Well, Not the Kitchen Sink

It’s throw it out there Thursday – a gathering of gleanings.

Editoons v. Memes; Newspaper Troubles; Battling Book Banners; and what your heirs will do with all those comics.


Graeme MacKay, “One of the last staff editorial cartoonists still slogging away at a daily newspaper,” discusses the difference between editorial cartoons and memes, and the unauthorized use of one to turn into the other.

© Graeme MacKay

… While memes and editorial cartoons may share visual elements, it’s important to appreciate their distinct purposes and creation processes. Memes can spread rapidly across the internet due to their relatability and humour, whereas editorial cartoons are crafted to deliver thought-provoking messages and are shared with the understanding that they won’t be altered …

Newspaper Death Watch – Trouble in Paradise

© John Pritchett/Honolulu Civil Beat

Honolulu Civil Beat is reporting troubling times for Hawaiian newspapers:

Oahu Publications Inc. is making more cuts in the newsroom of the state’s largest daily newspaper, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser…

The Honolulu-based publishing company flagged 31 employees across all departments for removal in June 2020. 10 editorial employees left in 2017 and in 2016, the company trimmed the newsroom by more than 10%.


Separately, the Ogden Newspapers, a group that operates over 50 daily newspapers across the country, recently announced that it’s looking to sell The Maui News, which covers Maui, Molokai and Lanai.

The cutbacks are in line with media industry trends. There have been over 17,000 media layoffs so far this year, according to a June industry report.

You Shouldn’t Read That Book

Book bans in the United States are nothing new. From the very first ban in 1637 over a book that critiqued Puritans, to outlawing antislavery books in the 1850s, to blocking books allegedly encouraging Communism or socialism during the McCarthy era, American history is littered with examples of literary censorship.

Illustration and SLJ August cover by Victor Juhasz © Victor Juhasz/School Library Journal

Andrew Bauld, for SJL, reports on authors, librarians, teachers, and free speech advocates taking on the banners.

The latest wave of book banning attempts has been marked by vitriolic language and personal attacks. Librarians and authors have been accused of being groomers and pedophiles. Taking legal action is one way to fight back.

But Who Gets the Comic Books?

Richard Pini and Wendy Pini, whose comic book fantasy series ElfQuest debuted in 1978, wrestled with what to do with her body of work for most of their professional lives.

Over the years, they had amassed thousands of pages, including all the original art for the series, which was edited by Mr. Pini, 73, and drawn and written by Ms. Pini, 72. “He would never envision selling off the work individually,” Ms. Pini said.

photo: Tony Cenicola/The New York Times

George Gene Gustines, at The New York Times, explores what becomes of comic collectors’ collections afterward.

… But many collections are destined for less hallowed institutions. When the end comes, families sometimes go to the most convenient source — a local comic book store, a pawnshop — and may only get a fraction of what their collections are worth. In other cases, a collection is worth much less than what the owner, or inheritor, thought.

On a Related Note:

What to Do With All This Ephemera?

Our collections of comics pale next to that of Richard Marschall‘s.

Richard Marschall is among the most prolific of a breed of popular ephemera collectors-assemblers-scholars. He has written and edited more than 62 books on cultural topics, including the history of comics, television and country music (many he talks about below). He has documented the history of comic strips in two magazines he edited: Nemo, the Classic Comics Library and Hogan’s Alley. For Marvel, he founded the slick graphic story magazine Epic Illustrated. He has edited massive runs of comic strips (Peanuts, BC, Dick Tracy), scripted for graphic novels and animated cartoons (ThunderCats) and edited a book with Dr. Seuss.

The resume goes on and on, far beyond comics and cartoons.

Steven Heller interviews the respected historian on a lifetime of collecting popular culture artifacts.

Among the topics broached was what happens to it all when Richard goes to meet his reward:

Yes, it is an emotional, not only a practical, decision. As Grover Cleveland said about the problem of a government budget surplus (those were the good old days!), it is a condition, not a theory, that confronts me. I have earmarked for my children the chunks of my archives they want to inherit—art and philosophy and religious books for my daughter; Theodore Roosevelt rarities for my son Theodore; also history, Civil War, World War II material. Then, there are reference books and special materials I will retain at the moment for books, projects and exhibitions I am planning before I reach that ol’ horizon. For the (vast amount) of other material, I am at the first stages of deaccession.

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