Savage Larsen

Since that post detailing the Gaiman/McFarlane beef, I’ve become obsessed with one of that debacle’s periphery players- Erik Larsen. I mentioned in that post that Larsen seemed to be going for a Dave Sim level of commitment to his creator-owned book. Like Cerebus, The Savage Dragon has that insular feeling one gets from a piece of writing that has no editor. I mean that in the kindest way possible.

I follow the Twitter accounts of a few dozen comic pros, and uniformly the ones working for the Big Two hint at the art-by-committee nature of swimming in that pool. Larsen, more so than even the other Image Comics originators, does his work unprotected. No rubbers in Larsen’s world; dude operates without a net. The man drills a hole in the side of his head and allows whatever hits the page to stay there. Wether that’s to his benefit or detriment is a matter of opinion, but you’ve gotta respect the singular vision it takes to swat the flies away and do things on your own terms.

Here’s a smattering of Dragon paraphernalia from over the years. Let’s start with the basics. Savage Dragon issue #1. Check out the absolutely awful lettering on the cover. It was 1992, I guess. I had no idea there were variants on this issue and I had no idea the variants were just different colors on the logo. But apparently that passed for a variant back then.

Remember when every intellectual property needed trading cards?

Here’s a animation cell from the Savage Dragon cartoon, which aired on the USA Network in ’95. Check out these muscles. I’m usually not one to comment on comics or cartoons “not making sense” but what the hell am I looking at here? At least the sky is cool.

Here’s a decent Savage Dragon figure from McFarlane Toys. Dragon has a half-dozen toys in his likeness, but this is the one that works. The others have had him looking like a Muppet auditioning for the Village People.

Do yourselves a favor and follow @ErikJLarsen on Twitter. Some people compare it to beating your head against wall made of dried dog shit, other people find it insightful. I just like that the dude knows how big his professional cock is and doesn’t fear swinging it around. That’s what you get when you’ve been doing things your own way for 20 years.

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