Sunday, November 08, 2009




Have just finished reading volume 3 of Thimble Theatre featuring Popeye the Sailor, some of the most amazing and original comics ever. Extremely well drawn and written by Segar I highly recommend these as a prime example of newspaper comics. Funny and full of genuine pathos these stories will take off into unexpected directions. The animated version did the strip justice which is also rare. There are some really creepy scenes with the Sea-Hag and the fight with Bluto is nuts!

32 comments:

JoJo said...

The Sea Hag's intro is really creepy. There's something about that hatching technique and all that black negative space that really gives of a disturbing vibe.

Shawn Dickinson said...

Yes! I love these Popeye books, it's my favorite comic strip. I've been waiting anxiously for Vol. 4 to come out.

I agree with JoJo, that introduction to the Sea Hag is pretty creepy. There are some great moods in this comic.

Jim Smith said...

Thanks Jo-Jo and Shawn.
It gets under the skin, scary and funny. I love the first appearance of Popeye - he looks really funny.

RooniMan said...

Great use of cross-hatching on the Sea-Hag page and DAMN! Bluto can sure take a beating!

Weirdo said...

I need to buy the first volume of the Popeye reprints. I have volumes two and three. I need to get through them, but I want to start with volume one.

I'm very glad that Fantagraphics and IDW are reprinting the classic comic strips and books. I have the first five volumes of IDW's reprinting of the complete Dick Tracy and I want the first volume of Prince Valiant from Fantagraphics.

Jim Smith said...

Don't get me started on Hal Foster that man is God! But Segar invented so much.

Ollie said...

I'm reading the second volume. I like how they're detectives now. Haha!

I wonder when the fourth volume of the cartoons will be released.

Bruce said...

I have three of the four of Mac Raboy's Flash Gordon books, that were published by Dark Horse Comics. Those books are a gold mine to look through, and it shows that Raboy was heavily influenced by his idol, Alex Raymond.

And I agree, Jim, those Popeye books are stellar. I can't wait for Volume 4.

From an aspiring animator/ cartoonist

Jim Smith said...

Alex Raymond was genius with a brush!
I just put in an order for volume 3 of the Popeye cartoons. Is vol 4 of the comic out yet?

Weirdo said...

Popeye Vol.4 is already out on Amazon. You can order it from there.

Thad said...

Dang, I really need to get those Popeye books!

Are you familiar with the Floyd Gottfredson Mickey Mouse daily serials from the 30s? He makes all the Disney animators look like pikers.

Weirdo said...

"Are you familiar with the Floyd Gottfredson Mickey Mouse daily serials from the 30s? He makes all the Disney animators look like pikers"

I've seen you post a few on your blog, but I've never really read them. Isn't Disney going to be releasing those at some point in the near future?

Jim Smith said...

Thanks I'll get vol 4 immediately.
I am more familiar with Carl Barks' comic work, though what I remember Floyd was amazing. The Barks painted covers make me wet.

Ollie said...

Hey Jim, do you have any other books to reccomend? Maybe give us a top 5 or something.

I'm reading the Peanuts collections and anything by Mike Mignola. Guy Davis, who draws Mike's B.P.R.D. book is amazing, he can draw anything! And he draws the best monsters ever.

There's also an Al Williamson Flash Gordon book that I've got but I haven't read it yet. It's called A lifelong Vision of the Heroic and it collects all of his Flash Gordon work.

All good stuff.

Davi Calil said...

uau,

that is very cool.

thanks for sharing.

Jim Smith said...

Boy do I Ollie! For true newspaper comics check out Wee Willie Winkie by Lionel Feininger, Gasoline Alley, (sorry, I forgot the artist name), Washtubbs by Roy Crane, and anything by Frank Robbins. He did a strip in the 50s about the Air Force but the name escapes me, (Senility). Also Anything by Milt Caniff and do you know about Frazetta's work on Lil' Abner? Frazetta also worked on Little Annie Fannie for Playboy in the 60s. Hope I didn't overload you.

JoJo said...

Feininger is great! He has a really interesting style. Did you know he was a fine artist too?

I wonder what his stuff would like if it were animated?

jonjonson said...

Jim, this is off-topic, but what happened with Laff Riot?

Weirdo said...

Jim, Gasoline Alley was done by Frank King, who originated the strip, then followed by Bill Perry, Dick Moores, and now Jim Scancarelli.

Was the Frank Robbins strip you mentioned named Johnny Hazard?

I would recommend Dick Tracy by Chester Gould as a great comic strip to read. I love his ghoulish villains. Also, you can't go wrong with Walt Kelly's Pogo or Al Capp's Li'l Abner. Plus, I've heard Gus Arriola's Gordo is a good read too. You might want to check those out too.

Stephen Worth said...

I got the full size reprint of Gasoline Alley Sundays- Big enough to bury an ox under. Great stuff.

Jim Smith said...

Lionel was more of a painter and illustrator but his comics were out of this f'n world. If I could some of that in my animated cartoon it would help.

Jim Smith said...

Jon I think they are refiggerin' their stragedy, or so I hear. Too many people laid off for lack of planning.

Jim Smith said...

Johnny Hazard! that's what I was thinking about. A lot of people worship Walt Kelly and with good reason. He ain't bad atall.

Jim Smith said...

Steve we tried to bury a yak with it when you weren't looking.

Jim Smith said...

yeah Al Williamson rules too. I love the Ben day zip-a-tone effect. Wally Wood was a Master at that too. Genius! Roy Crane on Wash Tubbs and Capt, Easy may be the all-time master for zip-a-tone use.

Ollie said...

Cool, thanks Jim. I'm not overloaded. Haha! I'll try and check all those out.

Weirdo said...

Hey Jim, I have a question to ask you. I've heard you and John talk about "genuine pathos" and "fake pathos". What do you mean by that? HOw do you differentiate between the two?

Jim Smith said...

Weirdo I'm glad you ask that. Let me think on it, but it's the strongest force in show business.

Weirdo said...

"Weirdo I'm glad you ask that. Let me think on it, but it's the strongest force in show business."

I'd like to see you or John K. do a post about this. It would be very informative.

Jim Smith said...

Pathos - to me - is the emotional content, not just sadness or sentiment, but honest emotion as apposed to contrived. You kind of know when you see it or feel it. The Popeye comics are full of real emotion in my opinion. When Popeye gives all his money to an orphanage because he was also an orphan brings a lump to my throat, similar to the end of It's A Wonderful Life. Never fails to get me when Jimmy Stewart says Zuzu's petals! There, I just got the lump again thinking about it. I hope this explains my point. Good topic Weirdo.

Weirdo said...

Thanks for the info Jim. I'm actually working on a post about pathos now.

Weirdo said...

I just posted my post on pathos. Would you mind checking it out?