Additional Book Information
Series: New York Review Comics
Publication Date: April 2, 2019
by Mark Alan Stamaty, with an introduction by Jules Feiffer
Every week, from 1978 to 1980, The Village Voice brought a new installment of Mark Alan Stamaty’s uproarious, endlessly inventive strip MacDoodle St. Centering more or less on Malcolm Frazzle, a blocked poet struggling to complete his latest lyric for Dishwasher Monthly, Stamaty’s creation encompassed a dizzying array of characters, stories, jokes, and digressions. One week might feature the ongoing battle between irate businessmen and bearded beatniks for control of a Greenwich Village coffee shop, the next might reveal a dastardly plot involving a genetically engineered dishwashing monkey, or the frustrated dreams of an irascible, over-caffeinated painter, or the mysterious visions of a duffle-coated soothsayer on the bus. Not to mention the variable moods and longings of the comic strip itself....
And somehow, in the end, it all fits together. MacDoodle St. is more than just a hilarious weekly strip; it is a great comic novel, a thrilling, surprising, unexpectedly moving ode to art, life, and New York City. This new edition features a brand-new, twenty-page autobiographical comic by Stamaty explaining what happened next and why MacDoodle St. never returned, in a unique, funny, and poignant look at the struggles and joys of being an artist.
Stamaty treats the strip like a canvas, filling it with layers of meticulous detail; tight, clean lines; playful self-awareness; and monkeys washing dishes….Though Stamaty's words are sly and kinetic, one can't help wanting more of his stupendous illustrations, somewhere between R. Crumb and Hergé. Mostly superb with bouts of just excellent.
I have never read a comic strip that was this much alive. Stamaty comes at the reader in so many directions at once. It’s as if a classic adventure strip was fending off a Dada invasion while the battlefield (comics’ formal conventions) does somersaults as an ever-changing cast of broadcasters comment on the action.... It’s a funny and thrilling spectacle that has more than a whiff of danger.