Our guest on today’s illustrative episode of the Popzara Podcast is an artist whose work straddles the worlds of artistry and commercialization, of teens and tweens – and possibly their parents: prolific writer/illustrator Jim Benton, creator of modern picture book classics like Five Stinky Socks and Where’s My Fnurgle?, as well as the Dear Dumb Diary: Deluxe and Franny K. Stein series of young reader books.
Plus, chances are good you’ve spotted his ubiquitous Happy Bunny somewhere – anywhere – out in the wild. It’s pretty popular. Like, really popular.
Jim talks with our comics-loving Nathan Evans not just about his anti-cursive bias, but also his third collection of cartoon funnies, Man, I Hate Cursive: Cartoons for People and Advanced Bears, set for release October 18th from Andrews McMeel Publishing. The two delve deep into the world of publishing for younger readers, catering to different audiences, changing up styles and keeping things fresh, cartoon literacy, even squeezing in a frank discussion about gender disparities in modern comics/films. Comics, cartoons, wizards and lemons – what more could you possibly want?