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Category >> Daniel Clowes

The A.V. Club's Best of the '00s
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under PeanutsMichael KuppermanKrazy KatJasonGeorge HerrimanDaniel ClowesCharles M SchulzBest of 2009 24 Nov 2009 4:55 PM

Why Are You Doing This? by Jason

On The A.V. Club's (controversial) Top 25 Comics of the '00s list: Eightball #23 by Daniel Clowes ("a straight-up masterpiece"), Tales Designed to Thrizzle by Michael Kupperman ("No one does giddy surrealism quite like Kupperman"), and Why Are You Doing This? by Jason ("builds to a gut-punch ending"); their separate list of the best archival books includes The Complete Peanuts ("has framed Charles Schulz’s enduring masterpiece about as well any lifelong fan could’ve hoped") and Krazy & Ignatz ("a godsend to comics fans... Each book is bizarre, sweetly amusing, and blissfully continuity-free").

Previously unseen Clowes album art
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tim HensleyrockDaniel Clowes 23 Nov 2009 1:27 PM

Victor Banana Split album art by Daniel Clowes

Unused Daniel Clowes artwork for Victor Banana's Split album, circa 1989 — see this and much more (cassette J-card!) at Blog Flume courtesy of Tim Hensley.

Cartoonist tunes
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under rockRobert CrumbPeter BaggePaul Hornschemeiermary fleenerDaniel ClowesChris WareArcher PrewittAl Columbia 20 Nov 2009 3:19 PM

Can You Imagine?

The new episode of the Inkstuds podcast is a special treat: an all-music show featuring music by cartoonists. The playlist includes: The Action Suits! Peter Bagge's Can You Imagine?! Al Columbia's The Francies! The mysterious Extravagant Bachelor! The Crumb Family! Archer Prewitt! Chris Ware! Paul Hornschemeier's Arks! Mary Fleener's Wigbillies! And (drum roll)... Blueshammer! Awesome.

Ghost World On Demand
Written by Eric Reynolds | Filed under Terry ZwigoffDaniel Clowes 9 Nov 2009 7:50 AM
  I'm told that Terry Zwigoff and Daniel Clowes' GHOST WORLD film premiered on your local Movies On Demand channel over Halloween weekend. I don't have a local Movies On Demand channel myself, so I'm not really sure how this works but hopefully you can figure it out yourself. If you've never seen it, you owe it to yourself to, and if you have seen it, you know you're probably due for a repeat viewing. 
And the winner is... Grotesque!
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Sergio PonchioneRobert CrumbIgnatz SeriesDaniel Clowesawards 3 Nov 2009 2:01 PM

Grotesque by Sergio Ponchione with prize trophy

Congratulations to Sergio Ponchione, whose Fantagraphics/Coconino "Ignatz" series Grotesque won the Gran Guinigi prize for Best Series at the 2009 Lucca Comics & Games festival! See photos of the ceremony and read Sergio's reaction to the award at his blog (translated).

And further congratulations to Daniel Clowes, winner of Best Long Story for the Italian edition of Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, and Robert Crumb, acknowledged as Maestro del Fumetto!

David Digs Comix!
Written by Larry Reid | Filed under Fantagraphics BookstoreDaniel Clowes 3 Nov 2009 10:21 AM

Michelangelo's David visits Fantagraphics Bookstore

To promote their blockbuster show "Michelangelo Public & Private" the Seattle Art Museum dug up this miniature Michelangelo and dropped it off at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery last week. We took him on a little tour of Georgetown on Halloween day, where he enjoyed a spooky threesome with GHOST WORLD beauties Enid and Rebecca. Check out his continuing adventures at "Little David's Travelogue."

Daily OCD: 10/30/09
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tim HensleyThomas OttstaffPaul HornschemeierLove and RocketsJohnny RyanJim FloraDave CooperDaniel ClowesAbstract Comics 30 Oct 2009 2:57 PM

Happy day-before-Halloween — lots of treats in today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

• Bookmark: And I thought I was thorough! Hats off to Love and Rockets fan blog Love & Maggie, your one stop for comprehensive L&R/Hernandez Bros. link gathering, commentary and more (hat tip to Mike Sterling)

• Profile: Newcity's Beatrice Smigasiewicz talks to Paul Hornschemeier about the conclusion of his Mome serial "Life with Mr. Dangerous" and other topics: “People are routinely surprised to find that in person I joke around all the time and am obsessed with comedy: they think that I must walk around in a constant fog of philosophical conundrums and Weltschmerz.”

• Things to see: It's getting to be time for Giant Robot's annual Post-It Show, with artists such as Johnny Ryan and Tim Hensley revealing their entries

• Things to see: Speaking of Tim, I want this to be a real thing so badly I can feel the flocking on my fingertips

• Things to see: Speaking of Johnny, he reveals that the final (sniff) issue of Nickelodeon magazine includes a strip written by him and drawn by Hector Mumbly (Dave Cooper) — !

• Things to see: At the Jim Flora blog, outtakes from The Curiously Sinister Art of Jim Flora

• ???: Can anyone translate this page for us? It's photos of Thomas Ott seemingly leading some kind of comics workshop, but beyond that I haven't a clue

• Contest: Create a text-only comic, submit it to Doctor Popular, and you could win a copy of Abstract Comics

• Staff: Oh snap! Our own Jason T. Miles is now blogging at Comics Comics. Holy crap that guy can write

• Crass Google pandering: Sasha Gray tells AOL's Asylum that she likes Ghost World (via AOL's Comics Alliance)

Daily OCD: 10/13/09
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under The Comics JournalreviewsPeanutsMegan KelsoJohnny RyanJasonJacques TardiHans RickheitGil KaneDaniel Clowescomics industryCharles M Schulz 13 Oct 2009 3:40 PM

Holy smokes, there's no shortage of Online Commentary & Diversions today:

• Review: "...Prison Pit... is nothing less than a continuous, no-holds barred, violent assault on the eyes. It is literally one god damned, bloody fight scene after another... The book's genius lies in Ryan's sheer nerve and imagination in setting up these battles; he constantly ups the ante in the most bizarre and inventive ways possible. ... Ryan's love of body functions goes into full gonzo mode here. ...you've got a book where body horror extends far beyond the repulsive into the truly sublime and inspired. ... Despite the gore, or perhaps, because of it, Prison Pit is a fantastic, accomplished work." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

• Review: "Page after page [of The Squirrel Machine] features one of the brothers traversing through some odd, off-kilter landscape, either out in the woods, or, more often, in their home. Between the floorboards and walls seem to exist an endless array of paths and rooms, each cluttered with an endless array of junk, machines and the occasional disturbing, inexplicable oddity. The end result resembles more of an old-style adventure video game than a comic. It's Myst, directed by David Cronenberg." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6 (same link as above)

• Review: "Perhaps what makes West Coast Blues so captivating is how well it highlights the similarities between film and comics, while simultaneously showcasing its own unique ability as a graphic novel to capture the noir aesthetic through word and image. ... Not unlike many noir films, West Coast Blues is replete with car chases, hit-men, drinking, guns, and the occasional salacious scene. All of this is set in Tardi’s straightforward drawing style which is a good fit for the almost matter-of-fact, unsentimental manner in which violence, sex, and life in general are met with during the course of the book." – Sara Cole, PopMatters

• Review: "Most comic strips today, especially those that are humor strips, often avoid topical subjects. Schulz embraced the topics of the era.  They may date the strip, but it never leaves them outdated. ... Schulz was also not afraid to carry on-going storylines for several days or in some cases, even a couple of weeks. ... [The Complete Peanuts 1973-1974 ] also features all the favorite subjects like Linus’ annual wait for the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown’s trip to Summer camp, and Sally’s letters to Santa Claus.  This is why Peanuts is the greatest strip ever!" – Tim Janson, Newsarama

• Review: "Jason seems to delight in building firm plots, only to swiftly tug them out of sync. The resulting offbeat dynamic is punctuated with deadpan verbal, narrative and graphic punch lines, which pin the stories down at the same time that they suggest grander meanings. 'Where am I?' asks a prisoner. 'I think I'll do some gardening,' says a murdered man. 'Which way?' a son asks his father in 'You Are Here' — the heartrending emotional core of the collection [Low Moon] — as they search for his mother on a barren planet. Each line and frame could mean nothing or could mean everything in this quiet, gripping book." – Becky Ferreira, The L Magazine

• Interview: Jason speaks frankly about Low Moon with Becky Ferreira of The L Magazine (different link than above): "Low Moon, the story, wasn't long enough for a book of its own, so I had to include some other stories to fill it out. They were just ideas for shorter stories I had lying around. There wasn't meant to be any thematic unity. Death, I guess, is a repeating theme. People die a lot."

• Interview: Tommy Hill of the Columbia Daily Spectator talks to The Comics Journal assistant editor Kristy Valenti about comics criticism and The Importance of Comics: "I teach my interns that nobody cares about them and their feelings and their dog when they were 8; while their experience and perspective is valuable, it’s just a jumping off point to get at bigger things."

• Plugs: In his Washington Post review of David Small's Stitches, Michael Sims places Daniel Clowes's Ghost World and Megan Kelso's The Squirrel Mother on "the list of powerful works of art in this versatile medium"

• Plug: "You Are There...: More beautiful Jacques Tardi, a seminal work in comics for adults in the French-language market and a first-paragraph mention work for both Tardi and writer Jean-Claude Forest." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

• Plug: "[You Are There] is a strange, wordy, spicy satire, seeing a man struggle to live on the walls surrounding land stolen from him; maybe it's best to see for yourself." - Joe McCulloch, Jog - The Blog (read the rest of his blurb for some interesting background info on the book)

• Events: At his blog, Hans Rickheit reports back from his Squirrel Machine book tour

• History: At Bleeding Cool, Warren Ellis examines the place of Gil Kane's Blackmark in comics history

New Yorker two-fer: Clowes & Xaime
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videoJaime HernandezDaniel Clowes 5 Oct 2009 4:07 PM

The New Yorker cover by Daniel Clowes

Dan Clowes contributes one part of a three-part cover for the new issue of The New Yorker, with a video explanation wherein the artists and art director Françoise Mouly discuss the concept:

And Jaime Hernandez has an illustration inside (via The Beat):

Jaime Hernandez New Yorker illustration

Daily OCD: 10/1/09
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tom KaczynskireviewsOlivier SchrauwenNoah Van SciverMomeLove and RocketsKevin HuizengaJaime HernandezJacques TardiHans RickheitFletcher HanksEmile BravoDaniel Clowes 1 Oct 2009 4:02 PM

October, when kingdoms rise, and kingdoms fall, but Online Commentary & Diversions goes on and on:

• Review: "If the world of alt-comics feels appealing but intimidatingly vast (what doesn’t these days), MOME is the perfect place to start. ... The volume is thick, slick and printed in what looks like Technicolor. An anthology is only as good as the sensibilities of those who compile it, of course, so it’s worth noting that a subscription of MOME equals four issues per year of work culled from the depths by an outfit that not only has keen vision in such matters, but also a stake in finding the very best. What’s not to trust?" – Molly Young, We Love You So

• Review: "...[Locas II,] the latest collected chunk of the (mis)adventures of locas Maggie and Hopey (and the occasional 'loco,' like Ray, the consort of sexy Frogmouth -- does it seem like a good soap opera yet? -- and their sprawling, recurring cast of compelling, sometimes hard-to-figure supporting characters) all brought me squarely back to Los Angeles. In the 80s. ... But returning to L&R, even sporadically, isn't simply an exercise in nostalgia. ...[W]hat's ultimately compelling about the L&R saga is the way the characters change over the years. ... So it's not just a [madeleine] cookie from our past, but something still fairly warm from the oven." – Mark London Williams, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica

• Review: "There is such a relentlessly fervid, even crazed, sheen to all [Fletcher Hanks's] work, that you can't look away. ... Hanks seemed nearly demon-driven in these stories of constant fighting, killing, betrayal and revenge. The panels are often cramped, and the color schemes are nearly incandescent, and you're not sure whether to liken the rawness of it all -- elastic, rubber-boned physiognomies included -- to listening to a record by Fear, circa 1980, or watching a half-dressed man shouting on the corner." – Mark London Williams, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica (same link as above)

• Review: "Tardi's intricate, cartoony, and beautiful art perfectly expresses Forest's ideas and words. The humorous You Are There masterfully satirizes French society and politics unlike any comic before or since." – Rick Klaw, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica

• Plug: "It always amazes me how [Kevin] Huizenga can take everyday moments, like, in [Ganges #3], trying to get to sleep, and turn them into extravagant, elaborate displays of cartooning genius." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

• Interview: At Comic Book Galaxy, Alan David Doane poses 5 questions to our favorite Associate Publisher, Eric Reynolds

• Profile: "Comics creator Hans Rickheit's new graphic novel, The Squirrel Machine, is a stylish and surreal tale of brothers dabbling in the forbidden unknown. ... He lives in Philadelphia, but his work pulls from the style and antiquity of 19th Century New England. 'The objects, places, and people from that time period in New England grabbed my imagination," Rickheit says. 'I find them visually more interesting than modern trappings, modern buildings. And they're more fun to draw, because they're just so ornate.'" – John Seven, Worcester Magazine

• Profile: Rodger Coleman, inspired by his Little Enid Coleslaw doll from Presspop, waxes appreciative of Dan Clowes, Eightball & Ghost World

On his blog, Tom Kaczynski takes note of the inclusion of his story "Million Year Boom" from Mome Vol. 11 in The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2009 (along with Mome stories by Olivier Schrauwen and Émile Bravo — don't tell anyone, but they ain't American)

• Things to see: Noah Van Sciver pens a strip about his trip to SPX with John Porcellino for The Beat