• Review: "This extraordinary collection of World War I tales offers perhaps the finest work from the lauded Tardi. Each story, based on actual accounts from French soldiers, relates the often-horrific realities of trench-warfare. Disturbing yet compelling images abound: a dead, mangled horse hanging from a tree serves as a warning; rats feasting on corpses; amputations; executions; countless dead. Far more memorable are the impassioned stories themselves. Betrayal, deceit, mistrust, murder, hope, and even humor run throughout these tales. Painstakingly researched, the amazing Tardi perfectly captures the everyday despair of the World War I trench soldier. Visceral, powerful, and effective, the flawless It Was The War of the Trenches blazes a new standard for the war comic." – Rick Klaw, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica
• Review: "One of the nice things about the rise of highbrow comics is the how many genuinely lurid entertainments a gentleman can get away with adding to his library. For starters, we’d suggest Tim Lane’s Abandoned Cars. It’s the modern equivalent of the Raymond Chandler yarns that fill up the more exciting portion of your bookshelf — a string of police chases and back-alley fist fights with a surprisingly introspective thread running in the background." – Kempt
• Interview:Mr. Media's Bob Andelman talks to Gahan Wilson about Fifty Years of Playboy Cartoons: ""I said, 'I'll see Mr. Kurtzman?' 'Oh, no,' the receptionist said. 'Trump is out of New York.' The art director came up behind me and said, 'Hef would like to see you.' I didn't know who or what a Hef was." Listen via the embedded player above or at this link, or download the MP3
Thanks to all the artists, attendees, and MoCCA staff & volunteers for helping make the 2010 MoCCA Art Festival our most successful ever! We sold out of numerous titles, some within hours (and to the chagrin of our artists who ran out of books to sign — sorry!), and had mobs of fans turn out for our signings.
• Review: "Troublemakers is... a noirish tale of crosses double and triple, in which the same small cast keeps tripping over each other, making and breaking promises and plans and alliances. ... The dialogue is often overwrought in that trying-to-be-tough way, but the plot is suitably twisty and energetic. " – Andrew Wheeler, The Antick Musings of G.B.H. Hornswoggler, Gent.
• Interview:Comic Book Resources' Chris Mautner talks to Gahan Wilson about fifty years of Playboy cartoons and Fifty Years of Playboy Cartoons: "The bottom line in horror, or humor, really, is that life is tough and sometimes it's ludicriously disastrous. And yet we cope. We struggle on. That's a large part of the thing. That's very much underlying it. This admiration for us for making it through one day to the next. And taking care of kids and being nice to people. Working it out somehow together."
• Interview: On the MTV Tr3s Blogamole, Daniela Capistrano talks to Gilbert Hernandez about High Soft Lisp: On Fritz: "Well, looks wise, she's an 8 1/2 and she's smarter than any of my other characters. She always has the potential to go anywhere and do anything I want because she's wealthy and childless, giving me free reign to change her life at any time. She's got class and the genetics to age beautifully and gracefully." On what he's going to do with his U.S. Fellows grant: "Spend it on gold rims for my car."
• Interview: Alex Dueben interviews Robert Williams on the Suicide Girls website (SFW): "The arts have to be open for everybody with every kind of style. I’m for making the thing open and free. I don’t think an artist has to learn to paint and draw. I prefer to do that, but I want the ability to have as much right to be in a museum as someone else. I respect their right to put anything in there. If they want to have a pile of sand in the middle of the museum, that’s okay with me. As long as I have room in there."
We are exceedingly pleased to report that Fantagraphics publications and artists received a record 18 nominations for the 2010 Eisner Awards. To celebrate, we're offering these titles at 18% off for a limited time! Click here for the full sale selection. (Sale is valid for online and phone orders only.) Winners will be announced at a ceremony on Friday, July 23, 2010 at Comic-Con International in San Diego. Congratulations to all the nominees! Fantagraphics' nominations are as follows:
• Best Adaptation from Another Work: West Coast Blues, by Jean-Patrick Manchette, adapted by Jacques Tardi • Best U.S. Edition of International Material: West Coast Blues, by Jean-Patrick Manchette, adapted by Jacques Tardi
• List: We published 3 of "The 6 Most Underrated Comics of 2009" according to Robot 6's Chris Mautner, including Giraffes in My Hair: A Rock 'n' Roll Life by Bruce Paley & Carol Swain ("Swain's low-key, nonchalant art fits perfectly with Paley's tales of hippie wanderings and punk-era decadence, stripping the stories of any rock glamor and tinging them with a genuine sadness. Really, this book just underscores how talented and sharp an artist Swain really is") From Wonderland with Love: Danish Comics in the Third Millennium ("...Nikoline Wedelin's haunting, chilling Because I Love You So Much... still resonates with me months after I wrote this review. The unflinching regard for its subject matter is not going to have people beating a path to its door, but the sheer daring artistry on display deserved much more attention than it got") and Gahan Wilson: Fifty Years of Playboy Cartoons ("It's a testament, not only to Wilson's genius (the material never flags or gets rote, no matter what the decade) but also to Fantagraphics skill in presenting this material in such a stellar fashion. Really, it was the best retrospective collection of the year, and I wish more people had noticed it.")
• Panel: The concluding installment of The Comics Journal's presentation of a never-before-published panel discussion between Charles Burns, Chip Kidd, Seth and Chris Ware, moderated by Jeet Heer, that occurred October 29, 2005 at the International Festival of Authors in Toronto, Canada, turns things over to audience Q&A
Wrapping up another week of Online Commentary & Diversions:
• Review: "Fantagraphics sets a high standard for quality in all of their products, and [Gahan Wilson: Fifty Years of Playboy Cartoons] does not disappoint. ... It's just amazing...this is a product with a real 'wow' factor. ... If you're an admirer of Wilson's work like I am then this will be a must-have, something you'll want to look at again and again." – Matt Staggs, Suvudu (Random House)
As an incentive, Fantagraphics is offering a bookstore-only discount on both the normal and special editions of the 3-volume, embossed slipcase set GAHAN WILSON: 50 YEARS OF PLAYBOY CARTOONS. Through the end of the show, the normal edition is $25 off and the special edition is $50 off cover price! And while supplies last, each purchase will include a signed silkscreen Gahan Wilson print.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of the Georgetown arts community, only minutes south of downtown Seattle. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00. Phone 206.658.0110. See you all soon.
(Ed. note: Above, Gahan Wilson makes the acquaintance of Michael Leavitt's action-figure sculpture of R. Crumb. Have a look at this and more recently-posted photos of the exhibit opening from Flickr user and friend of Fantagraphics Bookstore Jo David.)