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View Full Version : Harvey Kurtzman and "Trump", Wally Wood and "Witzend"



jam
05-29-2006, 05:53 AM
Folks,

as a fan of the EC Comic's "Mad" and the early years of "Mad Magazine", I have always been intrigued by Harvey Kurtzman's "Trump" magazine (although I haven't ever seen a copy).

Now I may have some of the historical details wrong, but I believe this "Trump" magazine came out under the aspices of "Playboy", and I only recently found out there were only two issues ever published. This was shortly after Kurtzman left the employ of "Mad Magazine".

I also believe many of the artists who worked with Kurtzman on "Mad" jointed him at "Trump" (i.e. Wally Wood).

Here's my point : why doesn't someone collect the two issues of "Trump" and put them out as a book?

I have also heard for many years of Wally Wood's "Witzend" which -- and again I may have the details wrong -- was his self-published "magazine". I have never been lucky enough to set eyes on any issue of "Witzend" but would ask again : would it be possible to collect these issues in some way?

Kurtzman and Wood are two of the greatest comic creators in history, surely? Wouldn't such editions sell?

MDG
05-29-2006, 03:02 PM
I think Denis Kitchen is going to collect Help! and Humbug (or at least Best Ofs), but I don't know about Trump. if Playboy owns it, they probably feel it won't sell enough to be worth thier while.

I'd love to see a collected Witzend too, but I'm pretty sure that the individual stories are owned by the creators, so getting rights could be difficult--especially since Ditko's one of them.

MDG

jam
05-31-2006, 03:59 AM
I think Denis Kitchen is going to collect Help! and Humbug (or at least Best Ofs),


Well, that's a start! I'd definately be interested in those collections.


but I don't know about Trump. if Playboy owns it, they probably feel it won't sell enough to be worth thier while.


Fair enough. It's a shame, though.



I'd love to see a collected Witzend too, but I'm pretty sure that the individual stories are owned by the creators, so getting rights could be difficult--especially since Ditko's one of them.
MDG

Ah, OK. That's an impossible dream, then!

Thanks for the info!

Rob Allen
06-01-2006, 05:55 PM
I've seen a lot of Witzend issues on eBay.

Brad Curran
06-01-2006, 08:22 PM
I've seen a lot of Witzend issues on eBay.

I've never even thought to look. Before now. Thanks, Rob.

Rob Imes
06-02-2006, 04:42 AM
I'd love to see a collected Witzend too, but I'm pretty sure that the individual stories are owned by the creators, so getting rights could be difficult--especially since Ditko's one of them.


Actually it might be easier considering that Ditko's Witzend work, which I believe to be mainly Mr. A. strips, has been reprinted in Ditko collections of Mr. A. in the past.

InfoBroker
06-02-2006, 06:05 AM
Most if not all of Steve Ditko's Mr. A strips that were published in various fanzines/prozines in the late 60s have indeed been reprinted. Steve's other Witzend material was collected in the Angry Planet.( I think that was the name) which was distributed on newstands in the 70s.

Wally Wood's Odkin Elf series was also collected and reprinted sometime in the 90s in hardback.

Vaghn Bode very creative Cobalt-60 series, and Cheese Wizard also had their own Print Mint underground comics, along with various limited editions publications done by Bud Plant. His Sunpot comic was a very interesting and creative project.

Jeff Jones had a strip or two in Witzend that later showed up 1970s B/W horror comics. Not sure if it was Warren or Skywald.

There was a lot of other random material that pushed in other graphical story directions besides super-tights. All of if it very creative. It also had top notch letters columns discussing the state of the comics industry at the time, and a few interviews; including John Benson's with Wil Eisner from 1965 or 66. A page or two of Spirit material was also reprinted. It was my first introduction to the master storyteller's material.

Witzend was a breakthrough publication in many ways, providing creatives a place to express things, spotlight pet projects and secure copyrights. Back then, you couldn't copyright something until it was published. You sent two printed copies of the material to the Library of Congress to secure copyright protection. Lot of old comics in that library!

I think I've got Witzend 5 and 6 lurking around here somewhere. If I get a chance I will post a random page or two, and the covers.


-jb the should be doing morning exercises ib -

Aaron Kashtan
06-02-2006, 09:17 AM
Witzend was a breakthrough publication in many ways, providing creatives a place to express things, spotlight pet projects and secure copyrights. Back then, you couldn't copyright something until it was published. You sent two printed copies of the material to the Library of Congress to secure copyright protection. Lot of old comics in that library!

Indeed. When I was at the Library of Congress this year for the International Comic Art Festival, they had an exhibit of the library's comics holdings. It was amazing. They had McCay, Schulz and Herriman originals, as well as the "Guilty! Guilty! Guilty!" Doonesbury strip and one of the Simple J. Malarkey strips from Pogo, plus other stuff I don't remember now.

Rob Allen
06-02-2006, 05:46 PM
Here's a detailed index to Witzend and a number of other independent publications of the same era:

http://www.enjolrasworld.com/Richard%20Arndt/The%20Early%20Independents.htm

MichikoS
06-02-2006, 06:53 PM
Witzend was a breakthrough publication in many ways, providing creatives a place to express things, spotlight pet projects and secure copyrights. Back then, you couldn't copyright something until it was published. You sent two printed copies of the material to the Library of Congress to secure copyright protection. Lot of old comics in that library! Yes, but fewer than there ought to be. This item from the Michigan State University list of Comics Research Libraries:

"The Library of Congress has a comic book collection of over 100,000 items, and keeps them alphabetically arranged in covered, acid-free archive boxes. Although the collection in theory should be complete because of copyright depository, for many years comic books seem to have disappeared regularly. In addition, until the 1970s the comics were not well protected from light. Consequently, the older collections are brittle and incomplete."

:mad: Michi

Dan B. in the Underworld
06-02-2006, 07:34 PM
i just noticed, michiko, your latest icon. i read that novel probably within the last 15 years & may well still have it in that edition (not that i know whether there were any others). you know, i'm sure, that it was the basis for a movie circa '67. ( i've also got the lp of the same name by the '80s uk goth band the batfish boys.)

GRF58
01-30-2008, 05:19 AM
I see that there is a hardcover of The Complete Trump due for release
February 29, 2008 according to Amazon. Did Wood do very much work for
that magazine? Probably very little as he stayed with Mad mag during
that time.

MDG
01-30-2008, 05:23 AM
"The Complete Trump" is only two issues, and Wood's in both.

MDG

GreatLakesAvengers
01-30-2008, 07:34 AM
I've sold a bunch of Witzend on eBay ... they fetch some good bucks! $20-30 per issue at times

jam
01-31-2008, 09:35 AM
Hey! I've just found a listing on Amazon.uk for a two volume set of Humbug!!!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Humbug-Kurtzman/dp/156097933X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1201800759&sr=1-1

Could this be a complete collection?

I'm very happy about all this! All we need now is a collection of "Help!" ...

Slam_Bradley
01-31-2008, 11:21 AM
Hey! I've just found a listing on Amazon.uk for a two volume set of Humbug!!!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Humbug-Kurtzman/dp/156097933X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1201800759&sr=1-1

Could this be a complete collection?

I'm very happy about all this! All we need now is a collection of "Help!" ...


Humbug only lasted 11 issues, so I'm pretty sure that's the whole magilla.

MDG
01-31-2008, 12:11 PM
I saw the Humbug set as well. I've got about half the run, but I'm definately getting the collection. Not as funny as Mad, but it's charming and the art is excellent.

MDG