Fallece Harvey Pekar, maestro del cómic independiente

"Harvey Pekar”, homenaje del nicaragüense Pedro X. Molina al caricaturista estadounidense

"Harvey Pekar”, homenaje del nicaragüense Pedro X. Molina al escritor e historietista estadounidense

(EEUU) La madrugada del pasado lunes 12 de julio falleció  Harvey Pekar en su casa en Cleveland, Ohio. Pekar, figura indiscutible del cómic underground y artífice de American Splendor, su trabajo más conocido, abandonó este mundo a los 70 años.

Hijo de inmigrantes polacos, Pekar nunca dejó su natal Cleveland. Allí fue a la universidad, sirvió en la marina y se empleó en los más diversos oficios hasta ser contratado como archivista en un hospital local, en cuyo empleo permaneció por más de 30 años hasta su retiro definitivo hacia el año 2001.

El trabajo de su vida, sin embargo, fue American Splendor, un galardonado cómic autobiográfico inspirado en su día a día como empleado administrativo, una historia que él mismo definía como “una guerra de desgaste” que se escribía tal como iba sucediendo. Una batalla ya perdida en donde uno estaba obligado a participar.

Aunque la crítica sobre su trabajo siempre fue favorable, Pekar no alcanzó el reconocimiento internacional sino hasta que American Splendor fuera llevado al celuloide por los documentalistas Shari Springer Berman y Robert Pulcini en el año 2003. La fama le llegó porque el filme ganó el Gran Premio del Jurado a Mejor Drama en el Festival de Cine de Sundance, fue entonces que el mundo volteó hacia su modesto trabajo como argumentista de historietas, mismo que llevaba publicando de manera independiente desde mayo de 1976.

El también crítico musical y literario escribía sobre la vida diaria, sobre los acontecimientos clave en la psique norteamericana. Sus temas iban desde cómo acontecieron sus vacaciones de verano hasta hondas relatorías sobre sus compañeros que habían servido en el frente de guerra en Vietnam. En un lenguaje ágil y desenfadado, en un tono accesible y con una peculiar visión crítica del entorno, el trabajo de Pekar resonará por siempre en el imaginario colectivo norteamericano. Revista MilMesetas lamenta la pérdida de uno de los más grandes genios del cómic y la historieta.

AM/RL

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