Just in time for Roy Halladay to throw the first pitch and open the Phillies 2012 season, local comic artists debut their latest baseball-themed issue of Dugout Phunnies.
For the , a Roxborugh resident, and comedian Jon Goff released their Phillies-inspired comic book to coincide with baseball's opening day.
"The first issue last year got a lot of attention. A lot of people jumped on it and kept in touch. We got a small fanbase, which is great, because Jon and I have a lot of fun doing it," Jablow said.
In 2011, the duo released three issues and set the familiar Phightin' Phils in unorthodox situations. Haven't you wondered how Charlie Manuel would handle getting sucked into a video game universe? Or, what if Chase Utley inherited a haunted mansion?
The scene for April 2012: space. Jim Thome, Vance Worrley and others must save the Earth from imminent doom.
"It'd be boring to have talking heads in a locker room. We take after things like Mad magazine. We go back-and-forth and say, "Hey, let's do a horror story," he said.
Jablow draws the black-and-white comic and colored cover. He says it's a fairly even division of labor, with Goff writing the story's bulk. Jablow helps tighten it to comic style.
Purely a passion project, Jablow said he's happy at the Dugout Phunnies' growth.
"It's not exactly a moneymaker. It's something we do for fun. We think the work is getting strong. Both the writing and artwork are improving," he said.
For Jablow, the Phillies make drawing interesting. Charlie Manuel is one of his favorites, with Hunter Pence proving to be most difficult.
"Baseball players who try to stand out with facial hair are a godsend. Any little thing is good for me," he said, adding Worley's Mohawk and goggles and Placido Polanco's appearance help.
"Charlie is fun, because he already looks like a cartoon character."
As part of First Friday in Manayunk, Dugout Phunnies will hold a release party at on Cotton Street April 6. All issues will be available for purchase, and they will sign books from 6 to 9 p.m..