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Roses in December: A Story of Love and Alzheimer’s

Roses in December: A Story of Love and Alzheimer’s

Laughter and pain, love and loss Since its debut in 1987, Crankshaft has engendered reader loyalty and affection with its wry wit, engaging storylines, and identifiable characters. Created by Tom Batiuk and drawn by Chuck Ayers, the strip offers plenty of humor but also tackles serious issues like adult literacy, school violence, and the challenges of aging. Roses in December is a touching collection of two Crankshaft storylines of characters who find themselves dealing with the incurable condition of Alzheimer’s disease. First, Ed Crankshaft’s best friend Ralph is confronted with the trauma of his wife Helen’s worsening Alzheimer’s. He never knows if the love of his life will recognize him on those days that he visits her at Sunny Days Nursing Home. Ralph and Helen’s love story unfolds with humor and heartbreak.
The Complete Funky Winkerbean, Volume 3: 1978-1980

The Complete Funky Winkerbean, Volume 3: 1978-1980

The Funkyverse continues to expand In this third volume, award-winning cartoonist Tom Batiuk continues to chronicle the lives of a group of students from the fictitious Westview High School. Funky Winkerbean fans are introduced to a host of new characters, including black cheerleader Junebug Jones; Melinda Budd, Holly Budd’s ambitious stage mother; Jerome the drum major; Nancy the school librarian; Ron the tennis pro; Irma, Rita Righton’s tennis partner; Channel One reporters Brenda Harpy and Minnie Cameron; talk show host John Darling; news anchor Charlie Lord; Phil the Forecaster; and program director Reed Roberts. Batiuk also features a troupe of inanimate forms achieving sentience, such as talking trees, clouds, school desks,video games, and a talking tennis ball machine that goes on to play at Wimbledon.

Check out the Komix Thoughts Blog

The Komix Thoughts is where I get to expound on all things comics. At a given moment, you might find me extolling the virtues of my favorite comic strips, comic books, and comics creators. While at others, I’ll be delving into all things Crankshaft, Funky Winkerbean and John Darling. Plus you’ll get a peek behind the curtain at the goings on in the studio, early looks at works in progress, blasts from the past, and much more.

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Tom Batiuk
Creator of Funky Winkerbean and Crankshaft

Tom Batiuk was a junior high school art teacher in Elyria, Ohio, when he created a comic panel aimed at teens for the Elyria Chronicle-Telegram. That panel was the precursor to what became Batiuk’s award-winning comic strip Funky Winkerbean.Since its debut on March 27, 1972, Funky Winkerbean has chronicled the lives of a group of students from the fictitious Westview High School. Batiuk has been recognized for his humorous and entertaining portrayals of the students and staff at Westview and acclaimed for his sensitive treatment of social and educational issues.