Bijou #8 (Mad parody) - Krupp Comic Works and Kitchen Sink Press - 1973 - 32 pages

This is the eighth and last issue of an "underground" comic book generally known as Bijou Funnies.  In many ways, this is also the most ambitious parody of that comic book style.  The cover was drawn by the great Harvey Kurtzman [1924-1993] in the style of his Tales Calculated to Drive You Mad that rocked the comic book world in 1952.  Kurtzman's cover shows two naked lovers desperately holding each other in the midst of a dangerous city.  Inside are eleven short comic stories by underground writers/artists spoofing the styles of their colleagues.  All of it has been created with a nod to the ground-breaking Mad style with appropriate Mad words ("furshlugginer", "Melvin", etc.) and chicken fat.  The first article ("Geek Brothers!") by Jay Lynch [1945-2017] is a parody of The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers by Gilbert Shelton.  Lynch threw in several Wallace Wood characters on the splash.  Chicken fat includes a Mickey Mouse skeleton, various cigar-shaped nose jokes, "Boast No Pills" sign, a Yoko Ono/Linda Eastman bit, spittoon, Charlie Chaplin, hair curlers, etc.).  The tale ends at "The Gary Arlington [1938-2014] Memorial Old Comix Characters Home" with cameos by Mr. Natural, Wonder Warthog, Oat Willie and other underground comic stars.  The Geek Brothers are followed by "Snazzy Melvin Snoot!" by William "Don" Stout (parody of Snappy Sammy Smoot by Skip Williamson [1944-2017]) and "Melvin Natural!" by Williamson (parody of Robert Crumb characters).  Snazzy Melvin runs into some characters of Will Elder [1921-2008] including The Mole and Stumble, and then gets arrested by Dick Tracy, becomes Little Orphan Annie after a shampoo, and is then hand-cuffed by Charlie Brown.  The splash page of Melvin Natural also features some Wood characters and a parody of Crumb's Flakey Foont ("Funky Feet").  The most clever parody in the issue is "Melvin Wizard!" by Pat Daley.  Artist Daley faithfully recreates the Cheech Wizard world of Vaughn Bode [1941-1975] and slowly transforms it into the Okefenokee Swamp and Pogo world of Walt Kelly [1913-1973].  Cheech/Pogo and Lizard/Albert are last seen rowing their boat towards the sparkle and glitter of Disney World.  After Cheech/Pogo, R. Crumb ("Arzy Crumbzy") contributed "Pard 'N' Nat", an excellent parody of Nard n' Pat by Jay Lynch.  The final five parodies get much deeper into the nastier aspects of the underground comics scene as Bijou #8 moves away from its parody of Kurtzman's Mad.  Although the history of the underground comic book movement was rather short, there were some great artists/humorists playing to the selective audience.  This parody published at the end of the phenomenon perfectly captures the highs and lows of the genre.  [JAM 6/19/2017]

Front Cover - Tales Calculated to Sell You Bijou (Harvey Kurtzman)
Inside Front Cover - Editorial re 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision

Departments:
1 - Three Heads Are Better Than One - Geek Brothers by "Jaybert Lynchton" (Jay Lynch)
4 - Smashin' the State - Snazzy Melvin Snoot! by (William) Don Stout
7 - Guru - Melvin Natural! by Skip Williamson
10 - Teenage - Hungry Irving Biscuits by Denis Kitchen
13 - Neo-Tolkein - Melvin Wizard! by Pat Daley
16 - Pard 'N' Nat by "Arzy Crumbzy" (R. Crumb)
20 - Truth-in-the-Media - Inside Dopes by "Dim Kitsch" (Bill Griffith parody of Kim Deitch)
23 - Bufo Boffo by "Griffy" (Kim Deitch parody of Bill Griffith's Zippy)
26 - Checkered Cherub! by Justin Considine Green
29 - The Wiper by "Skeetee Grunt" (Willy Murphy)
32 - Hard-Hitting Propaganda in Comic Strip Form - Mashman Meets Spleen Queen! by "Teena" (Jay Kinney)

Back Cover - Bijou ad by Ralph Reese (similar to Mad ad re competitors)