spanker", as Abe Goodman called them, even though Eric Ericson's Fly-Swatter Spanking, which we see now, was first published seven months earlier in the December 1954 issue of Joker.

How can we do this, you ask? It boils down to a question of definitions: Ericson's cartoon is squarely in the tradition of a long line of humor cartoons along a similar theme going back to Vaudeville: a pretty girl (or a big woman) bends over and a guy tries to work up the nerve to give her a sharp whack on the fanny. Bill Wenzel's spanked secretary on the other hand was the first of a new type of humor cartoon, one which was far more erotic (largely due to the use of the OTK position) and which was to become even more so as Wenzel and others adopted the ink wash technique and either began taking the spankee's dress up to expose her cami-knickers or (in Wenzel's case) began drawing incredibly form-fitting dresses that were in a way more revealing than cami-knickers. Before that time, when the OTK position appeared great pains were taken to present the scene as strictly disciplinary, obviously to avoid any too-blatant eroticism. Dan and I briefly discuss this point in one of the pages on the Feedback Forum, and it's important enough that I intend to return to it in an article next year on the history of the spanking cartoon. Thus, the Ericson cartoon is considered part of this series but doesn't have much in common with the vast quantity of spanking cartoons that came later, while Wenzel's remains "first" in our view.

Ericson, by the way, actually mixes up three different gags here: (1) Bend over and get a swat; (2) using a cut-out fly-swatter to give the fly a sporting chance, which is pretty strange all by itself; and (3) "I wasn't spanking you, I was trying to swat that fly!" a gag which would indeed turn up in later cartoons, both with and without the fly-swatter as an accessory.

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