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high adventure
solid writing
exceptional art
historical bonus 3
total score 8
High Adventure
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Only Printing / June, 1973 / 36 pages / Kitchen Sink
High Adventure was a unique departure from the usual underground comics published by Kitchen Sink, which turned out to hint at a new paradigm to come. Though not an underground in the strictest sense, High Adventure is a sword and sorcery comic that's been freed from the shackles of censorship thanks to the underground movement (in other words, the artists get to draw some topless chicks). This is the paradigm that would spread like wildfire years later with alternative comics.

Besides being one of the first links between underground and alternative comics, High Adventure provides some terrific stories as well. Of course, there's no drugs or sex or humor or revolutionary politics. But hell, there are other undergrounds in these archives that don't have that stuff either, so I don't consider that to be a cardinal sin. Mind you, I don't hand out cardinal sins lightly, since they are sins that condemn a person to Hell after death unless they are appropriately forgiven and fully absolved. And reading (or creating) High Adventure hardly seems to meet those parameters.

This book is also notable for being the first truly professional comic-book artwork produced by the 21-year-old Steve Leialoha. The San Francisco native began cartooning for fanzines in the '60s, but after getting this gig for High Adventure Leialoha's career took off in the pages of Star*Reach and he hit stardom in mainstream comics, including Howard the Duck. Leialoha still lives in San Francisco with his long-term partner (and fellow cartoonist of some reknown), Trina Robbins.

I don't think I've mentioned it, but High Adventure is also a pretty solid comic book, with some entertaining stories and excellent comic art.
Kitchen Sink printed approximately 10,000 copies of this comic book. It has not been reprinted.

Robert Kline - 1, 3-7 (art), 27-34 (art), 36
Mike Royer - 2, 8-15
Mark Evanier 3-7 (script), 16-34 (script)
Steve Leialoha - 16-26 (pencils)
John Pound - 16-26 (inks)
Roger Freedman - 16-26 (lettering)