I had a great time at San Diego Comic Con 2008! I've been going for about 6 years in a row and each new year it swells and festers, expands and quivers like a giant quivering zit. I love it! Here are some photos...
I really like this photo of Jim Woodring. Raconteur of Blue Collar Surrealism and Cartoon Mysticism, Jim Woodring is a hero of mine, and has been since I was twelve! He is a constant source of sage wisdom, a profitable dawning of understanding and articulating human as well as immortal folly; Jim's work continues to alter my experience.
This is the last book I would've imagined finding at Comic-Con. I highly recommend you find a copy of Kenneth Patchen's The Walking-Away World and Jim's introduction nails it.
(L to R: Dan Nadel, Paul Karasik & Jordan Crane)
Like his work, Paul is replete with useful information... it's the kind of information that escapes most folks... and if you don't know what I'm talking about you need to track down a copy of Bad News #2. I like this photo because it looks like he's giving a lesson.
(L to R: Jordan Crane, Paul Karasik, Dan Nadel & Jim Woodring)
Isn't this great!? Maybe it's just me, but I love how impassioned Dan looks, how considerate Paul looks, how mischievous Jordan looks and then there's Jim to the far right, hard at work drawing another PERFECT Frank head.
The new plan is debated in this week's installment of Steven Weissman's in-progress pages from "Blue Jay," an epic 50-page story from Chocolate Cheeks, the next collection of the Yikes! gang's adventures.
• Review: The A.V. Club "Comics Panel" likes Mome Vol. 14, saying of two featured stories, "Both [Dash Shaw and Lilli Carré] combine striking illustration with a nuanced sense of place and character for a winning mix of the classic and the progressive."
• Review: Italian site Il Sole 24 Ore says our collection of Mort Walker & Jerry Dumas's Sam's Strip is "exceptional... As always, the presentation of Fantagraphics is superb and worth sharing," according to the Google translation
Another great book that we have going to press this week, Low Moon collects the titular New York Times Magazine "Funny Pages" story but that's not even the half of it. In fact, it's about 1/5 of it as you can see from the Table of Contents below. This hefty book is the first hardcover collection of Jason work (for the U.S. anyway) and I think the back cover quote says it all.
Okay, so there you have it. This summer we are releasing two Tardi graphic novels, You Are There and West Coast Blues. Next summer, It Was the War of the Trenches.
Should these find favor with the fickle American public, I plan to keep on translating and publishing Tardi books, working my way through the Nestor Burma books, the Adèle Blanc-Sec books, and all the one-shots, until, as with Jason, American readers will be able to enjoy the entire oeuvre of one of comics' grandmasters.
If not, if we crash and burn, we'll still have made available three masterpieces of modern Eurocomics, and it'll be up to the next Tardi fan turned publisher to take another running leap at this hard-to-crack marketplace — following in the now well-worn path created by Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly, Terry Nantier of NBM, Mike Richardson of Dark Horse Comics, Chris Oliveros, the late Byron Preiss of iBooks, and now Gary Groth and me. We love Tardi and we want you to love him too. When you see his books on the bookshelf in a few months, take a chance. You won't regret it, I promise.
And here, to whet your appetite, the first five pages of You Are There. The typesetting isn't quite right yet, we haven't gotten the effects lettering done, but basically, there you have it.
I'm just finally seeing all the content for our second collection of Fletcher Hanks comics and if anyone doubts the need for a second collection I am here to say YES. YES, THE WORLD NEEDS ACCESS TO EVERYTHING HANKS DID. This is pure joy to me. The impassioned competence of the drawings and their gorgeous flatness. The fate-ridden inevitability of everything that is happening everywhere in the universe. The horror, the slapstick, the compulsiveness of his work mapping out the very wiring of his chemistry's miserable imagination.
Paul Karasik has written a great introduction this time around and he is a wonderful man for somehow managing to hunt down all of these stories. On behalf of the fans, special thanks go to the collectors who provided material from the ultra-rare comics these stories appeared in!
Ooo-wee! Richard Sala posted this cover art for the 4th issue of his Ignatz series Delphine on his MySpace page yesterday. Kim's not here so I can't tell you when the issue's coming out... this summer, I'm guessing. I'll update tomorrow when I find out because I wanna know too (or maybe Kim will leave a comment), but I couldn't wait to share this.
Tony Millionaire's Maakies is one of the best and most popular weekly comic strips in America, running in over a dozen of the largest U.S. weekly newspapers including the Village Voice, L.A. Weekly and Seattle's The Stranger. The strip has also been adapted into the hit animated series The Drinky Crow Show on the Cartoon Network's popular Adult Swim. Designed by publishing's foremost graphic designer, Chip Kidd, Drinky Crow's Maakies Treasury collects the second five years of the strip (previously reprinted in the volumes When We Were Very Maakies, The House at Maakies Corner and Der Struwwelmaakies) in a beautiful, deluxe, landscape hardcover format that complements the strip's elegant and classical style.
Maakies features the comical high-seas adventures of a booze-soaked corvid (Drinky Crow) and his equally-soused simian pal (Uncle Gabby), blending vaudeville-style humor and a breathtaking line that hearkens back to the glory days of the American comic strip. The twosome also sometimes makes room for their stuffed-toy alter egos, a clockwork alligator, various other land-, air-, and sea-borne fauna, the Author and his Editor, the heavens, architecture, and occasional guest strips (by Kaz, Renee French, Eric Reynolds and others) and fumetti.
Maakies suggests a contemporary collaboration between E.C. Segar, creator of Popeye, and seafaring novelist Patrick O'Brian (Master and Commander). Millionaire has won multiple Harvey and Eisner Awards and is also the creator of the popular Sock Monkey and Billy Hazelnuts books.
• Review: Dutch blog Koen says of Dash Shaw's Bottomless Belly Button (according to the Google translation) that "Shaw proves himself a master of the portrayal of inner pain and dysfunctional relationships without being depressing, with the addition of humor and mystery... This book is one of the best comics of 2008."
• Preview: Introducing an exlusive 7-page excerpt from Unlovable Vol. 1 by Esther Pearl Watson, New York Magazine says "Tammy [Pierce]'s hopes, dreams, and humiliations are brought vividly to life in Watson's grotesque-but-touching book Unlovable. Even if you never wore leg warmers with high heels, you'll still recognize your teenage self in Tammy Pierce's unguarded, most secret thoughts. And if you did wear leg warmers with heels, well, maybe this was your diary."
• Blurb: Italian blog Nuvole Parlanti, looking at Birdland, calls Gilbert Hernandez "the king of American erotic comics"
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