Friday, June 28, 2013

Toby Wing In Dick Tracy Comics

Thirties blonde Toby Wing inspired a character in thirties Dick Tracy comics.

                                                                     Toby Wing

Toby Townly

Toby Townly first appeared in DICK TRACY in the Sunday strip for May 26th, 1935, as a cashier working for Mary Steele, who was the recently introduced mother of "Junior". Toby's boyfriend is a bank teller who "borrows" money from the bank to bet on horses without bothering to make the proper arrangements. When he gets in trouble, he shoots the bookie who'd taken his bets and is killed by the other gangsters in revenge, who then frame Toby for shooting a cop. She gets sent to prison*, but is finally freed because Dick Tracy learns the truth by giving the killer a lie detector test. But right before she can be released there is a riot in the prison and she is blinded by tear gas.

Junior trains his dog to be a "seeing-eye dog" for Toby and for some time she is led about the strip

by the dog. Eventually she recovers her eyesight and no longer needs the dog. Toby Townly continued as a character for several years, even after Toby Wing had retired from the movies in 1938. But eventually Toby Townly was retired from the strip and Chester Gould went on to something else.

In 1982, the character was revived after a long absence by writer Max Allan Collins, who ignored the marriage the character originally had in the story to have her marry Dick Tracy's friend Pat Patton.




 The marriage of Toby Townly and Pat Patton can be seen as related to developments in the original DICK TRACY, where the two characters were shown as going around together, leading Tracy to comment, "You know- you two look terribly suspicious to me, terribly suspicious." ( March 4, 1936 )

Toby Wing in real life was alleged to have been involved with Pat DiCicco's cousin Cubby Broccoli, who was alleged in turn to have underworld connections. But at least she didn't have to go to prison like the comic strip version.

* Writing in THE COMPLETE CHESTER GOULD'S DICK TRACY: 1935-1936, Max Allan Collins remarked that the prison sequence "recalls Barbara Stanwyck's 1932 Pre-Code feature, LADIES THEY TALK ABOUT."

Dick Tracy Comicooky Baking Set ( Includes Toby Townly as a character ):

Toby Wing:

Toby Wing in Dick Tracy:


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