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DON MARTIN DEPT. I
KlutzTHE COMING OF CAPTAIN KLUTZ

Don Martin's satirical take on the 1960s superhero craze, Captain Klutz, made his debut in 1967, making this year the good Captain's 40th anniversary!

Captain Klutz owes his life to Batman, or, to be precise, to the sensational popularity of the 1966 Batman television show. As Batmania swept through American pop culture like a tidal wave, it influenced other TV shows, movies, fashions, and, of course, comic books.

Even Mad magazine, who would eventually share the same publisher with Batman, got into the superhero game in 1967, with the publication of “The Mad Adventures of Captain Klutz,” drawn by Don Martin, and written by Dick DeBartolo, Phil Hahn, Jack Hanrahan, and Don Martin (edited by Nick Meglin).
"He was created for the books," DeBartolo recalls, "so he didn't appear in [Mad] magazine. There were separate contracts for each."

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THE SECRET ORIGIN OF CAPTAIN KLUTZ!
How and why was Captain Klutz created? According to Mark Evanier, "Don Martin was a very slow, meticulous artist and even though MAD paid pretty well, they could only use so much of his work per issue. He was looking for another avenues of income, and came up with Captain Klutz because he thought a running character would have more potential for exploitation (merchandising, maybe a movie or TV deal) than the disconnected gags he'd been doing. In Dick Debartolothe MAD paperbacks, the writer and artist shared copyrights so it seemed like a good place to launch the idea without losing it."

But there's more to the story! Capt. Klutz' co-creator Dick DeBartolo gave DIAL B for BLOG the inside scoop: "The good captain was created by committee: Nick Meglin, Duck Edwing, Phil Hahn, myself and maybe one or two other writers were sitting around thinking of creating unique characters for up-coming Don Martin books. Someone suggested we have a Super Hero."

"Of course, he couldn't be a normal superhero," DeBartolo continues. "He had to be more nutty to fit Don's style. When we were talking about his costume I suggested pajamas. Then someone said, 'how about his falls out the window and into a pair of pajamas and then ended up wearing them as his uniform.' And since he would be a bumbling kind of super hero, a klutz, the name Captain Klutz seemed perfect!"

Now, excerpted from "The Mad Adventures of Capt. Klutz," DIAL B for Blog presents the startling story of how young Ringo Phonebone became a satirical super hero!


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BEWARE, READER...
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INSIDE KLUTZ: UNIFORM, GADGETS, AND SECRET DWELLING PLACE!
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CAPTAIN KLUTZ ROGUES GALLERY
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SISSYMAN!
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GRANNY and THE MAD BOMBER!
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GORGONZOLA!
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