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Gay comics star “Jayson” turns 25, takes on Tinseltown in new graphic novel
Celebrating 25 years in comics, gay everyman “Jayson” takes aim at Hollywood in his latest graphic novel. Proving that time has not dulled the blade of this cutting-edge series, “Jayson Goes to Hollywood” finds our hero in hot pursuit of his most cunning villain yet – Meryl, the lesbian mantrap. Along the way he encounters Kevlar DuPont, a movie star with a fetish that has to be seen to be believed, while his cohorts back in Philadelphia experience a comic shock of their own.
“Jayson” cartoons have entertained generations of readers by taking a lighthearted look at gay life in the big city. Title character Jayson Callowhill doesn’t want much – just a job and a man worth having. That’s what he left Farmville and moved to Philadelphia to find. But like many of us, he’s still searching. At least Jayson has interesting friends: Arena Stage, his unemployable gal-pal; Robyn Ricketts, the cross-dressing adult filmmaker next door; and Bertha, Jayson’s previously puritan, now progressive mother. Together they comprise what might best be described as an “Algonquin card table” – cracking wise as they struggle to make the rent.
The brainchild of creator Jeff Krell, “Jayson” began life in 1983 in the Philadelphia Gay News. He soon graduated to Gay Comix and the Meatmen series of cartoon anthologies. A syndicated version of the strip followed. In 1998, Krell collaborated with songwriters Romanovsky & Phillips on a “Jayson” musical that enjoyed a successful off-Broadway run.
The best “Jayson” cartoons from the past two decades have been collected in a pair of anthologies. “Jayson: Best of the 80s” contains Krell’s earliest, most provocative work, including first appearances in the Philadelphia Gay News, Gay Comix and Meatmen. “Jayson: Best of the 90s” plunges the cast into a series of epic misadventures involving Sapphic saleswomen, oversexed aliens, and Christian telemarketers.
Now Krell opens a new chapter in the lives of these classic characters with a book-length adventure that will leave you breathless with laughter. “Jayson Goes to Hollywood” (96 pp., $12.95) is available at finer bookstores, progressive comics shops, and Amazon.com. For more information, visit http://ignite-ent.com.
Digital samples of the art appearing with the press release are available here.