I've been reading Steve Canyon strips from IDW's Library of American Comics collections, a month every day, for the last few weeks. I started with volume 2, since that's the volume I had. But now I'm flashing back to volume 1, and since there was some interest in a read-along, here goes!

January 1947.

This is a short month, as the strip began on January 13. Short synopsis: Rich vamp Copper "the Copperhead" Calhoun wants to hire Canyon's Horizons Unlimited air-transport business for a mysterious mission. Steve (and his secretary, Feeta-Feeta) are rude to Calhoun's underling, Mr. Dayzee. Calhoun tests Canyon's bravery and prowess b setting thugs on him, and then hires him, impressed. Dayzee plots with Calhoun's bodyguard, blackmailing him, to kill Canyon during the mission.

Elements of note:
I liked how Canyon isn't introduced until a week into the strip. Canniff spends a week with Feeta-Feeta being sassy to Mr. Dayzee as we wonder what the lead character is like. And then, on the first Sunday page, he appears... but not until after several incidental characters react to him while he's only partially on-panel.

Feeta-Feeta's unusual nickname is taken from the soldiers in American Samoa -- Fita is Samoan for soldier, and from what I can find online, the Fita Fita Guard was the Samoan Marine Reserve.

I like Copper Calhoun's hooded wrap -- it suggests cobra more than copperhead, but it definitely gets the idea of a snake across. 

New Characters of Note:
Steve Canyon, Feeta-Feeta, Copper Calhoun, Mr. Dayzee, Kroom

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Ha, yep! She's a lot of fun!

Anyway, after a week of stalling, here's my last entry for volume 1.

December 1948.

We stick with Reed Kimberly this month, as Steve stays out of the picture. Reed's been thrown out of Fancy's life (for his own good), but he takes up with Cheetah, an attractive local pickpocket. However Reed's sensible nature keeps thwarting Cheetah's attempts to get all his money -- either by leaving his money in the hotel safe, or when he takes it out, she finds out it's traveler's checks, and she'll need his signature anyway!

In the meantime, Fancy tries to make up with Reed, at first meeting on the street -- where Cheetah winds up throwing a rock at her, and knocking out Reed by mistake -- and then later, sabotaging any alone time they'd have together by sending  local officials to their door every 15 minutes.

Eventually, she arranges a rendezvous with Reed, who meets her, thinking Steve will be there. But she shows him the type of time Cheetah can't provide... taking him to a church to sing carols on Christmas eve. 

Eventually, Reed and Fancy lure Cheetah to the police station with his traveler's checks, where she's captured. And then Reed loans Fancy some money to pay her hotel bill, and they plan to celebrate New Years Eve together... as the radio station they listen to is about to broadcast from announces all around the world.

(And that's where I came in, with Volume 2, and Fancy hearing her presumed-dead husband's voice on the radio, and flying  off to America to find him!)

Elements of Note:
This has been the strip's first completely Steve-less month, as Caniff was testing how well Reed could support the strip. And I definitely  like Reed, but I can't say there's a lot of high adventure here. (He'll get his chance at that later, though!)

Arrivals, Departures:
None of note... but we'll lose quite a few people from the strip early in the new year!

Coming  up, I might not go month-by-month for volume 2, instead breaking it down into individual stories like the ones Jeff linked to. And then I'll be back monthly for Volume 3!


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