Interviews: GUTSVILLE's fate and Infantino's final interview

gutsville02 p5 Interviews: GUTSVILLE's fate and Infantino's final interview
§ GUTSVILLE was one of the highest concept comics ever, a Hawthorne-esque melodrama of a society that lives inside some giant beast. Written by Si Spurrier with art by Frazer Irving, the first issue came out in May 2007, to good reviews, and two issues eked out over the next two years. But it seems to have run aground. Now Rich Johnston quizzes Spurrier on What Ever Happened to Gutsville and the answer isn’t the happy one we’d want, as Irving can’t fit the last three issues into his schedule:

Bleeding Cool: So what happens now? In a Marvelman style do you bring Alan Davis on board?

Spurrier: Heh. That would be nice… I dunno: it’s fucking tricky. I mean… You go riiiight back to the beginning and || the setup was gloriously efficient. Fraze had had a run of good work and was flush enough to be able to take || 6 months out to do something which paid fuck-all along the way. He loved the Gutsville pitch and that was that. || …and to start with it worked perfectly. He’s super-quick at top speed. The first ep took 20 days, and looks amazing. || So do I want to finish it with someone else? Not really, because I’ve had a taste of how amazing it *could* be || For whatever reason Fraze slowed down then stopped. I don’t want to farm it out to anyone else if there’s the slightest || chance he can get going again.


Can’t we all raid our penny jars and gather a fund to get Irving started on finishing this? Please?

§ Graphic NYC has what they bill as “Carmine Infantino’s final interview.” The artistic giant and former DC publisher finds himself much concerned with his legacy:

“Let me ask you a question,” Carmine Infantino says at the end of our interview. His voice normally reaches the lows of a mumble, except when he has a point.

Like now.

“Where do you think I fit in the whole picture of comics?” he asks with an air of sincerity, as if he were asking if the sky was really blue. “Be honest. A lot of people don’t like what I did as editor, but some did.”

Comments

  1. History is on Infantino’s side. Sure, he’s taken a lot of hits for cutting off Kirby’s Fourth World books, but in doing that we got Kamandi, The Last Boy on Earth and The Demon. As Editorial Director and Publisher at DC, he developed some artistic maturity at the company. He stands tall in my book!

  2. Synsidar says:

    This tribute:

    Infantino was so adept at creating striking images that, after Marvel’s failed 1967 attempt to steal him away, the veteran went on to become DC’s artistic director … then editorial director … and then publisher. One of his first moves in the top post: luring Kirby away from the House of Ideas and onto the DC roster. Don’t think for a minute that talent doesn’t recognize talent.

    and biography:

    In 1967 he became DC’s editor in chief and prompted the company to take several bold steps in innovative design. DC was a relatively homogenous comic company, preferring to maintain a “family” type atmosphere in it’s comics, whereas Marvel was far more revolutionary in forward cultural movement.

    One of the things he did was to hire (now) legendary artist Neal Adams, who helped to start a movement resulting in greater creator’s rights throughout the industry.

    Then in 1971, Carmine was appointed publisher, in addition to editor. This appointment in commonly acknowledged as the reason for DC regaining a top spot in the publishing business. In 1974 he became president of DC, leaving the company in 1976 over a dispute with corporate heads of the parent company, ending 30 years of association with DC.

    indicate that Infantino needn’t have wondered much about his legacy.

    SRS

  3. “Where do you think I fit in the whole picture of comics?”

    I can’t imagine a more poignant question from someone who’s been so influential in the modern history of the medium.

  4. I’m just a fan and not in the “biz” so I don’t have a clue what he was like to work with or for Mr. Infantino, but the first comics I read regularly were the “Star Wars” books he did and I really liked and still like his style of artwork to this day. Not sure of his health or whether or not he can still draw, but I would have loved to see him do an alternate cover or something for “Flash: Rebirth.” One of these days I’ll hopefully get around to reading his autobiography and gain a whole new appreciation of him beyond “just” his artwork.

  5. I have always admired Infantino’s drawing. A combination of architect, designer and illustrator.

  6. jimmy palmiotti says:

    carmine is and will always be awesome. i think the world of him and his talent.

  7. I had the great experience of studying composition and design for comics from Carmine at SVA. I didn’t realize how much Carmine has meant to, and influenced the industry, until years after I graduated. I always loved the design of the old reprints of his Batman stories I had in my Batman from the 1930’s to the 1970’s book (which he also edited). But was amazed by the innovation he brought to the art form with his cover designs (Flash and Batman) as well as the cool visual effects he experimented on with the FLash comics. I recently looked back at some of the sketches he had done to correct story telling mistakes I had made on assignments and have so much admiration and respect to the man for his brillance and honesty. Carmine never pulled a punch. If you were a F*cker, he told you to your face that you were a F*cker, and I truly respect that about the man. I hope for the benefit for those who have yet to explore his work, that Carmine will be around for many years to come and have many works to offer.
    I agree with Drew, a Variant cover of Flash Rebirth only seems fitting and appropriate.

  8. Steve Brumbaugh says:

    As one of the great designer artists in comics, Carmine will always have a prominent place. But it’s his tenure as “boss” at DC that I will always remember most. DC went from being mostly old fashioned writing oriented comics to AMAZING artist oriented comics. Given his hiring of artists (Kubert, Orlando, Giordano, etc.) as editors, this wasn’t surprising, but it was NEW.

    Marvel had lost most of their creative dynamism and DC was exciting again! Personally, I went to college and dropped comics for a year or two. I never would have come back (it’s all your fault Carmine!) if not for Kirby’s Fourth World comics, Wrightson, Chaykin, Kaluta, on and on. Not to mention “Swanderson”! Marvel started making the big bucks, but DC had something incredible every month.

    Carmine Infantino will always be one of the true comics immortals to me; maybe not a genius like Barks or Kelly or Eisner, but one of the GREATS.

  9. Jamie says:

    FRAZER IRVING! F-R-A-Z-E-R! No “I”!

Trackbacks

  1. […] Legendary artist and publisher Carmine Infantino was the subject of an interview on the Graphic NYC website last week, and it seems that he takes issue with some of the handling of the piece. Since we gave the interview a prominent spot, we’re giving his rebuttal equal prominence: “Some weeks back, I granted an interview to Mr. Christopher Irving, who brought along a few friends, one of whom photographed me. Mr. Irving promised that I could look over the materials before publication. Imagine my surprise when I found out that both the interview, which was turned into an essay, and the photographs, were posted on the internet before I had a chance to review them. Not only am I displeased with Mr. Irving for not keeping his word to me, but I also object to his describing my physical health in a negative way, as if I was about to die. Irving reinforced this image by labeling the essay as Carmine Infantino’s Final Interview. I was unaware until now that I had died. I may be an 84 year old man with some health issues, but I am not at death’s door. Also, I never stated that this was my final interview, as I have given one since then, and if the opportunity arises, I may do more. When I complained about the essay title, Mr. Irving promised to change the title, but all he did was add a question mark at the end. If he’s expecting me to die soon, I wish he’d tell that to my sister-in-law, who’s cooking dinner for me next week. I asked him to remove the bad language from the interview, which he did. However, he has not fixed the historical inaccuracies in the piece, most of which consist of his own lack of research. When discussing my decision to have Murphy Anderson redraw Jack Kirby’s Superman and Jimmy Olsen faces, Irving states, “Carmine now admits this was a mistake.” I never said any such thing, and I still stand by my original decision. I asked Irving to remove this comment, and he has yet to do so. I had not intended to go public with this, but because Irving has painted an inaccurate portrait of me nor has he kept his promises after our last private conversation, I have no choice but to disassociate myself with this article. I have learned one lesson, though. From now on, I’ll be more careful about granting interviews to disrespectful amateurs. […]

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