Thursday, June 2, 2011
Not Ignatz and Krazy Kat, Mind You
I need a graphic novel. I don't mean that I'm looking for one to read; I can find one myself. I know where 741.5 holdings are shelved in Dewey. What I meant is that I need to have a graphic novel written and drawn in which I am, naturally, the star character. Is that too much to ask? Of course not. I'm glad we agree.
I'm not talking about silly cartoon characters here. No Ignatz and Krazy Kat, although they were pioneers in early comic strip (1913-1944) and animated silent movie days. Not familiar? Watch this.
Okay, that's a 1916 silent film, and American humor was different a century ago, obviously, but Krazy Kat looks like a monkey, and Ignatz lacks the screen presence delivered in the comic strip. With all due respect to George Herriman and his chief supporter, William Randolph Hearst, this is basically a one-joke premise.
That's It, Pretty Much. End of Story.
That caricatured presentation is no good for moi. What I need is something much more modern, subtle, stylish, realistic, and substantive. Let's see . . . Purrrrrrrr . . . (helps me think) . . .
Well, Joann Sfar is a bit too sophisticated for my taste. No, I think what I'm after is a mystery/adventure genre. Not really superhero, but perhaps more like a feline detective or something. Got anything I can use?
Of course, whenever I think about graphic novels and a feline motif, I think, quite rightly, of Selina Kyle (Catwoman) from the Batman series. Surely, everyone knows about this character.
There are, of course, the modern movie interpretations by capable actresses such as Halle Berry (although hers was a really awful movie) or Michelle Pfeiffer or, now, apparently, Anne Hathaway, but, for my money, the best portrayal was by Julie Newmar in the Batman television series (1966-1968).
Autographed and Inscribed by Julie Newmar. How Cool is That?
Ms. Newmar was a leading lady on 1960s television. She had just completed My Living Doll (1964-1965) on CBS when ABC started Batman, which attracted all the big names in television, movies, and theater to do guest appearances. She also appeared in an episode of The Monkees. (Thanks, Scowl-Face, for all this obsessive historical research. At least we know you weren't watching Batman to see Adam West or Burt Ward, nice as these fellows were. Well, there was also Batgirl, played by actress Yvonne Craig. Hey, Barbara Gordon was a librarian, right?)
Yvonne Craig as Barbara Gordon/Batgirl
From the Batman Television Series (Second Season, 1967-1968)
I appear to have digressed rather much. The point is, I need a graphic novel devoted to my exciting adventures as a feline roving reporter. Anybody out there who can draw and write in the graphic novel format?
No Need For a Costume, Thankfully,
Cauli Le Chat
MPL Roving Reporter
Graphic Novel News Beat
P.S. Here's an clip from the Batman TV series from 1966, featuring Catwoman (Julie Newmar) and Batman (Adam West). Remember, the show is supposed to be campy and over-the-top. The actors and actresses ham-it-up for the camera, big-time, which is part of the program's appeal. It's satire, folks, at its corniest. Even after several of my nine lives, it's a hoot to watch.