Monday, August 17, 2009

It Happened at Woodstock!

Forty years ago today, the last bands played the Woodstock festival and the people who made the pilgrimage out to Bethel, New York began to head home. The event was not quickly forgotten however, and was immortalized in a documentary film, comic books, and yes -- cheap costume jewelry.

This advertisement from 1971 appeared in several romance comic books. Notice how it capitalizes on the slogan from the documentary film released in '70 -- "No one who was there will ever be the same" and uses the dove-on-guitar imagery from the poster.

1971 was evidentally a big year for Woodstock memorabilia. The same year as the jewelry ad made its rounds, Marvel released a story called "It Happened at Woodstock!" which appeared in My Love #14 (November 1971).

Marvel's story by Gary Friedrich with art by Gray Morrow (which will make you jump out of your seat and say WOW, by the way) is a more sophisticated tale than its DC counterpart. Read the whole story at The Golden Age of Comic Book Stories blog (thanks so much to fellow romance blogger Jarett Kobek for the heads up) (UPDATE: this story can now be read at the blog, Shades of Gray), and be prepared to be blow away by Morrow's gorgeous depiction of the festival. I personally think it is a really interesting story, if you can forgive the fact that the splash page says the event happened during the summer of 1968. Other than that error, the story serves as a pretty darn good historical piece. It documents not only the artists that performed at Woodstock, but the social mores surrounding the expectations for young women at the time to "settle down" and begin domestic life. It is definitely one of my favorite romance stories with some of the best art that came out of the genre. Be sure to check it out!


  1. Loved the art, but the story was pretty weak. What I do find very interesting as a cultural indicator is that the underlying plot of the two Woodstock stories I've seen so far is "I fooled around at Woodstock and my boyfriend didn't."

  2. Ah, I didn't even think of it like that. Very telling about assumptions... I always wonder how these stories would have ended if a woman had written them...

  3. Not a huge fan of Gray Morrow's line art, but he did some STUNNING painted paperback covers and movie posters. He is missed.


  4. I think I like his painted work better as well, Marshall. So soft and dreamy.

  5. Gorgeous art, but the story is pretty weak. And all I could think, at the end, that Flowers most likely died of an OD in 1979, while Rick and his girlfriend ended up divorcing in the 1980s. A happily ever after!