Li’l Abner Dailies (1988) #1-27 by Al Capp
I know all the readers (I’m sure there’s several? Right?) of this blog is going: “Hang on. That’s not a picture of 27 Li’l Abner collections in that picture up there?”
For the previous blog posts in this series that have dealt with Kitchen Sink’s huge reprint projects (The Spirit, Steve Canyon, etc), I do have the comics in question, but I didn’t bother to actually read them, because it would have taken months. Well, for Li’l Abner I didn’t bother to buy the books, either, because I’m never going to read them — I’m just not a fan of Al Capp.
But let’s look at the one volume I happen to have, #8.
The book starts off with two essays that both wonder why Li’l Abner shied away from dealing with WWII subject matter.
The book starts, oddly enough, with a 1941-12-09 strip. I wondered whether that was because Kitchen didn’t want to start in the middle of a serial… but that’s just what they do. So… they just have a certain page number target, and fill a volume with strips until they’re out of pages, perhaps?
This format for reprinting comic strips isn’t unusual, but I’ve always found it to be odd. I mean, one quarter of each page is basically dead space (i.e., the logo). If that bit hadn’t been there, then the book might be been uncomfortably short and unstable, so there’s probably a practical reason for it, but…
I love George Herriman’s comics, and his play with dialects, but I’ve somehow found Capp’s treatment of the same to be tedious and annoying.
But his artwork’s nice, I guess, and some of the gags work.
I’m still not reading these books.
This is the one hundred and third post in the Entire Kitchen Sink blog series.