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Friday May 1, 2009 9:36 pm

WEEKEND READING: Green Lama, MAD Magazine, Dollhouse, and Blazing Combat!

Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Reviews,

Lots of great stuff this week on the internets. Here’s a few things to occupy you ‘til Monday.

THE GREEN LAMA: The Green Lama was created as a Shadow imitator in a story for a 1940 pulp magazine called Double Detective. It was written by Kendell Foster Crossen. The character made the leap to comics later that year in Prize Comics #7, then jumped to his own title in 1944, still written by Crossen. One of my favorite blogs, Killer Covers Of The Week, has a terrific overview of Crossen’s work and his pseudonyms, and his career as a detective novelist who also wrote for the TV series’ 77 Sunset Strip and Perry Mason. Now that GL is in the public domain, he’s currently appearing in Project Superpowers, from Dynamite Entertainment, courtesy of Jim Krueger and Alex Ross.

MAD MAGAZINE: Senior Editor of MAD, Joe Raiola, recently made a stop at the Everett Public Library (Washington) to talk about “The Joy Of Censorship.” HeraldNet – the online news service for Snohomish County has the details.

TOM RICHMOND I: One of the great caricaturists of the modern era operates The Mad Blog – because he also draws for MAD Magazine - and this week he has two great posts. The first is his Sketch O’ The Week which features John Belushi lookalike who’s (allegedly) never been kissed: Susan Boyle of “Britain’s Got Talent.”

TOM RICHMOND II: Years ago, my girlfriend at the time and I were in Paris and we found a guy doing caricatures at a makeshift booth on the street. His samples looked terrific, but the finished piece looked more like me than her. Still, we coughed up the Euros and went on our unhappy way. Apparently, there’s a lot of bait-and-switch in the world of street caricaturing and Tom Richmond has another great post that explains the ruthless, cutthroat behind-the-scenes drama. Specifically, street-and-mall caricaturists often use his work and misrepresent it as their own to lure in the tourist trade. Says Tom, “I’ve seen my work on other people’s displays in Phoenix, San Diego, New Orleans and even right here in Minnesota. I’ve also had reports of my work being used thusly in Rome, Greece and London.” I had no idea this kind of thing was going on, and I’m sorry that talented cartoonists have this happen to their work. Kudos to Tom for pointing it out – he’s got more detail and photo evidence at his blog.

JOHNNY WEST: Forces of Geek is one of my favorite geek-based websites and it never disappoints. My favorite post this week isn’t comics-based, but it’s about a cowboy action figure produced by Louis Marx circa 1964-up: Johnny West. There’s a company that’s producing new accessories and Gavin Hignight has both the interview and some cool fun facts about Johnny West, Jane West, Geronimo, Sam Cobra and more.

BATMAN: I would totally buy a Batman comic that looked like this (y’know, once he stops being dead and all).

LE SPIDER-MAN: The Amazing one, as interpreted by Raphael B. A great use of the internets. This has been linked to a million times already, but I still love it. Possibly Not-Safe-For-Work.
(h/t Rich Johnston at Lying In The Gutters)

JOSS WHEDON: Some of you might like his series Dollhouse, and others, not so much, but this guy has a very interesting take on the show.


JAMES REASONER: He’s an award-winning Western author, who writes under his own name (as well as several others). He’s also a comic book fan and he occasionally posts reviews on his blog. One of his latest is Batman: The Man Who Laughs.

BOOKGASM: Over at Bookgasm, Rod Lott posts at least one comic book review a week. One of his latest is on the Fantagraphics collection of Blazing Combat that features stories written by Archie Goodwin and illustrated by guys like John Severin, Alex Toth, Wally Wood and others.

That’s it for this weekend! See you soon and happy reading!

(Art: Cover to Green Lama #2 by Captain Marvel, Jr. artist Mac Raboy)



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