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Mary Worth is looking younger, has stalker

I’m not a Mary Worth reader, but after reading an entertaining article in the The Palm Beach Post about how Mary Worth has morphed into a more hip-per comic strip, I’ve decided I’ll give the 60+ year old strip a good read for the next couple of weeks. Recent story lines have include a new character “Aldo” who might be crazy (and a murderer) and there is the possibility of a “secret lover” from Mary’s past resurfacing in her life.  The article also talks about the various artists over the years that have worked on the strip and how they’ve made Mary look much younger (which created a stir among readers).

“Major things are happening,” says Karen Moy, the young New Yorker who took over the strip two years ago when longtime author John Saunders, son of the strip’s creator, passed away. “I don’t know if it will delight fans. I think it will hold their interest.”

Fourteen years ago, after Joe Giella assumed drawing duties from another artist who had passed away, he abruptly took away the wrinkles from the plump widow’s face. He says he was ordered to make the change by executives who wanted to modernize the strip. Readers had a snit-fit, and the media shrieked with disapproval.

“Did Mary Have a Nip and Tuck?” screamed the headline in the Los Angeles Times.

“I called Joe, and I said, ‘When did Mary Worth have a face-lift? I don’t recall writing that into the story,’ ” Saunders told the L.A. Times at the time. “He said to me, ‘You mean she’s too young?’ I said, ‘Yes. By almost half.’ ”

Embarrassed by the whole affair, and fearing he would be fired, Giella quickly made Mary look old again. As the wrinkles returned, the controversy faded.

But this time, Mary’s transformation is permanent. Giella, a legend in the comic-book business who has drawn Superman, Flash Gordon and Batman, took 12 weeks to wipe away her wrinkles, eliminate her bun, streamline her body and add some curves. When he was finished, holy makeover, Batman!

Mary ? wrinkled, overweight, with a dowager’s hump, who had been “in her 60s” for 68 years ? was transformed into a hot tamale.

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Community Comments

#1 Robert G.
August/17/2006
@ 11:15 am

Curiously, the reporter didn’t notice that the new character’s name, “Kelrast,” is an anagram of “Stalker.” Kind of telegraphs the story line…

#2 Denny
August/17/2006
@ 1:17 pm

army throw is an anagram of mary worth and I wish the army would throw it into a skirmish in Fallujah.

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