Religious leader - the old cartoon character (6)
I believe the answer is:
'cartoon character' is the definition.
(I've seen this before)
'religious leader the old' is the wordplay.
'religious leader' becomes 'pope'.
'the old' becomes 'ye'.
(Other definitions for popeye that I've seen before include "Spinach-eating sailor" , "Spinach and Olive Oyl lover" , "Old cartoon sailor" , "Cartoon sailor (showing amazement?)" , "Bluto's rival" .)