Top of Toon Town

Max Fleischer’s “queen of the animated screen” started her career as a canine jazz crooner in a delightfully bizarre cartoon, “Dizzy Dishes,” first animated by Grim Natwick in 1930. She has co-starred with Cab Calloway and Louis Armstrong, and was touted as one of Paramount’s biggest stars in 1932. Though she personified the freewheeling, sexy flappers of the 1920s, her image became synonymous with 1930s Hollywood cartoons and was in fact an early feminist: She even ran for president. When the Hays Code came in, Betty became virginal but never lost her appeal — and is today more popular than ever.

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