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Mike Baehr's Blog
Description:
Flog posts by Fantagraphics' consumer marketing/web editor/hand model guy. Say, buy some books why don't you?
Archive >> July 2008

See you at Sub Pop 20
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under staffevents 11 Jul 2008 3:47 PM

Sub Pop 20th Anniversary Festival

Going to the Sub Pop Records 20th Anniversary Festival this Saturday and Sunday? Us too, and we couldn't be happier about it. The Sub Pop and Fantagraphics families have been deeply entwined through the years. Not only that, the festival's proceeds are being donated to charities chosen by each of the acts performing, and Green River and Mudhoney are donating their share to the Northwest Parkinson's Foundation in honor of Seattle rock mainstay and former Fantagraphics staffer Tom Price.

Be sure and stop by our table to pick up a catalog and some other free swag, especially on Sunday when Larry Reid will be there to regale you with war stories of the Sub Pop/Fantagraphics family tree. See you there!

Blogosphere roundup for 7/11/08
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under reviews 11 Jul 2008 1:56 PM

This week's batch of reviews from 'round the web:

Comic Book Galaxy's Alan David Doane on Blake Bell's Stranger and Stranger: The World of Steve Ditko

• Fantasy writer Icats Nitram discovers Linda Medley's Castle Waiting

Art Blog by Bob looks at Explainers by Jules Feiffer

PopMatters reviews Dash Shaw's Bottomless Belly Button; meahwhile, Laura Hudson takes a close and thoughtful look at the animated trailer Dash made for the book and decodes the book's coded letters (spoiler alert applies to both links)

PrettyFakes on the first two issues of Kevin Huizenga's Ganges

The Austin Chronicle on The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8 by Thomas Ott

• Review Pull-Quote of the Month: "A lot of people’s Top Ten Favorite-est Comics of the Year lists this year will involve comics about Israel or the exquisite sadness of being an Asian man who likes blondes, all that stuff; mine will involve cheeseburger-flavored semen...? I got dropped on my head a lot as a baby." - Abhay Kholsa of The Savage Critics on Johnny Ryan's Angry Youth Comix #14

Non-review links:

Mike Sterling presents "The most horrible thing done to Charlie Brown by Lucy in The Complete Peanuts 1967-1968," and then rounds up links to postulated fates of the Peanuts characters

• I don't think I'd come across Sergio Ponchione's blog before

• Sean T. Collins continues rescuing his "I Can Has Comics?" interviews from WizardUniverse.com archive oblivion; this time, Johnny Ryan and (as Jacob already pointed out) Jordan Crane

The Bad Genious, profiling a handful of alt-comix publishers, says "If Noam Chomsky read comics, I am positive he would dig Fantagraphics"

On WFMU's Beware of the Blog, Irwin Chusid memorializes Jim Flora on the 10th anniversary of Flora's death (which was Wednesday)

• At Comics Comics, Frank Santoro presents the final installment of his recap of the "Craft in Comics" panel at HeroesCon that featured Jaime Hernandez

Pig State Recon profiles the multifarious creativity of Tim Hensley

• Jenny Ryan (Mrs. Johnny) finds a surprise in her freezer

Hidden Gems Sale spotlight: Eve Gilbert
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under sales specialsEve Gilbert 10 Jul 2008 11:00 PM

Every day in July we're spotlighting books from our month-long Hidden Gems Sale, wherein we're featuring some of our under-the-radar backlist titles and encouraging you to try them by offering them at a nice discount of 25% off!

Today's installment features the debut volume from Eve Gilbert, which garnered high praise and an introduction from Robert Crumb:

Tits, Ass & Real Estate by Eve Gilbert

Tits, Ass & Real Estate

Populated by junkies, grifters, hustlers, strippers, pimps and various strains of victims and criminals, this is a biting and satirical portrait of America as seen from the lower depths. A collection of autobiographical stories, this volume by Eve Gilbert allows readers full access to her decidedly unglamorous world, filled with people you probably hope never to meet. "The Real Resume" is a depressingly realistic tour of the various wage-slave jobs Gilbert has held over the years. Another highlight is "Pregnate?" — which was written in a San Francisco porn store while Gilbert was waiting for an interview — in which Gilbert relates how she ended up pregnant despite a safety net of latex, with no money for even a pregnancy test, let alone an abortion. Unflinchingly candid and caustic, Gilbert has one of the most uniquely confident and iconoclastic voices to hit the world of graphic novels in several years. If you put Henry Miller, Charles Bukowski and Kathy Acker in a blender and added the ratty, unadorned drawing style of Charles Rodriguez, you'd have some idea of just how hot and incendiary a brew this is.

96-page black & white 8" x 11" softcover
regularly $12.95 • ON SALE $9.71
Order Now

Members Preview: Where Demented Wented
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Rory Hayespreviewsnew releases 10 Jul 2008 2:13 PM

Where Demented Wented by Rory Hayes

Hey, haven't done one of these in a while... presenting this week's free preview, a downloadable 19-page excerpt from Where Demented Wented: The Art and Comix of Rory Hayes, a first-ever collection of work from the notorious Underground primitive. These previews are exclusive to registered Fantagraphics.com users, so sign up and/or sign in to view.

(As a reminder, 20/20 Club members receive these previews two weeks before we post them on the website, just one of many great reasons to join up...)

Now in stock: Our Gang Vol. 3
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Walt Kellynew releasesclassics 10 Jul 2008 11:17 AM

Our Gang Vol. 3 by Walt Kelly

Our Gang Vol. 3
By Walt Kelly

Walt Kelly created dozens of Our Gang stories by the end of its 59-issue run in 1949, the year he quit comic books to switch careers a final time — as syndicated artist/writer on the immortal newspaper strip, Pogo.

In Our Gang’s third volume, Kelly begins to hit his stride by relying more on original ideas than following trite MGM scripts which had lacked in charm since the departure of producer Hal Roach in 1938. Keeping alive the wit that had been absent from the film series, this volume contains eight adventures of the mainstay offbeat personas as well as other whimsical characters, from mad scientists to eccentric animals. Suitable for adults and children alike, the work has been lovingly restored from the original comic books, giving Kelly’s art a renewed four-color splendor. With an all-new cover by Jeff Smith (Bone).

96-page full-color 7" x 10" softcover • $14.99
Add to CartRead More...

Hidden Gems Sale spotlight: Francesca Ghermandi
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under sales specialsFrancesca Ghermandi 9 Jul 2008 11:00 PM

Every day in July we're spotlighting books from our month-long Hidden Gems Sale, wherein we're featuring some of our under-the-radar backlist titles and encouraging you to try them by offering them at a nice discount of 25% off!

Today's installment features Francesca Ghermandi, who is justly lauded in her native Italy but remains underappreciated here in North America. Hopefully that will change with her new graphic novel Grenuord, coming soon from Fantagraphics.

The Wipeout by Francesca Ghermandi

The Wipeout

One of the brightest lights in the modern Italian comics firmament, Ghermandi infuses her work with a gorgeous full-color palette of stylized graphics and a decidedly hard-boiled (but very funny) story sensibility. Set in her crazy, surreal universe, The Wipeout is half Double Indemnity, half Mulholland Drive — a violent, dream-laden fantasia with enough twists and turns to delight any adventurous comics reader. Jo Tartaglia, who works for a global cleaning-products company, is putting the finishing touches on a revolutionary new fluid that would clean everything at once — the only drawback being that, when mixed with milk, it becomes a deadly poison. Nagged nearly to death by his hair-transplant-obsessed wife Belle, he falls in with the lovely Virgin Prune, a lady with a shady past who enlists him to get her out from under a villainous loan shark (who happens to be an exact double for Jo). In typical film-noir style, there are plots within plots, not everyone ends up alive at the end of the story, and those who are dead aren't necessarily dead for good.

80-page full-color 9" x 12.5" softcover
regularly $19.95 • ON SALE $14.96
Order Now


Hidden Gems Sale spotlight: Mary Fleener
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under sales specialsmary fleener 8 Jul 2008 11:00 PM

Every day in July we're spotlighting books from our month-long Hidden Gems Sale, wherein we're featuring some of our under-the-radar backlist titles and encouraging you to try them by offering them at a nice discount of 25% off!

Today's installment features Mary Fleener, a true grande dame of the underground/alternative comix movement!

Life of the Party by Mary Fleener

Life of the Party

The ultimate collection of Mary Fleener's groundbreaking Drawn & Quarterly series Slutburger in book form! Mary recounts tales of rock n' roll, southern California life, strange phantasms, and more in the pages of Life of the Party. Fleener's trademark neo-cubist cartooning ("cubismo") and her unique perspective on life in Southern California, from hippie art student, to gigging musician on the lesbian bar circuit, to surfer, make Life of the Party a striking and singular comic experience. Included here are such stories as "Turn Off That Jungle Music," "The Jelly," "Hush Yuppies," "Ashes of Passion," "Tales from the Pink Coffin," and many others. With Slutburger, hordes of fans joined the Fleener conga line — Life of the Party is the perfect place to get on the good foot!

152-page black & white softcover
regularly $14.95 • ON SALE $11.21
Order Now

Ott exhibit at Swiss comics fest
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Thomas Ottevents 8 Jul 2008 1:29 PM

The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8 by Thomas Ott

Via the Forbidden Planet International blog comes word that Swiss artist Thomas Ott will be honored in his home country with an exhibit dedicated to his most recent book, The Number 73304-23-4153-6-96-8, as part of the BD-FIL festival, taking place September 12-14 in Lausanne. Here's more info in French, and Google-translated into English.

Hidden Gems Sale spotlight: Bob Fingerman
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under sales specialsBob Fingerman 7 Jul 2008 11:00 PM

Every day in July we're spotlighting books from our month-long Hidden Gems Sale, wherein we're featuring some of our under-the-radar backlist titles and encouraging you to try them by offering them at a nice discount of 25% off!

Today's installment features a title by Bob Fingerman which, again, didn't exactly escape notice when it was released, having been heaped with praise by the likes of Augusten Burroughs, Margaret Cho, Penn Jillette, Entertainment Weekly and many others... but it's been a while, so we're thrusting it back into the spotlight:

Beg the Question by Bob Fingerman

Beg the Question

Bob Fingerman's Beg the Question tells the story of Rob and Sylvia, two twenty-somethings navigating the labyrinth of New York City life. Imagine a cross between Seinfeld and Caligula, set in Manhattan, and you'll have an idea of Fingerman's caustic wit. Beg the Question follows Rob & Sylvia's relationship through all of its ups-and-downs, from courtship to marriage, rentals to real estate salesmen, public sex to unwanted pregnancies, and everything in between. Performance art, extended families, the comic book industry and Screw magazine are just a few of the other topics subjected to Fingerman's satirical microscope. Fingerman's mid-1990s comic book series Minimum Wage was a breakthrough success, and this marks the first collection of the entire run, completely retouched, with added gray tones that give the art a much fuller, richer look, plus almost 40 pages of never-before-published material. Find out why Beg the Question is one of the most critically acclaimed graphic novels we've ever published!

240-page black & white 6" x 9" softcover
regularly $16.95 • ON SALE $12.71
Order Now

A Night with Deitch
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Kim Deitchevents 7 Jul 2008 1:48 PM
Hey, here's more info on the Inkstuds-sponsored Kim Deitch event taking place on Saturday August 23rd at 7pm at the Vancouver Art Gallery in Vancouver, BC. Kim will be screening classic and rarely seen animation from his personal collection. Whatta treat!

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