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Bluey and Curley (Alex Gurney 1902 - 1955)

Alex Gurney, born in England, achieved fame as creator of the war-time comic strip "Bluey and Curley". The strip featured a pair of soldiers - Bluey, a Great War veteran who had re-enlisted, and Curley, a new recruit to the AIF. Gurney was accredited as a war correspondent, and visited troops to ensure authenticity in his strip. In New Guinea he contracted malaria. Sent to England in 1946 for the Victory Parade, he had Bluey and Curley participating in that event. Gurney was in England in June 1946, as part of an Australian Press Syndicate sent specifically to view the Victory Parade. As well as sending caricatures of various eminent people involved in that parade back to Australia for distribution through the press, he also used the opportunity to have Bluey and Curley attend the parade, and a number of his Bluey and Curley comic strips reflected that event. Gurney's visit to London, and his version of events, as seen through his Bluey and Curley comic strip, was also historically significant for another reason: it was the first time that a newspaper comic strip had ever been transmitted from England to Australia by radio. Although Bluey and Curley were popular with Australians because they related to the slang, attitude, and the lack of respect towards authority exhibited by the main characters, the strip remained popular with the readership when the pair returned to "civvy street".