Movie News

Harvey Pekar
1939 - 2010

Published at: July 12, 2010, 4:26 p.m. CST

"I just keep my eyes and ears open, and that's it. See what I can see."

In the pages of his autobiographical comic book series AMERICAN SPLENDOR, Harvey Pekar saw life as it is lived in the working-class confines of Cleveland, Ohio. To some, Pekar's dispatches (illustrated by some of the greatest comic artists in the history of the medium) revealed a banal, occasionally bitter, rarely cheerful existence; they were the laments of a regular guy stuck in an unrewarding job in an unappealing city. This is limiting. For me, Pekar's work was a celebration of intellectual curiosity undimmed by the drudgery of the ol' nine-to-five. He was an avid reader, a jazz enthusiast, and a fearlessly critical thinker. He was an empathetic chronicler of uniqueness in others - and while he was amused by peculiarities of his friends and neighbors, he did not mine them for cheap laughs. Did the job get him down? Absolutely. So did the financial struggles, the marital strife and the cancer. But none of it ever snuffed out his interest in the world around him; he saw too clearly the value in making art out of his plight, rather than sourly swallowing down the indignities served up on an unceasing basis. When I spoke with Pekar in 2003 during the press tour for AMERICAN SPLENDOR, I was thrilled to find that he was the same no-bullshit guy I'd been reading about for years. It was one of the most satisfying interviews I'd ever conducted - until I asked the obligatory David Letterman question. Right away, I could sense Pekar's disappointment. After earning his trust as a fellow Ohioan, I had to go and bring up the same topic he'd discussed to death all day (and for years prior). I was sick to my stomach. Though the tension may not read in the piece, I was desperate to redeem myself as someone who wasn't there just to get him reliving his classic moments on Letterman (which, admittedly, are wonderful and well worth watching on YouTube*). After tossing off a few standard questions, I remembered I'd written down a quote from Pekar's review of George Wein's autobiography. So I quickly rattled it off, and asked if Wein's belief in doing "the decent thing whenever they have the opportunity" carried any resonance in his own life. Pekar smiled and responded thusly...
Yeah, well, it worked for Wein, and I’m trying to make it work for me. Like I say, we all die, so maybe it’s all futile. I don’t have the ability to sell out. I mean, I don’t have the kinds of skills it takes to be a commercial writer. For example, I have an awful lot of trouble with some editors because my prose writing isn’t fancy enough. I’d be writing for a jazz magazine, I’d be doing an article about a guy, and they’d say I wrote too much about his music, and not enough about what kind of guy he is – like how he dresses or how many kids he has… stuff like that. I just try and do what I do well, and I try to do it the best I can. I hope it pays off. Maybe it will this time. It’s scary to think about… I’m real scared. Maybe it’ll work out; maybe I’ll get more gigs. Maybe I’ll be alright.
This answer has always stuck with me. If you're realistic, life isn't about the pursuit of happiness; it's about the pursuit of "alright". "Alright" is attainable. Joy is unexpected and fleeting, like a perfect, three-minute pop song. Aim for "alright", and the struggle is bearable. I will miss Pekar's voice. Forget the hyperbole that attended LeBron James's departure. Today, we lost a true son of Cleveland. Harvey's work lives on at The Pekar Project and in book stores the world over.

Faithfully submitted, Mr. Beaks

*As a child of Ohio, I particularly love the impromptu intrusion onto the set of NBC's "Live at 5", where Pekar excitedly chats up Al Roker, and name-drops legendary Cleveland-area weatherman Dick Goddard.

Readers Talkback

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  • July 12, 2010, 4:17 p.m. CST

    First

    by Quentin_Rodriguez

  • July 12, 2010, 4:21 p.m. CST

    First on an obituary?

    by thatfilmlover

    wow, your a classy guy.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:21 p.m. CST

    Not first.

    by OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOUUUUUUUUUUTTTTTLLLLLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAWWWWW

    And people still don't care.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:22 p.m. CST

    Better late than never...

    by JayLenoTookMyJob

    ...I guess.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:23 p.m. CST

    Cleveland

    by Chicken_Man_Gus

    Sucks a little worse today.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:28 p.m. CST

    tonight, a drink to Harve

    by oisin5199

    I was lucky enough to meet him almost exactly a year ago at an outdoor counter-culture festival. He gave a great talk and was an all-around warm guy. When you look at the Letterman stuff, it was clearly exaggerated and somewhat staged. If you haven't seen Paul Giamatti play him (and Harvey playing himself) in the film, American Splendor, see it tonight and raise a glass. Forget all this Avengers crap. Pekar was a real American hero, doing what he loved. Rock and Roll Cleveland! (from another true son of Ohio).

  • July 12, 2010, 4:29 p.m. CST

    Its all Lebron Fault!!!

    by loc420

    He died because Lebron left the city with no hope of every winning a NBA title. Damn you lebron!!!!

  • July 12, 2010, 4:29 p.m. CST

    Oh fuck..really.

    by barryegan51

    Just yesterday i ptcked up a copy of a Pekar edited anthology.. loved the man through his stories and apearance in SPLENDOR. condolescence to his family and friends.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:30 p.m. CST

    anyone who 'firsts' on an obituary

    by oisin5199

    deserves immediate banning.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:31 p.m. CST

    Holy christ

    by StarryNight

    One of my high school heroes. Time to break out the comics.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:35 p.m. CST

    I remember just calling Harvey on the phone...

    by Uncle Stan

    ...to talk about American Splendor. He was still listed in the Cleveland phonebooks at the time. He would get pissed and swear at us, but he still took the time to chat. I met him in person at the premier of Comic Book Confidential. What a cad! He will be missed greatly.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:37 p.m. CST

    Sad news this morning

    by mtoast

    I've been a fan of Pekar's for a quarter of a century. His was a unique voice. He inspired other creators to do work in a similar vein but none had his voice. I met him in the mid-90s on the Our Cancer Year book tour. I had an old collection of his early work that I'd picked up at a convention. It had long been out of print and Harvey was amazed to see it when I handed it over to be signed. "Can I look at this?" he asked me. This is very rare. And there I stood at the table, people waiting behind me for their turn, while Harvey took several minutes to flip through a book that he himself had written. A small moment to be sure, but one that sums up the man's directness and quirkiness -- both qualities that contributed to his solitary genius. He is missed.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:38 p.m. CST

    quentin rodriguez

    by hey...jonboy

    i laughed. they just jealous u beat them to it

  • July 12, 2010, 4:39 p.m. CST

    fuck!! rip..

    by nickbeta

  • July 12, 2010, 4:40 p.m. CST

    Firsting an Obituary is low

    by ToughGuyRizzo

    RIP Harvey. I was looking thru some Splendor comics at NYC's Forbidden Planet last week. Damn....

  • July 12, 2010, 4:45 p.m. CST

    He was on Letterman once.

    by RPLocke

    He's the Harlan Ellison of comics.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:48 p.m. CST

    Rest in Peace, Harvey Pekar

    by Arch Nemesis

    I'm really bummed that I never got to meet him, he was one on my short list. Reminds me of my Dad who was also from Cleveland and about the same age (I too was from Cleveland some time ago). I was always interested to try starting up a conversation about music with him.... You were a true pioneer, Harvey!

  • July 12, 2010, 4:48 p.m. CST

    As we say in the UK...

    by Lemure_v2

    Good Innings.

  • July 12, 2010, 4:50 p.m. CST

    RIP Harvey

    by iwontwin

    you were so ohio

  • July 12, 2010, 4:56 p.m. CST

    Crumbs artwork made Splendor unreadable

    by lostboytexas

    wheres a Taliban machete when u need one?

  • July 12, 2010, 5:08 p.m. CST

    Harvey Pekar is offline...

    by Simpsonian

    yeah I used the same line in another thread.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:14 p.m. CST

    This sucks.

    by mortsleam

    Rest uneasy, you awkward crotchedy weird dude. And thanks for truly one of the best comic book adaptations ever made.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:19 p.m. CST

    I don't know if I could yell any louder!

    by JettL1993

    we've lost a legend, RIP

  • July 12, 2010, 5:20 p.m. CST

    RIP Pekar

    by donkingkong

  • July 12, 2010, 5:30 p.m. CST

    I saw the movie..

    by emeraldboy

    i can only speak for myself. But growing up in ireland. I never read american splendor as we were really repressed culturally thanks to the church and the state. Anything that came from england was viewed as contraband. books were banned if they were deemed a moral threat. load of bullshit. but that is the way things wereI our local shop stocked the beano and dandy. I lived in the north east of ireland for many years and hour away from dublin. where you could possible get stuff like this. bar dandy and the beano. I never read a superhero comic book. it tv and movies for me. none of this underground comic book movement in ireland. in fact untill last year there was no indigenous irish comic book industty. that appears to have changed. We saw, the hulk on tv, watched superman on the big screen and spiderman with nicholas hammond and wonder woman on tv. I saw the documentary on Robert Crumb. again the counter culture was stamped on by the state. so no robert crumb in ireland too. Hotpress magazine was really the be all and end all of pop culture in ireland and that was it. sorry for rambling.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:31 p.m. CST

    RIP The last shit i took 3:25-3:28 PM 7/12/10

    by TakingScorpiosCalls

    It sucks how much it gave to the world.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:31 p.m. CST

    PST

    by TakingScorpiosCalls

  • July 12, 2010, 5:32 p.m. CST

    RPLocke, he was on Letterman SEVERAL times

    by mtoast

    and they ultimately had a couple of big blow-ups. Harvey hated being portrayed as a blue-collar goon for laughs and started bringing more political topics to the show -- including the fact that NBC news was owned by GE, a corporation with a shady ethical record. Letterman was pissed, cutting one segment short and banning Pekar from the show. In later years Harvey was invited to the CBS version of the show and made a couple more appearances.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:35 p.m. CST

    So Uncle Stan, is it true...

    by StanGrossman

    that there were really three Harvey Pekars listed in the Cleveland phonebook? (American Splendor fans know what I'm talking about)

  • July 12, 2010, 5:42 p.m. CST

    Seemed like an interesting guy...

    by Darkman

    ...at least, if the film and the few issues of AS I picked up are any indication. He will be missed.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:44 p.m. CST

    Peace to Harvey and condolences to his

    by Dingbatty

    friends and family.

  • July 12, 2010, 5:58 p.m. CST

    This sucks.

    by Sailor Rip

    What did he die from?

  • July 12, 2010, 6:02 p.m. CST

    somebody said he was the harlan ellison of comics

    by Bloodstained

    bullshit! harvey was a much better writer and person than ellison.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:05 p.m. CST

    i was always shocked that letterman didnt get him

    by brabon300

    harvey widened the scope of what could be considered material for a comic...he will be greatly missed

  • July 12, 2010, 6:07 p.m. CST

    I believe in Harvey!

    by DrAwkward

    Harvey,<p>Thanks for showing that a hometown hero can win at his craft without totally trashing the area he came from.<p>-A fellow Clevelander

  • July 12, 2010, 6:07 p.m. CST

    StanGrossman

    by Argentino

    What a beautiful monologue that was. Was it taken from one of the comics by Pekar or did the screenwriter write it? It made a huge impresion on me. I'm also curious about your question.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:11 p.m. CST

    Bad Week for Cleveland.

    by fiester

    What's next--Rock & Roll Hall of Fame moves to LA?

  • July 12, 2010, 6:12 p.m. CST

    LEBRON JAMES IS A MURDERER

    by TheNotoriousDRB

    If there is a heaven, and I doubt there is, I can imagine Harvey at the pearly gates, grousing as usual. St. Peter places his hand on Harvey and says, "Relax, it can't ever get any worse." Harvey looks at St. Peter and says, "But this is Heaven, it can't get any better either." St. Peter, slightly miffed, retorts, "Well you could always go to hell, you know." Harvey will crack a smile, and with a twinkle in his eye, he'd say, "Well if you send me back to Cleveland, at least I can be with my wife again..." We'll miss you, Harv. Whether you like it or not. :)

  • July 12, 2010, 6:18 p.m. CST

    Well, this proves Harvey was right all along...

    by FlickaPoo

    ...the worst case scenario does, and probably will happen.<P> I'm glad all his obsessive and neurotic hard work payed off during his lifetime...<P> Good for you, Mr. Pekar.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:21 p.m. CST

    Dammit!

    by Billyeveryteen

    What the fuck, this world is becoming... less.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:22 p.m. CST

    True son of Cleveland

    by destroytokyo

    Thanks for this article, Mr. Beaks. And thanks for a career well spent, Mr. Pekar. Cleveland has had its fair share of tough breaks, but Harvey helped us see how life is still exceptional, even when you're down.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:32 p.m. CST

    Harvey had a huge impact on me

    by Chuck_Chuckwalla

    When I got tired of reading Marvel comics back in the late '80s because they had hit a creative low point, I picked up the first two American Splendor paperbacks because of his appearances on Letterman. I loved those stories. Especially, the ones where he collaborated with Robert Crumb. I'll miss him.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:32 p.m. CST

    "Ordinary Life Is Pretty Complex Stuff"

    by IForgotAbout19

    Goodnight to a real life super hero.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:46 p.m. CST

    "how come you put me on the last 5 minutes, everyone's asleep"

    by paulloch

    I loved him on Letterman, which led me to the comics. Growing up in the 80s/90s there were a over dozen places in my area to pick up comics, now there's only one left. So even the idea of a comic book writer appearing on a TV show to promote his unique work, seems like a lifetime ago in a foreign land.

  • July 12, 2010, 6:51 p.m. CST

    Farewell..

    by Dawhiteguy

    Its sad to know that all the journalist in the papers and on the internet, are turning this into another Lebron James story.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:05 p.m. CST

    Cancer is a motherfucker

    by Knugen

    It takes the best of us. Chiefly among them, <br><br>my father.<br>1945-2010<br><br>RIP<br><br>It sucks to be an atheist right now.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:13 p.m. CST

    As someone born and raised in Cleveland...

    by rbatty024

    I'm sad to see him go. We have our fair share of great artists, but it is always sad when one of them passes.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:17 p.m. CST

    Peace and solace to his family and friends...

    by Jaka

    ...during this difficult time. <P>I own everything the guy released between 1976 and 2008. I don't love all of them, but I always find them interesting and look forward to cracking them open. I've always appreciated that they pushed me to read something different (yet familiar) and to look at the mundane from another angle. As a reader/collector of independent comic books I've always taken it for granted that Pekar would be there, releasing some new idiosyncratic work every year or so. I didn't even realize he was that approaching seventy until very recently. Kinda bummed out right now.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:22 p.m. CST

    yo Knugen

    by godhatesusall

    think about it this way....all we are is the sum of what we do, when we are gone we do really live on in the memories of those who knew us, your dad lives with you, mr. pekar was one of us yard apes who showed us the yard ape life we live, which is art, real art is made from pain, american splendor laid out that pain and we saw it and realized ourselves, everyone dies, so it does matter what we do here, i have never been to cleveland, but i think someday i will, just to see....i hope letterman acknowledges him

  • July 12, 2010, 7:27 p.m. CST

    He proved Letterman is really just a shill

    by OutsideChance

    For all the talk (deservedly so) about how Leno is a corporate shill, Pekar proved Letterman no better. Dave loved Harvey until he had the balls to call the network out on the whole "GE/NBC" thing. Rather than stick up for one of his best guests, Dave canned him.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:29 p.m. CST

    A true intellectual

    by beeman31

    In my opinion, the movie made him look kind of like a schlub who wrote comic books. In fact, the man was an intellectual giant who wrote serious academic criticisms of pop culture and more obscure topics in his books. He will be missed.

  • July 12, 2010, 7:37 p.m. CST

    RIP Harvey

    by blunted666

    I hope Toby has a couple more friends even half as good as Harv left to hang out with

  • July 12, 2010, 8:09 p.m. CST

    This hurts

    by Mockingbuddha

    because, more than any other artist, Harvey's art made you know him. I will miss him.

  • July 12, 2010, 8:10 p.m. CST

    Loved Harvey Pekar!

    by NeverTalksBack

  • July 12, 2010, 8:12 p.m. CST

    by NeverTalksBack

    He will be missed, quite a unique & talented guy. BTW I don't want to start a war but exactly how big is that giant tree branch permanently stuck in your asshole RPLOCKE? You are by far the biggest loser on these talkbacks every single day

  • July 12, 2010, 8:19 p.m. CST

    I'll Raise My Glass of Orange Soda

    by Sgt.Steiner

    To the man. The truest cranks have the biggest hearts.

  • July 12, 2010, 8:25 p.m. CST

    Ya know, I wasn't going to say anything

    by Jaka

    But I'm so annoyed by the gall of anyone who would say something shitty about a guy who never DID anything shitty in his obituary that I'm not going to let it slide. Pekar didn't do the fucking artwork! He was a writer. And nearly everything he ever published had artwork from more than one artist. Educate yourself before you start spewing hate. Unless you enjoy looking stupid and angry.

  • July 12, 2010, 8:30 p.m. CST

    I've got all the original comics...but he eventually became a bu

    by Bob Cryptonight

    He really acted like an ass on Letterman. He was trying to be so clever and "expose" NBC, but he just exposed his unsophisticated Cleveland, Ohio roots (his "shocking" rant was so obviously contrived--and poorly). Should have stayed behind the typewriter.

  • July 12, 2010, 8:31 p.m. CST

    "buffoon"

    by Bob Cryptonight

  • July 12, 2010, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Bob Cryptonight, I disagree, because...

    by Jaka

    ...he did a ton of great work long after the original Letterman appearances (as I mentioned, something was released almost every year). Also, Letterman himself ended up hating GE. Going on to make jokes and talk shit about them for the many years. Lastly, Pekar was invited back on Letterman's show. Too much is made of the Letterman/GE deal. Pekar himself documented it in American Splendor and then moved on.

  • July 12, 2010, 8:38 p.m. CST

    Rest In Peace You Crabby Bastard

    by HeisenbergsBlueSky

    I discovered this movie with the help of rob zombie.i was reading a magazine and they were doing a what's your favorites list.when zombie mentioned american splendor.i remembered giamatti from private parts and thought i'd give it a try.i really love this movie.eventualy i'd like to collect all the comics.i watched it a few times last year when i was going thru some hard times and it really lifted my spirits.like the man said ordinary life is pretty complicated stuff

  • July 12, 2010, 8:40 p.m. CST

    Damn.

    by johndillingers20inchseveredcock

    Glad I got to meet him a few years back. I have a couple of books of his I hadn't read yet. I'm glad I still have them to look forward to. I will miss him.

  • July 12, 2010, 9 p.m. CST

    RIP to a great talent

    by andrew coleman

    I hope he haunts Lebron while that ass hole is in South Beach. And this is coming from a Lakers fan. American Splendor was simply perfect.

  • July 12, 2010, 9:28 p.m. CST

    Real classy, Bob Cryptonight

    by Nice Marmot

    "unsophisticated Cleveland, Ohio roots" Way to sound like a total douche while bashing a guy in his obit. What a prick. And Cleveland will always ROCK!!!

  • July 12, 2010, 9:44 p.m. CST

    suicide

    by JaredP

    thats my guess it seems like all great geniuses commit suicide spalding gray hunter thompson and now harvey. FUCKED UP!!!!!

  • July 12, 2010, 10:03 p.m. CST

    I heard about this on the radio today

    by MJs_Cold_Dead_Pale_Corpse

    Surprised AICN got the obit out this early. R.I.P

  • July 12, 2010, 10:12 p.m. CST

    Seemed like a good guy.

    by ebonic_plague

    I liked what I'd read of his work, and the movie was really well done. That's two comic book greats gone this summer. Rest in peace Harvey.

  • July 12, 2010, 10:12 p.m. CST

    Thought it was Pecker at 1st...

    by TheKGB

  • July 12, 2010, 10:48 p.m. CST

    American Splendor...

    by workshed

    ...such a great movie. One of the best of the Noughties.

  • July 12, 2010, 10:56 p.m. CST

    Quitter ripped apart my soul and made me

    by jimbojones123

    A better person for it.

  • July 12, 2010, 11:05 p.m. CST

    Letterman...

    by ConfusedPanda

    I forgot to watch Dave's opening tonight. Did he make any mention of Harvey?

  • July 12, 2010, 11:18 p.m. CST

    May we meet...

    by Altered_DNA

    ...in the clearing at the end of the path when all worlds end. RIP Harvey.

  • July 12, 2010, 11:36 p.m. CST

    Wow. Different emotions today.

    by GeneralKael

    I honestly didn't know a whole lot about Harvey until I watched American Splendour. Then I read some of his stuff and it was awesome. I'm very sad to hear of his passing, he was definitely original. My wife just gave birth to our daughter today so I went from being sad to hear about Harvey to holding my firstborn within a few hours. I don't think my wife will go for Harvey as a girl name, even a middle one... RIP Harvey, see you on the flip side.

  • July 12, 2010, 11:50 p.m. CST

    Knugen:

    by John Maddening

    I just lost my dad to cancer last month, he was just a year older than Harvey.<br><br> It's really terrible, you have my sympathies.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:01 a.m. CST

    433

    by Sgt.Steiner

    Sorry about your dad, dude.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:08 a.m. CST

    RIP, King of Curmudgeons

    by njscribe44

    "American Spendor" graphic novel collections and the movie were great.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:20 a.m. CST

    STAN GROSSMAN

    by Uncle Stan

    Yeah, there were several. We actually got the idea of calling him from that same story he wrote about the phonebook.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:30 a.m. CST

    The Harlan Ellison of comics is . . .

    by Olsen Twins_Fan

    Harlan Ellison's editor.

  • July 13, 2010, 1:06 a.m. CST

    mtoast: Interesting.

    by Playkins

    Remember back in the day when GE bought NBC and Letterman tried to deliver a fruit basket to GE's CEO (on camera)? That story surprises me- I wouldn't have thought Dave would puss away from some comedi-politics.

  • July 13, 2010, 1:34 a.m. CST

    Tragic

    by Out of your element

    American Splendor, great film. My Dad actually knew him while Pekar worked at the Cleveland VA. I guess Harvey is finally free of his biter life...

  • July 13, 2010, 2:22 a.m. CST

    RIP

    by JaredP

    we keep losing the great ones last year it was michael jacksn now harvey

  • July 13, 2010, 3:03 a.m. CST

    Quite a few profoundly influential

    by Dingbatty

    writers of scifi, fantasy, and comic books from Cleveland, the area, Ohio, or spent portions of their lives in or near Cleveland, so someone should be ashamed to be on a geek site insulting that city.

  • July 13, 2010, 4:32 a.m. CST

    Rest In Peace

    by MontyPigeon

    God bless your soul

  • July 13, 2010, 6:34 a.m. CST

    First Frank Sidebottom...

    by HarryDean

    Now Harvey. That's two of my heroes gone!

  • July 13, 2010, 6:37 a.m. CST

    I thought Splendor was Crumb's best stuff.

    by malificus

    Only stuff of his I ever cared about. Harvey did some good work and that will never die.

  • July 13, 2010, 7:03 a.m. CST

    Great

    by lead_sharp

    I love crying in the morning. Condolences to all.

  • July 13, 2010, 8:30 a.m. CST

    Pekar was great

    by rev_skarekroe

    It takes talent to write the mundanities of everyday life in such a way that you're not only interested but captivated. And he could do that.

  • July 13, 2010, 8:56 a.m. CST

    Bye Harvey

    by Abominable Snowcone

    From a fellow Clevelander, I bid you, a fellow critically-thinking curmudgeon of the highest order, a fond farewell. you will be missed. You were...Professional.

  • July 13, 2010, 8:56 a.m. CST

    George Steinbrenner

    by clustercuss

    rip

  • July 13, 2010, 9:01 a.m. CST

    George Steinbrenner is fucking dead

    by Abominable Snowcone

    Adios, muchachos

  • July 13, 2010, 9:02 a.m. CST

    Death is kicking ass in 2010

    by Abominable Snowcone

    We thought 2008-9 were banner years for the Reaper. Sheesh.

  • July 13, 2010, 9:03 a.m. CST

    FUCK THE YANKEES

    by PleaseWipeMyAss

    THANKS FOR NEARLY KILLING BASEBALL YOU FAT FUCK

  • July 13, 2010, 9:20 a.m. CST

    Fuck Steinbrenner.

    by fiester

    Fuck the Yankees. Fuck their fans. And fuck his retard spawn Hank.

  • July 13, 2010, 10:10 a.m. CST

    Used to LOVE his appearances on Letterman

    by skimn

    What a no-bullshit guy. Rest in peace Harvey.<p>Oh and Giamatti was robbed of a nomination...

  • July 13, 2010, 10:10 a.m. CST

    RIP Harvey

    by mojoman69

    ALong with Bukowski and John Fante, he was one of the best authors to capture the feelings of real life in a working class setting. He will be greatly missed. Play a jazz record tonite and raise a glass for Harvey.

  • July 13, 2010, 10:32 a.m. CST

    What about Crumb? How does he feel?

    by Snake Foreskin

    There were never two more strange, anti-social types that were more meant for one another. Bizarre men living in a bizarre world.

  • July 13, 2010, 10:39 a.m. CST

    tyhfgjhg

    by ershibamu

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  • July 13, 2010, 10:41 a.m. CST

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    by skimn

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  • July 13, 2010, 11:04 a.m. CST

    Comic Book Confidential

    by SonOfChiba

    ...was my introduction to him way back in 1988. I was 14, was there for the superheroes but ended up loving Pekar's tale of stealing old jazz records the most. After that, I always kept an eye for him. He was singular, and will be missed. Here's to ya, Harvey.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:12 a.m. CST

    thatfilmlover

    by FleshMachine

    commenting on a first poster on an obit?...uber-classy! u ironic douche. the only thing worse than a 1st poster is someone who bitches about it...out of secret jealousy i think...especially since you were 2nd.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:14 a.m. CST

    the aboove applies to the rest of you

    by FleshMachine

    who bother to give a fuck about someone posting 1st...oooh so disrespectful!!...this is the fucking internet you fucking pathetic little twerps.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:16 a.m. CST

    Pekar just spoke to me from heaven

    by FleshMachine

    said he's really upset about that guy who posted "first" on this board. he though heaven would be nice...but now it's ruined.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:37 a.m. CST

    Playkins....

    by mtoast

    That was one of the things that annoyed Harvey about Letterman. Letterman liked to act like this rebellious guy, disrespectful of his corporate bosses -- as long as it was for shallow laughs. Harvey felt like it actually made GE look like nice guys, willing to be teased. When push came to shove, however, Pekar saw Dave as a corporate shill -- unwilling to look at GE's evil nature. In Dave's defence, I think his main opposition was that Pekar was trying to turn a silly comedy show into a forum for political discussion. This was a long time before the Daily Show revealed how you could have both.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:45 a.m. CST

    Steinbrenner Died Today, so the Question is...

    by The Dreaded Rear Admiral

    Who's the third? These things always come in threes, so Pekar, Steinbrenner, and...who's next?

  • July 13, 2010, 11:52 a.m. CST

    Steinbrenner dead, wow

    by Samuel Fulmer

    I guess they're making room for him in Hell as we speak.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:07 p.m. CST

    Emerald boy- thanks for the cultural info. Totally explains

    by UltraTron

    why my Irish aquaintences can talk about nothing but drinking Jameson. Way to raise an entire nation people. Just give em booze n jeesus n hope fer tha best.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:28 p.m. CST

    RIP Harvey, you'll be missed...

    by Sulla

    What an interesting man we've lost, a true person in every sense of the word. Nothing phony about him, what you saw is what you got with Harvey.

  • July 13, 2010, 12:58 p.m. CST

    SO WHAT

    by planet_mars

    Harvey peckar was a complainer and was boring as hell...I tried to get through one of his complaintfest graphic novels and put it down after being extremely board....I can hear my cranky old neighbor if I wanted too, and be just as entertained. Now Art Spiegleman or Stan "the man" Lee passing away...now that would be news. They brought alot to the comics/graphic novel industry

  • July 13, 2010, 1:11 p.m. CST

    planet_mars

    by mtoast

    Reading your post, it's clear that you are barely literate and your opinion of literature is therefore completely irrelevant.

  • July 13, 2010, 1:39 p.m. CST

    mtoast, thanks for the spellcheck

    by planet_mars

    I spelled Pekar and bored wrong. I will definetly spell check next time, thanks for the help buddy, it is greatly appreciated. And yes, you are right. My opinion is my opinion, I don't celebrate banality. Now is my spelling right?

  • July 13, 2010, 1:47 p.m. CST

    oh, and by the way mtoast

    by planet_mars

    Funny that you can call me barely literate when I enjoy the writings of Umberto Eco, Mark Twain, Philip Jose Farmer, Ray Bradbury, James Hilton, T.H. White and many other writers of different genres. I am glad I annoyed you, now go back and read your Pekar graphic novels and continue your mourning like a good little boy.

  • July 13, 2010, 1:48 p.m. CST

    Harvey gets props from this brother!!

    by Oprah_Duke

    Sail on homie!!

  • July 13, 2010, 2:18 p.m. CST

    Didn't know him, but I liked him.

    by butterbean

    I'll miss you Harvey.

  • July 13, 2010, 3:09 p.m. CST

    I didn't get to know enough about him...

    by Cletus Van Damme

    ...while he was still with us. I liked American Spendor, and loved that it was sort of a back and forth between Giamatti's Pekar and Harvey himself.<p>He's an intriguing man and I'll check out more of his work.

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  • July 13, 2010, 3:51 p.m. CST

    planet_mars

    by mtoast

    You forgot about "alot" as well as the fact that you mixed the verb tenses when you mentioned your neighbor. I'm also wondering about ellipses as your punctuation of choice. Must be something you picked up from Philip Jose Farmer. Anyway, when someone you admire dies, I hope some punk decides to plaster his unwanted and unnecessary opinion across the obituary. If you don't care for the man's work, that's fine. Is this really the place to scream it to the world? Really? I hope you're just a punk kid. If not, I'm depressed now.

  • July 13, 2010, 6:52 p.m. CST

    planet_mars

    by Jaka

    You are exactly the kind of douche that Pekar could easily rip apart in one of his rants. The best part is that you wouldn't even get it. You'd think he was "just complaining" about some other guy.

  • July 13, 2010, 10:41 p.m. CST

    David Letterman

    by SemenStains

    I'm watching the Late Show, Daves talking about LeBron and asks if anybody from Cleveland is in the audience. Its the perfect segway to mention Pekar and yet it seems like hes not going to be brought up. Faggot.

  • July 13, 2010, 11:11 p.m. CST

    What comes after the dining car?

    by Thunderball

    The Pee Car. That was always my favorite line by Harvey. I did some work for Harvey back in the day and will miss him. He was a unique talent.

  • July 14, 2010, 2:55 a.m. CST

    I LOVE COMICS...

    by UmwaY

    AND HARVEY TOO... RIP BRO

  • July 14, 2010, 11:15 a.m. CST

    When someone like Pekar dies...

    by Knuckleduster

    ... it really feels like the world has lost someone special. Sure, you could say that about anyone, I guess, but Harvey was an ordinary Joe who decided to be more than just an ordinary Joe. Great guy.

  • July 14, 2010, 11:51 a.m. CST

    there is an irish acomonist called David McWilliams..

    by emeraldboy

    His first book was called the pope's children. It was all about how the irish economy started to grow in 1979. the year of the popes visit. and that was when the irish started to stop listening to the church. gardai made thier presence at port and airports felt. its sounds so stupid but the irish state considered cury wurlies to contraband. because it came from the UK. playboy was banned untill the early 1990s. and life of brian remains banned in irish cinemas to this day. but you can buy it on dvd and blu ray. and there are books, plays and other cultural items that were banned in ireland. ireland was a theocracy.

  • July 15, 2010, 3:53 a.m. CST

    RIP Harvey...

    by Master Bruce

    and condolences to his family & friends. Maybe he'll find true splendor now.

  • July 16, 2010, 4:10 a.m. CST

    The saddest part

    by GroolDemon

    Of his passing, living here in OH, is that the news channels barely had a blip about it. It sucks that the story of the day had to be about Lebron Lame instead of the great Pekar.

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