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Archive >> July 2011

Daily OCD: 7/27/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Willie and JoeSteve DuinShimura TakakoShannon WheelerreviewsRaymond MacherotPeanutsOil and WaterMomeMegan KelsomangaLove and RocketsKevin Huizengajohn kerschbaumJaime HernandezDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCarol TylerBill Mauldin 27 Jul 2011 11:38 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus

Review: "Macherot’s animals are cute and full of character, from the porcupine sheriff to the cigar-smoking, shop-keeping bird. Visually they resemble Walt Kelly’s Pogo, with backgrounds that will look familiar to anybody who ever watched The Smurfs cartoon.... There might be more slapstick than the average post-elementary school reader can appreciate, but the adorable art, amiable characters, and a thrilling late-story air battle will keep you interested until the end. Best of all are the brief glimpses at domestic country mouse mundanity, like Sibyl-Anne’s love for baking pies and the aside where she and Boomer talk about how nice a certain table and its parasol are." – Garrett Martin, Paste

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "This series [Wandering Son] is beautiful, perfectly capturing that time at the age of 10 or 11 where naivety and confusion meet in the formative years of your young identity. Where androgyny is a fine thing, defined by its ambiguity and as distinct as any sex." – Tom Rosin, Page 45

Willie & Joe: The WWII Years

Review: "The Willie and Joe cartoons and characters are some of the most enduring and honest symbols of all military history.... Alternating trenchant cynicism, moral outrage, gallows humour, absurdist observation, shared miseries, staggering sentimentality and the total shock and awe of still being alive every morning, this cartoon catalogue of the Last Just War [Willie & Joe: The WWII Years] is a truly breathtaking collection that no fan, art-lover, historian or humanitarian can afford to miss. …And it will make you cry and laugh out loud too." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Willie & Joe: Back Home

Review: "...[Willie & Joe: Back Home] features some of the most powerful assaults on the appalling edifice of post-war America ever seen. The artist’s castigating observations on how a society treats returning soldiers are as pertinent now as they ever were; the pressures on families and children even more so; whilst his exposure of armchair strategists, politicians and businessmen seeking to exploit wars for gain and how quickly allies can become enemies are tragically more relevant than any rational person could wish. ...[W]e have here a magnificent example of passion and creativity used as a weapon of social change and a work of art every citizen should be exposed to, because these are aspects of humanity that we seem unable to outgrow." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

You'll Never Know Book 2: Collateral Damage [Pre-Order]

Review: "Visually, Tyler's style is unique in the comics world.... The scrapbook design of [You'll Never Know, Book 2: Collateral Damage] is just one of many remarkable decorative touches she adds. Color is tremendously important both in a narrative sense (identifying key times and characters) and an emotional sense (modulating feelings felt on a page in an expressive style). The complexity of her page design (changing formats on an almost page-to-page basis) is brought to earth by the simplicity of her character design. The result is what feels like an ornate, powerful and cohesive sketchbook/journal.... Most impressively, Tyler manages to bring a static kind of craft (a sketchbook) to life with panels that crackle with energy and movement. There are no easy outs or answers in Tyler's attempts to create, maintain and understand connections with her loved ones..." – Rob Clough, High-Low

Love and Rockets Library (Locas Book 2): The Girl from H.O.P.P.E.R.S.

Essay: The Comics Reporter's Tom Spurgeon on Jaime Hernandez's The Death of Speedy, written for Team Cul de Sac's Favorites zine: "Hernandez's evocation of that fragile period between school and adulthood, that extended moment where every single lustful entanglement, unwise friendship, afternoon spent drinking outside, nighttime spent cruising are acts of life-affirming rebellion, is as lovely and generous and kind as anything ever depicted in the comics form."

The Complete Peanuts 1950-1952 (Vol. 1) [NORTH AMERICA ONLY]

Commentary: "It could be seen as frustrating that I've still got five years to wait to complete the Peanuts collection, ...but in some ways it's nice. If they came out more quickly, there would be more of a feeling of urgency about ploughing through the strips, whereas I'm able to take a more leisurely approach, reading bits here and there. After all, they were only really meant to be read once a day. I don't buy many books these days, preferring to download them to my Kindle, but these books are definitely going to be a part of my life for as long as they'll last (or as long as I'll last, whichever comes first) and I do look forward to seeing 50 years of Schulz magic lined up on my shelves. I just need to work out where I'll put them all... Such is the life of a completist!" – James Ellaby, Lullabies from a Giant Golden Radio

Ganges #2

Analysis: At Robot 6, Matt Seneca examines a page from Ganges #2: "Kevin Huizenga is one of the cartoonists whose work addresses comics’ conflict between the abstract and the literal most frequently and interestingly.  Huizenga’s attempts at using comics to mimic the visual effect of video games are especially notable: rather than creating the simulacrum of reality that the vast majority of comics do, what is brought forth instead is a simulacrum of a simulacrum, a copy of a copy, something already abstract abstracted further, its ties to reality stressed and stretched about as close to the breaking point as they can go."

Mome Vol. 22

Interview: The Daily Cross Hatch's Brian Heater wraps up his 4-part conversation with Mome editor Eric Reynolds: "I think Mome actually got better as I actively stopped worrying about who the readership might be, and actively indulged my own interests.... I think that began to happen as early as the fifth or sixth issue. And I think, by the end of it — you can point to a lot of things that we probably would have leaned against publishing at the beginning."

Queen of the Black Black

Profiles: Following the news that the Xeric Foundation is discontinuing its publishing grants, the writers of Robot 6 spotlight some of their favorite past grant recipients, including Megan Kelso and John Kerschbaum

Oil & Water by Steve Duin & Shannon Wheeler

Awards: The Oregonian's Steve Duin congratulates his Oil & Water collaborator Shannon Wheeler on Wheeler's Eisner Award win last weekend

New Comics Day 7/27/11: Gil Jordan, Sibyl-Anne, The Raven
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Raymond MacherotNew Comics DayMaurice TillieuxLou ReedLorenzo Mattotti 27 Jul 2011 7:30 PM

This week's comic shop shipment is slated to include the following new titles. Read on to see what comics-blog commentators and web-savvy comic shops are saying about them (more to be added as they appear), check out our previews at the links, and contact your local shop to confirm availability.

Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide by M. Tillieux

Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide
by M. Tillieux

96-page full-color 8.5" x 11.25" hardcover • $18.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-451-1

Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus by R. Macherot

Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus
by R. Macherot

64-page full-color 8.5" x 11.25" hardcover • $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-60699-452-8

"Fantagraphics is bringing some acclaimed Post-Herge all-ages comics to American audiences, and this week sees two of them coming to stores that people should be watching for: Gil Jordan, Private Eye: Murder by High Tide by M. Tillieux, a funny fast-paced detective story, and Sibyl Anne vs. Ratticus by R. Macherot, featuring a mouse in a story that's described as a Pixar version of Wind in the Willows." – Dave Ferraro, Comics-and-More

"Fantagraphics also presently has an initiative to translate post-Tintin Franco-Belgian comics for English-speaking audiences, so they're releasing Maurice Tillieux's crime cartoon Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide." – Cyriaque Lamar, io9

"I love learning about classic Eurocomics, so my next purchase would be one of two new books from Fantagraphics: either Gil Jordan: Murder by High Tide ($18.99) or Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus ($16.99). I know nothing about either book or the creators (M. Tillieux and R. Macherot, respectively) and am eager to be schooled." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

The Raven by Lou Reed & Lorenzo Mattotti

The Raven
by Lou Reed and Lorenzo Mattotti

166-page full-color 9" x 9" hardcover • $22.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-444-3

"...Lou Reed (of all people) releases his interpretation of Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven with Italian cartoonist Lorenzo Mattotti." – Cyriaque Lamar, io9

"There’s a interesting looking collaboration between Lou Reed and Mattotti on Poe’s The Raven..." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

At The Comics Journal it's Joe McCulloch's...

"CONFLICT OF INTEREST RESERVOIR: Europeans draw the comics. The Raven sees Lorenzo Mattotti interpret Lou Reed’s channeling of Poe; $22.99. Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide collects a pair of classic Belgian albums by Maurice Tillieux; $18.99. And Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus similarly presents work by Raymond Macherot; $16.99."





Daily OCD: 7/26/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Taking Punk to the MassesShimura TakakoreviewsPaul HornschemeierMickey MouseMaurice TillieuxmangaLou ReedLorenzo MattottiJohnny RyanJaime HernandezJacques TardiFloyd GottfredsonDrew FriedmanDisneyDiane NoominDaily OCDAlex Chun 27 Jul 2011 12:28 AM

We'll be catching up on the past week's Online Commentary & Diversions over the next several days.

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "Fantagraphics Books, which has previously done such an amazing job of collecting other classic comic strips like Prince Valiant and Peanuts , once again hits it out of the park with this collection [Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1].... From the beautifully reproduced strips to the densely packed ancillary features, this must be the book that editors David Gerstein and Fantagraphics’ co-founder Gary Groth wanted for years for their own libraries. Their enthusiasm shows in the wonderfully designed package. This book is highly recommended for any Disney fan and fans of America's rich comic strip history." – Rich Clabaugh, Christian Science Monitor

Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide

Review: "Murder by High Tide introduces Maurice Tillieux’s private detective Gil Jordan to America, collecting two 1950s stories from an acclaimed series that has never before been translated into English. Tillieux isn’t quite Hergé, but he’s adept at writing and drawing suspenseful detective stories with brief flurries of action. ...Tillieux’s plotting and deft hand at action, figures, and environments make Murder by High Tide a thrilling read." – Garrett Martin, Paste

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "...Fantagraphics is always a good place to start if you’re worried about trying something new. The venerable comics publisher is a stamp of quality, a guarantee that the vetting process has been serious and that, at very least, the book you hold in your hands will have been beautifully printed. Wandering Son [Vol.] 1 bears all that out.... It’s a lovely, tactile-y rich object, but it’s also a sweet book in terms of content. ...[T]he characters are pleasant to spend time with, the art is emotive and expressive (embarrassment comes up a lot), and there is a gentleness to the whole project that is welcome." – Hillary Brown, Paste

Review: "...Shimura Takako's Wandering Son, with its direct treatment of transgenderism, feels simultaneously natural and singular in the world of manga.... The true distinction of Wandering Son is not its subject matter so much as Shimura Takako's quiet and sensitive handling of it. Fifth grade is a difficult time and age for any author to handle well, and throwing transgenderism into the mix merely adds to the challenge. By keeping the story's focus on the intensely personal thoughts, experiences, and emotions of the characters, Shimura avoids both heavy-handed preachiness and overly melodramatic scenes, keeping the tone of the story sympathetic and realistic and — most importantly — a story." – Caleb Dunaway, Otaku USA

Review: "...Fantagraphics' edition is beautifully presented as a full-sized hardcover with excellent print and paper quality. The volume is just as lovely to behold as it is to read.... Instead of following a strictly linear narrative, Wandering Son provides a somewhat fragmented view. To me, it seems more like a collection of memories, glimpses of important and influential moments in the characters' lives. Though told chronologically, the story has an impressionistic quality to it. Wandering Son is lovely and quiet with tremendous emotional depth.... I was very pleased with the first volume of Wandering Son and greatly look forward to the release of the second volume." – Ash Brown, Experiments in Manga

The Raven

Review: "Brought straight to your chamber door from the ever-awesome Fantagraphics, we finally have The Raven graphic novel. Personally commissioned by Reed, legendary illustrator Lorenzo Mattotti (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Stigmata) has sketched some remarkably vivid scenes for what amounts to the definitive bard of Baltimore project from New York City’s own poet laureate.... Hardcovered, with a jacket by Grammy-nominated designer Jesse LeDoux, the whole presentation is indeed first-class." – Logan K. Young, Paste

Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind - A Visual History from the Permanent Collection of Experience Music Project

Review: "...Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind... is a dense tome... packed with beautiful photos of EMP’s vast collection of instruments, posters and flyers and assorted rock and punk memorabilia, with commentary and excerpts from the oral history project, featuring testimonials from people like Greg Ginn and J Mascis and Grant Hart and Novoselic, on facing pages. The effect is that of taking a guided tour through the museum, exhibit by exhibit, with headphones on.... There’s an awful lot to look at here, and the book stands up to repeated readings.... Taking Punk to the Masses is a definite keeper for anyone who loves the bands of the Pacific Northwest or the history of rock in America." – John G. Nettles, Flagpole

The Pin-Up Art of Humorama

Review: "Simply put, if you’ve enjoyed any of Alex Chun and Jacob Covey’s series of glamour-girl cartoon retrospectives they’ve assembled for Fantagraphics over the years, you’ll want — if not need — their latest, The Pin-Up Art of Humorama.... As with Chun and Covey’s previous collaborations, the captions to the cartoons rarely matter — sometimes, they don’t even match what’s depicted. All that matters is the art, full of lovely, curvy, super-sexy women whose bra sizes run deep into the alphabet. It may not come in a brown paper wrapper, but yeah, this book’s hot. It spills over with an abundance of retro tease to please." — Rod Lott, Bookgasm

The Arctic Marauder

Reviews: At his High-Low blog, Rob Clough looks at several of our translated volumes of the work of Jacques Tardi: "Tardi is an interesting figure because he felt comfortable writing mainstream material like detective stories, mysteries, fantasy and even science-fiction (though usually of a period nature; The Arctic Marauder, for example is a steampunk book) as well as more experimental and mature fare. No matter what the subject, his books always have a density and meatiness to them that rewards multiple readings. I'll briefly examine each book roughly in order of narrative complexity."

Glitz-2-Go

Plug: Library Journal's Martha Cornog spotlights Diane Noomin's Glitz-2-Go in the latest Graphic Novels Prepub Alert: "Retro-glamgirl DiDi Glitz, Noomin's signature character, originally appeared in the women's comics anthology Twisted Sisters and other collections. Hypno Magazine described her as a 'shamelessly campy, mai-tai-swilling swinger with a voracious appetite for polyester, poodles, and doomed relationships.' Also, 'hysterically funny.' This volume collects nearly 40 years of Noomin comics. Catch this transcript of a Noomin presentation about her work, with sample strips, some NSFW."

Even More Old Jewish Comedians

Plug: I was very excited to present Leonard Maltin with a copy of Drew Friedman's brand new book at Comic-Con, and today Maltin writes on his Movie Crazy blog "Fantagraphics Books had just received its first copies of Drew Friedman’s latest opus, Even More Old Jewish Comedians, which in the 'real world' is still a pre-order item."

Locas II: Maggie, Hopey & Ray [with FREE Signed Bookplate]

Interview: Jaime Hernandez reveals what kind of music he listens to while he's working in a survey on the topic by the Village Voice's R.C. Baker: "When told that one artist interviewed didn't want a fondness for a particularly 'retarded' pop song revealed, he cracks up. 'They don't want you to know they have a heart,' he says. 'I was never afraid to show mine — I put it out there in the comic every time.'"

Paul Hornschemeier

Interview (Video): Lee Keeler of Classy Hands has an on-camera chat with Paul Hornschemeier

Prison Pit

Scene: From Whitney Matheson's rundown of "50 Things I Learned at Comic-Con" at USA Today Pop Candy: "23. Johnny Ryan aims to scare us all. One of the most frightening moments on the convention floor came when a bloody, shirtless man walked up to the Fantagraphics booth and started screaming. Turns out he was portraying a character in Ryan's Prison Pit."

Congratulations to our 2011 Inkpot Winners
Written by janice headley | Filed under Joyce FarmerFrank StackCCIBill Schellyawards 26 Jul 2011 9:24 PM

Joyce Farmer and Frank Stack

Well, well, we've got some real humble artists here at Fantagraphics

This past weekend at the San Diego Comic-Con, Inkpot Awards were received by our artists Joyce Farmer, Frank Stack, and editor Bill Schelly! But no one brought their award back to the booth! So, instead you get this absolutely charming photo of Joyce and Frank.

Congratulations to all of you!  So well deserved!

Anders Nilsen Answers Big Questions at Fantagraphics Bookstore this Saturday
Written by Larry Reid | Filed under Fantagraphics BookstoreeventsAnders Nilsen 26 Jul 2011 3:14 PM

AndersNilsen

Join us this Saturday, July 30 at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery in Seattle to meet exceptional cartoonist Anders Nilsen. Anders will be in town promoting his new book Big Questions, an anthology of the popular series collected by our Canadian colleagues at Drawn & Quarterly. This 600-page, 15-year project displays the development of the artist's delicate rendering technique and idiosyncratic narrative approach to comix.

The festivities begin at 6:00 PM. Nilsen will give a slide presentation, answer big questions from the audience, and sign books. We expect he'll arrive with an assortment of self-published rarities, so plan to arrive early. Fantagraphics Bookstore is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle's historic Georgetown arts community. Phone 206.658.0110. See you soon.

Fantagraphics Books to Publish the EC Comics Library
Written by Gary Groth | Filed under Wally WoodJack DavisHarvey KurtzmanEC ComicsComing AttractionsAl Williamson 23 Jul 2011 3:00 PM

EC Comics logo

Fantagraphics Books President and Co-Publisher Gary Groth announced today at Comic-Con International that it has entered into a publishing agreement with William M. Gaines Agent, Inc. to publish the EC Comics Library, beginning in Summer 2012. The announcement teams two of the most storied comics publishers in history and aims to reintroduce the timeless work of EC to contemporary readers.

Fantagraphics will re-package the EC Comics (with the exception of MAD, which is now owned by DC Comics/Time Warner) in a series of handsome hardcovers devoted to specific artists and writers. While virtually all previous EC collections have been published by comic book title, Fantagraphics will collect the comics by artist, allowing fans to finally own single-volume tomes collecting the work of their favorite creators.

“It pleases me greatly to be in partnership with such an influential company as Fantagraphics,” said Cathy Gaines Mifsud, President of William M. Gaines Agent, Inc. “It’s a pleasure to be working with a company that shares similar values, yet retains unique and distinct creativity. I trust them fully to carry on the iconic EC brand.”

Entertaining Comics may have been the greatest mainstream publisher in comics history, with an attention to quality and consistency that has never been rivaled. Under the stewardship of William Gaines (who took over the company from his father, Max Gaines, in 1947), EC’s “New Trend” line employed a Murderer’s Row of writers and artists including Harvey Kurtzman, Wally Wood, Jack Davis, Johnny Craig, Al Feldstein, Reed Crandall, Will Elder, Frank Frazetta, Graham Ingels, Jack Kamen, Bernard Krigstein, John Severin, Al Williamson, Joe Orlando, and many others.

“EC was the most consistently literate and quality-minded publisher in the history of mainstream comics,” said Groth. “Editors Al Feldstein and Harvey Kurtzman were aware that comics was an artistic medium in a way that few editors did, and publisher Bill Gaines was unique in taking a hands-on approach to his comics line, choosing his editors wisely, giving them such editorial freedom and latitude, and taking such personal pride — and responsibility — in his comics. This was simply unheard of in mainstream comics; if more publishers had had Gaines’ integrity, the history of comics would’ve been vastly different.”

Like most of its contemporaries, EC specialized in genre fiction, specifically horror, crime, science-fiction, war, and satire, with several titles that seeped into the public consciousness long after their demise, including Tales from the Crypt, Two-Fisted Tales, Weird Science, and of course MAD. Unlike most of its contemporaries, Gaines and his staff took great pride in crafting socially aware works that transcended their genres. “At a time when comics were consid- ered sub-literate junk by the reading public, Gaines and the EC creators were impressing people like Ray Bradbury with the aesthetic possibilities of the medium. That was no mean feat,” Groth added.

The first four books in the series will be:

“Corpse on the Imjin” and Other Stories by Harvey Kurtzman. This will reprint all the war stories Kurtzman wrote and drew himself in Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, including all 23 of his covers — each a masterpiece in its own right. This volume will also include all the war stories that Kurtzman wrote and laid out but were drawn by artists who weren’t regularly featured in his war books: Gene Colan, Joe Kubert, Alex Toth, Dave Berg, Ric Estrada, Russ Heath, and others. (The regulars were Jack Davis, John Severin, Wally Wood, and George Evans, each of whom will later be the subject of their own war comics collections). Kurtzman’s war comics are still considered to be the gold standard for the genre, with a devotion not only to historical accuracy but also to resisting any impulse to glamorize wartime; a WWII veteran himself, Kurtzman’s humanistic approach was in stark contrast to the simp- leminded, jingoistic efforts of EC’s rival publishers, and paved the way for other popular media to depict the true face of war.

“Came the Dawn” and Other Stories by Wally Wood: Though often remembered for his science-fiction work, Wood’s heavy, noirish brushstrokes were perfectly suited for EC’s rough-hewn suspense stories in (the appropriately titled) Shock SuspenStories and this volume will collect them all for the first time.

• Jack Davis’s horror stories (exact title t.b.a.): Jack Davis’s gift for caricature has made him an icon in the advertis- ing world and helped define MAD magazine, but he was also one of the most versatile cartoonists of his generation; after “Ghastly” Graham Ingels, Davis was EC’s most prolific horror artist, appearing in all three of EC’s horror titles — Haunt of Fear, Vault of Horror, and Crypt of Terror. This will collect the entirety of Davis’s horror work, all of which was written by Al Feldstein.

• Al Williamson’s science-fiction stories (exact title t.b.a.): EC published two SF comics — Weird Fantasy and Weird Science — and Williamson was one of the stars, with an illustrative style that carried on the tradition of the great adventure comic strips like Alex Raymond’s Flash Gordon. This volume will compile all 174 pages of Williamson’s SF stories.

“EC featured many of the best artists working at the time — innovators like Kurtzman, Bernie Krigstein, and Johnny Craig, illustrators like Al Williamson and Jack Kamen, and renaissance cartoonists like Wally Wood, Will Elder, and Jack Davis,” said Groth. “Many of these artists did the best work of their careers for EC, and that is directly attributable to the creative environment Gaines created.”

Fantagraphics will be publishing four EC collections a year, beginning in Summer 2012.

“Came the Dawn” and Other Stories
By: Wally Wood, Al Feldstein, et al.
Release Date: July 2012
ISBN: 978-1-60699-546-4
Black & White • Hardcover • 7” x 10”

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201107/came-the-dawn.jpg

“Corpse on the Imjin” and Other Stories
By: Harvey Kurtzman et al.
Release Date: July 2012
ISBN: 978-1-60699-545-7
Black & White / Color • Hardcover • 7” x 10”

Corpse on the Imjin - Harvey Kurtzman







Fantagraphics to Publish The Complete ZAP® Comix
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under ZapVictor MoscosospainRobert WilliamsRobert CrumbGilbert SheltonComing Attractions 23 Jul 2011 3:00 PM

Fantagraphics Books President and Co-Publisher Gary Groth announced today at Comic-Con International that the Seattle-based publisher has entered into an agreement to publish The Complete ZAP Comix in Fall of 2012.

ZAP remains the best-known and most influential underground comic of all-time, and in many ways is Ground Zero for the entire field of underground, alternative, literary and art comics that exists today. Created by Robert Crumb, it was one of the defining events in the counterculture of the 1960s and singlehandedly launched the “underground comix” era.

ZAP took comics from children to adults, crushing The Comics Code Authority in the process,” proclaimed ZAP artist Victor Moscoso.

The Complete ZAP Comix will be published as a two-volume, slipcased hardcover set, printed slightly larger than the original comics, and shot from the original negatives to the comic books, ensuring the finest reproduction ever seen of the material. It will also include the rarely-seen ZAM, a one-shot mini-comic/jam spinoff of ZAP from 1974, as well as other supplementary features, interviews with the artists, and other surprises.

ZAP may be the most significant series in the history of American comics,” said Fantagraphics President and Co-Publisher Gary Groth. “Its cultural preeminence is the result of artistic merit, not collectibility or economics and that sets it apart from most comics series that have achieved this level of public awareness or notoriety. The artists that Crumb invited into ZAP each proved to be a stylistic virtuoso with a unique point of view and an uncompromising vision. ZAP was the vanguard of a movement that segued into the alternative comics of the ’80s and the graphic novels of the ’00s. We couldn’t be prouder to collect this landmark series in its entirety in a beautifully packaged two-volume set.”

Originally printed by Beat writer Charles Plymell in an edition of around 3,500 copies, ZAP #1 was the first title published by the late Don Donahue under the Apex Novelties imprint, and was infamously sold on the streets of Haight-Ashbury out of a baby stroller pushed by Crumb’s ex-wife, Dana. Over time, the series’ 16 issues have sold millions of copies.

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201107/zap1cvr.jpg

Although R. Crumb had initially created ZAP as a showcase for his own work, the success of the first issue led him to open up the pages of subsequent issues to several other artists. He invited his peers S. Clay Wilson, Robert Williams, “Spain” Rodriguez, Gilbert Shelton, Victor Moscoso and Rick Griffin to join him, effectively creating an artists’ collective that has remained mostly constant in the subsequent decades; when Rick Griffin died in 1991, the artist Paul Mavrides was invited to join the group.

“Fantagraphics’ The Complete ZAP Comix, as designed by Victor Moscoso, will be a classy item for the bookshelves of underground comics fans — those who can afford it, that is,” said ZAP artist Gilbert Shelton. “I imagine most of the original readers wish they still had their copy of the first edition of ZAP #1, which sells for over ten thousand dollars now, if in perfect condition. But part of the secret of the success of underground comix was that they were cheaply produced and turned yellow and fell apart quickly, and also that they were borrowed and never returned by one’s friends, thereby forcing you to buy another copy. This will not happen with the new collected edition, which will be produced under the most rigorous of quality control.”

“Much as the effect EC’s MAD had on the mid-20th Century, ZAP was equally influential and disruptive to cultural mores at the end of the 20th Century, but without the hindrance of the old comic book code that cramped graphic novel expression for 40 years,” said ZAP artist Robert Williams. “I’m very pleased that Fantagraphics will release this long-awaited compendium of ZAP Comix.”

“When Robert Crumb started ZAP in 1968, no one had any idea that it would still be alive 45 years later,” Shelton added. “This exercise in anarchy — there were never any rules, restrictions, or editorial policy — is still the flagship of the underground comics movement. I tried, and failed, to get my fellow ZAPsters to correct their spelling errors, but they would not be subjected to such editorial tyranny. I also wanted to let other artists into the group, but it was decided to restrict the number of contributors to seven. So be it. Spell free or die, I now say.”

Fantagraphics will be publishing the The Complete ZAP Comix in Fall of 2012.

The Complete ZAP Comix
By: R. Crumb, S. Clay Wilson, Robert Williams, Spain Rodriguez,
Gilbert Shelton, Victor Moscoso, Rick Griffin, & Paul Mavrides
Release Date: Fall 2012
Page Count: 800 PP
Black & White • Two-Volume, Slipcased Hardcover Set

ZAP is a registered trademark of Zap Comix.




It Was the Win of the Tardi
Written by janice headley | Filed under Jacques Tardieventsawards 23 Jul 2011 9:09 AM

It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi

Last night, we were honored to receive the 2011 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards for "Best Reality-Based Work" and "Best U.S. Edition of International Material" for It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi!  It's a privilege to be able to bring Tardi's work to U.S. readers.

Congratulations to all the winners and nominees!

Weekend Webcomics for 7/22/11: new strips from Kupperman & Weissman
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under webcomicsSteven WeissmanMichael Kupperman 23 Jul 2011 2:26 AM

Our weekly strips from Kupperman & Weissman. Our links to other strips from around the web will return next week (Comic-Con, you know).

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Up All Night by Michael Kupperman (view at original size):

Up All Night - Michael Kupperman

Barack Hussein Obama by Steven Weissman (view at original size):

Barack Hussein Obama by Steven Weissman

SDCC: Now With Even MORE Artists!
Written by janice headley | Filed under eventsDestroy All MoviesCCI 22 Jul 2011 12:00 AM

Fantagraphics Booth at Comic-Con International 2011

Thanks to everyone who came out for our first day of signings at the San Diego Comic-Con! And, guess what? We've just added THREE more artists to our already action-packed schedule! 

On Saturday, we'll be joined by Zack Carlson from 3:00 to 4:00 PM, and he'll be signing copies of the epic tome he co-edited, Destroy All Movies!!!: The Complete Guide to Punks on FilmStop by and try to stump him on punk movie trivia... YOU WILL NOT WIN!  

Also on Saturday, from 1:00 to 2:00 PM, we'll be joined by Roger May, one of the contributors to our underground comix collection, Newave!  He'll be joining two of the greats of the underground scene, Joyce Farmer and Frank Stack -- It's sure to be a fascinating hour!

And finally, we welcome special guest Martin Olson, author of the encyclopedic satire Encyclopedia of Hell (Feral House), a book that features illustrations by our very own hell-raiser, Tony Millionaire!!  Martin will be signing on Friday, July 22nd from 5:00 to 6:00 PM.

So, to recap, here's our signing schedule for the rest of the weekend at Booth #1718!  Come by and say hello!

Friday, July 22nd:
11:00 - 12:00 PM    Joyce Farmer / Bill Schelly / Tim Hensley
12:00 - 1:00 PM    Floyd Norman / Wilfred Santiago / Frank Stack
1:00 - 3:00 PM    Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez
3:00 - 4:00 PM    Paul Hornschemeier / Anders Nilsen / Esther Pearl Watson
4:00 - 5:00 PM    Mark Kalesniko / John Pham / Malachi Ward
5:00 - 7:00 PM    Johnny Ryan
5:00 - 6:00 PM    Jon Vermilyea  / Martin Olson
6:00 - 7:00 PM    Robert Goodin

Saturday, July 23rd:
12:00 - 1:00 PM        Wilfred Santiago / Bill Schelly
1:00 - 2:00 PM        Joyce FarmerFrank Stack / Roger May
2:00 - 4:00 PM        Paul Hornschemeier / Johnny Ryan
3:00 - 4:00 PM        Esther Pearl Watson / Zack Carlson
4:00 - 5:00 PM        Mark Kalesniko
4:00 - 6:00 PM        Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez
6:00 - 7:00 PM        Robert Goodin / Jon Vermilyea / Malachi Ward

Sunday, July 24th:
11:00 - 12:00 PM   Joyce Farmer / Jon Vermilyea / Esther Pearl Watson
12:00 - 1:00 PM    Mark Kalesniko / Frank Stack
1:00 - 3:00 PM    Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez

 


















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