Monday, May 21, 2018

European Western Comic Books ~ I protaganisti (Geronimo)

I protagonisti was a western comic series created by Rino Albertarelli and published monthly from 1974 to 1975 by Daim Press. The series presented documented and meticulous biographies of the heroes of the West and was only interrupted by the death of the author.

Each issue contained a monograph of a Western epic character with a comic strip story accompanied by a bibliography containing books consulted by the author in his documentation work. The series ran from September 1974 until June 1975.

The series was commissioned by Sergio Bonelli and Rino Albertarelli who wrote and designed the series for Daim Press in 1973. When Albertarelli died, on September 21, 1974, he was working on the tenth issue and only the first issue had been released on newsstands. The publishing house decided to end the series with the tenth volume, of which Albertarelli had completed only the first 42 tables, so Sergio Toppi was hired to finish the series.

In 1994 the series was reprinted in the series The Protagonists of the West, edited by Hobby & Work. A second reprint was published in 2007 in the series of History of the West by If Editions with the headline “History of the West Presents the Protagonists”. In each issue there are two stories in the chronological order of the original publication.

Issue #2 was about the life and legend of Apache War Chief Geronimo which was published in October 1974.

A nickname with which Goyathlay, the historical Apache chief born in 1829 in the territory that now corresponds to the state of Ariziona, soon became the leader of the last Native American tribes who opposed the decision of the US government to lock them up in reserves. Considered bloodthirsty by American settlers, for the Apache people he was the hero who fully embodied the aggressiveness and courage of his own race. Furthermore, because of his apparent invulnerability to the bullets, it was believed to be endowed with supernatural powers. Defeated in 1882 and forced into a reserve, Geronimo escaped almost immediately and regained the struggle that ended four years later with his capture by General Miles. Transported to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, he would remain there until his death in 1909, after dictating an interesting autobiography. 

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