Remembering Wendel

I love it when someone besides me remembers my 1980s comic strip Wendel, as has Kentucky blogger Steve Thompson this week. Steve wrote to tell me that last Wednesday’s entry of his pop-culture site Booksteve’s Library was devoted to my fondly-recalled gay strawhead, whose life was chronicled for readers of The Advocate between 1983 and 1989.

Illustrating Steve’s post is his copy of Wendel on the Rebound, an early compilation of strips from the series that was published in 1989 by St. Martin’s Press. Unfortunately, any of Steve’s readers who are inspired enough by his generous comments about my work to try and track down that particular book will have to haunt dusty used book racks (like this online one), since it and its predecessor (Wendel, Gay Presses of New York) have been out of print for a dozen years now.

I’m happy to report, though, that everything that was first collected in Wendel, Wendel on the Rebound, and Kitchen Sink’s 1990 Wendel Comix has subsequently been reprinted in Olmstead Press’s 2001 omnibus collection Wendel All Together, which can still be purchased online and (very) occasionally even at bricks-and-mortar bookstores. Besides assembling the entire Wendel series from beginning to end, the latter collection comes (to adopt DVD-Speak for a moment) with "Special Features" and — as Wolf Blitzer enjoys saying on CNN — "much, much more!"

Steve’s blog, by the way, is fun to read even when he isn’t writing about me. He’s erudite about manifestations of our cultural heritage that less discerning observors typically decline to expend their erudition upon. Already my horizons have been expanded to include awareness of what I gather was an interestingly bad 1971 movie I’ve never heard of (Kill Kill Kill) and an actress I’ve never heard of who seems to have met an unfortunate fate (Christa Helm) — and those are just from Steve’s posts for this week! I’ve added his blog to my "Blogmates" list so I can return frequently to further enrich my education.

About Howard

I'm a cartoonist and writer, best known for my graphic novel, Stuck Rubber Baby, and my comic strip from the 1980s, Wendel.
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0 Responses to Remembering Wendel

  1. Clay M. says:

    Howard — I just picked up the omnibus from Amazon. It is delightful. As a young gay guy and a (part-time) cartoonist, I find the work appealing on many levels. The focus on the lives of these characters, as opposed to the politics (although god knows those haven’t changed as much as we might hope) makes the strips really fresh. Thanks, too, for showing a young couple in a committed relationship — something that still is seldom portrayed in “gay media” these days.

  2. Howard says:

    Thanks for your note, Heather. That’s good for morale!

  3. Heather says:

    Wondrously, I just picked up Wendel All Together at the Philadelphia Free Library, only a day before you posted this 😀 So, the libraries have got you covered, too!