Thursday, June 17, 2010

Heil Parker

Thursday Story Strip Day.

I have been having some trouble with my new computer. Whenever I try to upload stuff to Blogger it freezes, no matter what the size of the file. I had accidentally stepped on my old laptop and cracked the screen and bought a new version. I uploaded the content from my Apple Timemachine and am essentially working on the same system, same computer, same basic data as the old one, except that the housing is a bit bigger now. Still, something must be wrong, since I still can't fix the problem.

As I still have my old cracked comuter here as well (although it will be going in repair to be used by my wife), I downloaded all files I needed for today and tomorrow, so I can at least upload from there (here). I will try and fix the new computer this weekend and hope to be back with more goodies soon.

So, for today I have a good one. Everyone who liked the posts about obscure and semi-obscure strips by former Milt Caniff assistants and imitators working in his style, like Ray Bailey, Alex Kotzky ("Duke" Handy) and George Tuska, will be surprised by this one.

I have always liked Dan Heilman's Judge Parker. I have never scanned any of them for you, because I have so many of them and the tast seemed daunting. Also, I did not have my comics in order and didn't know if I could ever find a run complete enough to not only show you the art, but also give you an opportunity to read a complete story. Heilman drew Parker in a vaguely Caniff-inspired style, which I like a lot. Maybe not as flashy as the real thing, but still pretty nice. Heilman's later assistant LeDoux has recently stated in an interview in Alter Ego Heilman was a real bastard and let him do all the work from pretty early on. I have my doubts about that. Heilman did a good job when LeDoux wasn't there yet and when LeDoux took over the strip, it changed style quite dramaticly... and not for the best in my opinion. In fact, it is the stiffness of LeDoux' style in the later years that has made me so surprised at the quality of the early years.

Anyway, this is not a preamble to me showing you some Judge Parker. I may still do that, but here is a strip Heilman did before he started Judge Parker. The american Adventure was a historical strip (not the only one of it's kind, but probably the first) in which a uncle Sam type character told two kids stories about famous figures from America's past. The first story is about Captain John Smith (and Pocohontas) and takes 12 weeks. I have decided to cut the story in half, although that does mean you will only get one of the many Sundays I have of this series (and which prompted me to find the accompanying dailies from NewspaperArchive).

To start it all off, here are the cover of a book Heilman did in the early sixties (just before retiring from the Judge) and a bio from the same book. And indeed, he doesn not mention LeDoux.

Strip missing.



Dan Thompson said...

The best part about these types of postings you do,Ger, is the gorgeous Sunday pages these cartoonists used to create. We can only wish newspaper publishers would wake up and give cartoonists more room to do these types of pages again. Well, at least we have these!


Ger Apeldoorn said...

Lucky for you I have many more, Dan. Next week the second half of this story with almost every Sunday page. After that I have Sundays until October (not every one but quite a few). I am a sucker for the old Caniff style, which is why I like your work as well. But I won't spill them all at once, since I have so much more stuff to get to in the same school. Lee Elias' Sunday only Beyond Mars, Alex Kotzky's "Duke" Handy, Spranger's Bodyguard and it's follow-up The Bantam Prince, the early version of The Saint, Doug Wildey's later Saint, Judge Parker, Dan Spiegle's Hopalong Cassidy, Bill Dyer's Patsy, A.C. Hollingsworth's Scorchy Smith (and his almost unknown satrical work), the rest of Ray Bailey's Tom Corbett (including some new 1953 Sundays I got) and much much more. And I hope you are all buying Jett Scott, because it's beautiful.

Dan Thompson said...

I'm drooling, Ger! Can't wait! HUGE FAN of your site...Keep up the great blog!!! I think seeing the actual color pages from the Sunday papers is the best part of seeing these great works.

George Freeman said...

I notice that your colour scans are reproduced at an adequate size (at least 1000 pixels wide). But your b&w dailies all seem to be bitmapped and 700 pixels. Is all your source material that small?

A lot of it is hard to find, so I guess we take it and like it. But I wish it all could be as nice looking as the Sundays.

Stereotopffer said...

Wow, i really dig the work of this guy, as well as of much of the authors you show here... i've been following you for some months now, and just wanted to thank you for share these treasures!