Genius, Isolated: The Life and Art of Alex Toth [Hardcover]
Dean Mullaney (Author), Bruce Canwell (Author)
* Hardcover: 328 pages
* Publisher: IDW Publishing (May 10, 2011)
* Language: English
* ISBN-10: 1600108288
* ISBN-13: 978-1600108280
* Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 9.6 x 1.5 inches
Roy Rogers: The Collected Daily and Sunday Newspaper Strips [Hardcover]*
* NOTE: As mentioned in the forums, Alex ghosted on this strip for less than a month (12-19-1960 to 1-12-1961). So this book may be for the Toth completists only..
In an example of Dean Mullaney and Bruce Canwell's dedication and hard work, the awaited biography of Alex Toth will be presented in three volumes starting in March 2011.
In an email back in October, Dean Mullaney reported that "Bruce Canwell's bio text is already over 30,000 words and he still has a little ways to go!"
Also thanks to cooperation of Fans, Lorraine Turner (Associate Art Director) and the Toth Family, this series of volumes will be filled with detail and art from Alex Toth that will likely never be surpassed.
Fear and suspense can be effectively created by the inference of the unknown. What is shown can be less harrowing than what is implied and then forms in the imagination of the reader. The late cartoonist Alexander Toth disliked drawing explicit horror and violence in the style of E.C., what he called “gore-gulping grind and grunge.” His preferred taste was for adventure fare appropriate for general audiences. However, throughout his career as an interpretive comic artist, he worked mainly on short stories for anthology titles and so he drew many horror stories. The artists of Toth’s generation drew comics primarily for children. When called upon to actually show ghouls and demons, he most often made them as flimsy as the harmless monsters he designed for children’s TV cartoons. Still, Toth is one of the greatest of America’s horror comics stylists because he believably renders the emotions of characters who face shadowy, barely-seen terrors."
With my new post of Toth's primer on TV Animation 'TV Cartoons', I thought I would look for a few Toth cartoons online tonight.
There is no shortage of them on Youtube, etc. A few 'Space Ghost And Dino Boy' Cartoons are online @ theWB.com. So I thought I would start there. Unfortunately, the plots on these cartoon are non-existent, dull and the designs have been watered down by nameless animators, but the clever Toth character, creature and other designs can still be sussed out. The plots fall so far from the high-water mark that Hanna-Barbera achieved with Jonny Quest that it is really sad. You can see why Toth got frustrated with the industry.
But HB shows like these clearly stood out to many of us as children. I have heard from modern animators that these shows were monumental influences that they have brought into modern cartoons. So if you have a few minutes see if you can spot Toth’s vision.
While I'm sure "a nickel a page" is probably an exaggeration, I don't doubt you that the colorists' pay wasn't the greatest -- too bad too, because it certainly was/is an important part of the equation.
I noticed that myself, especially page 7, panel 5. Perhaps Mort assisted him on this one. The hand on that panel is all Toth, though. On page 3, panel 3, the character on the far left looks as if drawn by Jack Sparling