Madmania by Luke S.
It was the summer of 2017, and I had just gotten back into comics thanks to Gerard Way’s fantastic DC’s Young Animals. I had just taken a trip to the Chicago area Graham Crackers, and with a little extra help from my friendly neighborhood Normal store, I was able to catch up on all of the fantastic series that Young Animals had to offer. Shade the Changing Girl, Mother Panic, Cave Carson has a Cybernetic Eye, and my favorite, Doom Patrol. But there was another book I noticed that shared the Young Animal banner, and it was the Allred’s Bug! The Adventures of Forager. Little did I know that this would be the start of my obsession with the fantastical pop art of Michael Allred.
After picking up my new batch of Young Animal comics from the Normal GC, I decided to flip through the 50 cent bins for my three free books. That’s when I saw it, one of the most wonderful comic covers I had ever seen. It was Mike Allred’s Madman Comics issue one. I had loved the art and adventure of Forager so far, so I decided to try out another Allred book. Instantly, I was hooked. That night I poured over the pages of the first issue of the Dark Horse series. As soon as I read Madman exclaiming “Oh no! Streat beatniks!”, I knew this was the beginning of a new obsession.
Ever since that first Madman Comic, I’ve been trying to get my hands on everything Madman and Mike Allred. From action figures, to yo-yos, to 25th anniversary monster hardcovers, if it’s Madman, I’m in. Sadly, there hasn’t been much in the way of new Madman in comics for the past ten or so years. That is until last year.
Crossover by Donny Cates, Geoff Shaw, and Dee Cunniffe is a fantastic book. I loved issues one and two, but then issue three came out and changed everything for me. (WARNING: SPOILERS FOR CROSSOVER ISSUE 3, GO READ IT, IT’S FANTASTIC). I was just minding my own business, reading a really cool comic, when BAM, out of nowhere I see Frank Einstein aka Madman, popping out of the final page. I actually screamed. After ten years of waiting for a new Madman comic (really it was just 4 since I had started a few years ago, but still), I never expected to see my favorite comic character appear as a cameo in a new book, let alone become a lead character in a fast paced action series, centered around the ultimate comic crossover.
I guess what I’m trying to say is, I’m really happy to see Madman get all of this attention. Just last week, I had someone ask me about Madman. They had never heard of him and thought he was really cool in Crossover. I suggested some of my favorite Madman stuff, but because it’s an older indie title it can be sort of difficult to find. That is, until today. I am beyond excited for the new Madman Library Edition, collecting all of Frank Einsteins antics and adventures in the definitive chronological order. It makes both the character and the comics more accessible to people who are more interested in Madman after seeing him in Crossover, and makes it so I don’t have to drag out my short box of single issues just to re-read my favorite series. So if you haven’t checked out Madman, give it a try. If you’re a fan of fun, poppy, and all around ginchy comics, you won’t be disappointed.