2013 Eisner Award Nominee: Best Archival Collection/Project — Strips
“Crane’s work is sheer energy. It’s somewhere between Crane and E.C. Segar
that (Carl Barks’ beloved) Donald Duck got forged; the kind of ruddy-cheeked
adventurousness that underlies the content is certainly the same work that
moves Donald and his nephews through their stories.” —Art Spiegelman
The third volume in Fantagraphics’ ongoing reprint of Roy Crane’s legendary comedy-action series features what many consider the absolute peak of the
series: “Temple of the Swinks,” in which Wash and Easy discover an ancient
temple with statues of an unknown animal called a swink... a real-life specimen
of which shows up!
In other stories, Wash and Easy sail for Singapore aboard a dhow with a cargo
of wild animals, crash land a plane on an island inhabited by (inevitably) pirates
and (just as inevitably) beautiful women, and sail the South Seas in a schooner whose villainous captain plans to rob
them. When they return to America, Wash Tubbs’ pet swink draws huge crowds and a reputation for being worth a
million dollars. Then Wash and Easy travel to Peru to rescue an American lost in the jungle and, in the cover-featured
story, Easy goes deep sea diving in search of a beautiful girl’s lost diamond.
ERRATUM: Editor Rick Norwood: "I made a serious mistake in editing Captain Easy Volume 3: an older strip appeared where the July 3, 1938 strip should have been. I apologize for my error. The missing strip will appear in Captain Easy Volume 4, and can be viewed now [here]."
"Freed from the tiny
confines of the black-and-white daily strip, Crane brilliantly exploited the vastly larger canvas of the full
newspaper page, wildly varying the sizes, shapes, and arrangement of the panels. His distinctive drawing
style, an appealing blend of simplified realism and broad cartooniness, also set Easy apart. While not quite
as large as the original newspaper broadsheets, this volume’s oversize pages fully convey the strip’s
formidable visual impact."
– Gordon Flagg, Booklist
“Crane’s art is stunning, combining simple cartoony figures with richly
detailed backgrounds in clever, colorful layouts. It isn’t even necessary
to read the dialogue or captions to follow the action; just scan Crane’s
dynamic lines, which make every panel look like a unique work of
pop art. [Grade:] A-.” – The A.V. Club
"Though he was one of the genre’s pioneers, Roy Crane’s Captain Easy is arguably the most idiosyncratic of all the adventure strips. But it’s this blend of loud slapstick, young-boys-styled adventure and blatant sex appeal that make Captain Easy such a winning, fun strip to read." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6
"...[O]ne of comics' purest entertainments... Combining cartoony figure drawing and considerable humor with rousing adventure, Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune: The Complete Sunday Newspaper Strips, Vol. 1 exceeds even Steven Spielberg's Indiana Jones films in exuberant action and breathless pace." – Cliff Froehlich, St. Louis Post-Dipatch