Sunday, June 05, 2005

Is Diss A System?

While I remember it, and this seems as appropriate a way as any to christen this Ship of Fool, the Comics Journal Winter Special 2005 has a nice piece by comics historian Bill Blackbeard on Milt Gross, creator of Nize Baby, Count Screwloose of Tooloose and many others. Though largely unsung today, Milt was one of the greats of the medium, with a penchant for unrestricted slapstick and madly exaggerated nonsense. As Philip K. Dick once observed about Christ, "There should be more like him."

While we're on the subject, I finally acquired a Walt Kelly autograph a few weeks ago. It's in a copy of Pogo's Sunday Punch and inscribed "From an old goat..." with a sketch of Albert Alligator. This leaves one name on my autograph wishlist: Laurence Sterne. But we may have to curb that desire until the proverbial ship comes in. In fact, the way the Screwloosemobile has been acting up, I may switch to a boat any day now.

Shouldn't leave this topic without a mention of the latest issue of The Comics Journal, which reprints a nice hunk of Kelly's work on Our Gang Comics. It's always strange to see him drawing humans...


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