What is an 'Eisnershpritz' anyway?

Art © Harvey Kurtzman Estate

Harvey Kurtzman, another comics legend and a friend of Will Eisner, would jokingly use "Eisnshpritz" as an ersatz Yiddish term for the seemingly ever-present rain, sewers and docks in the Spirit stories. But the term was not officially coined until Kurtzman worked it into his contribution to "The Spirit Jam," a 50-creator extravaganza first published in Kitchen Sink's Spirit Magazine #30 in 1981 (and later collected as a stand-alone soft cover book). The term has since become a part of the comics world lexicon, though more often spelled as Eisnerspritz, Eisenshpritz and other variants.

Text supplied by Denis Kitchen. Art by Harvey Kurtzman (panel from 'The Spirit Jam') © Harvey Kurtzman Estate.

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