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

December 10, 2012

Not Comics: Tim Durham Gets 50 Years In Prison

It's a more lurid read than it is a necessary one, but I used the occasion of this article about a former National Lampoon brand owner (or however that should be phrased) being sentenced for other Ponzi scheme-like stylings to refresh my memory on the status of that oddly resilient brand name in American satire. I always thought that this was a case where a magazine would actually serve what they wanted to do with the name, by creating a context where writers could publish high-profile, high-concept personal essays that could be turned into movie franchises the way that the Animal House and Vacation franchises were developed. I mean, there a bunch of funny young writers with an interest in politics -- I would have to think one of them would have a funny, bawdy campaign-trail story to tell in 14,000 words or so. Then again, I'm sure everything they've done with it has whipped up far more money than my backseat publishing dreams would.

With the graying of the underground generation more than having arrived, we may soon turn our attention to National Lampoon's comics legacy as a way of remembering yet another of our great cartooning traditions, and I think I'll enjoy the renewed attention there quite a bit.
posted 5:20 pm PST | Permalink

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