Can you identify these beloved characters before they were on TV?

Before television, they were in comics, books and magazines.

Television has always looked to other entertainment media for ideas. The Odd Couple was a play and movie before becoming a classic sitcom. The Lone Ranger, like so many cowboys, was born on the radio. The Flying Nun and Gidget (both Sally Field characters) first lived in the pages of books.

Other iconic TV characters started out in comic books, newspaper strips, short stories and film.

See if you can recognize these characters as they originally appeared.
  1. She made her debut in All Star Comics No. 8 in December 1941.
    Image: DC Comics
  2. He made his debut solving "The Case of the Chemical Syndicate" in May 1939.
    Image: DC Comics
  3. This radio cast started performing over the airwaves in 1952.
    Image: radioclassics
  4. This horse first appeared in Liberty Magazine in 1937.
    Image: avalon-collectibles / eBay
  5. This holiday-special favorite first appeared in papers on October 2, 1950.
    Image: United Feature Syndicate / Universal Uclick
  6. He first turned up in the funny pages in March 1951.
    Image: Fantagraphics Books
  7. This scientist made his debut in May 1962.
    Image: Marvel Comics
  8. The characters from this TV show first appeared in a 1968 novel, seen here in the 1969 paperback edition.
    Image: Pocket Books
  9. This crime solver first appeared in books in 1933. Here he is in a 1937 movie poster.
    Image: Warner Bros. Pictures
  10. These characters can trace their roots back to a cartoon in The New Yorker in 1938.
    Image: Tee & Charles A. Foundation
  11. This hero first turned up in a 1972 sci-fi novel.
    Image: Warner Paperback Library
  12. This hero dates all the way back to an issue of Amazing Stories from March 1929.
    Image: Wikimedia Commons

Can you identify these beloved characters before they were on TV?

Your Result...

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52 Comments

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Runeshaper 19 months ago
You got 11 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
Rickey 20 months ago
You got 12 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
ndebrabant 20 months ago

You got 12 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
rycki1138 22 months ago
12 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
WILD 23 months ago
What's with the British(the wrong) spelling of "recognize"?
RedSamRackham WILD 22 months ago
Or is British spelling & pronunciation correct before it became "Americanized" here? There's is the king's English! ☺
WILD 23 months ago
You got 10 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
LeeHarper 23 months ago
You got 12 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!

EllisClevenger 28 months ago
You got 12 out of 12
Nice work! You'd recognize these characters in any form!
Tresix 29 months ago
11/12. I didn't know Buck Rogers went back THAT far! I was also surprised to learn Mr. Ed appeared in a comic book before becoming a TV show.
CraigGustafson Tresix 22 months ago
Mr. Ed was in Liberty magazine, not a comic book. He appeared in series of short stories.
Terrence 29 months ago
Missed Question #9.........................................11/12
Siglund 29 months ago
Perry Mason is a crime solver AND lawyer. The hint did not mention that last part...
Bobbo 29 months ago
12/12 albeit with a few guesses!
Rebel 29 months ago
Re: #10; Gomez Addams looks impressive, wearing a beard.
Tresix Rebel 29 months ago
Isn't that Lurch?
jerischopp 29 months ago
11/12. The last one got me too!
SheriHeffner 29 months ago
I got 11 out of 12 on this one. I'm getting better.
Lon 29 months ago
aghhhhh, 11/12. that last one got me
Greg 29 months ago
11/12 missed Perry Mason saw the gun in the background so took Peter Gunn. I'm surprised that one didn't get more people
KellyM 29 months ago
Thought some of these were pretty original ideas for TV when they came out. Esp. #4, Mr. Ed and some others. Was surprised to find out the real beginning source for some of these.
Kirsten 29 months ago
11/12 I want to kick myself for missing #4.
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