By Derek Royal
After almost a year and a half hiatus, Sergio Aragonés Funnies returns with issue #8. As he explained on his official website in February of last year, Aragonés had to take time off due to serious back problems that left him unable to work as he once had. His other comics, such as his illustrations for MAD as well as his Groo stories, were also put on temporary hold. But last month there was good news: Aragonés is apparently better, and we get the next installment of Sergio Aragonés Funnies. Issue #8 begins, in fact, with a one-page explanation to the reader, informing us of his back problems, his stay in the hospital, and apologizing for the delay in publication. Aragonés then pulls back the curtain — literally, and in cartoon form — on a jam-packed issue that includes not only his signature short strips, but longer narratives such as “The Bank Robbers,” about nineteenth-century thieves who become bankers, and the autobiographical piece, “The Mexican Trip,” recounting the time that William Gaines took his usual gang of idiots to Mexico.
Issue #7 of Sergio Aragonés Funnies was released in January 2012, but now the title is back with plans to go bimonthly. It’s great to have Aragonés back (no pun intended), it’s great to have Sergio Aragonés Funnies return, and let’s all wish the renowned cartoonist the best of health!