Pekar was, as the cliche goes, a complex man of contradictions. Famed for his self-portrait as a cranky, anonymous everyman. Widely-respected as a legitimizer of comics and pioneer in autobiographical comics, all of which he made in collaboration with a variety of artists. Pekar was one of the standard-bearers of the blue-collar intelligentsia, which has a long low-key tradition in America and especially in the Rust Belt where he spent his life. Fans of his comics are probably not aware of the many essays and reviews he’d written about music, politics, and literature, while his literary readers probably considered his comics a quirky attention-getting sideline, at best. He’s missed already.