Monday, December 5, 2011
Cartoonist Showcase #5
This month in 1968, you could have received in the mail Cartoonist Showcase #5, dated November. It contained comic strip reprints of Modesty Blaise, Secret Agent X-9, Tarzan, and James Bond. 84 pages of great action comic strips with a Mike Royer cover in magazine format.
Published by Ed Aprill, this was one of the classic fanzines of the 1960s that were professionally produced. Edwin M. Aprill Jr. was one of those forgotten founders of comic fandom. He was a fan, a con dealer, original art collector, publisher, and one of the co-founders of the Detroit Triple Fan Fair in 1965. As a "big-name" fan, he tried to expand fandom beyond its focus on superheroes by publishing a slick, professional magazine that re-packaged old newspaper strips. He demonstrated that there was a market for them in fandom and that one could make a profit from selling them.
Cartoonist Showcase ran 12 issues from 1968 to 1972, but ended when Ed died after his car skidded off an icy road and into a tree in southeast Michigan on Feb. 3, 1972. He also published 10 issues of Great Classic Newspaper Comic Strips from 1964-1969.