**Update: Due to many believing Snagglepuss was always gay, we did a little digging.**
In the 1961 cartoon, “Spring Hits A Snag,” Snagglepuss envisions Lila as a “suitable Mrs. Snagglepuss.”
Here’s the full description from Warner Bros. Television on YouTube:
Snagglepuss rescues Lila, a lovely young miss in distress, who he then envisions as a suitable Mrs. Snagglepuss. This was actually Lila’s plan all along and in no time at all, she is ensconced in Snag’s domain. But all is not sweetness and light. The house is all wrong, she demands fresh berries.
If that’s not enough, Joe Barbera, the Barbera in Hanna-Barbera, is quoted as saying, “Snagglepuss wasn’t gay! He was modeled after Bert Lahr who was anything but gay. He beat his wife!”
Original article continues:
DC Comics, writer Mark Russell, and artist Mike Feenan are turning the classic Hanna-Barbera character, Snagglepuss, gay in their new series Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles.
Writer Mark Russel, who previously wrote The Flintstones comic, detailed how the idea of doing the Snagglepuss comic came about in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter:
It just kind of happened by accident. I was just tweeting funny lines I thought Snagglepuss would say, if he were Tennessee Williams — some kind of Southern Gothic playwright — and Marie Javins, my editor, thought they were funny and she talked to Dan [Didio, DC co-publisher] about turning that into a comic. That’s how it started. It was really just funny tweets and it just ballooned from there.
Russell then went on to detail how he will use the comic to not only critique 1950s society, but also today’s society.
Snagglepuss in this story is having to live a double life as a gay playwright living in New York, and he’s closeted. But he has values and integrity as an artist, and he’s trying to stand up for people who otherwise would be shoved under the stairs in this time of great national paranoia in the Red Scare mentality. It’s very easy in a time of national catastrophe — of perceived national catastrophe — to throw people under the sink and forget about them, and Snagglepuss is unwilling to let them do that to people he knows and loves. He’s willing to stand up for people when the rest of the country is not.
In a lot of ways, that frees me up to say what I think about what’s going on in the world now, just putting it in the context of 1953 America.
He then went onto elaborate about the issues he sees facing American society and hinted at some of the themes he will address Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles:
Somebody once said that history never repeats itself, it just rhymes an awful lot. Unfortunately, there are these themes in history — particularly American history — that never really seem to go away. Themes like marginalizing minorities and immigrants, using fear of military threats to make people go along with abuse. These themes quiet down every now and again, but they never seem to go away, so unfortunately, when you’re writing about these things, they will always be timely or relevant.
He was then asked if his comics are meant to speak for someone and elaborated on his own personal philosophy that will be seen in the comic:
I don’t really feel a responsibility to talk on behalf of anyone else — I don’t really feel that’s what I’m doing, I just speak from my heart about things that matter to me. I don’t worry too much about getting it right, or misrepresenting other people. I’m really just representing myself. But my political philosophy — my philosophy in general — is that I just want the human race to play nice with itself. To me, that’s the most boring, obvious ideology a person can have, and it’s amazing to me, I’m continually amazed, how controversial or edgy people think that is. To me, this should be the natural state of affairs, and isn’t it weird that it’s not?
Finally, he talked about how using Snagglepuss or the Flintstones allows him to say things through the characters without people getting offended about.
The fact that it’s a pink lion, or a caveman, gives me the license to say all these things and people don’t really take it that personally. It’s hard to get offended at something a big pink lion is saying and not feel silly about yourself.
Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles will be a six issue miniseries. The first issue will feature covers by Ben Caldwell and Evan “Doc” Shaner. The first issue is expected to go on sale in January 2018.