Manuel “Spain” Rodriguez died Wednesday, November 28 at age 72, after a long battle with cancer, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
Michael Cavna wrote in his “Comic Riffs” blog for the Washington Post:
Born in Buffalo, the Bay Area transplant would become a true cartooning original (even if he cited influences like Wally Wood). Besides co-founding the Mission District’s murals movement, he was among the band of Zap Comix artists who, beginning in the ‘60s, pioneered the underground comix scene.
More information is available in Trashman: The Art of Spain Rodriguez, a 2012 documentary created by Rodriguez’s journalist wife, Susan Stern.
One of his projects was a graphic novelization of Nightmare Alley by William Lindsay Gresham (2003), an author once married to Joy Davidman.
[Thanks to David Klaus for the story.]
Like many of the underground cartoonists, Spain also wrote science fiction. He probably did more stories with his character Trashman: Agent of the Sixth International than any other.