BHOC: THE SPIRIT #17

THE SPIRIT #17
Winter, 1977

The first Spirit story I read was the one reprinted in THE GREAT COMIC BOOK HEROES, and frankly, I didn’t see what all the fuss was about. But I’d heard more about the character and his mileau in THE COMIC- BOOK BOOK, and thought it sounded intriguing. So when the SUPERHERO MERCHANDISE catalog (the mail-order firm that ultimately evolved into HEROES WORLD) offered the first two issues of Kitchen Sink’s reprintings of the strip (the numbering carried over from the Warren run of reprints), I took a leap and ordered the both of them.

Will Eisner’s SPIRIT is a seminal comics experience. In just seven pages, Eisner would craft tales of startling power and sensitivity, little mini-movies that ran the gamut of human emotions and experiences. It was a rewarding, fully-rounded series, done originally as a newspaper insert which allowed Eisner to play towards a broader audience than the young children then thought to be the only audience for comic books.

You owe it to yourself to seek some of these stories out.

I can remember bringing this issue of THE SPIRIT into my sixth grade class, to use as an example of the short story format. The teacher actually read two Spirit stories to the class.

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