Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Humor Digests

Something that doesn't seem to get a lot of attention are the humor digests from the 1940s & 50s. Published by such companies as Crestwood and Harvey, info on these types of books seems kind of scare whenever I poke around the 'net. There doesn't seem to be any one place to go to learn more about the books, as opposed to the thousands of sites dedicated to comics, or even the dozens of sites focused on magazines. That said, most of what I know comes from the books themselves, and what I know about them doesn't add-up to a whole lot. Obviously, the contents were geared towards a more mature audience, with scantliy clad women on nearly every page, so if that's not the kind of comic artwork you're into, you should just skip this post altogether.

Today I'm presenting single-panel cartoons from a few issues of "T.N.T." and "A-Laugh-A-Minnit", two titles published by Toby Press/Minoan. Both titles were published during the mid-50s, with "A-Laugh-A-Minnit" published at first under the Toby name, then using the Minoan imprint starting with issue # 12.

The quality of both the artwork & the writing seems rather spotty. Maybe it's just my personal preferences for humor, maybe it's a reflection of the times, maybe the jokes & art simply aren't that good. Still, there's a few pages that made me say to myself "That's kind of clever" or "That looks nice", so I figured I would share some of those here. Oh, and I apologize if some of the pages are a little out of focus. Toby/Minoan produced the books in a square-bound format, making scanning the pages a little difficult.

On a totally unrelated topic ...

I was reading about DC Comics digital comic plans, and while it's nice to see them finally get with the program and offer digital comics, I can't help but wonder ...
"What the heck are they charging $2.99 for?"

The problem I have with today's digital comics' pricing is that, physically, you aren't getting anything in return. All you have are a bunch of images that are formatted for viewing through some device (iPod, computer, what-have-you), so if that file gets corrupted or your device craps-out on you, you're pretty much left with nothing.

I think digital comics would work better at a 99¢ price (and no, I'm not the first person to make this statement). It's not like DC or Marvel have to pay for printing or distribution of physical books, so "$2.99" simply seems like they are trying to squeeze every penny they can out of people ... at least until some company comes along with some quality titles, and figures-out that it can turn a profit with a smaller cover-price.

Oh well, maybe some day somebody will come along and show Marvel & DC the error of their ways.

1 comment:

  1. That first inside cartoon from A-Laugh-a-Minute, signed “Jake”, is pretty obviously by Jack Cole.


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