Saturday, November 3, 2012

Palookaville 14: Simon Gets Propositioned!

Simon continues to fail miserably at being a salesman in this issue, but he picks up some tips when another salesman attempts to sell to him.  Here are some random thoughts on this comic:

*The scene with the other salesman ends the issue.  Like the elevator scene in The Great Gatsby, the gap between this issue and next is open to a homosexual interpretation, though not much evidence exists to support it.  If Simon was a closeted gay man in 1957 Canada, then it would explain much of his shyness, awkwardness, and general not fitting in with the homophobic society of the time.  I'm not sure that's what Seth was going for though, Simon could just be a shy, bookish heterosexual, who never marries.  Just like how Bert and Ernie from Sesame Street are just roommates.

*In the letters page, Seth complains about the technology fetish of the turn of the century and notes that the comic book pamphlet seems to be becoming a thing of the past.  In a few issues, he would jettison the pamphlet format himself in favor of Palookaville becoming a yearly graphic novel.  Seth's distaste for new technology probably will not let him see that the comic book pamphlet might have a future online, but, yes, in printed form, it is dying.  I was able to see that while rereading my collection.  Comics such as Power Man And Iron Fist got canceled in the 1980s because they were only selling a hundred thousand copies an issue or something.  Today, those would be the bestselling comics.  You can trace the rest of the trajectory yourself as the middle-aged men, such as myself, keeping the printed comic book pamphlet alive get older and start to die off.  Oh, well, when the printed comic book pamphlet does essentially die off as a commercial medium (the medium will still exist as the odd enthusiast or two will keep it alive aesthetically), then Seth will have one more aspect of 20th Century popular culture to be nostalgic for and mourn.  

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