Friday, January 2, 2015

Evidence to the contrary

One of the best Christmas presents ever, the third in fantagraphics' massive hardcover reprints of the greatest comic there ever was: Pogo, by Walt Kelly. This is not the first time that someone has tried to reprint Pogo, but it is by far the best. It was the best political satire available in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. Herblock was good, he was very good, but his single-panel cartoons were no match for the Okefenokee Swamp. Not only was the political wit incisive, the slapstick was just unbelievable, and even now, in what I believe to be the golden age of independent comics, no one does drawing better. So, by this book. Buy multiple copies and give some away. I need fantagraphics to persist until they have done every Pogo strip the newspapers. I think it lasted for 23 years, and so far they have done approximately the first four of them. So much goodness is still to come!

Walt Kelly was almost the only one with the courage to go up against Sen. Joe McCarthy. The wildcat Simple J Malarkey is an uncanny parody. It's all in this book.

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