Cartoonist Roger Langridge produces illustrations, children’s books, and comics in a surprisingly wide range of flavors, at ease with everything from mainstream characters like Batman, Spiderman and Judge Dredd, all the way to mindbendingly alternative and very personal creations such as the brilliant, bittersweet and utterly hilarious adventures of “the thinking man’s idiot”, Fred The Clown.
Langridge’s influences are just as diverse. His humor has elements of Buster Keaton’s deadpan comedy, W.C.Fields’s caustic wit, Marx Brothers zaniness and Goon Show lunacy. His art blenderizes everything from Windsor McKay to Robert Crumb, by way of Chuck Jones and Elzie Segar.
In the early 90’s, Langridge created the unusual, absurd and exhilarating Frankenstein Meets Shirley Temple, a stream of altered consciousness strip that paired a woolgathering Monster with little Shirley as a pint-sized wisecracker. The author called it “spontaneous drivel”.
The strip anticipates Langridge’s later, more accomplished work. If anything, Langridge has since learned how to compress and refine his strips to their pure essentials, but Frankenstein Meets Shirley Temple still packs a pie in the face. It’s funny and fearlessly foolish.
The entire run of Frankenstein Meets Shirley Temple — in five short chapters — is yours to read online.
Go look, and learn about the great interconnectedness of all creation. Unless you’re dreaming all of this right now.
Read the complete Frankenstein Meets Shirley Temple.
Lose yourself (or just your mind) on Roger Langridge’s fabulous website, featuring links to interviews with the artist.
Roger Langridge’s blog.
Fred The Clown collection from Fantagraphics.