Pim & Francie: The Golden Bear Days by Al Columbia

Title: Pim & Francie: The Golden Bear Days

Author: AI Columbia

Context: Pim & Francie: The Golden Bear Days is a scrapbook-like collection of sketches, paintings, illustrations and unfinished comics by Al Columbia featuring Pim and Francie, both similar to characters like Hansel and Gretel drawn over a period of more than one decade.  The book published in 2009, is a full-fledged comic and art-object that appears so thick and swarming with evil that, the world around it gets corrupted. The comic press received Pim & Francie, most enthusiastically.

Synopsis: A mercurial perfectionist and cartoonist Al Columbia presents old-timey cartoon–character boy-girl couple of the title, torn, partially erased, burned, crumpled and unfinished, thanks to the tyrannical critic within him. With all their damages intact and reassembled, the adds up to a horror comic. It gives a hot to the touch feeling as if black-flame demons and killers with clown faces who harry Pim & Francie could make their way through the pages any moment, into the reader’s world.

Al Columbia states that the fragmentary vignettes of the book were his efforts to do things correctly and create a full-fledged comic – to put out comics regularly, however it just did not happen so with him.

Al Columbia collects storybook covers, excavations, animation stills, comic strips and lots more while telling the story of Pim & Francie in the graphic novel’s jigsaw puzzle. Both the childlike female and male imps end up in a fantastic and horrific trouble with their irresponsible pranks. The artist threads together notes and texts while defining relationship of the characters which contributes to the existential horror, lingering beneath the different perils they undergo.

Other works by the author:

1992 – Doghead

1994 – 23 Skidoo, Minicomic

1994 – The Biologic Show #0

1995 – The Biologic Show #1

AMNESIA: The Lost Films of Francis D.


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