The Complete Chester Gould’s Dick Tracy – Volume 25 (1969-1970) Review
For comic fans too young to remember or perhaps just unaware of the newspaper strip, Chester Gould’s run on Dick Tracy remains one of the industries most creative and interesting runs. If you just know Dick Tracy from the flop Warren Betty movie or are just aware of the character in general you might not realize that the levels of originality the strip possessed and its huge cultural impact back in the mid-tentieeth century.
IDW has been collecting this historic newspaper run into volumes of roughly 18 months worth of strips and as you can see by the years within this twenty-fifth volume they have already collected forty years of work. That is a staggering amount of work put out and there is a reason this newspaper strip deserves this level of attention, Chester was a genius with both his stories and his artwork. If you think Batman has a great rogues gallery of villains, Dick Tracy has a collection that will stun and delight you. Pruneface, Mumbles, Flat Top, The Blank and more filled the strip with threatening villains out to off Tracy and finish some elaborate scheme.
Of course, the villains plans did not succeed and often met with violent deaths themselves, something that would be almost unthinkable these days. Do not think that Dick Tracy is just a kids strip; the crimes were creative, the violence often surprisingly graphic and characters are introduced only to be knocked off with staggering regularity. This volume continues the strips run through the height of the Vietnam War when the very concept of a good police officer was being challenged as old fashioned and antiquated. Sci-fi elements had been added to the strip in an attempt to broaden its appeal and Tracy often struggled with the limitations of being a law enforcement officer.
Chester was approaching the end of his legendary run on the strip and would soon be “modernizing” Dick Tracy with longer hair and a 70’s era appropriate mustache. The end was rapidly approaching but the old man still has some stories to tell and this is another late-era volume filled with interesting characters, neat inventions and villains that you just loved to see get what was coming to them. The book features the strips in a roomy format three daily strips or a single Sunday strip per page and it is a joy just to sit and flip through the pages while you read. There are also two special text features as well, one by Max Alan Collins who would replace Chester as writer in 1977 and enjoy a long run on the strip himself, and the other by Jeff Kersten who was a founding member of The Chester Gould-Dick Tracy Museum. Both of these gentleman know their Dick Tracy and the end that little extra something to the book to really make it special.https://www.firstcomicsnews.com/the-complete-chester-goulds-dick-tracy-volume-25-1969-1970-review/https://www.firstcomicsnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/2018_12_DickTracy25-600x469.jpghttps://www.firstcomicsnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/2018_12_DickTracy25-150x117.jpgThe Quarter BoxDick Tracy