Herbie First appeared in Forbidden Worlds in 1958, but did not get his own comic until 1964. Even by 1964, he was still evolving. His shape changed, even between the two stories in Herbie #1. His speech changed. Even his face changed. And so did the humor in Herbie stories.
- Herbie has a round head with a bowl haircut of black hair (with blue highlight).
His neck is never visible.
He wears round-rimmed glasses on his nearly-closed eyes.
His mouth is usually closed, usually filled with a lollipop.
- Herbie is extremely short, about three feet tall
(based on his height compared to adults and to doorknobs),
and eventually settles at over two-thirds as wide (implying a 75" waist).
- Except for one appearance in Forbidden Worlds #94,
Herbie always wears the same blue pants, with black belt and silver buckle.
- Herbie wears a long-sleeved white shirt (cuff hangs below his belt), and a short black tie
(presumably a normal tie that lost much of its length going around Herbie's neck). In early stories in Forbidden Worlds, his shirt shows a seam where buttons would be, but that quickly disappears.
- Herbie wears white socks under tied leather shoes in brown or blue/gray.
- Underneath, Herbie wears boxer-shorts, except when disguised as the Fat Fury, when he wears nothing.
- As the Fat Fury, Herbie wears full-body red underwear with a dropseat, a blue cape, a light blue mask, and a plunger on this head. His feet are bare.
- After the original Herbie stories, three revival stories were written in the 1990s, with generally disappointing success imitating Herbie.
In Herbie #17b
, "Herbie and the Spirits!" was reprinted from Forbidden Worlds #94
(the one in which his pants were brown, but blue in the reprint -- apology accepted). There is commentary, beginning with "Hundreds of letters, all asking how Herbie started out!
Was he always the Herbie of today? Well ... He wasn't!
" and an arrow pointing at Herbie labeled with "Look ... would you believe
Index terms: appearance, physique, speech patterns, grammar, Richard E. Hughes, Ogden Whitney