This blog is officially "retired," but my other blog,
"The Lair of the Silver Fox," is still open for business!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Feel Free to Skip This... least, if you've never followed comic books, or been involved in comic and/or fantasy fandom. Because most of its references will probably be lost on you. This isn't going to be funny, or clever, or entertaining. I just need to vent, and hereabouts, venting = ranting, pretty much. So here's where I get to do it.

I just found out that artist/writer Dave Stevens died. Yeah, the guy who created "The Rocketeer" and almost single-handedly revived interest in the 1950s cheesecake/bondage model Bettie Page. He was 52, which was a few years older than I'd thought he was, and only a tiny bit older than I.

There have been far too many creative people in or "around" the field of comics who've died in the past year or two or three, not that there's a lesser amount which I'd deem "acceptable." It's bad enough when we lose someone like a Will Eisner, a Jack Burnley, or a Martin Nodell -- men who'd been around since the start of the Golden Age of Comics -- but the passing of (relatively) younger people like Steve Gerber, Gary Gygax, Marshall Rogers, Dave Cockrum, and Dr. Jerry Bails -- and several others for whom I'll probably return to this post to magically edit in -- is starting to wear me down. We're losing people my age, or slightly older, making me feel my own mortality more and more with every new obituary.

That's all. No jokes, no irreverent "Oh, So-and-So died? I can make fun of him, then!" Nope. I'm done.

Thanks for your time.


  1. That it does, that it does.

    I think I'm gonna have a drink or two, fire up the ol' VCR, and watch The Rocketeer. Not as good as the original comics themselves, but any port in a storm, right?

  2. Got a group link to Mark's page this morning, telling of the sad news. I should visit there more than twice a month, I know. It seems not only artists, but the 50-somethings in general aren't sticking round as long. My old man wasn't that old. Only 56. I too, thought Mr. Stevens was younger and he'll be greatly missed, as are all the others, especially Mr. Eisner. Have a drink for me, as well. I quit 19 years ago.

  3. Ooh, thanks for the reminder, Subtorp! I'd been meaning to add Mark Evanier's websites to my links list, but kept getting sidetracked.

    And yeah, I did have a couple of drinks last night, but I hope I didn't leave the impression that I threw myself a one-man, all-out, drunken pity party. I was ticked off more than depressed, so I stayed sober.

  4. Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

    Godspeed Dave Stevens. Sorry I'm not much of a comic books fan but you sounded pretty cool.

  5. David: you're welcome. That's a must for your links. It keeps getting better. If I want to wallow in misery, I just crawl in to a book and get lost.

    redbeard76: good reference. And yes he was pretty cool.

  6. I agree. These things seem to come in waves, which makes it all the more depressing.

    On my first (and so far only) trip to Comic-Con in San Digeo a few years back, I made it a priority to go to the "old timers" panels run by Mark Evanier, where I got to see Nick Cardy and Irv Novick, the latter of whom is no longer with is. And I also went to a panel honoring Julie Schwartz, who has also shuffled off to that big comic book shop in the sky.

    Think I'll go search out a copy of "The Rocketeer" movie, which I've never seen the whole way through.

  7. Lois brings up a good point. And it's not just with our comic artists and writers. Take a look at Hollywood lately.

    I too, have had the opportunity to meet with a few of my favourites, be it writers, artists or actors. I enjoyed it regardless of the short visits. Just being able to meet the person behind the scenes( or books )was not only gratifying to me, but to them as well. The memories will stay there.

  8. Lois: It's odd, but even though I own the movie, and have owned it for years, I'd never seen it all the way through, either... not until the other night, that is. I suppose I didn't have to, since I'd read the comic book adaptation of the film ages ago, which was drawn by Russ Heath (and not Dave Stevens, who did draw the cover). From the comics, to the screen, and back to the comics... Strange how things come full circle.

  9. I know nothing about comics but I read on anyway. Yep, most of what you said was lost on me although I do know Betty Paige and the 50's pin ups of her....I would comment on the facing your mortality thing but as many of our conversations go that route either because of your writing or mine, I will refrain. lol


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