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CSBG Archive

365 Reasons to Love Comics #159

Anthropomorphism Fortnight continues with a particularly marvelous rabbit. But first, here it is, your moment of archive.

6/8/07

159. Hoppy the Marvel Bunny

Hoppy 1.jpg

Here’s one you didn’t you’d see, eh? But no, Hoppy’s great. Created by cartoonist Chad Grothkopf (fantastic name) for Fawcett in 1942, Hoppy was what his name and appearance implied– a funny animal version of Captain Marvel. He was one of the first super-funny-animals, beating out Marvel’s Super Rabbit and several others by about a year, though he came after Mighty Mouse. Hoppy first appeared in Fawcett’s Funny Animals, a title he would be featured in throughout the entirety of its 82-issue run, but he also had his own title, which lasted 15 issues.

Much like Billy Batson, this Hoppy cried “Shazam!” to transform into Captain Marvel Bunny. Hoppy’s Shazam stood for different things, however. It went something like this:

Salamander
Hogules
Antlers
Zebreus
Abalone
Monkury

Uh… yeah…

Like most Golden Age heroes, Hoppy spent quite a bit of his time promoting the war effort:

Hoppy 4.jpg

Don Markstein informs us of Hoppy’s mysterious fate. When Fawcett folded, it sold Funny Animals off to Charlton Comics, but because of DC’s lawsuit, Captain Marvel Bunny couldn’t continue– so he became Magic Bunny. However, years later, with DC now exerting ownership over the Marvel Family, Hoppy returned! They couldn’t have technically owned him, however, because they hadn’t bought out Charlton yet. No one seemed to care, though. Dare I ask– was Hoppy unimportant?

Hoppy 2.jpgHoppy 3.jpg

Well, maybe. But we love him anyway.

Hoppy’s only appeared a handful of times since the Golden Age, including an issue of DC Comics Presents, where he suddenly appeared to rescue Superman and the rest of the Marvels from certain death. And of course, he teamed up with Captain Carrot at least once.

In the 90′s, our pal Jerry Ordway brought Hoppy into an issue of Power of Shazam for a not-quite-in-canon guest appearance, but I’m fairly certain that’s the last we saw of Hoppy. C’mon, comics! Aren’t there any Hoppy fans out there? No? Dang.

Hoppy 5.jpg

Well, it could be worse. Judd Winick could be writing him. (Ouch.)

Alright, alright, you’re all going to tell me today’s was a really lame column. They can’t all be winners, people! I am sleepy. These things happen. Regardless, I love the Marvel Bunny because he’s silly, wacky, and weird. The comics industry is a cyclical beast, so I’m sure, much like the cicada, Hoppy will return one of these days in an exciting new adventure. I can always hope.

19 Comments

hifidigitalboy

June 8, 2007 at 6:30 pm

My first contact with Hoppy was on Crisis on Infinite Earths. Wasn’t this when DC decided to introduce the Marvel Family into it continuity? All I have to say was it was a great moment for me.

Well, it could be worse. Judd Winick could be writing him. (Ouch.)

Don’t even kid, man. Just don’t.

Tom Fitzpatrick

June 8, 2007 at 7:19 pm

You guys really hate Judd Winick, don’t you?

I remember way back when he was doing Exiles for Marvel.
Those were pretty good.

Well, since Earth-S has been brought back as “Earth-5,” Hoppy could come back. He was in World’s Funniest: his arrival drove a already-ticked Mr. Mxyzptlk into a rage, and he destroyed Earth-S. Evan Dorkin…good times. Does anybody remember who drew the Earth-S pages?

Exiles was the only book by Winnick I liked. It was also the only Chuck Austen book I liked, the thing was idiot-proof.

Here’s hoping for at least a cameo in the Captain Carrot revival…

There was a reference to Hoppy in FKATJL, which seemed to establish him as existing in the DCU (prior to New Earth, of course).

Winick’s work may stink of hedonism and self-righteous social agenda, but Barry Ween was really good.

Mostly because it didn’t stink of hedonism and self-righteous social agenda.

Well, okay, some hedonism.

zzzz….

somehow rabbit week is even slower than duck week….

here’s an idea: most important or interesting alien world and / or alien race.
here’s another: super-team week (month?.

just please stop before we get to cat week.

But if you do super-team month, please don’t spend half of it on the Legion of Super-Pets.

Ha! Hoppy is the only Golden Age comic I actively collect. (At least when I can find ‘em for ten bucks or less. Which is rarely.)

They’re usually surprinsingly enjoyable stories, as well.

And to connect it to the day before’s entry, Chad Grothkopf inked several issues of Captain Carrot!

The Kirbydotter

June 9, 2007 at 8:47 am

C’mon! USAGI YOJIMBO already!

The Kirbydotter

June 9, 2007 at 8:55 am

Aside from CC Beck, Ordway was the only one to do Captain Marvel justice. He managed to bring the Big Red Cheese to a modern public in a new, yet classic way.

And to connect it to the day before’s entry, Chad Grothkopf inked several issues of Captain Carrot!

Oh wow. I never noticed that!

Bill, how can you think everyone would dislike Hoppy? I first saw him in that DC Comics Presents – a great Superman and Captain Marvel team-up that started with Clark going into the broom closet to change, pulling open his shirt, and seeing a red jersey with a golden lightning bolt. And saying something like, “This red uniform? This puny little cape?”

Best of all, it was a two-parter, with this cover of the second issue:

http://www.comicvine.com/comic/dc-comics-presents/2943/21267/&i=33378

Hoppy is definitely a reason to love comics for me!

Isn’t he getting an action figure in the new Captain Marvel line from DC Direct. A two-pack with Billy IIRC

I thought that issue of Power of Shazam where Hoppy showed up was great. I was always very fond of that series in general. Da Ordster did fantastic work on it. I was quite sad when it got the axe.

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