Tragic love story of the authors of the famous comics "Love Is ..."
Many years passed, and we still remember the aroma and taste of a soft chewing cube. But the liner was even more important than chewing gum, because in it the author shared with us her thoughts about what is true love. Few people know that all touching words were addressed to the husband of the artist.
A tender and tragic story of love, loyalty and loss
Comics Love Is ... created by the New Zealand animator Kim Casali. When Kim was 19 years old, she went to travel the world, and six years later she settled in California, where she became acquainted with the Italian Roberto Casali.
She painted him on napkins short sketches with the participation of a paunchy naked girl and the same boy. "I did small sketches to express what I feel ... It was like keeping a diary of my emotions, which describes how my feelings developed. First I drew a little bit, which became a girl, it had to be me. She experienced all these fantastic feelings. Then I drew another drop - a boy who was the cause of these feelings. "
Kim and Roberto were married in the same church in New Zealand, in which Kim's parents married. The girl had a crown of daisies and a veil - the same then she painted her pot-bellied heroine. She recalled: "My father died when I was young, so when Roberto asked me to marry him, I agreed, but said:" Whatever you do, do not die on me. " He laughed and promised that he would try."
Roberto decided to produce a comic release, and so "Love is" was released on January 5, 1970. In the comic book of 1974, the boy calls the girl Kim, and earlier, in the comics of 1971, the girl draws the letter R on the sand - the first letter of the name Roberto.
Kim never considered herself a true artist. In an interview in 1981, Kim said: "If I had a choice, I would become the author of romantic songs. Songs of love deeply touch me ... But I can not write beautifully, so I had to choose another way to express my feelings. "
Comics quickly gained popularity: they were now being printed not only in the magazine. They appeared on T-shirts, calendars, posters, circles and much more.
The characters of the saga "Love is ..." pass through different stages of the relationship - from dating to a married couple and the death of one of the heroes.
The heroes of the comics, like the real Roberto and Kim, had children. True, the painted children were a boy and a girl, and in life in 1971, Kim gave birth to the sons of Stefano and Dario when the family moved to England. The popularity of the pictures "Love is ..." continued to grow, and Roberto became the manager of Kim's affairs. For this, the Minikim corporation was created. Animals in comics too! Sometimes a dog named Samson appears on the drawings, and on another occasion we see a grave with the name Fido on it - apparently it's the deceased dog of the pair. In the comics of 2005, the couple have two cats, and in 2009 the girl cries over the dead seal.
Unfortunately, happiness did not last long. In 1975, Roberto was diagnosed with an incurable stage of testicular cancer, very aggressive. Kim stopped working on comics to spend more time with her beloved. But she did not plan to throw comics at all: she asked the English animator Bill Espri to draw comics for her, signing it by nickname. It was from under the brush of Bill began to go out the first colored comics with dressed characters "Love is ...", which took over the artists of Russia, Turkey and Ukraine
"The next year I spent in search of a medicine, trying to keep it away from bad news," Kim recalled.
Roberto operated in 1975. "We talked about Christmas presents, and I told Roberto that I do not want a diamond ring, I want another baby." Then the couple decided to save the sperm of Roberto in case Kim could not get pregnant before his death.
Roberto Kasali died at the age of 31, in 1976, and only Kim's girl and a tombstone remained in the comics.
A wonderful child
Sixteen months after Roberto's death, Kim gave birth to a child from him, using the frozen sperm of her husband. Although the widow received many letters of support, the religious press stressed that she went against "religious morality."
"Roberto and I really wanted to give our two sons a brother or sister. Now, thanks to the care and patience of the doctors, it became possible: I received another reminder of my wonderful husband. "British newspapers called the child "a wonderful baby." On the Love ... card the girl pushes the carriage, and the signature reads: "We are pleased to introduce Milo Roberto. Parents: Kim and Roberto (posthumously, through artificial insemination)".
In response to criticism, Kim wrote: "Cute here thanks to the love of his mother and father. If someone condemns this, it means that the world has lost the sense of proportion. We tried to have a child through artificial insemination before Roberto died. If my husband were alive, Milo would be conceived in marriage. What changes the death of Roberto?".
Unfortunately, Kim was also given a little time. She died at the age of 55 from bone and liver cancer at her home in Surrey, England. Her eldest son Stefano continued the family business. And now Bill draws stories of "Love is ..." under the signature of Kim (by agreement), despite the fact that Kim is no longer alive.
Kim Kasali's sons, Dario and Milo Kasali, created Doom2: Plutonia Experiment, worked on TeamTNT on Doom2: TNT Evilution, then Dario was hired by Valve, where he worked on Half-Life, Half-Life2, Portal, etc.
With the best wishes, @gleb-jeglov aka Evgeny