Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles

exit stage left the snagglepuss chronicles cover trade paperback tpb
9.0 Overall Score
Story: 9/10
Art: 9/10

Fun, thinking comic that has a lot of layers

Not necessarily a historical work but fiction with history which not everyone may get

Comic Info

Comic Name: Exit Stage Left:  The Snagglepuss Chronicles/Suicide Squad/Banana Splits Special

Publisher: DC Comics

Writer: Mark Russell

Artist: Mike Feehan

# of Issues:  7

Release Date: 2018

exit stage left the snagglepuss chronicles #2 cover variant

Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2 Variant

Reprints Suicide Squad/Banana Splits Special #1 and Exit Stage Left:  The Snagglepuss Chronicles #1-6 (May 2017-August 2018).  Snagglepuss is the star of Broadway.  His cleverly crafted plays bring heart and soul to the stage and are renown around the world.  Snagglepuss has a beautiful actress wife and runs in some of society’s most elite circles.  Within those circles, Snagglepuss is a known homosexual, but Snagglepuss has always managed to keep his private life private.  When the House Committee on Un-American Activities sets its sights on Broadway, Snagglepuss could be the next victim of the Red Scare.

Written by Mark Russell, Exit Stage Left:  The Snagglepuss Chronicles is a DC Comics and Hanna-Barbera publication under the Hanna-Barbera Universe.  Illustrated by Mike Feehan, the series was released to critical acclaim and GLAAD award for Outstanding Comic Book.

I loved Snagglepuss when I was little.  With Pixie & Dixie and Huckleberry Hound, Snagglepuss and his “exit stage left” and “Heaven’s to Murgatroyd” were some of my favorite catchphrases.  When DC first started the Hanna-Barbera Universe, I rolled my eyes…then I read The Flintstones which I really enjoyed.  Snagglepuss is a great follow-up to The Flintstones and has a lot of deepness and history that many comics don’t have.

To be clear, Exit Stage Left:  The Snagglepuss Chronicles isn’t history.  Some characters in the comic are real, but others are amalgam of other people…and some events are simply sculpted to fit the comic.  Things like the bust of the Stonewall Bar in Greenwich Village happened in 1969…not in the 1950s when the story took place (it was just a restaurant then).  Things like the Marilyn Monroe-Arthur Miller-Joe DiMaggio drama were created for the comic…Russell is clear about a lot of this in “glossary” of the collection, but some might take it as history.

exit stage left the snagglepuss chronicles #6 cover

Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles #6

The real strength of the comic is the fact that it has some well written dense concepts and ideas.  From the short story pulled from Suicide Squad/Banana Splits which explains what Snagglepuss thinks the role of a writer is to incorporating theories of Russell’s Paradox, not all comics could pull off this type of story, but The Snagglepuss Chronicles make it seem easy.

The Snagglepuss and Huckleberry Hound relationship also is core.  Snagglepuss loosely represents Tennessee Williams who did mentor William Faulkner who is meant to be a stand-in for Huckleberry Hound.  The age difference between the two was greater, and Faulkner travelled in some gay circles, but there seem to be few real ties to author.  The two provide a nice flipside to each other…one character is living large (Snagglepuss) while the other is destroyed by his love (Huckleberry Hound)…Ironically, Huckleberry Hound is destroyed by a closeted lesbian in Gigi Allen (who is a stand-in for famed attorney Roy Cohn).

Part of the joy of Exit Stage Left:  The Snagglepuss Chronicles is decoding and untangling truth from fiction…something an author like Williams would probably love since truth-fiction-reality-imagination are all tied together.  The book is definitely worth seeking out and is one of more clever comics I’ve read in recent years.  Like Maus, it softens its message in appearance by inserting the cartoon world and opens the story up to more people.  It has its faults, and I wish it had even run longer, but any weakness in the series is minor.  Don’t give Snagglepuss the hook, read Exit Stage Left!

Related Links:

DC Meets Hanna-Barbera—Volume 1

DC Meets Hanna-Barbera—Volume 2

The Flintstones—Volume 1

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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