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64 Years Ago


Mary looked quite different several decades ago.  She resembled a pleasantly plump version of Aunt May from the “Spider-Man” strip more than the sleek active Jessica Fletcher from “Murder She Wrote” that we see today.

But however her look may have changed, her romantic escapades and desire to help others have not.  Those things continue on in steady fashion as Mary is as she always was.  A compassionate, wise, senior widow with a penchant to do good in an ever-changing world.

Mary Sightings and Mentions

Mary has appeared in and has been mentioned in other comic strips over the years.  It’s always fun to see her pop up in these instances!

In MOTHER GOOSE & GRIMM, Mike Peters did a series of gags about Mary having dalliances with men in other continuity strips.

There was REX MORGAN:








Gunther, Roscoe, and Earl told CURTIS that they got lost on the way to Blondie and Dagwood’s anniversary party and found themselves in Santa Royale!


MALLARD FILLMORE noticed Mary’s getting older with grace:


And in MY CAGE Mary shared her wisdom with Norm:


I wonder where Mary will turn up next!

Reader Tip

Nancy Campbell sent in the following great suggestion:

“I read your comic strip daily in the SLC Deseret News. Just thought I’d give a suggestion for Tommy. It has worked for my sons looking for first time jobs.
Offer your services to work “free” for two weeks to prove your work ethic and dependability. My oldest son did just this at an Orem Utah J.C. Penney store. He got the job and had the store’s highest sales in the shoe dept. as their salesmen during his college years.
You have probably already finished this series of comic strips but just thought I’d give a different slant to job hunting.”

Thanks for sending that in, Nancy!  I’m glad it worked out well for your sons!  Maybe it will help others who are looking for a job.

Poetry From Prison – A Unique Perspective

Tommy wants to avoid returning to prison.


April is National Poetry Month.  To reflect on Tommy, an ex-con who’s featured in the current story., here’s a poem from the book, “How to Survive A Bullet to the Heart” –  a collection of poetry by maximum security prison inmates, compiled by John Wareham.

“More to It” by Rudy Bisnauth

There’s more to it than cuffs and crackles.
More to it than pain and shackles.
More to it than days and nights.
More to it than oozing life.
More to it than parsing crime.
More to it than counting time.

I woke and saw that pain’s a blessing.
Judgement Day is life’s undressing.
Caress what is to be your rest;
love, in time, will be your test.

To me there is a whole lot more.
A door to open many tours.
More to it, I count my breath,
how many whispers might be left?

A link to the book can be found here.

Mary Likes to Garden


Mary’s one of those people with a green thumb.  Maybe you are too.  If you are, or if you know someone who is, you may be interested in this charming tee that features Mary as she’s gardening.


You can purchase it here.


“A garden is a grand teacher.  It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust.” – Gertrude Jekyll

Mary’s Known As a Great Cook

Mary’s known by her friends not only as a great adviser, but also a great cook.  Friends often sit at her dining table and share the wonderful creations she makes in her kitchen.  What better way to break open a person’s psyche than by breaking bread with them?


Eating together is a big part of dating.  Although she likes to cook, sometimes Mary likes to  eat out with Jeff at The Bum Boat seafood restaurant.


In addition to making hearty meals, Mary often makes baked goods to serve to friends.


I recommend “The Good Cake Book” by Diana Dalsass.  There’s an appealing selection of different cake recipes – bar cakes, tube cakes, loaf cakes, etc. – and she has a nice way of describing them.  One of my favorites is the Chocolate Chip Apple Cake recipe which appears in an early version of her book.



Mary Likes Dogs

I like dogs and so does Joe.  A few years ago I wrote a story about Mary temporarily fostering a beagle named Chester.


I asked Joe to draw a dog resembling an owner in this scene.  Notice how he gave them the same long hair and gentle disposition.


In addition to providing exercise during walks, dogs generally promote a person’s well-being and good feelings.


The bond between a pet and his or her owner can be very powerful.  I recommend the book, “Dogs That Know When Their Owners Are Coming Home” by Rupert Sheldrake who says, “We have a great deal to learn from our companion animals.”



“Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.” – Voltaire


Q – In the “Aldo Kelrast” story, his last name is an anagram for “stalker.”  Where did you get the idea?

A – From Mia Farrow’s Scrabble scene in “Rosemary’s Baby.”  What a killer movie.

Q – Why does Dawn wear purple so often?

A – Sometimes characters have signature colors.  It’s a favorite color of hers, but sometimes she wears the blues.

Q – Is Mary ever going to marry Jeff?

A – Maybe.  She’s held off for a long time, but who hasn’t known couples who dated forever and then finally tied the knot?  On the other hand, as much as Mary likes Jeff, she also likes her independent lifestyle.

Q – Mary fostered a dog once.  They got along well.  I’d like to see her get one permanently.

A – Jeff’s allergic.  She’d probably have to choose between Jeff or the dog.  Don’t ask who would win.

Q – If Mary’s a great cook, why doesn’t she open up her own catering business like Blondie?

A – She’s busy semi-managing Charterstone, advising neighbors and friends, gardening and cooking, volunteering at the hospital, and writing Wilbur’s advice column whenever he takes a break from it.  Besides, she wouldn’t want to encroach on Blondie’s territory.  They’re friends.

Q – Are Dawn and Jim dating or just friends?

A – They’re just friends, although he’d like it to be more.  She’s young and exploring life right now.

Q – Now that Jeff’s daughter Adrian and her husband Scott are married, are they going to have kids?

A – Maybe later.

Q – You dedicated your book to the late Jay Kennedy.  Who was he?

A – The late great Jay Kennedy was the man who gave me the job of writing Mary Worth.  He was my employer, my teacher, my editor, and my friend.  He has my eternal gratitude.

Q – A few months ago, I thought I recognized a Pearl Jam lyric in a strip where Jeff says, “I miss you already.  I miss you always.”  Was that deliberate?

A – Yes, everyone could use some Eddie Vedder in their life.  Don’t it make you smile?


Pearl Jam’s Smile

Joe Giella Looks Back At His Work On Batman

Before drawing Mary Worth, Joe Giella worked at DC Comics on titles such as The Flash, Green Lantern, Batman, and many others.  This year is the 75th anniversary of Batman which debuted in 1939.

To mark the occasion, golf pro Tom Ward sat down and spoke to Joe about his work on the legendary comic book character.


Here’s a link to the article that appears at rattleandhumsports.

Writing Mary Worth

Hi.  This is Karen Moy, writer of Mary Worth.  Welcome to the Mary Worth site.

When I tell people that I write Mary Worth, sometimes I’m asked how I do it. The answer, to quote Edison is, “One per cent inspiration, and ninety-nine per cent perspiration.”  The truth is it’s hard work.  It’s gratifying and wonderful, but it’s also time-sensitive, deadline- oriented, and 50% dependent on the artist I’m working with. Thankfully, I’m working with a great artist, the legendary Joe Giella.  It also helps that I love reading and telling a good story.

I read as much as I can to keep the strip fresh, and for new story ideas. Books, newspapers, magazines, the internet, television, personal conversations, casual observations…are some places I go to for inspiration. It’s been said that real life is stranger than fiction. So there’s plenty of fodder for a good story. Art mirrors life, and vice versa.

I try to give my stories happy endings, because that’s what I want to read. And if the story is meant to have a different kind of ending, I try to write one that imparts a soft blow and not a sharp pain in the gut.

SPOILER ALERT: Take, for example, one of the more popular stories that I’ve written: “Aldo Kelrast” (which is currently featured in the book, “Love and Other Stories of Mary Worth.”). The ending may not have been the happily ever after that comics readers are used to, but there was a deep reflection afterwards on the part of the characters involved. Sometimes that’s what’s needed. An inner meditation by the characters that makes them grow after a catalyzing event. Art mirrors life indeed.


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