Little does Kevin know that his unexplained black eye will lead to worse circumstances.
As far as this particular story arc goes, one definite bonus is the fact that I have Chicago Tribune examples of each episode. While the paper was long past its heyday of incredible color separations and reproduction—some “Kevin the Bold” episodes from the early 1950s are simply stunning—the paper still created its own printing plates, which led to higher-quality final results.
Comparing an episode from the Trib with one from the Florida Times-Union could be seen as comparing apples to oranges, with the latter’s output often being rather magenta-saturated, a close comparison between the two shows that the Tribune did indeed use different printing plates than those offered by NEA Services to its regular subscribing newspapers. In some panels it is hard to determine if the difference was simply due to the flood of magenta ink and indifferent press operators, but in the Trib‘s splash panel, the lower portion of Kevin’s cloak clearly shows shades of both orange and red, while in the Times-Union version it’s all reddish orange.
It’s a shame that raven-haired Gertie has gotten mixed up with the Strangler, she’s generally my favorite part of any episode in which she appears!
Happy New Year! January 1 also marks Kreigh Collins’ birthday; he would have been 48 years old when the following story arc appeared. The first two episodes are beautifully illustrated, and show Kevin sailing past the Isle of Sark. As is the case with many of the plot lines in “Kevin,” I was inspired to look up where exactly this little island was located—and I became intrigued by the local talent at the Elephant and Castle.
The previous episode’s splash panel is lovely, but it is no match for the one that followed. The third panel is also masterfully executed—the Strangler is a menacing villain straight from central casting.