GARETH GAUDIN learned to walk on the world’s largest ship, and then fell on his face with his first steps on land. However interesting this may be, it has nothing to do with his current state of being, or perhaps it has everything to do with it.
Mr. Gaudin has spent the past 15.5 years with Legends Comics and Books (Victoria, BC). It was open for only 6 months before they stole him away from another comic store. (Quick note, the store that Gareth worked for before Legends, closed down shortly after his departure.) In that time Gareth has created a comic book series called Magic Teeth Dailies ( featuring Perogy Cat), started a record label called ‘Magic Teeth Records’ and for just over 5 years now, owner of Legends Comics and Books.
The comic-a-day regime of Magic Teeth Dailies began July 27th, 2004. Since then, Gareth has not missed one single day of comic writing. Gareth states, “the name ‘Perogy Cat’ came from a late night study session in an art history class. When I fist drew him and we were starving and the only things that students seemed to eat were ramen noodles, macaroni and cheese and perogies. The cat was fat and white and looked like a perogy, so the name stuck.”
Legends Comics and Books
Each comic can take anywhere from 15 minutes to a couple of hours to create and now has quite a cult-like following, largely on the social networking site, Facebook. Here you can find fan groups titled ‘I love Perogy Cat’ ‘Magic Teeth Dailies’ and ‘Legends Comics and Books’. These groups host updates, new comics from Perogy Cat, Magic Teeth Records and many photos of people all over the world posing with the stuffy version of the pudgy white cat or placing him in strange and historical landmarks.
Day one of Perogy Cat (from the official Magic Teeth website)
Perogy Cat, in all is his glory, exists in many forms. First and foremost, as a comic book character that is drawn daily, then as cards, buttons, stuffed animals, toys, t-shirts and wall art. Gareth says that his cards, with clever sayings like ‘ I think we’ve reached the point in our relationship that I can fart in front of you’, sells 10 to 1 over the comics and are just half the price of a 20-page comic book. The current comic book, issue #26, features the ultrasound fetus of the Gaudin’s unborn child. (Due on December 12th,)
Perogy Cat in one of many forms
When flipping through a Perogy Cat comic, you will notice an abundance of dirty puns and though this is a disturbing highlight, Gareth says that this trend comes naturally and fills the comic easily. He would eventually like to get down to some real fine art comic style where the voluptuous lines of Perogy Cat take a more artistic approach.
Perogy Cat and Gareth seem to live quite parallel lives. You can often catch up with Gareth’s life by reading a current issue of Perogy Cat. I will admit that after reading the first few comic books, I felt a little awkward... as though I were reading journals that I bought in a dodgy back alley store. Was I secretly engrossed in embarrassing aspects of Mr. Gaudin’s life? I quickly overcame this sensation. I now own every issue.
Gareth states that his most rewarding experience during his time at Legends has been obtaining the complete Spider-Man collection, selling it, going to Europe, and then collecting it all over again. He also says 'being able to promote my own work and actually having a readership or fan base as also been quite awesome'.
As he continues to conduct business while we chat, the most common topic that everyone brings up is the fact that Obama went on TV recently, outing his love of Spider-Man. Almost instantly, Legends became twice as busy as previous days and everyone is buying or talking about Spidey. The fact that peoples interest in Spider-Man has been peaked, gives his senseless joy and confirmation on many levels. On a personal level, Gareth’s most prize possession of the store is The Amazing Fantasy #15 from August 1962, which features the first appearance of Spider-Man.
Gareth still reads Spider-Man every month.
Though it is a busy time at Legends Comics and books, it is quite obvious that modern technology has changed the future of print. When I mention the decline of newsprint and magazine publication and how this effects the comic industry, Gareth states that there are 500 comics that are released every month and he hopes that half of them stop with their monthly print and move towards only printing in book or novel form. Though it’s a good idea, chances of this happening are unlikely due to consistent popularity to comics in their tactile form.
Gareth has an extraordinary amount of knowledge regarding the comic industry, where artists and writers came from and where they are today. Fair enough, it is his livelihood. I will admit a certain amount of envy when I think of sitting in a store filled with extraordinary stories and illustrious art. That being said, Gareth does not take this for granted. He works very hard at his job and is constantly engaged in conversation. He once thought he would be able to sit in the store and draw all day. With mixed feelings, Gareth observes that those days just don’t exist.
my favorite corner..also known as my 'bee line'
As if he isn’t busy enough, Gareth, a self-proclaimed failed musician, has a record label called Magic Teeth Records. Magic Teeth Records has its 11th recording being released in December and will be available at Legends Comics and Books
As I say good-bye, Gareth shares a quote of the day.."smart mother-fuckers are often thought of as crazy mother-fuckers by stupid mother-fuckers" (Walking Dead issue #54)
Don't miss Perogy Cat #26 out now..only at