Border Crossing: The Story of Canada’s Export Publishing

The Comics Detective: History and Research by Ken Quattro

Border Crossing: The Story of Canada’s Export Publishing
Border Crossing: The Story of Canada’s Export Publishing

©2020 Ken Quattro [Special thanks to Wayne Smith and Stephen Lipson] Canada has always had a complicated relationship with the United States. Inexorably linked to its neighbor to the south by geography, language and cultural commonalities, Canada has borne the linkage with both gratitude and resentment. Stronger economically, militarily and possessing a far larger population, the US understandably casts a…

The Pogo Riot
The Pogo Riot

©2020 Ken Quattro “For three days last week, Yale students watched with interest as two ice-cream venders [sic], a Good Humor man and a Humpty Dumpty man, jockeyed for position outside the university post office, a choice sales spot. Finally the argument became so heated that police told the venders [sic] to move along. A handful of undergraduates rushed into…

Superman and the American Way: 1943
Superman and the American Way: 1943

©2020 Ken Quattro Definitions: Nikkei are Japanese immigrants of any generation. Nisei are second generation Japanese immigrants who are citizens of another country. Sansei are the third generation of Japanese immigrants who are citizens of another country. __________________________________ Most American comic strip fans opening their newspaper on Monday, June 28, 1943, and reading the Superman strip for that day, would…

Tony Abruzzo: Taking The Road Less Travelled
Tony Abruzzo: Taking The Road Less Travelled

©2020 Ken Quattro PROLOGUE: Comic book history has mostly been viewed from the perspective of the male reader. As a consequence, male comic fans, (and I include myself) have a blind spot. If a comic or a genre falls outside our realm of interest, we discount it. Romance comics rank at the top of that ignoble list. The artists who…

The Origin of Superman by Jerry Siegel, 1942
The Origin of Superman by Jerry Siegel, 1942

©2020 Ken Quattro Jerry Siegel’s letter to Josette Frank was cordial, friendly and personal.   “Hope Stanley was pleasantly surprised by the acceptance of his synopsis. The check which I sent to DC to be forwarded to him has probably already reached him.” [Jerry Siegel letter to Josette Frank, June 1, 1942]   Although Siegel had gotten the name of…

The Committee On Evaluation Of Comic Books
The Committee On Evaluation Of Comic Books

©2020 Ken Quattro Cincinnati is one of those cities pollsters love to cite as representative of America as a whole. It sits at the bottom end of Ohio, perhaps the most mid-American of all states. While nominally a northern town, it is separated from Kentucky only by the Ohio River, and shares not only its southern weather, but many of…

Visit To A Comic Book Exchange: St. Louis, 1946
Visit To A Comic Book Exchange: St. Louis, 1946

©2020 Ken Quattro In times past, before comic shops and conventions, comic book fans had over means of finding back issues. Often it was a kid-to-kid transaction brokered over a soda or outside a candy store. Other times, though, when a specific issue was desired, someone with a larger inventory was required and that’s where magazine exchanges came in.  …

THE LIFE OF FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT (June 1942)
THE LIFE OF FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT (June 1942)

©2020 Ken Quattro Even before the United States entered the fighting during World War II, it was abundantly clear to those paying attention that the country lagged behind its potential adversaries in one crucial aspect of the coming conflict. The enemy had leading this effort, a man with a doctorate in philosophy and a reputation as a failed novelist, who…

“Sambo Without Tears” by Georges Sadoul [translated by Samuel Beckett]
“Sambo Without Tears” by Georges Sadoul [translated by Samuel Beckett]

©2020 Ken Quattro Below is an article written circa 1930 by the legendary French film critic, Georges Sadoul. Sadoul was a journalist and one of the first to begin reviewing films as an art form.   In this article, however, he took a look at the presentation of Blacks in French comics. He specifically contrasts the representation of Blacks in…

THE TEACHER AND THE COMICS by Gabriel Lynn (c. 1946)
THE TEACHER AND THE COMICS by Gabriel Lynn (c. 1946)

©2020 Ken Quattro In previous posts I covered Gabriel Lynn and his contributions to the comic book controversy in the 1940s with his writings for the Catechetical Guild. Some of his background was included in the post entitled Wertham’s Forebearers.  His first pamphlet THE CASE AGAINST THE COMICS in its entirety can be found elsewhere on this blog. Here then…