Saturday, January 30, 2010
Sunday, October 13 1907 -- George visits the opera today, a performance of Tosca starring Madame Padovani. This was a huge event in L.A. meriting vast coverage in the Examiner's Sunday issue. The bottom cartoon was a printed at almost full page size in the Examiner's magazine section, accompanying an interview with the diva.
Note also that Herriman was referred to as 'George the Greek' in the headline accompanying the top cartoon. Unfortunately the article didn't make it into my photocopies so I don't know what else might have been said about Herriman therein.
Labels: Herriman's LA Examiner Cartoons
No, there's no limit, at least I've had as many as 15-20 posts queued up at a time, so if there is a limit it's pretty high.
The 'gotcha' that you probably ran into is that you MUST specify a posting date/time before you hit the PUBLISH button. If you publish before you date the entry there is no way that I've found for undoing it, short of deleting the post and starting over.
I've made this mistake plenty of times. It's easy to forget and just hit PUBLISH without thinking.
Keep up the hard work!
Friday, January 29, 2010
Obscurity of the Day: The Merry Marceline
For today's obscurity I pass the reins to our resident expert on all antiquated forms of entertainment, Cole Johnson ....
Marceline Orbes was an internationally famous clown, born in Saragossa, Spain, in 1875. He was a fixture at the famous London Hippodrome, where he once worked with a very young Charles Chaplin (Chaplin called him one of his major influences).
In 1905, the most elaborate entertainment venue in the world was constructed in New York, also named the Hippodrome. the building was capable of putting on incredible circus shows with gigantic rising stages, huge menageries, and water carnivals. One of the star attractions was Marceline, who was a smash hit. He stayed with the Hippodrome for nine seasons, but his popularity waned, supposedly because of the rise of slapstick comedy films, but also because he was losing his creative spark.
Marceline took his savings and decided to go into business, making bad investments in a restaurant and in real estate. Short on funds, he made a comeback attempt at the Hippodrome, but it was a humiliating failure. The audience greeted the former favorite's fillips with silence. Soon, the best he could do was be one of the myriad unbilled clowns at Ringling Brothers.
Chaplin saw him at this bleak point, and remarked at what a sad comedown it was for the once-great droll. (Typical of Charlie, he didn't help his "major influence" or give him a job, however.) After a while, Marceline couldn't find any work at all. He lived in a grimy dive, the Hotel Jefferson ( 226 W. 50th St.) in New York, where he "never had visitors, received mail, or telephone calls", according to the landlady. On Nov. 3, 1927, he pawned the last thing of value he had, a diamond ring, for $15.00. On Nov. 5, a maid found him kneeling at his bed, as if in prayer, surrounded by various portraits from his days as a star. Police were called in and they found two bullets, one in the wall, the other through his head. The old clown had apparently been shaking so hard that his first shot missed. The sounds of the gun shots had been ignored, just like the man who fired them. He still had $6.00 left.
On that sad note let's dispense quickly and solemnly with today's obscurity. The Merry Marceline, supposedly edited by the famed clown himself, was drawn by Foster M. Follett for the New York World. As you can see in the above samples the action is frenetic, and that lends credence to the credit because Follett, left to his own devices, generally went for a more low-key approach.
Marceline's comeback on the funny pages was very short-lived. It ran from April 1 to May 13 1906.
You must have dusted off some OLD OLD OLD books to find that one!
Thursday, January 28, 2010
Obscurity of the Day: Mischievous Willie
Frank H. Ladendorf spent at least a decade and a half cartooning for the New York World. He was there in 1895 at the dawn of the Sunday comics, and his last work was published at the start of the teens as the newspaper comics world began to settle down from its raucous early years.
Ladendorf's features were seldom memorable ; his Posey County was merely a second-rate copy of Outcault's material, and today's obscurity, Mischievous Willie, is yet another entry in that seemingly endless parade of prank-pulling kid features. However, Cole Johnson points out that Mischievous Willie does exhibit one rather interesting innovation -- it may well be the first comic strip series in which the star ages. As proof Cole submits these two samples -- the first from 1900, the second from 1903, in which Willie has progressed from infancy to knee-pants age.
Mischievous Willie first ran as a titled feature on May 7 1899 and ended on March 1 1903. Ken Barker's World index further notes that Ladendorf strips featuring a baby prankster of the same general description began in December 1898.
I am a collector of breweriana from Syracuse, NY and have a couple of pieces of advertising in my collection done by Mr. Ladendorf.
To see them visit my website:
Catagories: booklets and signs
Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Obscurity of the Day: Howard the Duck
If you were a nerdy teenage comic book collector with intellectual aspirations in 1976 (as I was) you no doubt remember Howard the Duck. Howard, a cigar-chomping duck from another dimension "trapped in a world he never made" was THE hot comic book of 1976. The duck's creator, Steve Gerber, wrote intelligent stories that reveled in turning super-hero comic book conventions on their ears.
I didn't catch on to the duck's saga until about issue #4, and I still recall saving up my paper route money for months to buy copies of the first three issues at the local comic book store. Issue #1 was scarce due to low distribution and went for a king's ransom (about $20 as I recall). Heck, I was so enamored of Howard that I even went to the movie. I think I was the only one in the theatre...
Speaking of low distribution, the Howard the Duck newspaper strip certainly fits that description. Although Howard was a cause celebre among comic book fans, you can imagine what newspaper editors thought when the salesman from Register & Tribune Syndicate showed them this supremely odd strip. You can be sure that any editor who actually took the strip did so only because they had teenage boys at home who threatened to make his life hell otherwise.
The newspaper strip version began on June 6 1977 at the height of Howard-mania. At first Steve Gerber and Gene Colan, the creative team on the comic book, handled the strip as well. Colan, however, dropped out after just five months, and his job was taken over by Val Mayerik, who was also occasionally spelling Colan on the comic book.
In 1978 Steve Gerber abruptly left both the comic book and comic strip due to creative control issues with Marvel Comics. Gerber was last credited on the strip in April, and Marv Wolfman took over the writing duties. Shortly before, Mayerik bailed out and was replaced by Alan Kupperberg on art. The strip soldiered on until October of that year before being replaced by a strip about a different Marvel property, The Incredible Hulk.
Here are specific creator dates on the series, most of which come from John Wells with a few edits by me. Undoubtedly, as with all Marvel newspaper strips, there's more to the creative story than is told by the official credits...
Steve Gerber / Gene Colan: 6/12/77 - 11/6/77
Steve Gerber / Val Mayerik: 11/13/77 - 3/26/78 *
Steve Gerber / Alan Kupperberg: 4/2/78 - 4/16/78 *
Marv Wolfman / Alan Kupperberg: 4/23/78 - 10/29/78
* art 1/29 - 4/16 unsigned, looks like Mayerik to 3/19, 3/26 - 4/9 may be by others (4/2/78 sample shown above)
Steve Gerber / Gene Colan: 6/6/77 - 10/8/77
Steve Gerber / Val Mayerik: 10/10/77 - 2/25/78
Steve Gerber / Alan Kupperberg: 2/27/78 - 4/22/78
Marv Wolfman / Alan Kupperberg: 4/24/78 - 10/28/78
Joe Brusky compiled the story info (some titles are his invention -- most stories were untitled in the actual strip), with additions and corrections from Mark Nems:
Pop Syke - The Consciousness of Success: 6/6/77 - 7/31/77 (daily/Sunday)
The Cult of Entropy: 8/1/77 - 10/2/77 (daily/Sunday)
Fred Feenix the Self-Made Man: 10/3/77 - 12/11/77 (daily/Sunday)
The Sleigh-Jacking: 12/12/77 - 1/1/78 (daily/Sunday)
In Search of the Good Life: 1/2/78 - 2/26/78 (daily/Sunday)
Sleep of the Just: 2/27/78 - 4/22/78 (daily/Sunday)
Close Encounters of the Fowl Kind: 4/23/78 - 6/13/78 (daily/Sunday)
The Tuesday Ruby: 6/14/78 - 9/2/78 (daily only)
The Clone Ranger: 9/4/78 - 9/30/78 (daily only)
Howard Heads Home (aka Bye Bye Beverly): 10/2/78 - 10/28/78 (daily only)
Mystery of the Maltese Human: 8/27/78 - 10/29/78 (Sundays)
When you are writing your post, look down at the bottom of that window. You'll see a thing called "Post Options". Click on that text and some extra prompts will pop onto the screen. You'll see where you can enter a date and time for the posting to appear on the blog.
Stan and Larry said they were still doing it in separate Alter Ego interviews. Granted those are both probably a few years old by now, and who knows if they're telling the truth, but I haven't heard any contrary rumors. Anyone have the inside scoop?
My understanding is that Stan Lee still writes it, with an assist from Roy Thomas for the past ten years.
Larry Leiber pencils the dailies with Alex Saviuk inking the dailies. Alex Saviuk pencils the Sundays and Joe Sinnott inks the Sundays. (Every couple of years lately Joe Sinnott, for one reason or another, has taken a break and Jim Amash has filled in as the Sunday inker).
To me, these credits seem a bit more accurate...
Then again, it is my site. :)
A public thanks to Joe Brusky, who helped Howard fans remember this great strip existed.
Monday, January 25, 2010
Newspaperarchive.com + Apologies
Topic the second: For those of you who have been waiting for email replies from me please accept my apologies for not answering lately. Been busier than Dagwood at a sandwich-eating contest with a bunch of projects and email has been floundering in the priority list. I'm hoping to catch up with correspondence this week, as next week promises to be even busier. Of course this has also hampered me in making daily posts, as well, so please bear with me.
I am using Firefox on an Apple computer, by the way. When I used Netscape, the pages used to open in my browser. Now they immediately get downloaded and I open them from my download manager in Adobe.
Related question: is there a way to pull copies from Googles newspaper search function. I was very pleased to find Willie Lumpkin Sunday pages, but found I couldn't copy them. Is it me?
Other than doing a screen capture, no, Google doesn't let you print. One of several annoying properties of their interface. Much worse IMHO is that there's no simple way to find out what they actually have in their archives -- gotta just search blindly.
Bhob @ Potrzebie
After a week of troubleshooting it is starting to look like the problem may be something to do with my ISP. Now how in the world would you expect me to figure that out without some outside input?
Sorry to have so offended you.
Bhob @ Potrzebie
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics
Two books by Jim Ivey are available at Lulu.com or direct from the author:
Graphic Shorthand: Jim Ivey teaches the fundamentals of cartooning in his own inimitable style. 128 pages, coil-bound. Lulu $19.95 plus shipping, direct $25 postpaid.
Cartoons I Liked,Jim Ivey's career retrospective; he picks his own favorite cartoons from a 40-year editorial cartooning career. Lulu $11.95, direct $20 postpaid.
Send your order to:
5840 Dahlia Dr. #7
Orlando FL 32807
When ordered direct, either book will include an original Ivey sketch.
Labels: Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics