Friday, January 18, 2013

Galacton 2230, Part 4

(Continued from Part 3)

What started out as a one-panel joke cartoon, and then became a 2-page joke, eventually became a full 30-page comic-book story.  And somehow, I actually managed to find a printer, have 1,000 copies run off, and published the thing. Although intended as a fanzine, I wound up looking into the actual "Direct Market" distribution system, and, incredibly, sold 700 copies to Capital Comics.  They told me I probably could have sold a lot more, if I'd solicited it before I'd printed it.  Oh well!  It was a small miracle, with all I was fighting against at home, that the thing got out there at all.

Anyway, that wasn't the end of it.  Before I ever had the book printed, I'd already started working on a follow-up story.  Inspired by the soap-opera format of both the Paul Levitz-Keith Giffen LEGION OF SUPER-HEROES and the recent cop show, HILL STREET BLUES, I began fashioning a story whose complexity put the first one to shame.  Which may have been a mistake.  The 1st story wound up being 30 VERY-densely-plotted pages.  The follow-up, I felt sure, would take 3 times as long to tell.  The legalities of continuing a "parody" book beyond a single issue aside, the project took SO long to do (working in my spare time in between a full-time drafting job amd my various fannish collecting obsessions-- comics, books, magazines, music, and more TV shows than I'd watched since the late 60's), that I felt completely burned out on it by the end of the 2nd issue.  Yes, tragically, the 2nd story was NEVER finished.  But that's not stopping me from cleaning up the pages, and posting the previously-unpublished book here, in its entirety!

I'll begin by posting the cover, which was actually the very LAST page of art done for this book.  I pencilled it sometime in 1984.  If memory serves, I didn't get around to inking it until sometime in the 1990's, when I wound up inking a LOT of pencilled pages that had been sitting around for some time.  I'm not sure what my original intention was for the background (if any), but I eventually wound up doing the background in 3D.

And now, the FINISHED version.  Ain't this cool?
I think this qualifies as a "Good Girl Art" cover.

Episode XIV
Things start out way too complicated here, and get more so as it goes! In the first 4 pages alone, I introduce Dan Ayckroyd, Eric Bloom, Donald Roeser, Alan Alda, Mike Farrell, Treat Williams, Susannah York, Marlon Brando (filling in for the conspicuously-missing Edward Mulhare-- yes, my mind WAS being too devious even for my own good here), and Jim Henson (no kidding!).  Oh yeah, and a cat named "Heathcliff".  But the main character this time out is based on an old friend of mine named John Huber, who, as you'll see, was one very "outrageous" person in real life, and so required very little exageration here.

Sadly, John (known as "Kohn" in this story) passed away a couple years ago, from multiple strokes, even as my other best friend from back then, Jim O'Donnell (seen in the jail cell in this episode) also passed away at age 40 from his 3rd heart attack.  Among other things, I see this entire comic as a tribute to John's memory, as well as to so many TV shows and movies I loved back in the early 80's and earlier.
Episode XV
It made perfect sense (at least to me) to add Wayne Rogers and Lynn Redgrave to the "medical" side of the cast here. In addition, there's Steve Martin, Larry Fine, Moe & Curly Howard, George Murdock (whose likeness proved amazingly easy to capture on paper), Loretta Swit, and John Candy.  The "little kid and the dog" return this episode.  I mention them because you cannot imagine how much FUN it was writing them in this story, considering how many fans of the show tended to hate both of them on it.

(Continued in Part 5)

Story & Art (C) HENRY KUJAWA
All prominent characters are Trademarks of HENRY KUJAWA

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