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"Charles Addams: A Cartoonist's Life"
by Linda H. Davis
Published by Random House
review by Doug Ogg
of the most commonly asked questions of cartoonists is, "Where do you
get your ideas?"
of course when the cartoonist is Charles Addams, this question leads to
unrivaled speculation and disinformation, which over the years created
its own brand of peculiar mythology.
Addams certainly had quirks and odd obsessions. But he was also
universally loved, and so charming that he dated the likes of such
luminaries of his time as Greta Garbo, Joan Fontaine and Jackie Kennedy
Onassis (along with untold numbers of others). He drank hard, raced
cars, and no party or social gathering was considered complete without
him. His fan base ran the gamut from the criminally insane to Sean
Connery and Alfred Hitchcock.
this first ever biography of the subject, Davis charts Addams'
meteoric rise and more than 50-year career as the most esteemed
cartoonist at The New Yorker. With his cartoons, Addams became a significant
cultural force by combining horror and humor, a genre that continues to
flourish today. His impact and influence on generations of cartoonists
is impossible to calculate, but it's fair to say that Gary Larsen's Far
Side would not have existed without him.
own unique creation of The Addams Family began as print cartoons which
went on to inspire a popular TV series, animated cartoons and two
esteemed biographer whose previous subjects have included Stephen Crane
and Katherine White, Davis spent over six years on this book and
interviewed more than 130 persons who knew Addams well, or as well as
anyone could. Although Addams died in 1988,
|Copyright © 2006 Jon A. Davis. All rights reserved.|