It is interesting to note, that when Jim was drawing in a more realistic style in the early 1920s for Life’s Little Comedies, he does not draw black people in a stereotypical manner.
Category: Comic Page 1 of 11
The title seems to make no sense, but there was likely a well publicized story about a police officer in Missouri testing people’s brakes this way. Jim would sometimes get his ideas from a news story that may be printed recently.
[Update]: A reader has suggested that the joke might play on Missouri being the “Show me” State, a saying that indicates that proof is always required.
It is encouraging to see that very early in Jim’s career (when he drew his comic in a realistic style), that he did not resort to physical stereotypes, as was common in comics of the era. See my post on About Stereotypes for more information. Though Jim did not use a physical stereotype in this comic, the speech of the Black man still is.