Saturday, October 31, 2015
I grew up reading Mad Magazine. It was a lot of fun at the time, though it seems a lot less clever now. But I always liked the art. And I always liked the Spy Vs. Spy comics, with their over-the-top ultraviolence and ghoulish giddiness.
My enjoyment of Spy Vs. Spy may have been influenced by the fact that it was single-serving; in each issue of Mad you could expect to find only one or two pages devoted to the diabolical duo. I recently found (and read) a collection of the comic and the humor palled by the third story.
The art was as good as Spy Vs. Spy ever is - there's a lot to be said for the way that Antonio Prohias manages to ignore and subvert perspective and composition. He can cram an awful lot of information into a single, simple panel and this book may be more useful as reference than as entertainment because of Prohias's impressive command of the page.
I'll probably never read this book again. I didn't enjoy it, it wasn't fun, and I found myself getting angry at the book really quickly. But I've already used it once as a sort of tutorial on black-on-black inking and I'm sure I'm going to end up doing so again.
Prohias, Antonio. Spy Vs. Spy: Casebook of Craziness. Fall River Press. New York: New York. 2014.