|Cathy Malkasian's Drool Busters|
|Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Cathy Malkasian||12 Mar 2008 8:48 PM|
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This week's free preview is a downloadable 20-page excerpt from The Clouds Above, the all-ages classic from Jordan Crane which is being released in a new softcover edition this spring. These previews are exclusive to registered Fantagraphics.com users, so sign up and/or sign in to view. As a free bonus for everyone, the two images above, taken from the interior of the all-new cover flaps, are available for download as desktop wallpapers!
(As a reminder, 20/20 Club members receive these previews two weeks before we post them on the website... usually, except the past couple of weeks when we accidentally switched them around!)
We've put the entirety of Gary Groth's introduction to Explainers, the forthcoming collection of Jules Feiffer's Village Voice strips (due in June), here on the website for your reading pleasure. The feature includes a sideshow preview of 11 strips selected by Groth as standouts from the collection. Read it now!
I really enjoyed this CBR feature on Wilfred Santiago's forthcoming graphic novel, 21 (which is still many months away), a biography of baseball legend Roberto Clemente. I'm a big baseball nerd, and was already looking forward to this book, but after reading this feature I'm even more sold. Santiago's clear grasp of Clemente's place not only in baseball history but also the Civil Rights movement and Puerto Rican history is palpable, and is sure to make for an engaging, important read. And the images I've seen, including those in this piece, are dazzling.
The news of Dave Stevens' passing today was as sad as it was unexpected. It's difficult to appreciate today how special The Rocketeer was when it came out. I'm not going to pretend that it was a totally brilliant comic book or anything, but when it first came out during my formative years in the '80s, it really was something else. Its retro chic style was, paradoxically, ahead of its time, and there's little arguing that Stevens was one of the very best craftsmen of the post-Frazetta school of illustrators (see above). I haven't re-read any of The Rocketeer in close to 20 years, but I think I will have to dig them out tonight and rectify that.
For a warm remembrance of Mr. Stevens, read Mark Evanier's blog.
More "Shit from from my walls that will fit on my (very small) scanner"...
I bought this small Jimmy Swinnerton drawing on eBay over ten years ago when things like this were still cheap on eBay:
A sketch from the great Spanish cartoonist Santiago Sequeiros, obtained in a restaurant in Grenada, Spain several years ago:
Two panels I bought for my wife from the "Don Quixote" story in Ted Stearn's awesome Fuzz & Pluck collection. Ted drew this story as individual panels rather than whole pages:
A lovely little Kevin Scalzo color drawing:
You may or may not be aware that last week Fantagraphics co-sponsored a "bookwarming" party for Drew Friedman at NYC's exclusive Friars Club, on the occasion of the release of More Old Jewish Comedians from Fanta. I say you might not be because it was a private affair by invitation only, so it wasn't publicized in advance, although you may have seen some of the "postgame" coverage. Despite it being a private affair, by all accounts it was one of the most successful events the Club has ever thrown, with an estimated 400 people cramming into the Milton Berle Room and joining a cavalcade of comedy legends in honoring Drew, including Mickey Freeman, Freddie Roman, Jerry Stiller, Gilbert Gottfried, Jeffrey Ross, Joe Franklin, Larry Storch and others.
We should be getting a slew of pics that we'll upload soon into a Flickr set, but in the meantime, don't miss these great write-ups (with photos):
ABOVE PHOTO: (Left to right) Gilbert Gottfried, Jerry Stiller and Larry Storch, at the Friars Club. Photo by Brian Heater from our pals at The Daily Crosshatch.