The Powder Expert

As Carmine nears her destination, and takes in the lovely vista, she gets jolted back to reality.

Meanwhile, something appears to have been lost in translation.

Despite the language barrier, Pedro and Carmine make a strong connection, but as ever, danger lurks in the form of the jilted Del Sarto.

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

La Bella Donna

This chapter, from late 1958, starts with an episode in which Kevin himself is absent. Such a setup allows new characters to be introduced as the scene is set. And one new character that surely caught the readers’ eye was Carmine.

Slender, lovely women such as Carmine frequently appeared in Kreigh Collins’ comics, and for me, an especially charming aspect that these ladies’ poses were often modeled by Kreigh’s wife, Therese—Gramma Collins to me.

By the midpoint of KEVIN’s run, Kreigh Collins no longer wrote all of his feature’s stories, but this one has certain hallmarks of his style.

To be continued…

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Pipe Dream

Kreigh with his pipe, northern Michigan, c. 1930.

A very busy week with my day job has led to having nothing ready to post today. Instead, here is a quick update.

As previously mentioned, the reason I started this blog was to raise awareness of my grandfather’s career as a cartoonist. One of the reasons I wanted to raise his profile was my plan to publish a collection of his comic strips and I hoped to sell books to folks outside my immediate family!

My first idea was to do a book featuring KEVIN THE BOLD, but this seemed intimidating because the strip ran for so long. While searching for KEVIN episodes to fill the holes in my collection, I acquired the complete run of MITZI McCOY, and the idea of putting together a book with only about 100 episodes seemed much more manageable for a first-timer like myself.

Once the book came out in 2018, this blog continued, and I circled back to my original idea—doing a book on KEVIN. By this point, I had become more familiar with the 78 story arcs of Kreigh Collins’ better-known comic feature and my publishing plans evolved into the pipe dream of publishing all of KEVIN’s adventures in five volumes—each with about 200 episodes. This dream included a sixth volume with UP ANCHOR!’s run of 174 episodes.

Knowing how much work went into the MITZI book, I realized I’d be lucky to do a single volume on KEVIN, but unlike producing six more collections, this was a viable plan. KEVIN THE BOLD, Volume 1 would feature the strip’s first 205 episodes—the 15 chapters that appeared from October 1, 1950 through August 29, 1954. I was confident that I could find a new publisher; however, this step proved to be harder than I expected, and I paused on my color-correcting efforts.

If anyone has any leads or suggestions for a publishing partner, please let me know by commenting below or by sending an email to brianedwardcollins1[at]gmail.com. (Even if you don’t have any leads, I love hearing from fan’s of my grandfather’s work!) Besides the wonderful episodes that Volume 1 would feature (about 95% of which are beautiful half page examples from the Chicago Sunday Tribune), I have plenty of other material to include, and I think it would be a fantastic book.

Thank you! Schedule permitting, a chapter from 1958 will start next week.

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A Golden Age Classic

The Lost Art of Kreigh Collins, the Complete Mitzi McCoy, features all of MITZI’s eleven chapters, plus the transitional sequence where the comic strips morphs into KEVIN THE BOLD.

Mitzi McCoy Cover 150

MITZI McCOY ran from 1948 to 1950 and showcased Kreigh Collins’ skill as an illustrator and storyteller. His picturesque landscapes, lovely character designs, and thrilling action sequences brimmed with detail and charm, and the strip’s ensemble cast rotated in and out of the spotlight taking turns as protagonists in the dozen story arcs collected in this volume. The last story collected in “The Complete Mitzi McCoy” is the narrative bridge that set Collins and his characters off on a new journey, beautifully told for the next couple of decades in the much-lauded adventure strip Kevin the Bold.

The collection includes an introduction by Eisner Award-winning author Frank M. Young, an afterword by Ithaca College’s Ed Catto, and previously unpublished artwork and photos. Longtime comics artist Butch Guice also provides a new pin-up of the character Mitzi McCoy.

The book’s price is $30. For domestic shipping, add $4; for international orders, add $25 for first class shipping. To place an order, leave a comment below or email me at BrianEdwardCollins1[at]gmail.com, and I will give you PayPal or Venmo information.

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Off the Chain!

The posse comes across Stub’s disabled hotrod—but where are Peggy and Tiny?

Breaking free, and with no time to waste, Tiny reaches Peggy before the wolfpack.

In the dramatic conclusion to MITZI McCOY’s eighth chapter, Tiny saves Peggy and Stub saves Tiny, with Peggy attesting to Tiny’s heroism.

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Mitzi, Tim, Stub, and Tiny

Besides this chapter with Tiny and little Peggy Smith, “The Lost Art of Kreigh Collins, the Complete Mitzi McCoy,” features ten other story arcs, plus the transitional sequence where the comic strips morphs into KEVIN THE BOLD.

Mitzi McCoy Cover 150

MITZI McCOY ran from 1948 to 1950 and showcased Kreigh Collins’ skill as an illustrator and storyteller. His picturesque landscapes, lovely character designs, and thrilling action sequences brimmed with detail and charm, and the strip’s ensemble cast rotated in and out of the spotlight taking turns as protagonists in the dozen story arcs collected in this volume. The last story collected in “The Complete Mitzi McCoy” is the narrative bridge that set Collins and his characters off on a new journey, beautifully told for the next couple of decades in the much-lauded adventure strip Kevin the Bold.

The collection includes an introduction by Eisner Award-winning author Frank M. Young, an afterword by Ithaca College’s Ed Catto, and previously unpublished artwork and photos. Longtime comics artist Butch Guice also provides a new pin-up of the character Mitzi McCoy.

The book’s price is $30. For domestic shipping, add $4; for international orders, add $25 for first class shipping. To place an order, leave a comment below or email me at BrianEdwardCollins1[at]gmail.com, and I will give you PayPal or Venmo information.

_______________________________________________________________

For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Little Girl Lost

It’s back to school as usual for Peggy.

Before his days as a cartoonist, Kreigh Collins did a lot of painting, and the wintery outdoor setting shown in the first frame of the January 15 episode certainly evokes one of those rural landscapes.

Meanwhile, back in Scott County, Stub, Mitzi, and Tiny set off on an investigation. (To learn why Stub drives an old hotrod, I recommend purchasing the book listed below!)

The January 22 episode is quite delightful, with the second tier handsomely featuring Peggy, feeding the remnants of her lunch to the birds and clambering through the snow.

The suspense builds as the four groups converge: the posse, the wolves, Peggy, and Tiny.

To be continued!

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Mitzi, Tim, Stub, and Tiny

Besides this chapter with Tiny and little Peggy Smith, “The Lost Art of Kreigh Collins, the Complete Mitzi McCoy,” features ten other story arcs, plus the transitional sequence where the comic strips morphs into KEVIN THE BOLD.

Mitzi McCoy Cover 150

MITZI McCOY ran from 1948 to 1950 and showcased Kreigh Collins’ skill as an illustrator and storyteller. His picturesque landscapes, lovely character designs, and thrilling action sequences brimmed with detail and charm, and the strip’s ensemble cast rotated in and out of the spotlight taking turns as protagonists in the dozen story arcs collected in this volume. The last story collected in “The Complete Mitzi McCoy” is the narrative bridge that set Collins and his characters off on a new journey, beautifully told for the next couple of decades in the much-lauded adventure strip Kevin the Bold.

The collection includes an introduction by Eisner Award-winning author Frank M. Young, an afterword by Ithaca College’s Ed Catto, and previously unpublished artwork and photos. Longtime comics artist Butch Guice also provides a new pin-up of the character Mitzi McCoy.

The book’s price is $30. For domestic shipping, add $4; for international orders, add $25 for first class shipping. To place an order, leave a comment below or email me at BrianEdwardCollins1[at]gmail.com, and I will give you PayPal or Venmo information.

_______________________________________________________________

For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Dog Days

As we enter the dog days of August, running a sequence featuring a pup seems appropriate. Kreigh Collins included a number of pooches during his 25-year run as a cartoonist for the NEA syndicate; here is the first—Tiny, an Irish Wolfhound.

MITZI McCOY was featured in many small-town, rural newspapers, so the story Collins cooked up likely resonated with many of its readers. These episodes started appearing in January, 1950.

The action is a real throwback, set on a small family farm where the entire family, including young Peggy, pitched in to do the chores.

Peggy’s father is skeptical, and others less so, but as editor for the Freedom Clarion, Stub is always on the prowl for news.

_______________________________________________________________

Mitzi, Tim, Stub, and Tiny

Besides this chapter with Tiny and little Peggy Smith, “The Lost Art of Kreigh Collins, the Complete Mitzi McCoy,” features ten other story arcs, plus the transitional sequence where the comic strips morphs into KEVIN THE BOLD.

Mitzi McCoy Cover 150

MITZI McCOY ran from 1948 to 1950 and showcased Kreigh Collins’ skill as an illustrator and storyteller. His picturesque landscapes, lovely character designs, and thrilling action sequences brimmed with detail and charm, and the strip’s ensemble cast rotated in and out of the spotlight taking turns as protagonists in the dozen story arcs collected in this volume. The last story collected in “The Complete Mitzi McCoy” is the narrative bridge that set Collins and his characters off on a new journey, beautifully told for the next couple of decades in the much-lauded adventure strip Kevin the Bold.

The collection includes an introduction by Eisner Award-winning author Frank M. Young, an afterword by Ithaca College’s Ed Catto, and previously unpublished artwork and photos. Longtime comics artist Butch Guice also provides a new pin-up of the character Mitzi McCoy.

The book’s price is $30. For domestic shipping, add $4; for international orders, add $25 for first class shipping. To place an order, leave a comment below or email me at BrianEdwardCollins1[at]gmail.com, and I will give you PayPal or Venmo information.

_______________________________________________________________

For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Il Nerbiniano – Anno VIII, n. 4

NERB 08 04 C1

During a trip to Italy this summer, I met with an old friend from Trieste—Fabrizia had been an exchange student that stayed with my family when I was a senior in high school. What made the reunion sweeter was that she gave me a package containing 14 issues of the Italian comics publication Il NerbinianoAnother friend had generously purchased them for me and mailed them to Fabrizia in order to avoid expensive international shipping. Talk about overstimulation—being in Venice, and having a bella regazza hand over such a wonderful trove of my grandfather’s artwork!

Il Nerbiniano was published for at least ten years; the issues I received came from years IV through VIII (I’ll use Roman numerals per the publication’s style because “when in Rome…”) The number of issues per year varied from four to six. At some point, an Italian translation of KEVIN THE BOLD began running, but without a complete collection, it’s hard to say when—the comic strip’s storylines do not appear in their original sequence. The oldest copy I have seen (Anno III, n. 1) has a sequence from mid-1951, whereas KEVIN’s introductory chapter ran in Il Nerbiniano a few years later (starting in Anno 6, n. 1). This issue was published in the last quarter of 1980.

First up was a profile on Roberto Diso, an artist who illustrated MISTER NO.

This was followed by some material I didn’t have any luck in translating/researching, I’m sorry to say.

For me, things got exciting at the mid-point of the book. The orientation of the artwork on the pages changes, with half of a KEVIN THE BOLD tabloid episode appearing before and after a four-page section geared toward subscriptions. Because the action picks up with the third and fourth tiers of the episode (January 28, 1951), there isn’t a KEVIN logo identifying the strip. Following the four subscription pages, another half-episode appears—the first and second tiers of the February 4, 1951 episode. It’s a shame they are arranged like this, otherwise each spread would feature a single tabloid version. It would have been an impressive layout due to Il Nerbiniano’s ample trim size—these reproductions are larger than the original tabloid versions.

Issues of Il Nerbiniano generally included two to four KEVIN episodes, but on this occasion, it ran the equivalent of eight episodes—meaning KEVIN occupied more than half of the issue’s pages. As the issue’s featured comic strip, it ran in two colors.

Halfway through the pages featuring Collins’ artwork, The “Count de Falcon” chapter ends and the action transitions to the next sequence,“The Search for Sadea.”

The conclusion of the “Sadea” chapter would appear in Il Nerbiniano’s future issues (assuming there were any). As the final issue of 1980, the back cover was dedicated to a New Year’s greeting (“Best wishes to all readers”).

By splitting the tabloid comics in half and running them on two separate pages, they are printed about 12-3/4″ wide, larger than the original Sunday versions. ’ve heard of half-page comics turned into tabloids, but vice-versa? Interesting. By running landscape-oriented versions, they appear twice as large as they would otherwise, but only half as many comics fit in the six pages allotted to Kevin. Either way, there wouldn’t be enough room for the entire sequence, so it’s nice to see them enlarged like this, it must be a sign that Il Nerbiniano’s editors appreciated the quality and detail of Kreigh Collins’ comics. Perhaps this sequence continued in the next issue of Il Nebiniano?


For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Pistols at Dawn

During his run in the funny papers, Kevin has been challenged numerous times and with different weapons, but this is the first time I recall pistols being employed. Is he as proficient with firearms as he is with a lance or rapier?

We will have to wait to find out the answer to that question! While Kevin is out of danger, the same cannot be said for Pierre.

I just noticed that whomever was responsible for the color plates neglected to fill in the “D” in “BOLD” with red in Kevin’s logo.

As is his way, Kevin takes this opportunity to save Pierre, and thus reuniting lovely Marie with Pierre.

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

Trahison

Note: In trying to come up with a clever title for this week’s installment, I looked up how to say “double-cross” in French. Talk about serendipity!

Marie finds herself in a terrible position.

Quelle horreur!

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.

The Traitor Stalls for Time

Now where have I seen this before?

Ah yes—Day 8 of the January 6 hearings, where a treacherous man ignored advisors and refused to take action to stop a bloody assault.

With an Irish wolfhound by his side, Kevin likes his chances, but can he hold on until the troops arrive?

Barely surviving the attack of a half dozen would-be assassins, Kevin’s outlook improves with the arrival of Pierre and Marie.

To be continued…

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For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, visit his page on Facebook.