Oct 17, 2010

Easter Eggs in Comics: Grandma Ben in Sandman

Welcome to another installment of Easter Eggs in Comics! Click here for the archive!

One of the main characters in Jeff Smith's Bone is Grandma Rose Ben, a strong old woman, who was actually a tribute to Popeye.

In 2000, Jeff Smith wrote a prequel detailing Grandma Ben's past. It was drawn by Charles Vess.

So you might think, since this is a prequel, Charles Vess never got to draw Grandma Ben in her classic garb, huh? Wrong. See, in 1996, when Neil Gaiman was wrapping up his Sandman series (you've heard of it, yes?), with a story about William Shakespeare as he was writing The Tempest. And as a tribute to the fact that both Bone and Sandman have settings and concepts called "the Dreaming," Vess drew a familiar-looking bartender at a nearby inn.

Yep, that's Grandma Ben! Pretty cool, huh?


RaceForTaste said...


DeBT said...

Actually, I always thought Grandma Ben used the character design from Mrs. Beazly, the Cafeteria cook in Archie comics.

The ACTUAL Popeye tribute was more for Big Johnson Bone of Stupid Stupid Rat Tails, and only recently collected in the Bone Tall Tales book.

Duy Tano said...

I see where you're coming from. But the BONE SOURCEBOOK has Jeff explicitly say that Grandma Ben was a tribute to Popeye, and Smiley Bone to Wimpy.

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