Monday, July 12, 2010

American Splendor

Just taking this little break from my hiatus to acknowledge to passing of Harvey Pekar, the troubled and erratic creator of the American Splendor reality-comic and the subject of the great bio-pic of 2003 which starred Paul Giamatti and Hope Davis.

Harvey could be considered the proto-blogger; in 1976 he started chronicling his mundane existence in comic book form, using a variety of comic book artists to illustrate his stories of despair and futility. I feel I owe him a little- an ordinary person, with an ordinary life, creating a journal for the world to see, and find in it something of value. Here's to you Harvey- everyone has a story, and you went to the trouble of telling us yours in a compelling and unique way.

By Professor Batty


Blogger Cellar Door said...

In one of his comics, he wrote, "Dennis C. Lee is God."

Dennis C. Lee is my uncle.

I have, at times, thought Uncle Dennis was God, too. Harvey and I had that in common. He was pretty awesome, that Harvey.

Blogger Professor Batty said...

What a nice thing for Harvey to say. Cleveland won't be the same without him.

Blogger Cellar Door said...

Maybe Harvey Pekar is god. You are apparently looking at him in awe in your new picture there.

Blogger Professor Batty said...

There is an R. Crumb drawing of Harvey in the current issue of the New Yorker:

Blogger Mary said...

Batty - I think your description of Pekar as a proto-blogger is very thought provoking.

Metro is a newspaper published in San Jose. It's given away free in sidewalk dispensers - the kind with lots of massage ads in the back, not much of a rag. Turns out that Pekar wrote for Metro - interesting article and links to his writing at

Blogger Professor Batty said...

Mary ~ what a great tribute! Even better is the article about bringing the movie to the screen:

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