Dennis O’Neil & Curt Swan — DC Comics Classic Library: Superman — Kryptonite Nevermore (DC Comics) :: In 1971, definitive Supes artist Swan and definitive Green Lantern writer O’Neil teamed up to clean up a cluttered iconography by finally putting the kibosh on a multicolored crutch called Kryptonite. It’s an exciting read that features Clark Kent during his TV reporter phase — a gig he didn’t dig, which only goes to show that even Superman once had a day job that really sucked.
FemBots — Calling Out (Weewerk) :: If Trent Reznor has formed the Velvet Underground, their first unbalanced album would’ve sounded just like this.
Harvey Kurtzman, Will Elder, Jack Davis, Al Jaffee and Arnold Roth — Humbug (Fantagraphics Books) :: After they defined satire for Bill Gaines’ MAD but before they refined it for Hugh Hefner’s Little Annie Fanny, unparallel parodists Kurtzman and Elder ran rampant for themselves when they published these 11 exceptional issues of comic art anarchy. This two-volume hardcover box set has been reproduced from the original art and digitally restored to make everything look even better than when it first came out in 1957. This long-overdue definitive edition of Humbug is an essential slice of satire from the masters of the genre.
Mother Mother — O My (Last Gang) :: And if Lou Reed had formed Blondie, their first unbalanced album would’ve sounded just like this.
Ross Andru and Mike Esposito — Get Lost! (Hermes Press) :: Andru and Esposito were no Kurtzman and Elder, but they sure gave it their best shot with this short-lived comic book from 1953 that provided some direct competition to MAD — so direct, in fact, that Bill Gaines tried to sue them out of existence. He lost, but by that time the damage had been done. Now see for yourself what got Gaines’ goat in this gorgeously restored paperback that collects all three issues.
SATIRICAL PLATTER OF THE WEEK: Stan Freeberg — "St. George and the Dragonet" (Capitol) :: Three million copies sold in three weeks in 1953? Hoo-hah, that’s one sizzling single!
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