So I was asked in the comments to my post on Tuesday to say a little something more about Jupiter:
This was a series by Jason Sandberg that ran for nine issues in the late 1990s. It was an anthology series, where half the book was usually devoted to short strips and one longer story, with occasional appearances by this fella:
…and the other half (more or less) of the comic was devoted to “Pelasgus,” who is the gentleman with the nose on the cover of #1 up there at the top of this post. Pelasgus came into being on the planet Arcadia, and as other humans begin to appear, Pelasgus offers his advice and guidance to help direct these primitive humans towards a more civilized culture:
Over the course of the nine issues, barter systems are created, laws are codified, government is formed, currency is minted, religion begins to take hold, disputes are resolved…and murders happen and drug abuse increases, and Pelasgus and the people of this society try to deal with their changing world. It was fascinating reading, a literal experiment in world-building as problems arise and Pelasgus makes straightforward and cogent arguments on how to deal with them.
Interestingly, in his downtime Pelasgus would make paintings in a style that, perhaps, may look familiar to some of you comic book fans out there:
“Somehow all these creations have become separated from their creator,” continues Pelasgus. “Their hearts are filled with grief as they roam through space and time for eternity.” …Obviously a comment on Jack Kirby’s situation, but I read it as foreshadowing for what was to come for Pelasgus: the world he’s helping to create perhaps will someday separate from him as his influence over it reduces to nothing.
An author’s note in issue #9 promised longer “Pelasgus” chapters in future issues, but alas, that was the last issue, and I’ll never know if my speculation in regards to that Kirby connection would ever come true. Well, I suppose I could just email Mr. Sandberg if I wanted to bug the poor guy, as a previous lamenting of Jupiter‘s loss on this site put me in contact with him, and we’d had some friendly interactions over the years. He even provided a good pile of his mini-comics for me to give away on Free Comic Book Day, which I thought was very kind.
I don’t know how easy to find issues of Jupiter are…I’m not even sure we still have a full run at the shop, and I know I kept reordering copies from some of the indie distributors to have them around. But they’re definitely worth the search.
By the way, I reread all my issues of Jupiter just prior to writing this, and wouldn’t you know it, I’m hooked again…with no more to come! AAAAAUGH