July 6, 1957

Los Angeles

Oh this is a painful moment on the Mirror’s comics page. I was always a big fan of Gus Arriola and "Gordo,"
which I read for many years. The strips are beautifully drawn and the Aztec motifs are wonderful. But I certainly don’t recall the dialect. Ouch!

Arriola was a former MGM
animator and here’s what he had to say about the strip:

The early Gordos were very stereotypical, yes, and the dialogue was very broken English. A couple of editors started complaining that it was hard to read, and salesmen said it was difficult
  to sell.
So little by little I began clearing up the dialogue and cleaning up the characters myself in order to appeal to a wider audience.

And then I saw this: Ack!!!!



"Gordo" is a model of sensitivity compared to "Lil’ Pedro." I can’t find any information about the
artist or the strip. I can only imagine the reaction of my old pal Rudy
Wagner, who became furious whenever he discussed the lawn statues of a
Mexican sleeping against a cactus.

Email me

About lmharnisch

I am retired from the Los Angeles Times
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