Saturday, August 12, 2017

My Dad's Classics Illustrated

As a young child in the cold and dark times before the internet, I used to love reading my Dad's comic books that he had collected when he was a kid.  He had funny one's like Mad Magazine, but I also loved reading his Classics Illustrated.

Classics Illustrated were exactly what they sound like, short illustrated versions of classic novels in comic book form, so they were very easy to understand for kids.  I really like these and read certain of them over and over again.

I've read the "real" versions of most of them, but I can still see the comic book versions in my mind so easily!  I did a quick search for covers and these immediately jumped out at me and took me back:

And speaking of Wuthering Heights, there have been a ton of film versions of course and I do enjoy watching them.  When I was young I thought Heathcliff was so romantic, now of course I think he's a psychopath (but that's another blog post).  When it comes to his death scene, I don't really see the film's death scene, what overplays the film is what's in my mind's eye, which is the panel from the Classics Illustrated version I grew up reading which is this:

Why look, it's dead Heathcliff.

Dead Heathcliff!


OMG anonymous Classics Illustrated illustrator, did you have any idea what an impact you'd have on a small child seeing this?  It's the stuff of nightmares!!!!

But soul-crushing dead psychopaths who kill themselves to be with their objects of obsession aside, my absolute favorite Classics Illustrated is one that isn't well known today - it's a Mark Twain story:  Pudd'nhead Wilson!

Where has this story been all these years?  It's got drama, murder, baby-switching, blackmail, Italian noblemen, early use of forensics, everything you could ask for!  Much better than Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn lololol.  I'd tell you about it, but I don't want to ruin it for you!

So anyway, thanks for sharing your Classics Illustrated with me Dad, I really really enjoyed them, and NEVER would have heard of Pudd'nhead Wilson without them!

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