blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Rip Kirby, The Cold Deck Switch (September 1952-February 1953)


Honey doesn’t appear at all this storyline—and Desmond starts the investigation—but it’s the strongest Kirby’s been in a while. Strangely, it features Raymond’s worst panel on the strip so far. Rip’s on the phone and his arm looks about four sizes too big for his body.

What starts as a fairly mellow society mystery (is a girl cheating at bridge) turns into a murder. It’s rather fine stuff. Desmond’s a great lead because he brings a lot of comic humor to it and, when Rip finally does show up, it’s about investigating. There’s no action finale this time.

The storyline further shows how interesting it can be to have a deeper protagonist (at least for a while). Desmond has to ask for help and to explain himself. He’s far more compelling.

Raymond’s art picks up once Rip arrives. There’re lots of beautiful, innovative panels.

It’s an excellent storyline.


Writers, Ward Greene and Fred Dickenson; artist, Alex Raymond; publisher, King Features.

One response to “Rip Kirby, The Cold Deck Switch (September 1952-February 1953)”

  1. There has to be some history of what went on with this strip. It seems to be following a roller coaster lately story wise. Congrats on your dedicated hard nosed dissection that has it’s own unique direction.

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