Joltin’ Joe under the weather

Joe Sinnott, Jim Steranko, Mark Sinnott

Joe Sinnott, Jim Steranko, Mark Sinnott

Joe Sinnott hasn’t been feeling well lately, and he even pressed his son Mark into service finishing the inking job on the latest Sunday installment of the Spider-Man syndicated comic strip for Stan Lee. Although Joe checked out fine on Monday he’s suddenly come down with a case of pneumonia and he’ll be at a hospital for a couple of days. Mark’s wife Belinda says that Joe should be okay, dehydration is his biggest problem, and I’m looking forward to hearing that he’s home again and resting and back as his drawing table.

Where have all the papers gone?

Bill Watterson ended “Calvin & Hobbes” at the end of 1995, the year that the Internet revolution began, thanks in great part to Windows 95 with its built-in support for TCP/IP. It was the beginning of the end for newspapers — which had been predicted as far back as 1972 — so Watterson got out when the getting was good.

There’s a documentary about the future, or the lack of it, for syndicated newspaper comic strips. It’s called, naturally enough, “Stripped.” Bill Watterson drew the poster for it, his first published cartoon in almost twenty years.


Wait! No! Sorry. That’s Violante Placido. Here’s the Watterson drawing.

Watterson Stripped

And here’s the trailer for the documentary. The video is available only on iTunes, which means I won’t see it until it’s on Amazon or Netflix.

Feeling in the pink

A week already since I posted something. Being Sunday again, my usual routine is to listen to the Beeb, and today’s Johnny Walker’s Sounds of the 70′s on BBC Radio 2 featured Mike McGear, otherwise known as Paul McCartney’s kid brother, who played a bit of “Lily the Pink.” Mike’s on the left in this video, with a song he and his mates in the Scaffold put out in 1968.

Before Lily, the Scaffold had this ditty. I knew these records from WBCN in Boston, which was the first American outlet for Monty Python.

More BBC on Sunday

‘Been enjoying a very funny series on BBC Radio 4 from a few years ago, called 1966 and All That. I was happily surprised to hear Eleanor Bron, best known in the U.S. as Ahme in the Beatles movie “HELP!”

And speaking of BBC Radio 4, Brian Sibley has announced on his Facebook page that he’s been given the go-ahead for another series.

After a year-long negotiation, I have just signed a contract with the BBC to adapt T H White’s THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING as six 1-hour dramas for BBC Radio 4 this coming autumn! :-)

THE ONCE AND FUTURE KING was the source material for Walt Disney’s THE SWORD IN THE STONE and Alan Jay Lerner and Frederick Loewe’s CAMELOT.

The “They Don’t Know” I didn’t know

Today I heard a record from 1979 for the first time. Johnny Walker’s Sounds of the 70′s on BBC Radio 2 played the late Kirsty MacColl’s “They Don’t Know.” I enjoy simple, accessible songwriting like this.

The only version I knew of MacColl’s song was Tracey Ullman’s cover, featuring a cameo by another Mac, pre-Sir Paul. I can tell this came from the era of the Bangles.