Mike Danger Loses A Friend

December 20th, 2011 by Max Allan Collins

For those of you out of the comics scene loop, I’m sorry to report that Eduardo Barretto passed away recently. Eduardo was the initial artist on the MIKE DANGER comic book, drawing the first six issues, and while other good artists followed, nobody came close to his classic approach. He also drew my Eliot Ness/Batman graphic novel, SCAR OF THE BAT, providing the best Bat-art I ever got.

My collaborations with Eduardo were long distance, and we only met once, briefly, at a San Diego Comic Con. He was about to go into a meeting with an editor, and we pretty much passed like ships in the night. But I loved his work and regret I didn’t get a chance to work with him again. He was on the very short list of artists I suggested for ROAD TO PERDITION.

There were a lot of nice write-ups about Eduardo in the wake of his passing, but here’s a nice representative one.

Crimespree 44

I am pleased and honored to be a cover boy again, this time on CRIMESPREE 44. The interview, conducted by editor Jon Jordan himself, has some glitches and typos but is otherwise a particularly good one, I think, thanks to Jon’s questioning. If you can’t pick up a copy at a mystery bookstore, you can just pay $6 through Paypal to Jon@crimespreemag.com, or send a check for $6 to:

Crimespree Magazine
536 South 5th St
Milwaukee WI 53204.

It’s also available as an e-book from either Amazon or Barnes & Noble online.

My pal Leonard Maltin called recently to say how much he liked BYE BYE, BABY. He even included it in his seasonal wrap-up on new and notable Hollywood-oriented books.

At Bookreporter.com, several regular reviewers were asked to present best 10 books of the year, and Tom Callahan included BYE BYE, BABY on his.

We also received some Best of 2011 honors at the cool Sons of Spade site.

I was asked to write about one of my favorite authors, Ed McBain, for Amazon, and you can find my piece (and others) right here. If you like my work and McBain’s, you’ll want to take a look.

A nice CONSUMMATA review popped up here. That little book has generated nice online buzz (and was recently part of a Titan giveaway promotion at Ain’t It Cool News); no link, ‘cause the contest’s over….

You may find this review of the graphic novel ROAD TO PERDITION of interest. It’s quite insightful, but has the unusual perspective of a reviewer who likes the book but does not like the film. I like the film a lot, but I am always up for hearing from people who like the book better….

That gifted comics scribe John Ostrander said some nice things about CHICAGO LIGHTNING.

Finally, let me wish you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas this week, and a happy holidays in general. This has been a rough year in many ways – the loss of Eduardo Barretto is a reminder of other losses, including Chuck Bunn from Crusin’ and my longtime film collaborator Mike Cornelison. My mom at her nursing home no longer recognizes Barb and me. I have always gotten misty-eyed at that line in “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” that says we’ll all be together “if the fates allow.” The fates have been kinder in other years.

Still, I am remarkably blessed. I have a beautiful, funny, talented, supportive wife in Barb – did I mention beautiful? – and a talented, funny, supportive son in Nate (I would call him “handsome,” but as much as we look alike, that would be inappropriate). My career manages to roll along nicely despite a marketplace that resembles a back-alley in Iraq. I have so many friends, many of whom collaborate with me – like Jane Spillane, Matt Clemens and Phil Dingeldein, among many others (you know who you are, or anyway I hope you do) – who make my life a particularly full and happy one. Among those friends are the readers who support my work and stop by this weekly update. I raise a rum-spiked glass of egg nog to you all.


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2 Responses to “Mike Danger Loses A Friend”

  1. mike doran says:

    It is my gift … and my curse.

    “If the fates allow” is from “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”.
    The next line is “Until then we’ll have to muddle through somehow …”

    I can’t help this – it’s my duty to straighten the crooked picture on the wall, even as I knock down all the furniture to do it.

    So please understand and forgive …
    … even as I point out that Johnny Carson didn’t take over THE TONIGHT SHOW until October of 1962, which means tha Nate and Marilyn couldn’t have … (but Nate is recalling this at age 106, so …)

    … so why don’t I just shut the eff up and wish you and Barb and Good Old Reliable Nathan and Abby and everybody else in Muscatine “A Merry Little Christmas now …”
    *and I’ll go back to muddling through*

  2. Sorry about the song screw-up. Just what we call in the biz a brain fart.

    Nate Heller’s memory isn’t what it used to be. But for our purposes, Johnny Carson is a better reference point than one of the parade of guest hosts who filled in for the departed Jack Paar. Key thing there was that MM didn’t care for Paar, having been in a movie with him.