I've heard it said more than once in recent years that we're in a Golden Age of comic reprints. There are several publishers these days doing higher-end books reprinting many classic comics, both books and strips. There gorgeous hard cover collections of Little Nemo, Krazy Kat, Peanuts, Calvin & Hobbes, Steve Canyon... IDW has been doing some great work with their Artist's Edition series reprinting the original art from classic comic runs by Jack Kirby, John Byrne, Walt Simonson, Frank Miller...
The Yellow Kid has been written about extensively, certainly, and most of those pieces seem to include a number of reprints, but I don't see where anyone's really try to put togther a single Yellow Kid reprint collection. And while Buster Brown seems to have gotten the reprint treatment more than a few times over the decades, they seem decidedly finite in nature. This collection from 2009, for example, is only 60 pages long and this one from 2012 is only 76. Hardly a good representation of the nearly two decades of strips.
Does it have something to do with a rights issue? I can't imagine it would since copyrights for anything prior to 1923 have expired. (Buster Brown ceased publication in 1921.) Access to materials? I'm sure the original art is no longer around, but that hardly stopped any of the other publications.
So what's the deal, publishers? No one willing to take on Outcault's work? Seems to me there's a decent audience for this out there. What's holding you back?
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