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Mark Pennell sits at the helm of his time machine.Mark's Almanac is a 90-second time travel that highlights the world's history from the very serious to the sometimes sublime.

Mark's Almanac for September 8, 2021

A comic strip of Blondie from 1950.
A comic strip of Blondie from 1950.

It was on this date in 1930 that the comic strip Blondie debuted in newspapers across America. Although not initially popular, fans eventually warmed to the comic strip featuring a middle-class family. And it was on this date in 1965 that an ad in New York's Daily Variety appeared with the words "Madness! Auditions for acting roles in new TV series." The next day, 437 men showed up for a part in a series that was supposed to be a take on The Beatles' A Hard Days Night. Four men were selected and would later become The Monkees.