This chapter dissects Filipino comic art, tracing it to the anti-Spanish, and then anti-American cartoons in humor magazines and newspapers a century or more ago, through Tony Velasquez’s “Kenkoy,” the first strip, and the post–World War II komiks. During komiks’ heyday of the 1950s-1960s, many titles of varied genres appeared, a large percentage of which were adapted to movies. Both komiks used for national development causes and for titillation (the erotic bomba) published in the 1960s. At the same time, U.S. comics publishers began to recruit Filipino artists to draw American superhero titles. For much of komiks’ history, Ramon Roces dominated their publishing. The chapter relates how changes occurred in the 1990s and beyond, with the arrival of young, independent creators, the impact of manga, the development of new forms, including the graphic novel, and the professionalization of comics through festivals, groups (particularly “Komikero”), and awards.
Keywords: Komiks, bomba, manga, Tony Velasquez, “Kenkoy,” Ace Publications, Boboy Yonzon, Gerry Alanguilan