Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Les Callan

Les Callan wrote, "These cartoons were first published under the caption "Monty and Johnny" in the Canadian Army newspaper "The Maple Leaf," Northwest Europe Edition, 1944-1945. They record events from D-Day to VE-Day."

Monty was, of course, Field Marshall Sir Bernard Montgomery, and Johnny was an average Canadian soldier fighting in the liberation armies of Europe.

After the war Monty and Johnny were collected in a paper-covered book called Normandy and On... From D-Day to Victory, -published by Longmans, Green and Co., Toronto with text and art by Lieut. Les Callan. The cartoons are as much history as fantasy, Callan was drawing the situations and the people along side him, fighting Canadians who battled their way through France, Belgium and Germany to victory. A modern reprinting of Normandy and On... would be nice to see.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Canuck Cartoonists at War

The Maple Leaf began as an initiative of Canadian Forces Brigadier Richard Malone. The paper supplied war news, sports, comic strips, cartoons, and pin-ups to the troops in the field. Wherever the Canadian troops were stationed, Italy, France, Belgium, Germany and the UK the Maple Leaf followed.

Ottowa, Ontario artist William “Bing” Coughlin’s Herbie was the most popular cartoon published by the Maple Leaf. Vancouver newspaper cartoonist Les Callan drew Montie and Johnny. Other Canadian cartoonists included Ted “The Moaner” Reeve, L. E. Weekes and Tom Luzny.

Toronto’s sporting legend Ted “The Moaner” Reeve was also known as “Old Lantern Jaw” and was active in every sport you could think of -- hockey, lacrosse, football, you name it, Ted done it.

L. E. Weekes is one cartoonist I haven’t been able to find any information on.

Tom Luzny was a Winnipeg artist. In 1954 Luzny was one of 9 Canadian artists whose paintings were on display at the Imperial Institute of London, England. The Winnipeg Free Press reported that his painting Trafalgar Square Coronation Eve “has aroused much comment.”

Popular strips from England and the US included Norman Pett’s Jane, Li'l Abner and Chic Young’s Blondie.

Meanwhile -- back on the home front, young Leo Bachle was supporting the war effort by keeping up the morale of the kiddies with such characters as Johnny Canuck and the Invisible Commando. This gaudy phallic illustration would look right at home in Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Canadian Science-Fiction Fanzines

Visions Vol. I No. 1, Fall 1976. Visions was published eight times yearly by Paranoid Publishing, Edmonton, Alberta. The publisher was Robert L. Thompson, editor David M. Vereschagin, and production was handled by Eugene W. Plawiuk. A serious fanzine devoted to science fiction which alternated with issues featuring comics. Artwork was contributed by John Byrne, David M. Vereschagin, Larry Hashman, and David R. Haugh.

Articles and poetry were provided by David M. Vereschagin, Eugene W. Plawiuk, David Schamber, Dae Cronan, Debra F. Sanders, Mike Mitchell, Mike Davidson, and Bob Thompson.

My own contribution was a cover and one interior illustration in Vol. I No. 3, March/April 1977 along with illustrations by John Byrne (spaceship below), David M. Vereschagin, David R. Haugh, Randy Mohr, and Barry Kent MacKay.

Writers were David M. Vereschagin, Eugene W. Plawiuk, Mike Mitchell, Rook Jones, H. A. Hargreaves, and Robert Anton Wilson. A letters column brought forth a comment from fanzine historian Harry Warner, Jr., of Hagerstown, Maryland, author of All Our Yesterdays (1969) and A Wealth of Fable (1976). Also heard from was Arthur C. Clarke.

Wilson Tucker wrote in 1969 of Harry Warner, Jr. that he "is an indefatigable writer of letters of comment, and the young fan editor who publishes two or three issues without receiving such a letter is apt to fold up his presses and steal away in shame." Harry Warner, Jr., a newspaper man, printed and published the first issue of his own long-running fanzine, Horizons, on October 1939.

David M. Vereschagin also published First Class no. 1 March 1977 in New Sarepta, Alberta. The Martian illustration immediately below appeared in one of the comic book issues of Visions.

The first fanzine published in Canada was Supermundane Stories, for fans of fantasy and the supernatural, published in the late thirties by Nils Helmer Frome (pen name Herkanos) and featuring work from H. P. Lovecraft, Rider Haggard and Clark Ashton Smith. From the same time period came Croutch Magazine Market News, from Larry Croutch of Parry Sound, Ontario. Title changed to Croutch News, then Light, in 1941.

William H. Gander of Transcona, Manitoba, inspired by American Ralph Cummings Dime Novel Round-Up, the 1925 British story paper fanzine Vanity Fair, and the Collector's Miscellany, long published in England by Joseph Parks, issued The Story Paper Collector Vol. I No. 1. For Jan/Mar, 1941 and it ran for 370 issues.

Rocket (1941) was issued by Fred Hurter with help from Beak Taylor. A fanzine had already appeared with that title and Rocket was changed to Censored. Mephisto, for weird fiction enthusiasts came out in fall of 1942 from Alan Child, and Eight Ball was printed up by Beak Taylor. By 1944 the only fanzine being published was Taylor’s Canadian Fandom published in Aurora, Ontario and survived until the late fifties under different editors.

By the fifties Norman G. Browne was publishing Vanations in Vancouver, B.C. and Georgina Clarke was issuing various fanzines from Calgary, Alberta.

Various Canadian science fiction fanzines in no particular order:

Novoid, Saskatoon : C. Hinz,1986

Dapapa, Edmonton : Dada Amateur Press Association. 19 issues last dated 1979

Under the Ozone Hole, Victoria 1992-1996, edited by John Wilson Herbert and Karl Johanson

I’m not boring you am I, Edmonton Editor: Robert Runte, 1983

torus /cthe Kamikaze Editorial Collective, Toronto : Kamikaze Editorial Collective, 1988

BCSFA newsletter Vancouver : BCSFA, 1973-Issued on behalf of BCSFA by Mike Bailey, 1973-1975

Xenium Vol. 1, no. 1 (1973) Toronto : Mike Glicksohn

Amor, Regina : Susan Glicksohn, 1973-1979. Editor: Susan Wood.

Winding numbers, Winnipeg : Editor Randy Reichardt, Vol. 1, no. 1 (fall 1975)

Simulacrum Ontario : Victoria Vayne, No. 1 June 1975 - no. 8 1978

Universe, Winnipeg : STYX, 1974-Editor: Joseph Krolik.

Schmagg, Winnipeg : BeFlatte Publications, No. 1 1977. Editor: Michael S. Hall.

Genre plat, Vancouver : Allyn Cadogan and Bill Gibson, no 1 Spring 1977

Rothnium magazine, Owen Sound, Ont. : Cygolian Press, 1977 Editor: David Hull.

Strange dystrophies, Islington, On. : Bill Brummer, c 1976

Orca, Toronto, Ontario Editor Jennifer K. Bankier, 1976

Dream vendor, Hamilton, Ont. Alan C. Sandercock No. 1 Sept 1976

Laid : the decadent Winnipeg newszine, Winnipeg, Editor: James A. Hall ("also known as Michael Hall") 1977

Calcium light nights, Editor, Phil Paine. 1975

Neology, Edmonton Science Fiction and Comic Arts Society, 1978-1992

The Monthly monthly (later Bimonthly monthly),Edmonton, Gang of Four, 1979-1980.

Typo, 1978, Willowdale, Ontario, Editor: Taral Wayne.

DNQ, Toronto 1978-1984. Editors: Victoria Vayne, Taral Wayne.

The Prydonian, Peterborough, Ontario, editor Dr. John Smith. No. 1 1979

Fewmets, Edmonton, 1980 Editors: Lorna Toolis, Marianne Nielsen.

Contact, Oshawa, Newsletter for the Doctor Who Information Network, No. 1 Sep./Oct. 1980

Carefully sedated, Toronto, Ontario : Alan Rosenthal & Catherine Crockett, 1983

Maple Leaf Rag, Victoria, B.C. , Stop Press, No. 1 (Nov. 1983)-no. 30 (June 1987).

New Canadian Fandom, Edmonton, Published by Beflatte Publications in Association with Negative Entropy Press, c1981-

Tales from Purgatory, Edmonton, R & R Creations, Editors: Randy Smallman and Ron Holmes, 1994, 13 issues

*Please help yourself to the Comments section with any corrections or additions.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Chartier Le Samedi Cover

Another great Albert Chartier cover for Le Samedi, 20 octobre 1956

Friday, September 5, 2008

J. R. Williams (1888-1957)

James R. Williams was born in Nova Scotia in 1888, left shortly after his birth, and grew up in Michigan and Ohio. He spent most of his life in the United States.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Doo Dad Sundays III

Unfortunately I don't have these Sundays dated and in order as they were on the original corrupted disc but some have dates. The very bottom piece is dated Sept, 14, 1924 and may actually be the first Sunday Doo Dads strip. I have been stitching these together from two scans for one Sunday and they don't always line up perfectly. The top piece is interesting for it's limited use of color. More tomorrow...

Monday, September 1, 2008

Doo Dad Sundays II

Top is dated February 15, 1925 but is dated 1924 in the corner. Below are two featuring the bagpipes.

Arch Dale's American Sundays 1924

Canadians owe a lot to Bill Blackbeard. A few years back Bill sent me b@w photocopies of Arch Dale's Doo Dads American Sunday strips. Bill had not seen the Canadian single-panel version and I had never laid eyes on an American Sunday which he had described as "Herrimanesque."

One day a large package arrived in the mail containing the complete run of original Sunday pages. I scanned them all and unfortunately while adding something to the cd the whole thing was wiped clean by a computer glitch. I had already sent the whole box of goodies back but luckily many examples had been saved to another disc and I am going to spend the week posting them entire.