7 août 2017

Hugo Hercules

Moi qui croyait connaître tous les personnages des débuts de la BD... en voici un dont je n'avais pas entendu parler:

WHETHER HE WAS stopping a speeding trolly car with his bare hands, or wielding a full-size cannon as though it were a pistol, the friendly colossus known as Hugo Hercules was pulling off superhero-type feats long before anybody even thought to use the word.

The word superhero, that is, which didn’t come into existence until 1917 according to Webster’s Dictionary. Hugo Hercules was doing his thing way back in 1902, every Sunday in the funny pages of The Chicago Tribune—saving damsels in distress; effortlessly hoisting an elephant; turning the tables on armed robbers. For 5 short months, anyway. As it turned out, what Hugo had in strength he lacked in timing. Apparently, America’s readers weren’t ready for a hand-drawn, super-powered individual in 1902. They would be three decades later, after World War I and the Great Depression created a need for escapism. But by the time the U.S. comic book industry was born, in 1933, Hugo Hercules was long gone.

(...) Alan Moore certainly loves him. The master comic writer (Watchmen) included Hugo as a character in his 2015 League of Extraordinary Gentlemen spinoff Nemo: River of Ghosts.

Vous pouvez lire plusieurs de ces comic-strips en cliquant ici.

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