Obscurity of the Day: The Wish Twins and Aladdin’s Lamp

The Wish Twins are an obscurity by association. The strip ran for five years in the New York Herald, almost always as an inside third-page with only one spot color. Meanwhile on the other side of that sheet was usually something by Winsor McCay. Not quite well-drawn or interesting enough to compete with the master, they are ignored like the wallflowers at a dance. If you can afford to buy Little Nemo tearsheets you’re among the few with access, but who could tear their eyes away from the full-color full-page glory of Nemo long enough to peruse the sparse monotone color of the third page Wish Twins on the reverse?

The creator, W.O. Wilson, was a regular of the humor weeklies where he was never a star player but did turn out good cartoons. He spent most of the 1900s at the New York World where he penned this feature as well as a number of others that hid in the section’s interior. His one breakout strip was Madge the Magician’s Daughter which he did for the Philadelphia North American; this strip has lately been the subject of a Hogan’s Alley article.

The Wish Twins ran in the Herald from October 30 1904 through January 5 1908. You’ll find more samples of this strip over on Barnacle Press.

One comment on “Obscurity of the Day: The Wish Twins and Aladdin’s Lamp

  1. Did you know, speaking of McCay and the Herald, that for a very brief period of time, both McCay and Earl Hurd (one of the inventors of the cel-animation process) were drawing cartoons for the same paper?

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