Pencil Mania, Piano Tooners, Boulevard of Broken Dreams

by John Holbo on May 28, 2006

Following up last night’s post, I’ve constructed two more little Tom and Jerry appreciation sites – for “Pencil Mania”; for “Piano Tooners” [fixed!] You can also download the cartoons themselves here and here. I’ve incorporated my expert commentary into the sites themselves. Are you like me? Do you find these things just weirdly beguiling?

That reminds me. One of the finest graphic novels you’ve (maybe) never heard of is Kim Deitch, The Boulevard of Broken Dreams – and it’s for sale cheap, in hardback [amazon]. Now that Green Day went and sang that song, the poor book will never show up in google searches anymore, I guess. Pantheon doesn’t even have all that much about it on their site. But I’ll tell you a secret. I linked to this page of stills – and this charming little animation – long ago, and the links are still good! (Probably there’s some way to get there the normal way, but I’m not seeing it.)

Here’s a short bio piece on Deitch, who really deserves to be as well known as Spiegelman and Crumb.



Patrick S. O'Donnell 05.29.06 at 6:35 pm

Thanks for some delightful stuff!


John Holbo 05.29.06 at 8:00 pm

Whew! One comment! (Thanks.) I was in trouble there for a while.


Steve 05.29.06 at 8:30 pm

Boulevard of Broken Dreams really is great — the best of the non-Maus serials in RAW, I think.


ben wolfson 05.30.06 at 12:32 am

The Pencil Mania cartoon is great.


Mr. Waggish 05.30.06 at 4:36 pm

I’m overjoyed to see a shout-out for Deitch. I think he is *the* narrative genius of the 60s comics underground, and I’ve been working on a long piece on his twisty complexity for years. (Especially in the uncollected “Search for Smiling Ed,” he achieves Potocki-esque levels of storytelling upon storytelling.)

Deitch I think hasn’t been as praised because his artwork isn’t as sophisticated as many of the other undergrounders, but his following (including Spiegelman, Crumb, and the Fantagraphics folks) is loyal and obsessive. As statements on artistic creativity and consumption, his work is unmatched in comics, I think.

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