Monday, November 23, 2009

Blast #2, 2 of 4

I remember watching some show like 'Thirtysomething' where a character finds artifacts of their youth in the attic and waxes nostalgic about how silly they once were. Among the things they found were “earth shoes, protest buttons, and zap comics.” The latter was said as if it was a generic term like Band-Aid or Google. That's actually how the general public views underground comics-products of a past generation that went away with their own youthful ideals. I remember when 'Crumb' came out, my parents didn't realize that he kept doing comics all along, let alone that I knew about him and his life.

If the boomers look at underground comics as some hippie thing from the past, their parents must have looked on them as a passing fad as well. To them, underground comics were all about draft dodging and bra-burning and how many drugs you can do. If they actually read them- not necessarily liked, but read them- they'd see that those movements were satirized more than celebrated. Maybe from a different perspective, but more critically than they'd think.

This piece is an example of how the GI generation viewed underground comics. It looks like the BLAST staff just glanced at them and since they weren't heavily edited or in the same style they were used to in the newspaper, they must be crude. And they were only about the counterculture drawn by hippies who didn't know what they were doing. It reminds me of Steve Allen reading rock and roll lyrics.


  1. Is it me or is that Little Orphan Annie parody drawn more in the style of S. Clay Wilson rather than R. Crumb?

  2. It does look more like Wilson than Crumb but I don't think they were trying to imitate anybody in particular or could tell anybody apart. It's just a "kids today with their underground comics" kind of attitude. Using the rock'n'roll analogy again, it's like comedians in the 50s who wouldn't be able to tell the difference between Elvis and Little Richard (besides pigment) trying to make fun of popular music.