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[personal profile] strannik01
Ah, Toni Gay and Butch Dykeman. Chances are you've already seen the rather suggestive first page from their story in Popular Teen-Agers #6. It's become something of a meme in comic book fan circles. But few people ever stopped and asked - who was Toni Gay, anyway? And what the heck was the deal with Butch Dykeman?

School-Day Romances - Toni Gay - Header

Toni Gay was originally known as Toni Gayle. She first appeared in 1945 in Novelty Press' Young King Cole #1. She as a model who decided to become a detective after her father, a famous police detective, was wounded by a deranged criminal. After capturing the criminal, she realized that she enjoyed the mystery-solving thing and decided to split her time between modeling and detective work.

Toni was one of Novelty Press' more popular detective characters, and it wasn't hard to see why. In the age when many female protagonists were often dumbed down, she remained smart, resourceful and independent. Letter columns were filled with letters from female fans who praised her as a great role-model.

Then, in 1949, Novelty Press went out of business. Its assets wound up in the hands of artist L. B. Cole, who used them to start his own comic book publisher, Star Publications. He revived all of Novelty Press' most popular characters, including Toni Gayle. But when Toni reappeared in the first issue of School-Day Romances, case, it wasn't quite the Toni Gayle the readers remembered. All the sudden, the detective part was dropped and she was merely an aspiring model who attended a modeling school. She got herself a boyfriend named Butch Dykeman, a struggling actor who attended the Adonis School Of Arts. And she gained a rival in Eve Ardor, a fellow aspiring model who wanted to out-succeed her and steal her boyfriend.

Oh, and, in School-Day Romances #3, her last name was changed to "Toni Gay." Not really sure why.

(In my personal canon, the Star Publications stories took place before Young King Cole #1. Hey - it makes more sense than her sudden chickafication)

Anyways... With that long history lesson out of the way, allow me to show you what you actually asked to see - a story starring Toni Gay and her boyfriend, Butch Dykeman.

The following story originally appeared in School-Day Romances #4. Art and (presumably) writing by Norman Nodel.

In which Toni and Butch have some totally heteresexual hijinx (7 pages under the cut)  )

Tune in next time to see Archie Comics' attempt to do the female version of their most famous character as we take a look at Ginger Snapp and her many boyfriends.

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