Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Harvey Pekar, RIP

I never met Harvey Pekar, but I haunted many of the same bars and bookstores, in Cleveland Heights, Ohio. His comics were sometimes depressing, usually acerbically humorous, and always painstakingly real.

As Joanna Connors wrote, in the Cleveland Plain Dealer obit, "Pekar could neither leap tall buildings in a single bound, nor move faster than a speeding bullet. Yet his comics suggested a different sort of heroism: The working-class, everyman heroics of simply making it through another day, with soul -- if not dignity -- intact."

If Harvey did not always cheer me up, he did let me know that there others engaging similar human struggles.

A film was made about his life/comics, American Splendor, starring Paul Giamatti and Hope Davis (as Harvey's wife, Joyce Brabner). Harvey and Joyce helped write the screenplay, and also appear throughout the film. More links to online content can be found in this CNN article by Damon Brown.


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