Betty Boop Betty Boop
Cartoon Culture

Betty Boop And Popeye In Europe

Classic American cartoon characters pop up throughout Europe in unexpected ways. A couple examples from my recent trip:

Betty Boop street art in Paris

Popeye enjoys another kind of green as the mascot for this Amsterdam “coffeeshop” (I’m guessing they aren’t an official King Features licensee)

  • That strategically placed railing saves Betty from NSFW status.

  • Jon

    And speaking of Betty Boop, Olive Films has licensed over a hundred items from the Republic catalog for DVD/Blu-Ray release, including Betty Boop! The list of Boop titles listed (at the link below) is incomplete, though, leading me to suspect that they may have only licensed the ones that are still copyrighted. I hope the set they eventually produce will be complete and won’t exclude the public domain Boops.

  • Daniel C. Parmenter

    I’ve actually been to that Popeye coffeeshop. There are a number of Amsterdam coffeeshops with comics-themed decor. I recall seeing one that featured Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers characters (appropriately enough) and another adorned with Elfquest elves. Prior to my first A’dam visit I had heard that there were R. Crumb and Will Eisner-themed coffeeshops too, but I couldn’t find them. The proprietor of Lambiek (a wonderful comics shop/gallery in Amsterdam) didn’t know where they were, though he confirmed that the Crumb one did exist at one time.

  • Oliver

    An appropriately naughty Betty, given that her original cartoons were risque enough to require censorship after the Hollywood Production Code took effect in 1934.

  • Well, the Popeye characters fell into public domain in Europe a few years ago… so noone on the contintent actually needs the King Features licence to use him like that. :)

    • Chris Sobieniak

      I was just thinking about that. It’s nice to know our spinach-packin’ sailor is getting to stretch his legs outside the confines of the Hearst Corporation.

  • We have an music store in Alkmaar (Netherlands) called Popeye!

  • Pedro Nakama

    I’ll gladly pay you next Tuesday for a scone today.

  • Daniel J. Drazen

    Over on this side of the pond, the founder of the Popeye chicken franchise only received a license from the cartoon owners after they’d been in business for some time. It’s claimed that the name originally referred to the character of Popeye Doyle from “The French Connection.”

    Whatever; they still make some disastrously great fried chicken … disastrous if you’re on a diet, anyway.

    • Chris Sobieniak

      And yet there’s a generation of people like me who still can’t tell the difference!

  • James

    That’s sort of good news about Betty Boop on DVD. I’m concerned, though, that they only licensed the cartoons that are still under copyright. I’m guessing that means they’re either going to just release those and ignore the ones that have fallen into the public domain, or they’ll release all of them, but only the copyrighted ones will be mastered from the original film masters. After years of waiting for the Betty Boop cartoons to show up on DVD, I’d hate to end up with something poorly produced and incomplete. There’s been too much of that where classic animation is concerned

    BETTY BOOP CONFIDENTIAL, which was on that list of stuff Olive had licensed, was a videotape collection of thirteen Betty Boops. I still have the VHS. Maybe they are planning to put that out.