Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Celebrate America -- with Comics!

The most remarkable woman ever known, Fantomah (above in one of her many exciting adventures, although you can't see her blue skull here as gorillas tear apart an evil scientist [yes, gentle gorillas, but they've had a dastardly serum injected]): she's just one of the characters created by Fletcher Hanks. The weird and wonderful art of Hanks (AKA Hank Fletcher, Barclay Flagg, and Hank Christy) seems to come from a seriously disturbed mind and a singular (if anatomically suspect) hand. His heroic son, Hank Fletcher Jr., gives a little insight into why that might be (see pp 21-22 of this profile).

Gene introduced me to this bizarre work with the Super Wizard Stardust comic (sent by the joey Zone, thanks :-). I am convinced that there is a Fletcher Code to deduce within these pages (it can't just be inept storytelling!), so I will have to write that bestseller soon.

Really weird stuff, indeed.


Unknown said...

My new book, "I Shall Destory All the Civilized Planets: The Comics of Fletcher Hanks", collects 15 of the artist's best stories followed by a comics-Afterword by myself that solves the true-life mystery, "Whatever Happened to Fletcher Hanks".

Readers unfamiliar with his work may want to go to my website to the BONUS page for a slideshow of a Fatomah story that does NOT appear in the book (t-shirts soon!):

-Paul Karasik

C. Margery Kempe said...

Thanks, Paul -- that Fantomah story is AMAZING! That concentrated power of will and animal control -- I have to write about this at some point. Maybe next PCA, although I had planned to write on Voice of the Fire. But what rich subtext throughout this story. Wow -- and I thought Super Wizard Stardust was messed up!

Unknown said...

Be sure to check out Stardust vs the Mad Giant Experimenter, a "virtual cartoon" which adapts (occasionally a bit loosely) a Stardust story. Who knew that The Super Wizard spoke with a semi-Shatnerian cadence?

Anonymous said...

It's Fletcher Hanks' World--we just live in it. If we're good. Otherwise we die a horrible embarassing death.

FANTOMAH is She Who Must Be Obeyed Or Else.

FANTOMAH is the lovechild of Sheena & The Ghost Who Walks--Who then killed Her parents when She found them cohabiting in sin.

FANTOMAH *will* make the perfect Hallowe'en costume, but don't forget to wear the blonde wig on top of that deathshead,


C. Margery Kempe said...

I think he would look very fetching. And that would go well with my costume -- NO, I'm not telling!