My Scrapbook: The Shaft Comic Strip

My Scrapbook
The Shaft Comic Strip
(Ernest Tidyman Productions, 1972)

Can you dig it?

Flush with the success of the Shaft novels and particularly the 1971 film, creator Ernest Tidyman commissioned veteran comic book artist Don Rico to develop a presentation package to shop around a Shaft comic strip.

While their efforts went unsold, there’s no doubt how serious they were. Rico was a pro, as the artwork clearly shows—he’d been around the biz since the forties, when he’d worked for Timely Comics, long before they morphed into Marvel Comics.

A generous sampling, consisting of partial and finished strips, rendered in ink over graphite on Bristol board varying in sizes from 22″ x 10.5″ to 16″ x 10.5”, plus a folder of conceptual sketches, correspondence and draft scripts were sold at auction for almost two grand in February 2023.

Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith.

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