Dash Shaw Sells Out? *
Senior writer Harry Kollatz Jr. wrote about local cartoonist Dash Shaw, his book The Mother’s Mouth and his contribution to the anthology Stuck in the Middle in our April issue. Turns out that in addition to finishing up his next graphic novel The Bottom-Less Belly Button, Shaw has also been dipping his foot into the superhero-centric world of Marvel Comics (check out a sample here), working on a Doctor Strange story for an upcoming project the publisher’s billing as the “Indie Anthology,” featuring artcomix creators like Shaw, Johnny Ryan (who already skewered more than a few of Marvel’s characters in the scathingly scatological and aptly titled Comic Book Holocaust), James Kochalka and Michael Kupperman taking on Marvel’s icons.
Funny thing is, before all the movie and licensing money started pouring in toward the end of the ’90s, Marvel was in dire financial straits for a while there, filing for bankruptcy in 1996. This led now-defunct publisher Highwater Books to release a tongue-in-cheek Marvel Benefit issue of its anthology Coober Skeeber, in which, you guessed it, artcomix creators offered their (unauthorized) takes on Marvel characters. Kochalka’s Hulk story for Coober Skeeber was later reprinted by Marvel, and now the biggest company in American comics appears to be taking that ball and running with it. —Chad Anderson
* We kid, we kid.