Navigation Secrets

The source material for last week’s comics were proofs that my grandfather was sent by the NEA midway through the production cycle — I’m not sure how they were printed, but they are on nice heavy stock. Kreigh would paint on them with water colors and they would be used by the syndicate to generate the color films used in printing the comic.

This week, the comics come from other NEA proofs, but these ones would arrive just prior to the comics coming out in the Sunday funnies, and they included the syndicate’s other comic features, as well. The only disadvantage to these ones is the tabloid format, and the missing throwaway panels. Nonetheless, they are crisp reproductions of the original artwork.

Meanwhile, aboard the Polaris, Kevin is discretely trying to uncover the Spaniards’ secrets to navigating to the West Indies. Surprisingly, he is not alone.

KTB 081664 BT 150 cc

KTB 082364 BT 150 cc

Marco, also trying to uncover the navigational secrets, is on edge. The Polaris sails westward, and loyalties become blurred.

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Enraged, Marco worries that Kevin has found his notes, which would lead to his certain death. However, the tension is cut momentarily, with a lovely illustration of a forlorn Estrella, much like a siren, beckoning the readers to stay tuned.


For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, please visit his page on Facebook.

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Sailing for Hispaniola

Unbelieving that his fiancée has been has been lost at sea, Diego has stowed away in a ship bound for Haiti, in a valiant search for her. And what do you know…

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Estrella’s desperate plea for help is on target, but in vain.

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Pedro is able to make quick work of his task after spending most of his time eating. This is a running joke that continues whenever Pedro appears — even after the comic strip morphs into “Up Anchor!,” in which the characters Kevin and Pedro are again prominent.

KTB 080264 BWP 150

KTB 080964 BWP 150

While Pedro wraps up some loose ends, Kevin starts snooping around for knowledge of the Spaniards’ navigational secrets.


For more information on of Kreigh Collins’ career, visit his page on Facebook.

Best-laid plans

To follow last week’s post, which dealt with travel and this blog’s far-flung visitors, I had the idea to run a “Kevin the Bold” sequence with comics from my collection that appeared in a Québec newspaper. Because they had been translated into French, it seemed appropriate — most of my blog’s visitors were from France. I planned to run English versions, too.

After I started collecting my grandfather’s comics, these were the second batch I acquired — some one-third pages covering most of 1964. I hadn’t looked at them in a while, and I remembered them being rather sub-standard reproductions. Nonetheless, after two years of posting, and with this blog’s rather limited scope, I’m willing to try any angle.

The following sequence featured the young Spanish lovers Estrella and Diego. Since I didn’t have the French version of the opener, this printer’s proof of the English version would have to suffice. (I had French versions of the sequence’s remaining episodes).

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KTB 070564 TH Fr 300

However, once I dug out the French-Canadian comics, mon dieu! I realized it would be a misguided attempt to honor my French readers — the tops were sheared off the comics and much of the dialog was lost. Adding insult to injury, this week the U.S. nosed past France as far as blog visitors are concerned. So I guess there is some justification in continuing the comics in English.

KTB 070564 HA 150 cc

Following the exposition, Kevin and Brett finally appear. Kevin’s friend Pedro turns up, and he brings word of what will become Kevin’s next quest. To be continued…

KTB 071264 HA 150 cc


For more information on the career of Kreigh Collins, please visit his page on Facebook.

 

Travel

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In each of Kreigh Collins’ three NEA comics, travel is a frequent theme.

Mitzi McCoy flew her private airplane into the northern Canadian wilds, and later to Chicago. She also spent time in Florida. Kevin originated in Ireland but traveled widely throughout Europe, Northern Africa, the Middle East — he even visited the New World toward the end of his run (c. 1967). The Marlin family’s travels in “Up Anchor!” mirrored Collins’ own — besides sailing the Great Lakes and the Great Loop, the schooner Heather also called New England and Maine home for two seasons. A change of scenery provides a cartoonist an opportunity for varied tableaux, new storylines, and a chance to meet new characters.

Two years ago, I started this blog with the goal of raising awareness of my grandfather’s career (in advance of the publication of the collected “Mitzi McCoy” comics). While I’m not sure how successful I’ve been, I do know that my blog has done a fair bit of traveling too. According to its statistical data, it has been viewed by people in 55 countries across the world, amazing! I wish I could thank each visitor, I’m sure I’d also meet some characters.

The statistics are interesting, and I am pleased to note surprises. There have been slightly more viewers from France than from the United States, and there have been no visitors whatsoever from mainland China or Russia. Punching above their weight class are #4 Portugal and #6 Croatia (the 88th- and 129th-most populous countries in the world). The top twelve countries make up about 96% of my traffic, and while this is great, it’s more exciting to reach especially distant and smaller places. To my singular readers from Luxembourg, Uruguay, Greece, Guam, Romania, Slovenia, Qatar, the Philippines, Indonesia, Tunisia, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Malaysia, Taiwan, Ukraine, European Union (is that even a country?), Singapore, and Greenland (population 56,412), thank you!