January 05, 2004 - 2:50 p.m.|
Welcome to The Groop!
Dedicated to Groopies, Groopers and Groo Troopers everywhere!
It was a dark and stormy night, hmmm, since he’s in California it was actually probably a gloriously sunny day, but anyway on September 27, 1995 webmaster Josh J. updated his fledgling Official Sergio Aragonés Groo The Wanderer Website with an email list called The Groo List.
It probably was a dark and stormy night in Canada when the very next day Ruben A. became the first person to join The Groop. Ruben is also keeper of the Sergiography, an ambitious database of all of Sergio Aragones’ appearances from the last 40 years! It’s never been settled whether Ruben or Josh is the First Groop Member, Josh as Listkeeper and Proprietor or Ruben as First Subscriber, but others followed soon enough.
Hmmm? You ask “who or what is Groo? ” Been there, done that!
As I say in the above link, The Groo List (or just The Groop) is sort of like GrooGrams Online, an email exchange by dedicated (and often obsessed! ) Groo fans who are as interested in entertaining each other with wacky posts as they are in exchanging Groo information. Mark Evanier is an active member of The Groop as well, and his fans eagerly look forward to his news and myriad other contributions, both on our list and on his own blog NEWS FROM M.E.
Heart & Soul
The Groop has evolved into a tight group of friends who are always willing to welcome new members aboard. We share jokes and jibes, success and Grooisms, laughter and sometimes pain. We are quite the rarity in online fandom in that we only very, very rarely flame each other! Although we abhor censorship, we politely ask posters to keep the language family friendly, as Groo attracts readers of all ages.
We’ve been meeting every year since 2000 at our annual GrooFest, which others sometimes refer to as the San Diego Comic Con International. Trust me, it’s really GrooFest! Sergio Aragones’ Mark Evanier, Stan Sakai, Tom Luth, and Gordon Kent all attend and make Groop members feel especially warm and welcome! The highlight of GrooFest is The Sergio and Mark Show, a panel discussion featuring fun tales by the whole Groo Crew. Trust me, this is an event, ummm, not to be, errr, not to be missed…
OK, so last year I missed the panel! That’s a Grooism for another day!
I’ve made many cherished online friendships since I joined the Groop in early 1998, and am thrilled that I’ve had the opportunity to meet so many of you at GrooFest each year, as well as your occasional visits to NYC. I can’t (and won’t) even try to name everyone, but one thing you all have in spades is a highly developed sense of humor. Also, considering how friendly, kind-hearted, generous, approachable and just plain likeable Sergio, Mark, Stan, Tom and Gordon are, is it any wonder that their biggest fans almost universally display the same list of character traits. Kindred spirits are we, what a great bunch of fans I’ve found in The Groop!
Groop members are called many things, not all of them unkind, but are most often either known as Groopies (Screaming Teenager Faction) or Groopers (Fish Faction). Hey, what is a Fan List without splinter cells, might I ask? In Malysia we have a faction calling themselves (ok, himself) Groo Troopers!
The Groop has subscribers the world over, from Australia, Brazil, Canada, England, France, Malysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, The Philipines, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sweden, and some place called The United States. This list is by no means exhaustive (though it is exhausting! )
Small wonder, as Sergio’s appeal has always been international; Groo has been published in the local languages of all the above mentioned locales (except perhaps Saudi Arabia) and more (a great number of which are now in the possession of Groopie Gary G. I still don’t understand how he managed to get hold of copies of Groo in Turkish!!! )
Groopie Gary G., aka Dessesbo, has evolved into the de facto leader of the Groop, simply because he is the most obsessed! Always heading the pack of top posters for the year, Gary is a font of information both useful and trivial. Desessbo has by far the largest and most complete Groo collection in existence, he’s got stuff that Sergio and Mark don’t even have, and is quite the bloodhound when it comes to sniffing out Groo appearances (it’s surprising he actually still has a sense of smell after sniffing out Groo, huh? )
The Groop relies on Gary not just for information, but for stuff! He makes it a point to pick up extra promotional items at conventions and mail them out to the four corners of the globe. Thank you Gary, from The Groop!
Here’s Gary with the known tally of International Groo appearances:
There have been 212 International Groo publications in twelve countries and ten languages. Plus Groo was serialized in 218 editions of a Sunday newspaper in Malaysia (in English) in their funnies section known as the "Megazine".
I have 211 of the International Groo publications. I am missing 1 (one) gosh darn Brazilian Groo and it is darned annoying. So far my vast international network of Groo Agents has come up empty, but I'm still working on it. If I could, I'd hop on a plane to Brazil and search every comic shop from San Paulo to Rio.
Of the 218 Sunday Megazines, I have 86 originals, 111 photocopies, and I am missing 21. I have attempted to buy the Sunday Megazine archives from the newspaper since they have discontinued the whole section, but so far with no luck. There are three languages spoken in Malaysia: French, English, and Malay. Part of my problem is that apparently no one at the English Language newspaper speaks English!
Anyway, if you’ve found this site by Googling Groo, then come on and join The Groop! ! Sign up for the fray, but stay for the friendship!!!
BTW, in case you were wondering…