Friday, August 10, 2007

Come on, Steve! by Roland Davies

My good friend John Adcock spotted this on YouTube. I've been on the lookout for the Steve animated cartoons for some years. According to the fan site, all six cartoons exist and hopefully the enigmatic 'spectograph' who posted Cinderella Steve (1937) will also post the other five. I don't want to get your expectations up too high as the quality is not that good.

'Come on, Steve!' was a long-running cartoon strip in the Sunday Express, later transferred to the Sunday Dispatch, written and drawn by Roland Davies. Davies (1904-1993) produced six animated 'Come on, Steve!' cartoons in 1936-37 out of his own little studio in Ipswich, Suffolk. The films even have their own fan club. Steve also starred in a number of books and a couple of Annuals.

I have to confess that 'Come On, Steve!' is one of my all time favourite strips. There's something about the "loveable, usually stupid, occasionally artful" (to quote Sunday Dispatch editor Charles Eade) animal. Steve, prone to misunderstanding whatever he sees, whether it's people acting normally or the latest headlines, was the antithesis of Roland Davies' usual loves: sports, cars, trains -- anything that moved at speed!

Why I love this particular strip is probably buried deep in my psyche. Things don't always go the way he plans but that horse has heart; he wants to do the right thing... you can't help but love him.

(* I believe 'Come on, Steve!' is © The Estate of Roland Davies; if the strip immediately above has a slightly familiar ring to it, it's because the middle panel was used in Maurice Horn's World Encyclopedia of Comics.)

1 comment:

  1. Like minds, Steve - I love Come On Steve, too. My exposure to him was via the Express. Thanks for the posts on this strip



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