|Beauty & the Geek|
|Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Peanuts, life imitates comics||31 Oct 2007 7:26 PM|
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Archive >> October 2007
I have no idea who Luke Maxwell is, and I'd be hard-pressed to say he has any real talent for cartooning, but this comic strip, titled "My Crazy Dad!" is nonetheless one of the best comics I've read in while and I crave more. I've read it at least three times now since my pal Jason Grote first tipped me to it.
Been meaning to write reviews of things I like but just can't seem to stay on top of it, I can't write as fast as I read, and not enough things that I read engage enough to want to sit down and write about them. But Jacob's Cold Heat post inspired me to mention a few things, real quick-like...
Cold Heat Special by Jon Vermilyea - What Jacob said below. This special issue of the Cold Heat series is way better than any of the other issues, which frankly kind of mystify me (and my pal Dan Nadel's unabashed enthusiasm for it only makes me feel like some kind of lame dilletante for not getting it). But this is just a great comic book by Jon Vermilyea, accessible to just about anyone (and not contigent upon having any familiarity with Cold Heat), and the 16" x 23" silkscreened cover is so fucking attractive that I want to frame it. I'm not sure the art on the inside needed to be this big (11 1/2" x 16" or so), but the treatment is worth it for the cover, and the inside tells a genuinely charming story that would work at any size, and reminded me of some of Jaime Hernandez's or Jordan Crane's more fantastical work. I really liked it. If this had been submitted to me for Mome, I would have jumped for joy upon reading it.
Whether or not you're a fan of the original run of Cold Heat comics I highly recommend picking up the new Cold Heat Special with Jon Vermilyea doing the artwork to Frank Santoro's writing. I don't have time to write up a proper review of the comic but suffice it to say that Vermilyea is a great young talent and you could do worse than to collect all his work before you can't Ebay it for less than an arm and a leg.
This particular CH story is by far my favorite--but then the style of Frank Santoro's airy art is somewhat lost on me (though it seems to have been received well by many others so you decide). This edition is a very different take. More traditionally polished, Vermilyea's lush backrounds and smart compositions are beautiful and for the absurdly low price of $10 you can get the limited edition (50 copies!) silkscreened cover edition from Picturebox.
[Large-format 11"x16" short comic.]
NOVEMBER IS CLASSIC COMIC STRIPS MONTH!
We are truly living in a Golden Age of classic comics strip collections, and as such we're collaborating with CHECKER PUBLISHING (Flash Gordon, Little Nemo, Steve Canyon), DRAWN AND QUARTERLY (Moomin, Oh Skin-nay!, Walt and Skeezix), and IDW (Dick Tracy, Terry and the Pirates) to produce a cool, oversized promotional sampler that comic shops can distribute in November (cover pictured above). This full-color 11" x 17" tabloid showcases some of the very finest Gasoline Alley, Dick Tracy, Krazy Kat, Little Nemo in Slumberland, Steve Canyon, Terry and the Pirates, Dennis the Menace, Flash Gordon, Yellow Kid, Little Orphan Annie, Peanuts and Popeye strips. How can you go wrong?
Designed like an old-time classic newspaper comic strip supplement, Comic Strip Masterpieces will feature superb reproductions, including many stunning full-color Sunday pages! There will also be a "sequel" of sorts to the hugely popular Unseen Peanuts (an annotated spread of Peanuts strips from the upcoming ninth volume of Complete Peanuts that have never been reprinted since their original newspaper release almost 40 years ago), as well as biographical notes on the cartoonists, a checklist of classic comic strip reprints, and more. Reading Comic Strip Masterpieces will be like traveling back in time to an era when comic strips were actually good!
So badger your shop already to stock this! And for those of you unable to get to a comic book store, we're also making a PDF available for download RIGHT HERE. It's a 4.6 MB download, and nowhere near as cool as the actual printed sampler itself, so don't let this electronic version prevent you from getting a physical copy from your favorite retailer. Tell 'em Fantagraphics sent ya!
This article about the University of Cincinnati's new comics courses also includes a great little promotional video of Carol Tyler drawing/teaching/talking comics with her students.
ABOVE: Carol Tyler (right) and Diane Noomin.
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