Attention NYC residents

My re-vamped Chapter 1 of my one-fine-day-to-be-completed graphic novel Feeder Birds will be presented at

‘s Carousel this Wednesday evening. The author (me) will be in attendance and providing the voice of Flicker. Details of where and when can be obtained by clicking on the above images. Following the link below will provide the viewer with a 10-second version of the chapter. More images from the massive bird fight that forms the centerpiece of the chapter can be found here.

It’s worth noting that this edition of Carousel is to benefit Doug Skinner, whose studio was flooded a few months ago with much loss to his work and livelihood.  Doug is, to put it simply, one of the most talented people I’ve ever met in my life.  A true renaissance man, Doug is a gifted songwriter, performance artist, musician, composer, cartoonist, and many other things.

How smart is Doug Skinner?  Here’s an illustrative story:

In 1989 or so, I ran into Doug at an evening of performance art.  We were both on the bill that night and we had some time to kill during tech rehearsal.  I had brought the Village Voice to read.  Doug was reading Voltaire.  In French.  The big story that week was that Steve Martin and Robin Williams were currently starring in a big-deal production of Beckett’s Waiting for Godot at Lincoln Center.  The scandal of the production was that, in spite of gigantic ticket demand, it was being presented in the 300-seat Mitzi Newhouse Theater.  I wondered aloud if the production justified the hype, and Doug mentioned that he had seen it.  I remembered that Doug had trod the boards at Lincoln Center for many years as the co-star/co-creator of Bill Irwin’s In Regard of Flight, and that  Mr. Irwin was playing Lucky in the current production of Godot.  This all explained how Doug got in for the hottest ticket in town, but how did he like the show?  I asked him, and he replied, with characteristic underplaying, “Well, it’s not a very good play…

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14 Responses to “Attention NYC residents”
  1. ghostgecko says:

    Damn lucky NYC residents. Why does nothing cool ever happen here?!?!

    Have fun with that, Todd 🙂 Looks like it will be awesome.

  2. mikeyed says:

    I wish I could even imagine to plan to attend, but even that is out of my hands.

  3. Anonymous says:

    absent NYC resident

    As the author of this blog knows, I am out of town this week (in fact, not on the same continent), or I’d certainly be there!

    Todd, your new color and more particularly line and use of shapes is stunning, and I really wish I could see the chapter projected this evening.

    I just looked at the clock and realized that R. Sikoryak is probably making his introduction at exactly this moment…

  4. Geez, Todd…the one week I forget to check your LiveJournal and here you are, bopping around Manhattan and doing Carousel. I’m doubly sorry I missed it now. Hope it went well (the last chapters were excellent, by the way).

  5. craigjclark says:

    So… How did it go? Were all the 30-year-olds taken up?

    • Todd says:

      Carousel went well. Some said it was the best ever, but I have memories of more transcendent experiences. It was, I believe, the first Carousel to feature a 3D presentation by Gerald Marks, which was entrancing. It also featured one of Brian Dewan’s filmstrips, which are always a pleasure, this one a retelling of one of Grimm’s grimmest “catastrophe” stories, about a luckless chicken couple. Meg Sweeney Lawless did a piece about a monkey who gets an apartment building roaringly drunk and Sam Henderson did a piece on a cat-food company run by cats, so my gangster birds fit well with this menagerie of the bizarre. And I’m certain the theme was not planned by R. (please correct me if I’m mistaken, R.), these things just seem to happen somehow.

  6. SPEAKING of Todd Alcott comics, I picked up the second ‘Legal Action Comics’ in a library today and HEY ITS YOU! RIFFING ON FAMILY CIRCUS… OF SOULS! Nice, nice… only I dun gettit (a reference to Carnival of Souls?)

    Anyways, I like the father coming up to the girl and saying ‘How can anyone be so DUMB!?’ Yay!

    • Todd says:

      The Family Circus panels were drawn by R. Sikoryak for a theatrical show I wrote about my childhood. The children of the Family Circus family (Billy, Dolly, Jeffy and PJ) correspond exactly in age range to the children in my own family (with me as PJ). The situations in the parody cartoons are all taken from incidents in my real-life childhood. I asked Legal Action editor Danny Hellman to include some kind of explanation for the pieces but he either neglected to include it or else felt the pieces didn’t need it. They seem a little abstruse to me with no explanation, but then I’m not a great cartoonist.

      • r_sikoryak says:

        I don’t know why Danny left out the intro, either… I felt the autobiographical aspect separated your captions from every OTHER Family Circus parody.

  7. teamwak says:

    Feeder Birds is looking great.

    I am intrigued, to say the least. Good luck.

  8. Anonymous says:

    It’s not anonymous; it’s Doug Skinner. Thanks for doing the show, Todd! I’d never had a benefit done for me; it was strange, but fun.

    As for “Godot,” I’d been reading a bio of Beckett which went into all of his reservation s about it. It was his first play to be produced, and he felt his later work was better. I can see what he means; the Didi-Gogo dialogue has some great lines, but can be hard to bring to life. “Endgame,” by contrast, doesn’t have a wasted beat. By the way, F. Murray Abraham played Pozzo in that production; he was excellent.

    And “Feeder Birds” is looking sharp!

    • Todd says:

      I’d never had a benefit done for me; it was strange, but fun.

      I would imagine attending a benefit for one’s self would make one feel a lot like Huck Finn attending his own funeral.

      As for Godot, I don’t think there is any doubt that it is Samuel Beckett’s worst play (I mean other than Eleutheria). His dramatic sensibilities became steadily more refined afterwards, to the point of being difficult to look at, which I mean as a compliment. Endgame is ten times the play Godot is, and if you look at something even later, like Krapp or Ohio Impromptu or What Where, Godot looks formless and shaggy, almost pointless, next to it. It nevertheless is a major landmark of 20th-century theater (which, come to think of it, a number of bad plays are) and it was shocking for a Beckettian like me to hear it dismissed as such.

      F. Murray Abraham sounds like he would make a wonderful Pozzo.

      • Anonymous says:

        It’s Skinner again.
        I actually love “Godot”; it’s funny, imaginative, and daring; but on stage it does often come across as bookish and aimless, especially given the brutal precision of the later plays. As I recall, it was fun to see Steve Martin and Robin Williams, but they didn’t quite click together. Bill Irwin and F. Murray Abraham did. I didn’t mean to shock you!
        The benefit did feel like my funeral — but in a good way. At least I didn’t get stuck in bridge traffic later like our Brooklyn pals. Cheers!