On a complete whim, coming home from Schaumburg yesterday I stopped at a comics store I have often driven past, Phoenix Comics on Dempster in Skokie or maybe Niles. It was a cluttered disaster of a retail space to which I won’t return, but I did pick up a comic I’ve never even heard of The Moth by Steve Rude and Gary Martin. I really liked this comic a lot. The dialog and settings were just quirky enough to be unpredictable and the art was, well, Steve Rude. What more do you need? In the text piece, Rude says that Gary Martin (the writer/inker) has a style a lot like his old partner Mike Baron, which I can totally see. It also had some of that “ordinary guy hero” aspect that I liked so much about books like Crossfire in the 80’s. I never know what to buy in the comic shops anymore, but I’ll keep my eye out for this in the future.
Q: Are you still surprised at the response your work gets from people who keep following The Dude?
RUDE: It’s very flattering. I’ve told my wife and friends for 20 years now how lucky I am to have such a great group of supporters. My audience is made up of astute and fascinating people, looking for things of substance that can sustain our soul and help to understand the bizarre game of life a little better.
The one time I met the guy, he was very nice and easy to talk to. The people whose work you enjoy most are not necessarily the best people in the world, but in this case his prodigious skill as an artist seems backed by a pure heart.