Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

January 1, 2014

100 Comics Positives For 2013: Fantagraphics' Edition Of The Complete Barnaby Began Publication


Crockett Johnson's Barnaby had been reprinted before: in hardcover books close to the time of its initial publication, in paperbacks in the 1980s, as a re-run strip bereft of topical World War 2 references, in the Smithsonian book. But there's never been a full run of the feature using today's modern standards for archival reprints. For years it was a dream project; I remember talking about one proposal made almost 20 years ago that was turned down. Barnaby was my father's favorite strip, and he clipped them for over a year with the help of an aunt who lived in one of the feature's markets. He loved its sense of humor, this kind of measured yet off-kilter presentation of its wry but sympathetic worldview, beats and rhythms that don't exist in any other comic, a lengthy story told as if to family after a long and satisfying meal. It's good to have it restored to us.
posted 10:05 am PST | Permalink

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