Inspired by my parent’s traditional Christmas letter, in 1985 I began a holiday tradition of my own, creating original holiday pieces to share with my friends and family. Sometimes these have been woodcuts or poems or die cut cards … but my favorite pieces (not surprisingly) have been comics!
For most of the past decade, these pieces have centered around Watusi the talking dog and his supporting cast from my weekly adventure strip (new each Wednesday at www.watusithetalkingdog.com), often tying into the storyline then running in it:
- “Watusi’s White Christmas” (2003) was originally published as a minicomic.
- “Wrapping up Christmas” (2008) came with a customized gift tag as part of its cover.
- “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” (2006) was the first solo Professor Harvey and Mitchell comic.
- “The Green Line” (2005) had a hand-stencilled cover. It’s been fully colored for this collection. (And I laughed when I read it, in spite of myself)
Hapless hot dog vendor “Flamin’ Frank” (1999) was a character I used frequently before Watusi came along. Sadly, much of what would have been his supporting cast has been co-oped by Watusi, too! The original version of this comic came singed as my way of wishing readers “all the warmth of this holiday season.”
Likely my favorite holiday comic– certainly the most elaborate– is 2000’s “Three Wise Men”. Adapting my favorite part of the Nativity story, I did research into King Herod and the historical period, gaining new respect for the Magi in the process. Kings in their own right, they were crossing into the kingdom of a ruler beset with illness (Jewish historian Josephus described him as “suffering from uncontrollable itching, coughing, fever and worms”), haunted by the spirits of the wife and children he’d already murdered, and allied with the powerful Roman Empire. These men put their own lives on the line, all to pay homage to a newborn baby. It certainly gave me a new sense of their bravery and what a powerful effect that star had for them.
I hope you enjoy these comics with my best wishes for the season; they’re available in two formats:
- The print edition is available from my Square store for $3.00 postpaid in the US (or old school mail order; direct order info on my Contact page).
- The .pdf version is available from my Gumroad store for $2.00.
But, for those of you who read to the end of this post, you can get a .pdf copy for FREE! As this year winds down, I’m conducting a survey to better understand my readers, their reading habits & interests, and their thoughts on my comic. I hope you’ll take a moment to share your opinion (survey starts here); complete the survey before the end of 2016, and you get a code for a FREE copy of Festive Funnies. Thanks for your help!