With school starting up here next week, I’m attempting to get as many things in neat little piles as possible- between doing home stuff and Thunderbean related. Finish some inbetweens/ sand the new (old) desk and start prepping it for stain. Dub and mail some pre-orders/ fix the window in the bathroom. Write more curriculum lesson plans/ take the dogs to the ol’ fishing pond. There’s at least some normalcy!
I almost always write the Thunderbean Thursday post on Wednesday night. I hope to *start* Thursdays in the coming semester have it in early since it’s a busy year. I’ve also started quite. A few articles on some of the new stuff and will keep whittling at them. I’m really looking forward to a little deeper-dive as projects finish and are properly ‘out the door’.
This week, we’re having a lot of fun finishing off animation for the Rainbow Parade volume 1 title sequence. Getting this title done is a big milestone — it’s been in progress for four years! Flip will be similar — two projects that felt like they would never be entirely done.
No less than six ‘Special’ sets are now basically done, and we’re trying to get seven projects out the door at the same time right now. Between that and helping on finishing several ‘non-Thunderbean’ projects, all the computers are humming here.
This week I thought I’d ask all of you to try and figure out a little bit of a mystery.
This is Puzzy. He’s a bank from the late 40s. He showed up at an outside antique show in Midland, Michigan back in the late 80s, and has been hanging out with many of my other figures ever since. On finding him, I laughed immediately, so the $9 he set me back has never been regretted.
I always thought the name Puzzy was a little odd — but whatever you do don’t type just Puzzy into a search- it will bring you to a series of images and terms not at all related to our poor little cartoon character. I promise you, you don’t want to do that.
Type in ‘Puzzy Doll’ instead, and you’ll find a series of images of this little guy – here’s some of them:
Puzzy, at least from a basic internet search, appears to have been the creation of ‘Herman Cohen Dolls’- and he’s one of the ‘Good Habit Kids’ from ‘The House of Puzzy’ (is it just me or does that sound like some strange sort of cult?). Some sources say that there was a comic strip with these characters, and some say that they appeared on children’s products. I’ve really searched for both of those things over these years and have come up empty, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist. I can imagine him having a chain of restaurants (like Big Boy) and charming up with that sort of half-smile he’s doing.
‘The House of Puzzy’ couldn’t stand TOO long, however — it appears to have stopped in 1949, a year after our dear ‘Good Habits Kids’ seem to have been invented. Puzzy and pals just didn’t cut the mustard.
From the pictures here, it appears that Puzzy was quite a styler when he wasn’t being a bank- his clothes are really fun in these pictures (but who knows how many of them are original).
Puzzy clearly owes some of his design sensibility to the Cupie doll as well as Fleischer and Iwerks cartoon characters from about 15 years before his appearance. I had always hoped that the lost Puzzy cartoon series (in Brewster Color or something) would show up some day, but of course nothing like that exists. I wish I could find more information about this little guy, but for now I’l use him to stash some pennies to help pay for an upcoming Thunderbean release.
Ok – so, what do you know about Puzzy? Be careful— it’s a dangerous internet out there while trying to find more on Puzzy- you’ve been warned!
Have a good week everyone!