Burpie Upp

First appearance:

October 12th, 1960 (partial)
October 13th, 1960 (revealed)

Known Relatives:

Unnamed Husband (deceased)
Soso, Sister
Fresh Upp Plenty, Daughter
Johnny Plenty, Son-in-Law (deceased)
Little Boy Beard, Grandson

Appearance of Death:

November 30th, 1960

Created By:

Chester Gould

Can Be Found:

The Dick Tracy Casebook
The Complete Dick Tracy Vol. 19

Burpie Upp was the mother of Fresh Upp. She was an older woman with light-colored hair and a lined face.

After Burpie's husband passed away, she began to drink heavily and spent much of her inheritance. She also alienated her friends in high society, yet she remained seriously concerned about her social standing and others' opinions of her and her family.

After Fresh Upp's baby was born with a full goatee, Burpie forced Fresh to abandon the baby in the middle of an public park, since she believed that it would be an embarrassment to them in their social circle.

They were observed abandoning the child by the fugitives Spots and Ogden, who tracked Burpie and Fresh back to their home in an attempt to blackmail them. An altercation ensued that left Burpie and Fresh tied to chairs as Spots and Ogden made their getaway.

Burpie and Fresh eventually freed themselves from the ropes but Fresh desperately wanted to reclaim her abandoned baby from the police. A chase ensued across the building rooftops as Fresh tried to get away from her controlling mother. Finally, Fresh kicked Burpie off of a tall building ledge, sending her falling 25 stories to her death (November 30th, 1960).

Fresh was held on a charge of manslaughter, but she was later freed when the Grand Jury voted a No Bill.


  • Burpie's speech was often portrayed with an upper-class dialect, which most often manifested by the word "mother" being represented as "mothaw".
  • After her death, it was revealed that Burpie had a twin sister named Soso who came seeking revenge.

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