Pin-Up Art of Dan DeCarlo
 
 
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Pin-Up Art of Dan DeCarlo [Paperback]

Dan DeCarlo , Alex Chun , Bill Morrison , Jacob Covey
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

For more than 40 years, DeCarlo, who died in 2001, was the principal artist at Archie Comics, not only working on the company's title character and his friends but also co-creating Josie and the Pussycats and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch. Within the innocent context of these comics for juveniles, DeCarlo's Betty, Veronica and other heroines had a surprising degree of sex appeal, and they influenced the work of younger cartoonists from the Batman cartoon's Bruce Timm to Jaime Hernandez of Love and Rockets fame. In the 1950s, though, DeCarlo drew gag cartoons for the Humorama line of men's magazines, and editor Chun and designer Covey have assembled nearly 200 of these pieces into this collection. DeCarlo's cheery caricatures seem out of place in the blatantly risqué world of dirty pictures, unable to match the erotic appeal of more illustrative pin-up artists. In his introduction, Bill Morrison (The Simpsons) claims these DeCarlo cartoons reveal the sexual underside of the repressed 1950s. Actually, they depict a dated, anti-feminist world where young, buxom women make themselves available to men who often look less attractive, much older and smug. Intended in their day to be adult and sophisticated, these cartoons now look pathetically adolescent. Moreover, the gags are consistently unfunny. This book produces not titillation so much as tedium. (Mar.)
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Review

“Though best known for his signature visual influence on Archie Comics, pioneering artist Dan DeCarlo also drew bawdy pinup cartoons for 1950s magazines. The Pin-Up Art of Dan DeCarlo showcases his unique style in a far less innocent way, giving us a glimpse of what Betty and Veronica may have been up to after graduation.” (Playboy)

“The vavoom-figure drawings retain the doe-eyed innocence of Betty and Veronica, which makes gags about strippers and heavy petting sort of thrilling, in an illicit way.” (The Onion A.V. Club)

“The cover sums it up—a man who looks disturbingly like Riverdale’s Mr. Lodge gazes lasciviously at a lingerie-clad young woman who looks disturbingly like a (very) bosomy Veronica. That is just so wrong... Breasts swell and sag with the weight of flesh, not silicone; thighs press firmly and meatily together, hips and butts strain against fabric, threatening plentiful wardrobe malfunctions. And the wardrobes!... The overall effect is—well, I can’t describe the overall effect. Let’s just say that in trying to take it all in I may have stretched my eyes permanently out of shape.” (Noah Berlatsky - The Hooded Utilitarian)

About the Author

Alex Chun is a longtime journalist living in Los Angeles. A former staff writer for the Los Angeles Daily Journal, he is currently a regular contributor to the Los Angeles Times where he covers pop-culture. He also edits a series of art books for Fantagraphics. In his spare time, he collects original cartoon pin-up art and maintains the website www.pinupcartoongallery.com. His books include The Pin-Up Art of Dan DeCarlo (two volumes), The Pin-Up Art of Bill Wenzel, The Pin-up Art of Bill Ward, The Glamor Girls of Don Flowers, The Glamour Girls of Bill Ward, Classic Pin-Up Art of Jack Cole, and The Pin-Up Art of Humorama.

Jacob Covey lives with his wife in Seattle, WA, where he works as Art Director at Fantagraphics Books.

Dan DeCarlo was born in 1919 and passed away in 2001.

Bill Morrison (born 1965) is an American comic book artist and writer, and co-founder of Bongo Comics (along with Matt Groening and Steve and Cindy Vance). He currently serves as creative director of Bongo Comics. His work includes the original comic book series Roswell, and Lady Robotika, co-created with Go-Go's founding member Jane Wiedlin.
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