Jinni in a Bottle

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Cowardly Grudja is only willing to battle noble Kevin with the unfair advantage of his new “shooting shield.” At the same time, battle lines are being drawn between the manipulative blonde Gigi, who brashly proclaims that Kevin is hers for the taking. Gigi may be correct in calling Moya a lady, but perhaps she underestimates the fight and determination of her raven-haired counterpart.

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Tension rises in the run-up to the upcoming battle(s). While Kevin trains for his fight with Grudja, Moya is sharpening up, too. Grudja himself shows signs of unease, taking out his wrath on the poor beggar Toto, who has suddenly appeared in Ireland.

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Loyal to the knight who had previously showed him kindness, Toto plays a trick on Grudja’s soldiers. This gives Toto an opportunity to play mind games with the malleable brutes, in an attempt at unsettling them. It also gives Kreigh Collins a chance to use another alternative spelling (Jinni vs. Genie) and to illustrate Toto’s magic trick. Prior to settling on “artist” as a career choice, Collins had been keenly interested in magic. In 1937, he had written and illustrated a book on the subject, “Tricks Toys and Tim, A Book on Model-Making and Magic.” Flap copy for the unique book, published by D. Appleton-Century, reads:

Here is an unusual and fascinating how-to-do-it book, containing original and unhackneyed material. The unique presentation, the clear and understandable directions for making things, and the delightful bits of humor which run through its pages make this a most practical and readable book.

To some extent, these same words can be applied to the comics of Kreigh Collins.

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The July 4, 1954 comic makes clear the differences between Grudja and Kevin (and between Gigi and Moya). The battle begins, but its outcome is clouded. Will good triumph over evil?


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

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New Toy

Even fierce Grudja fears Kevin, but beware, the Norse invader has a new toy. Meanwhile, Kevin, Moya, and her clansmen are under siege.

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Grudja’s counsel has advised him to face Kevin one on one, in public combat. Thus, the Norseman reacts angrily when he learns of Bull Blackie’s actions in pursuit of Kevin. The traitorous Black Irishman has a personal vendetta against the McCoys, but Grudja has other plans to quell these nettlesome Irish resisters.

The May 23 comic is notable for its dramatic twists, varied visual perspectives, Kevin’s very boldness, and to a lesser extent, dated language.

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Making the classic bad guy mistake of letting his prey get away while planning his more appropriate demise, Grudja lets Kevin off the hook. Soon enough, Kevin finds himself in the center of another conflict, as the tenor of the extended sequence shifts.

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A particular aspect of Kreigh Collins’ comics that especially appeals to me is the wonderful throwaway panels that appear whenever the comic ran in a half-page or half-tabloid format. One-third page comics are undoubtably atrocities, suffering from severe cropping, yet even full-page tabloid comics lacked Kreigh’s charming throwaways.

The throwaways’ use was flexible: they could function as visual footnotes, with further explanation of plot device; they could show additional views of a comic’s scenery; or they presented another opportunity to show a pretty girl. In some cases the information in the “visual footnotes” could be recycled — with an adjustment for inflation, if necessary. (Note the difference in a suit of armor’s value between 1954 and 1962!)

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(You remember the story behind that armor of Kevin’s, don’t you?)

 


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

Grudja

KTB 041154 panel 150 QCCKevin is excited to return to Ireland, and especially so to return to Castle McCoy. After a long absence, he misses much about his homeland. Longing to settle down, imagining a peaceful life as a farmer, Kevin’s high hopes for a joyful reunion are quickly dashed. Evil Grudja is menacing Ireland, and at his side is none other than Bull Blackie, the villain in the inaugural sequence of “Kevin the Bold.”

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With Bull Blackie on her trail, Moya escapes, her beauty belying her ferocity. To her horror, Moya is shocked to realize the man she has knocked cold is her champion, Kevin. However, Moya is not the only one who will be startled by the reappearance of the legendary knight.

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Despite the effects of his nasty knock on the head, Kevin’s primal instincts kick in. So do those of Kevin’s creator, as the sequence continues with more beautifully drawn comics and a plot line with multiple dramatic arcs.

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