« All cartoonists are geniuses, but Arnold Roth is especially so. »

The talented pen of Arnold Roth (born 1929, and still alive, hey!) has graced the pages of what will seem like a slightly exaggerated, but in no way exhaustive, list (but no, he’s indeed appeared in all of these): The New Yorker, Sports Illustrated, Esquire and Playboy; Harvey Kurtzman‘s publications Trump, Humbug and Help!; The National Lampoon and Punch (Roth lived in England for a while), and The Progressive.

The topic of Roth’s contributions to Kurtzman’s satirical publications will no doubt crop up at some later juncture, but in the meantime, let’s have a look at some of Roth’s solo lampoonery and comic-form persiflage (not to mention the beauty of his inking line and the dynamism of his compositions).

ArnoldRothPoorArnoldsAlamanc
Roth created a Sunday strip called Poor Arnold’s Almanac for the New York Herald Tribune Syndicate, published from 1959 to 1961. In 1989, it was revived as a Sunday *and* a daily for Creators Syndicate, and lasted until 1990.  This strip is from April 24th, 1959.

Speaking of solo work, I also adore his Comick Books of Pets (published in October 1976).

ArnoldRotherComickBookofPets
« Found, Raised, Washed, Curried, Combed, Fed, and Cared for in Every Other Way. »

Roth’s art is also rather striking in black-and-white. To wit:

RothDaVinci
1978. Note the actual Vitruvian Man, L’Uomo Vitruviano, standing in line on the right.

Read this great interview with Roth in (surprise!) The Comics Journal, available online here: http://www.tcj.com/take-five-an-interview-with-arnold-roth/

Roth-3
“An Illustrated History of Sex,” Playboy, December 1973. Disturbing, isn’t it?

*Quoting John Updike.

~ ds

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