| One group of figures
evolved from the influence of the "Kilroy was Here" character drawn by
U.S. Servicement around the world, popular around 1944; another
influence were the two related characters drawn by Al Capp as part of
his Lil' Abner series around 1948. the Shmoo and the Kigme. So by the
age of around 12 I began to create a wistful character called,
variously, Melvin (a name that was considered funny around the time
that MAD comic books (put out by EC comics) first came out); a bit
later he came to be called "the Blatner Mouse."
Contrary characters also emerged, similar to the relationship of the
nice aforementioned Shmoo and the not-so-nice Kigme-- a masochistic
character that made people want to kick him. Other characters continued
to unfold after that.