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Gary Groth and Kim Thompson, FANTAGRAPHICS, THE COMICS JOURNAL editors: Mr. Media Audio Interview

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Fantagraphics guys plot a graphic demise for Mr. Media!


Instead of chasing girls or putting his nose to the grindstone, Gary Groth published a comic book fanzine throughout high school.

In 1975, after acquiring a half-assed education by attending four different colleges and graduating from none, he partnered up with a friend, Mike Catron, and decided that the best way to start a publishing company was to make a pot load of capital by putting on a rock ‘n’ roll convention. Rock ‘N’ Roll Expo, which boasted an appearance by a semi-stoned Hunter S. Thompson, among others, was a financial disaster, but they started a publishing company anyway.

In 1976, Groth co-founded Fantagraphics Books by editing and publishing The Comics Journal, which quickly acquired a reputation within the comics profession as anomalous, elitist, persnickety, and muckraking. The magazine was devoted to a) positing lofty standards that few comics readers thought were attainable or even desirable and b) verbally whipsawing anyone who didn’t agree with those standards, and c) championing the rights of comics creators who had traditionally been treated like scum by an autocratic industry.

Under the stewardship of Groth and his partner Kim Thompson, Fantagraphics went on to publish graphic novels including many books by pioneering cartoonists who had become established icons such as R. Crumb and Jules Feiffer; classic newspaper strips such as Popeye, Little Nemo, Little Orphan Annie, and Peanuts; and a new generation of cartoonists such as Chris Ware, Ivan Brunetti, Jim Woodring, Megan Kelso, and many others
Kim Thompson, Eric Reynolds, Gary Groth
Kim Thompson, Eric Reynolds, Gary Groth
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Kim Thompson
Gary Groth
Fantagraphics
The Comics Journal
Chris Ware
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