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Victor Gorelick – RIP

Archie artist and editor Victor Gorelick has passed away.

Archie Comics announced on Twitter:

Victor Gorelick
April 5, 1941 – February 8, 2020

 

From the CBR (aka Comic Book Resources) notice:

Gorelick joined Archie Comics at 16 and served in a variety of roles at the company. He became Archie Comics’ editor-in-chief in 2007. The next year, in 2008, Gorelick received an Inkpot Award for his achievements in the comics industry. Outside of Archie Comics, Gorelick worked with such organizations as the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art, the Comic Magazine Association of America’s Code Authority Guidelines Committee and worked as an instructor at New York’s Kingsborough Community College.

From the obituary:

Victor proudly served his country in the U.S. Navy from 1960-64. Victor started working at Archie Comics his senior year of high school and was lucky to be able to continue to work as a freelancer during his service. Victor took pride in his work learning all the ins and outs of the comic book trade and worked his way up the ladder to Editor-in-Chief. Victor’s last words were he hoped that his work at Archie Comics put a smile on peoples faces.

A career spanning interview with Victor from 2005:

1st: You were underage when you started at Archie Comics, how did you originally get hired?

Victor: Dexter Taylor, who worked in the production department at Archie Comics, was going free-lance. Bob Bolling needed an artist to assist him on the Little Archie book. Dexter jumped at the opportunity. But, he had to be replaced. Industrial Art had a job placement service. The person in charge of production at Archie Comics, Sheldon Brodsky, a former graduate of the school, contacted the service. The cartooning class was notified and a few of us set up appointments. I was interviewed by the Managing Editor, Richard Goldwater. A few days later, I received a phone call from Sheldon Brodsky that the job was mine if I wanted it. So here I am.

 

Comic Strips


above: Willie Lumpkin January 31, 1960 via The Fabulous Fifties.

Victor’s entry in the Jerry Bails’ Who’s Who of American Comic Books has Gorelick as colorist of the Willie Lumpkin comic strip. The comic strip ran from December 1959 to May 1961. The artist on the strip was Dan de Carlo who, at the time, worked for Archie Comics and so may have known Victor from the Archie production department. As noted above Victor joined the U. S. Navy in 1960, so he may have been the colorist of the early Willie Lumpkin Sundays.

 

Two years ago Fernando Ruiz remembered his time as artist of the Archie comic strip,
and seemed to imply that editing the comic strip was a part of Victor’s duties:

I think I’d done about five years worth of strips in total. During that time, Archie Comics had undergone many changes including acquiring new management. In 2011, I was told that they were no longer going to be producing new strips. The strip would continue but it would now be reprints largely from the DeCarlo era. These strips would receive some “corrective surgery” in order to appear contemporary and fresh. TV’s were turned to flat screens and telephones would be turned into cell phones. It was a sad end for what was once one of the most popular comic strips in the World. There was no doubt that the strip had lost a lot of its popularity. It was no longer in millions of newspapers world wide. In fact, my editor Victor Gorelick told me that the number of papers globally that carried both the Sunday strip as well as the dailies was just three. At one point, even the local newspaper in Mamaroneck, New York, where Archie Comics was headquartered, dropped the strip.

 

 

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