Towards the end of the underground comix scene, Wallace "Wally" Wood had become disillusioned and bored with doing 'mainstream' work for the major publishers of the time. Wanting to be able to produce stuff he was interested in, he created the irregularly published Witzend, a magazine of sorts that was an outlet for his own tastes along with those of his friends - who, incidentally, happened to be some of the biggest names in comics history. Running from 1966 to 1985, Wood and such luminaries as Steranko, Ditko, Frazetta, Williamson, Kurtzman, Eisner, Spiegelman, and others that came to be known as Grandmasters of the genre. Filled with prose, photo-montages, original stories, swashbuckling violence and plenty of nudity, this is a great example of the transition from the ultra-violent, drug addled, underground comix scene of the 60s into the beginnings of the comics revolution of the late 70s, early 80s. An interesting mishmash of styles and elements makes this collection a must read for anyone who is a fan of the "old school" artists, along with comics historians. Style elements abound, and it's a real treat to see early works by artists that would eventually create seismic changes in how comics are viewed. Above is an excerpt from an early work by Art Speigelman, the only cartoonist to ever win a Pulitzer Prize. Included in this collection are interviews with contributors and publishers, remembering Wood and his desire to create a space where artists could pursue what they wanted to without fear of editors interfering. This is a mature title for extensive (comic book) violence along with nudity and language. However, I had to think long and hard about designating it as a mature title, simply because there is very little that is lascivious or offensive to most audiences. I cited the ComiXology price because the book collection is currently out of print, and can only be found on the secondary market for an outpriced amount.

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