I love this
strip! It's fun, harmless, and yet reflective. Tiger and
his friends are small children, preschool to elementary age. How
they see the world around them is just like we might have seen it at
that age. It's a lot more realistic than most comic strips, and
it's given cute characters with funny quirks to give it real
personality. Tiger is a small boy who wears big T-shirts and an
oversized cap. He's called Tiger for the same reason a bald
guy is called "Curly".
Bud Blake is the
mastermind behind this strip. "Peanuts" often reflected upon the
cruel blows life gives us as
kids, "Tiger" is all about the fun of growing up. The kids in
"Peanuts" are slightly older, and I'm sure Tiger
would have these same problems if he were 8 or 10 or 12.
Bud Blake always kept his strip bright and cheery. He created the strip to appeal to children and
adults, and it does. "Tiger" is one of those strips that is very
easy to get into and to get hooked on.
"Tiger" was a well-liked comic strip, but it just
didn't make a successful crossover into other media. The biggest
thing to come out of "Tiger" was an eight issue comic book series in
1970-1971. Among readers, and certainly among other cartoonists,
Bud Blake's artwork and writing styles received much praise.
"Tiger" is really timeless. Kids are almost always going to look
something like they do in this strip...kid fashions haven't changed
overly much since 1965. In addition, kids are always going to
have certain viewpoints about the world around them.
Bud Blake retired in 2004, and the strip went into
reruns. "Tiger" has continued to appear in reruns since Blake's
death on December 26, 2005. Any strip that has that kind of
staying power is something special!
to Know About Tiger:
debuted on May 3, 1965 by Bud Blake and was distributed by King
Features Syndicate. At the peak of its popularity, "Tiger" was in
more than 400 newspapers worldwide!
- "Tiger" was
never made into a cartoon show or live-action show. This was a
missed opportunity, because "Tiger" could have slid so well into film
or animation. Look at the mileage "Peanuts" has received!
- "Tiger" also
wasn't merchandised a lot. The biggest thing to come from "Tiger"
was a comic book series from the Charlton publisher. It ran eight
issues from March, 1970 to January, 1971.
- The National
Cartoonists Society named "Tiger" the best humor strip in 1970 and
1978. In 2000, the NCS gave "Tiger" the best newspaper strip
award. It had an additional nomination in 1998.
- Bud Blake was
85 when he retired in 2004. The "Tiger" strip then appeared as
reruns, and continued as such after Blake's death in 2005. At the
time of Blake's death, the reprints were still in over 100 newspapers
- Tiger was an
ALL kids (and dog) cast. There were never any adults pictured,
although they were often mentioned.
- "Tiger" is
essentially a gag strip, but there was frequently some social
satire. Nothing heavy, but significant.
- Stripe was
based on a dog Bud Blake had when he was little, named Jenny.
- Hugo was based
on a boy that used to beat up on Bud when he was a kid.
& His Supporting Cast:
Releases: I will add more information as I find it, but
here is a list of known "Tiger" books of strip reprints I've
- Tiger- If Tiger has hair and
eyes, we don't see them. He's the leader of the neighborhood
kids. Tiger wears an oversized baseball cap and a baggy white
sweatshirt. If you pay attention, he has a different team name or
caption on his shirt in almost every strip!
- Punkinhead- Tiger's dummy kid
brother who, quite surprisingly, has a lot of insight. He has a
sort-of "Moe from the Three Stooges" haircut with a perpetual
cowlick. He wears a red hooded sweater, long, polka-dotted
necktie, and has untied shoelaces.
- Stripe- Tiger and Punkinhead's
always agreeable and "always there" dog. Incidentally, he is
spotted. It's quite obvious Punkinhead named him. Stripe is
a friend to all the kids, but he seems to click with Punkinhead the
- Hugo- The fat kid, and
not-too-bright. He has a red crewcut and a snaggle-tooth.
Hugo is Tiger's best friend and he never ceases to be hungry.
- Bonnie- She's the "Lucy From
Peanuts" of Tiger's world. Bonnie is pushy and wisecracking, with
black hair and a loud, sarcastic personality. She's quite the
opposite of Suzy.
- Suzy- The other end of the
spectrum for young girls. Where Bonnie is loud and pushy, Suzy is
soft-spoken and more girly. She has long, blonde hair, wears
dresses, black leotards, and white Mary Jane shoes.
- Julian- He's the bookworm of
the troupe...complete with glasses!
- Tiger (1969, Grosset &
Dunlap/Tempo Books)- Reprints strips from 1966-1968.
- Bud Blake was born on
February 13, 1918 in Nutley, New Jersey. He also grew up in this
town. His real first name was Julian. He later named the
bookworm character from "Tiger" Julian.
- Bud's father and sister were
both in the commercial art field.
- Bud dropped out of high
school before graduation. He did a bunch of odd jobs until
1937. It was that year he landed a job with Kudner Advertising
Agency. He stayed with them until 1954, although he was away for
awhile during WWII when he was in the U.S. Army Infantry.
- Working with an advertising
agency meant a lot of travel, responsibility, and frustration.
Bud tired of this and decided to pursue cartooning. It just so
happened King Features Syndicate was looking for someone to replace
H.T. Webster, who had recently died. Webster did a cartoon panel,
so Blake was signed on to do a cartoon panel.
- From 1954 to 1965, Bud Blake
did a cartoon panel that went through a number of name changes through
the years including "Home Sweet Home", "Growing Pains", and "Ever
Happen to You?" to name a few.
- King Features then wanted
Blake to come up with a strip to rival "Peanuts". "Tiger" was
- "Peanuts" was an awesome
strip. "Tiger" was an awesome strip. Besides the fact that
both strips have an ensemble cast of children (and one dog apiece),
there was little similarity.
- Bud was widowed in 1988. He had a son named
Jay, who grew up to be a physicist, and a daughter named Marianna, an