Don’t Pass Go: Unpacking the Feud Between Mike Mozart and Alec Monopoly
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Sidebar with a little history of Rich Uncle Pennybags (aka Mr. Monopoly):
Mr. Monopoly isn’t even his real name. Created by down-and-out inventor Charles Darrow during the Depression-era ’30s, Mr. Monopoly (or Rich Uncle Pennybags, if you’d prefer his given name) and the game he adornes was initially rejected by Parker Bros.
So we guess you could call Rich Uncle Pennybags a self-made millionaire, as Darrow sold locally printed facsimiles of his boardgame on the street, making Rich Uncle Pennybags an illustrated icon for the people.
When Parker Brothers finally got on board in 1935, Rich Uncle Pennybags was already well known enough to front other of the company’s board games. In 1940, he became the star of a game called Dig. In 1946, he fronted the eponymous Rich Uncle.
According to The Monopoly Companion, he was not added to Monopoly boards until 1936.
Meanwhile, Alec states that Hasbro is “is okay” with him using the likeness of Mr. Pennybags. Yet we can’t find evidence to substantiate.
Check out the gallery below for some suspicious similarities and smoking guns galore. Note the text conversation between Alec (white bubbles) and Mike (green bubbles). You can clearly see the work Mike did and the credit Alec is accused of nabbing.
Mike Mozart’s exhibit – “Art Basel on 4th Street” – debuts tonight at 212 gallery. It runs through the end of the month.