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Encyclopedia > The Born Loser

The Born Loser is a newspaper comic strip created by Art Sansom in 1965. His son Chip Sansom started assisting on the strip in 1989, and the strip is currently distributed by United Features Syndicate. The Sansoms won the National Cartoonist Society Humor Comic Strip Award for 1987, and the Newspaper Comic Strip Award for 1990 for their work on the strip. This article is about the comic strip, the sequential art form as published in newspapers and on the Internet. ... Art Sansom was a cartoonist who created the comic strip The Born Loser in 1965. ... Chip Sansom is a cartoonist. ... United Media is large editorial column and comic strip newspaper syndication service based in the United States, owned by The E.W. Scripps Company. ... The National Cartoonists Society is an organization of professional cartoonists created in 1946. ...

Initially beginning with no regular characters, the strip now stars the hapless Brutus Thornapple. Supporting characters include his wife Gladys, his mother-in-law Ramona Gargle, his son Wilberforce, his boss Rancid Veeblefester, and his neighbor's troublesome daughter Hurricane Hattie O'Hara.

The main characters include:

Brutus Thornapple - As the name of the comic implies, he's a born loser. He simply can't get a break, whether it involves his job, his family, or just plain every day life. He's rather old fashioned, perhaps explaining why the modern times seem to be running him over.

Gladys Thornapple - Brutus's wife, she's even more old fashioned than Brutus and doesn't seem to be very bright, especially with popular culture or technology. She's rather similar to Edith "Dingbat" Bunker. She can be a bit scolding of Brutus, and often gets into fights with him that he simply cannot win. Nevertheless, their relationship always seems to be intact. Edith Bunker (née Baines) is a fictional 1970s sitcom mom on All in the Family (and occasionally Archie Bunkers Place), played by Jean Stapleton. ...

Wilberforce Thornapple - The son of the Thornapple family, he's a very curious boy who looks up to his father and often turns to him for advice. We can only wonder how this will affect his later life. He's friends with Hurricane Hattie, and enjoys baseball, but as one would expect from being the son of Brutus, he's not very good at it. He curreently wears his blond hair in a crew cut but in the 1970s, when boys and men tended to wear much longer hair, he wore his hair in sausage curls. A strand of human hair under magnification Hair is also the name of a musical, see respective articles for the stage production and the movie. ... Comedian Drew Carey sports a typical crew cut. ...

Rancid Veeblefester - Brutus's boss, a rich tycoon similar to Donald Trump. A very cranky, unpleasant man, he works in an office surrounded by money bags and doesn't seem to do any real work. He always scolds Brutus for being incompetent and seems to enjoy tormenting him. He loves to give a seemingly nice remark to Brutus to get his hopes up, and then turns it around as an insult (one example being that the only empty cubicle in the entire office belongs to Brutus). It's often a wonder how Brutus, who dubs him "Chief," manages to escape being fired by him. Even in their home lives, nothing changes (such as when Brutus wants to borrow the lawnmower and Veeblefester tells him not to take it out of the yard). Donald John Trump (born June 14, 1946) is an American business executive, entrepreneur, television personality and author. ...

Ramona Gargle - Gladys's mother. A stereotypical mother in law, she often visits to pepper Brutus with insults and emotional anguish. However, Brutus does occasionally gets his own jibes back at "Mother Gargle".

Hurricane Hattie - The mischievous girl next door, she delights in menacing pretty much any adult she encounters, namely Brutus and her teacher.


  • The Born Loser's Guide to Life, 1990. (ISBN 0-88687-597-8)
  • Strickler, Dave. Syndicated Comic Strips and Artists, 1924-1995: The Complete Index. Cambria, CA: Comics Access, 1995. ISBN 0-9700077-0-1.

External links

  • The Born Loser
  • "The Born Loser Celebrates 40 Years as America's Favorite Underdog" - press release (pdf)
  • NCS Awards

  Results from FactBites:
We are the Born Losers (1642 words)
The Losers were already playing 5 years, when suddenly somebody appeared straight out of the Brazilian wilderness… with his characteristic tumbling, running, speeding, stumbling, falling, singing, whistling, shoe-squeaking, crawling, dragging, yet scoring way of playing, this bloke has earned the full rights to be a full time player in the team.
Once Roel was the youngest Born Loser within the team, but now Ton is without any doubt the youngest cub of the den… his telescopic legs seem to keep the ball to his feet every single time.
These facts suggest he would grow to become a very loyal Born Loser, yet so far he is the only Loser living to tell the tale of being the first player playing against the Born Losers (earning him a cold dressed shower after the game).
  More results at FactBites »



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