In 1947, Joe Barbera (of Hanna-Barbera fame) decided to publish his own line of comics. After gathering the necessary financing, he paired up with Harvey Eisenberg, a funny-critter cartoonist of near-legendary stature.
You would think comics written by the co-creator of numerous Academy Award-winning cartoons and drawn by an artist many compare to Carl Barks would sell like hotcakes. Sadly, the titles produced by Barbera’s Dearfield Publishing - Foxy Fagan Comics and Red Rabbit Comics – were far from successful.
Foxy Fagan only ran for seven issues while the Western-themed Red Rabbit lasted a bit longer.
As you would expect from talents of such high caliber, the books themselves were far better than their commercial fates would indicate. Eisenberg’s art is studied by cartoonists and animators alike to this day, while Barbera’s stories are stuffed with the same chaotic mischief that make Tom & Jerry perennially popular.
Out of Dearfield’s two “stars,” Foxy Fagan – a bushy-tailed con man whose schemes never quite gel – has probably aged the best. Lovable rogues never go out of style …
The following story originally appeared in Foxy Fagan Comics #4.