Excerpts from: "The Complete Guide to Classics Illustrated®" by Dan Malan ©rudy tambone all rights reserved
Introduction to: "The Complete Guide to Classics Illustrated®" by Dan Malan
First, we need to define some terms. What are illustrated classics? Philosophically speaking, we like to think of them as the romance of art and literature in popular culture. But Practically speaking, they come in three basic chronological groups: 19th century literary works containing black & white drawings, early 20th century literary works containing color prints of paintings, and for the last fifty years, comic-book adaptations of great works of literature. Our definition of a classical "comic" is a fully illustrated adaptation, usually abridged, with sequential art panels, and using word balloons to convey dialogue. That sounds pretty neutral to me.
For the eternal critic of the comic-book format, I offer two documents into evidence for the defense. Each is a comic book adaptation of a great work of literature. Each contains about 3000 high-quality illustrations, close to an unabridged adaptation. Each consumed the artist for five years. They are great works of literary art, having remained obscure because they are categorized as "comic-books." In the late 1940s, the great French illustrator RENE GIFFEY created his masterpiece adaptation of Les Miserables. It has received great praise in France, but has never been translated. Even as such, it would be an incredible tool for teaching French. The other comic is by the great U.S./Latin illustrator ANDRE LeBLANC, who in the early 1960s beautifully adapted the entire biblical narrative into The Picture Bible. These 750 full-color pages have been reprinted over 40 times in English alone, and into more than 100 other languages. Yet it remains virtually unknown outside of religious circles.
This volume and the one to follow will contain much more information than can be gleaned at one time. We hope you find it to be entertaining and the ultimate reference guide to all areas of illustrated classics collectibles. This information came from hundreds of die-hard classical researchers over the last 20 years. We have attempted to provide you with complete historical, pictorial, and financial information. But we know this is a never-ending quest, and we always welcome new info, as well as any corrections and differing opinions.
Now let me give you a quick tour of this volume. We will begin with three introductory background articles, one on the history of illustrated books and how classical comics derive from them, another on the history of comic-books and how the classical comics field fits into the bigger picture, and the third one on the history of our hobby of collecting Classics. Then we present the major overview of the history of Classics Illustrated, from AL KANTER's founding of the series in 1941, to CI becoming an American institution in the 1950s, to their untimely decline in the 1960s, the sale to PATRICK FRAWLEY in 1967, and their demise in 1971. We will cover the revival of CI with the new series in 1990 by First Comics, with a little peek into what the future holds.......<<<as we now know only 27 titles were published, and then in 1998 Acclaim Books tried, and published only 62 CI titles before folding the series..>>>rst
................ Every collector and dealer needs this specialized Classics info. This is combined with color illos of every CI cover, internal artwork change, back cover feature; plus spin-off series and non-series items, such as giveaways, gift boxes, giants, posters, binders, LP records, display racks, newspaper Classics, audio/visual items, promo items, CI ads, etc., etc. In fact, we dare you to point out anything officially connected with the CI series that we have omitted. But Classics collectors are so detail-oriented that I am sure they will find "glaring omissions." Then at the end of this book you will find various reference lists pertaining to CI titles, authors, adapters, and artists.
If you have taken the time to read this page you 'MUST" read this book!
|**please note.... all valuations in "CGCI" are over 10 years old and unfortunately obsolete.|
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