Missing the first two issues of the new Muppet Show book here in town, I ordered the first one from the internet. It’s everything Jesse said and more. Roger Langridge continues to to demonstrate brilliance regarding the style of the Muppet Show. Anybody that’s going to make a running gag by paraphrasing Oscar Wilde is working on a whole other level of genius that we mere mortals can not touch.
The real gem in my package was Gumby’s Summer Fun Special.
For those that don’t know, I’ve been preaching the Gospel of Gumby since I discovered the Bob Burden series from a couple of years ago. It was consistently the weirdest, trippiest book on the market. Here are some high lights: Gumby is turned into a Golem and is forced to join a circus; He and Pokey eat too many crayons and go on a psychedelic journey inside of Gumby to purify is body of the poison; The ghost of Johnny Cash saves the day. Reading these books is as close to LSD use as I am likely to get. The good thing here though is that there are no bad trips or infusions of vitamin C. Did you ever find something that was so good that you couldn’t really explain how good it was? That’s how it is with Gumby. You can find the issues cheaply on-line.
So you’re probably asking yourself why pick up Gumby’s Summer Fun Special? Well, it’s written by Bob Burden so it’s got that same wildness (more even since it was written in 1987 and everything was weirder in the ’80’s). Surprisingly, it’s also drawn by, get this, Art Adams. It’s no hyperbole to say that this book has everything: a suicidal next door neighbor, strange whistles from many planets, a family of robots, aliens, a werewolf babysitter, astronaut bears, pumpkin eaters, pirates, an Avon lady, and Gumby. Hard as it may be to believe, this all makes sense within the story. The story doesn’t get you, the art will. Adams makes the prettiest looking Gumby comic allowed by law.
Don’t take my word for it, check it out yourself!
The stars align, a writer crafts the perfect combination of words, an artist and inker scrawl the exact designs of Heaven, and God Himself smiles upon The Dream Team…
After that haiku a few weeks ago, I’ve been thinking a lot about Detective Chimp. Okay…I’m always thinking a lot about good old D.C.. But lately I’ve been thinking about why he could hold his own in a Second Feature. So this edition of Dream Team is also a Dream Book.
There’s got to be a place for a drunken super intelligent chimpanzee who moonlights as a detective. My thinking is it could easily bump Rucka’s Question feature in Detective. The whining reluctant hero is so 1990’s (unless you’re Judd Winnick and refuse to read the memo). Morrison, Johns, and others have stirred a renaissance in crazy-ass silver age ideas: a neo-silver age. Detective Chimp could be the standard bearer. There’s the pitch; who’s going to be on my team?
Outside of Jeff Parker and Carmine Infantino, Matt Fraction is the only man who ever really captured the essence of being an anthropomorphic gorilla. If you’ve read Rex Mantooth, you know where of I speak. He’s got a certain wit and brutality that would be perfect for a gumshoe detective chimpanzee. If DC wanted, they could even tie him to his most recent appearances and make him a gumshoe detective chimpanzee OF THE SUPERNATURAL. At any rate I envision D.C. and Congorilla partnering up to solve all sorts of crimes as a modern day Holmes and Watson or Magnum P.I.. Think about it. This is something that needs to happen.
So Fraction is scribe on this book from on high, who draws? My first instinct is to say Carmine Infantino. Infantino is to monkeys and apes in comics what Kirkman is to zombies. Infantino single-handedly created the Simian sub-genre of comics, but his work gets sketchier and sketchier. I turn instead to that other genius in the mist: Art Adams. This cat can draw. And he’s got experience with gorillas. Monkeyman and O’Brien springs to mind so does his Vertigo mini for Angel and the Ape.
Hells bells, the more I think about it, the more I realize that DC should do an Ape-centric book. D.C. and Congorilla as the main feature and Angel and the Ape as the Second. Guests could be Beppo the Supermonkey, Titano, Gleek, Solivar, Grodd and the populace of Gorilla City. This book would sell. Alas, I have realized DC comics hates to make money. There could be no other reason that this book doesn’t already exist. Stop hating money DC. Make this book for me….I mean the masses…yeah…the masses.
p.s. Until an ape-centric book happens, we’ll just have to content ourselves with web pages like this bit of awesomeness.