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    Betty Boop and the Little King (1936)


    by Allan

    Comic strip character The Little King, bored at the opera, sneaks over to the vaudeville house to see (and join) Betty's Wild West Show. But the Queen tracks him down...

    We are at the Imperial Opera House where there is a special performance for the king and queen of this unknown place. The royalty take their bows, and a huge-chested opera singer leads off what we see of the performance. In no time, the king is not happy and sneaks off. Down the road, he sees a poster outside a theater of Betty Boop. so he goes inside to investigate. Hey, it looks better than that opera.

    This little king is really a cool guy. In the theater, a vendor is selling pretzels. The king buys all of them and then distributes them free to the other people. Betty starts her show, rides a horse around a small ring a few times (Bronco Betty?) and the kings goes on-stage and asks if he can ride the horse. He's a little rough with the horse, but then changes positions and lets the horse ride him!! (This is kind of a strange story, to be honest.)

    Meanwhile, the crabby queen finally notices the king is gone from the opera house and goes to get him. And - talk about strange - you should see the ending!

    THE LITTLE KING by Soglow was a mainstay of Hearst Newspapers' King Features Syndicate's Sunday Color Comics, "PUCK THE COMIC WEEKLY" for years. As I remember it, there was little or no dialog, much like HENRY.

    Like most other popular features in the "funny papers", it was sought after for adaptation, and was done so by another studio, and possibly by Hearst's Metro Films as a silent Cartoon.

    The "cute", round little monarch of this still un-named Kingdom, with the Margaret DuMont type of Queen was tapped by Max & Dave Fleischer to be one of a number of characters that their own Cartoon Star, Betty Boop, would have as a co-star in one of her pictures. (The series, by the way, featured other characters which were published and copyrighted by Hearst/King Features, like for example, the previously mentioned HENRY and even from Elzie C. Seegar's THIMBLE THEATRE Comic Strip, POPEYE THE SAILOR MAN!* The Cartoon "BETTY AND THE LITTLE KING" features the King out for the night with his wife the Queen, when the Little King becomes bored with the Opera and sneaks out and down the street to a Vaudiville Playhouse, where he peddles some pretzels! (Displaying the most pitiful voice you can imagine, sort of like a cross between Elmer Fudd and Truman Capote!) He eventually hooks up with Miss Betty Boop, dancing, singing and doing a little Rope Skipping on Stage.

    After a while, the dowager Queen misses L.K. and all the King's horses and all the King's men are out looking for him.Once found, the little hen-pecked Sovreign is returned to the Royal Coach, and rides off with the Queen! But Betty Boop is riding outside on the under-carriage, and is holding his hand! Well now, we've all heard about the carrying-on of these Royalty People!