Friday, February 10, 2012

Friz Freelance

Friday Comic Book Day.

I have seen a lot of Frank Frazetta's early comic book work, but never these stories. After researching them for a bit, I found that some of them have been shown here and there on a blog and I just saw that they are going to be reprinted in a book by my good friend Craig Yoe. You can get his 256 page thick book Frazetta: the Funny Stuff when it comes out in March or via this URL: Is it is as nicely presented as all of Craig's previous books, you can't go wrong. Apart from the stories I show here, there are two more I couldn't get my hands on. There are also some funny animal stories and I'll ask Craig to see if the two Kathy stories he did with Ralph Mayo are in the book as well.

I did find some of the earlier ones and added two, although there are more. These two are cedited to Art Gates with a question mark at the GCD, but I am not sure. While Gates may have originated the character in Thrilling (and I will go back to find out), others (such as George Tuska) worked on it as well. In fact, I see evidence of neither artist here and it looks like me there are two different ones. The second story, from Thrilling #65 is particulary well drawn. But nowhere in the class of Frazetta's work, of course.

The original page I have added, was sold at an auction as a rejected splash. I am not convinced it was. It would be too late in the run for Frazetta to change the tone of the strip and there is no room for the text block on the lower left. My guess is, this was a showpiece he did to get out of the 'funny' books.


Kirk said...

Strange amalgam of Al Capp and comic hack! Nifty stuff, with plenty of headlights to keep the pages turning.

Alex Jay said...

You might be interested in my posts, at Tenth Letter of the Alphabet, about Frazetta, his art teachers and the Brooklyn Academy of Fine Arts.

Michele Falanga, Frank Frazetta's childhood art teacher

The Brooklyn Academy of Fine Arts

Brooklyn Academy of Fine Arts Students

85 Court Street

Hal Foster's influence on Frank Frazetta

Paul Grubman, Frank Frazetta's high school art teacher

Smurfswacker said...

Are you sure this isn't a rejected page as advertised?

My reasoning: (1) It used to have the pasted-on logo, which Frazetta probably wouldn't have bothered to attach if this were a sample page. (2) It was lettered professionally, as near as I can tell by the same person who lettered the printed version. Frazetta might have paid a letterer to letter a sample page, but more likely he'd leave the lettering out or do it himself. (3)In the splash panel Looie, the hero of the strip, is drawn from behind so you can't see his face. I can see an editor asking for a re-draw on these grounds.(4) The realistic style Frazetta used on the original isn't that far removed from that of the printed comic.

Of course I could be wrong. If the first panel were the problem, why wouldn't Frazetta simply have redrawn that one panel? Why did he change the staging of the other two panels as well? Interesting questions.

Smurfswacker said...

By the way, I just noticed that Looie has been courtin' an' sparkin' Clarabelle since she was 12 years old! Around here that would get Looie an ankle bracelet and a spot on the Sex Offenders Registry.

Salem said...

THis is really cool was this his first comics, you can see he didn't draw everything perfectly yet.

Salem said...

THis is really cool was this his first comics, you can see he didn't draw everything perfectly yet.