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cover
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spotty writing
competent art
historical bonus 2
total score 4
Back Cover
Back Cover
(click for larger image)

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REVIEW SCORE 7
Smile #3
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Only Printing / August 1972 / 36 pages / Krupp Comic Works
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Not long after Smile #2 was published, Dennis Kitchen and Krupp Comic Works put out the third and final issue of the title. Like its predecessor, Smile #3 offers Jim Mitchell artwork on the front and back covers, but this time the content is more like the first issue, with a few longer-form stories instead of dozens of short panel strips that had been previously published in syndication. When this issue came out in the summer of '72, the Krupp syndicate had already bitten the dust, so (I believe) most of the stories here were either created specifically for the comic book or were just lying around the Krupp office.

Unfortunately, the content in this issue is worse than either of the first two issues of Smile.
Mitchell himself produces less than half of the interior pages and almost all of them feature his lame "Smile" character, which elicits no excitement from me, though the first story is at least passable. Peter Loft contributes a nine-page story about toads that's almost as dumb as it is interminably boring. Denis Kitchen only kicks in one page (about a toad!) and even that's not a very good one.

To be honest, it's hard to cherry pick the highlights in this issue, but Bill Lee does provide a couple chuckles with his wry "Americarnal" strips near the middle of the book, and some of Mitchell's illustrations can't help but be cool. Beyond that, I guess I'd go with Mitchell's opening story about being stoned on pot (yeah, that's the "passable" one), which is an easy ride to take but not nearly as much fun as you'd hope.

Unfortunately, this would be Jim Mitchell's final work in underground comics, as he got busted for pot in Mexico City shortly after this came out and spent nearly five years in the slammer. Today he's producing much more interesting work than he did here, which probably can be said for most of the people involved in this final issue of Smile.
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keyline
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HISTORICAL FOOTNOTES:
Krupp Comic Works printed approximately 10,000 copies of this comic book. It has not been reprinted.

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COMIC CREATORS:
Jim Mitchell - 1, 3-11, 26-29, 31, 32, 34, 36
Peter Loft - 2, 13-21, 33
Denis Kitchen - 12
Bill Lee - 22-25
Rick Thrun - 30
Bruce Walthers - 33