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The Smithsonian Collection of Newspaper Comics Hardcover – June, 1977
All Books, All the Time
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From the dust jacket: "The American newspaper comic strip (like jazz and the movies) is a major innovative and creative cultural accomplishment of The United States, one that has spread around the world....Included in this Smithsonian Collection are some of the most accomplished and critically notable strips from the Yellow Kid of 1896 - the first to attain definitive form - to contemporary works such as Peanuts, B.C. and Doonesbury....Most of the works chosen for this volume have intrinsic excellence and were popular with the readers of their time. They are also fun to read - and are meant to be enjoyed."
Top customer reviews
The book is broken down by period going back to the first comic strips and working their way up to the early 70's. There's some text where the authors write to explain the different styles or comment on various strips but the real gem here are all of the comic strip samples in this book. Some strips (like Mickey Mouse) get many pages as they tell a whole story. Others don't get but a single sample strip, especially strips after the 1950's.
I love this book and will break it out from time-to-time just to read all of the classic strips like "Yellow Kid", "Buster Brown", "Katzenjammer Kids", "Mutt and Jeff", "Little Nemo in Slumberland", "Thimble Theater", "Mickey Mouse", "Krazy Kat", and many, many more.
It's a shame this book hasn't been re-published with new sections to include modern classics but oh well. If you can find it, it's well worth having!
Comic strips of the golden age where very different from the tiny, three panel strips we have today. Huge, multi-page full-color adventures were the norm. "Little Nemo in Slumberland" is a burst of eye-candy. Windsor McCay had imagination and talent. "Thimble Theater Staring Popeye" was another favorite of mine. E.C. Segar's Sailor is very different, and much improved, from the spinach-eather we have now.
Other great strips in here are "The Yellow Kid," "Gasoline Alley," "Barney Google," "Moon Mullins," "Buster Brown" and the list goes on. This book is a treasure.