• Review: "[Pim & Francie]'s spine calls its contents 'artifacts and bone fragments,' as if they're what's left for a forensic scientist to identify after a brutal murderer has had his way with them; Columbia obsessively returns to images of 'bloody bloody killers.' ... Many of the pieces are just one or two drawings, as if they've been reduced to the moment when an idyllic piece of entertainment goes hideously awry. But they're also showcases for Columbia's self-frustrating mastery: his absolute command of the idiom of lush, old-fashioned cartooning, and the unshakable eeriness of his visions of horror." – Publishers Weekly
• Review: "With [Pim & Francie], Al Columbia has created not only one of the more unsettling works of horror in the medium of comics, but it also happens to be one of the greatest myth-making objects... Whether Columbia planned more complete stories for any of the efforts collected here is an interesting question, but for my money he has instead come up with dozens of nightmarish scenarios that have a greater cumulative effect by skipping set-ups or endings. The ending, one suspects, is always going to be a variation of horrific death and dismemberment." – Christopher Allen, Comic Book Galaxy
This coming week Kevin Huizenga will be delivering the hotly-anticipated Ganges #3, featuring insomnia and cops. Expect this one to be released just in time to premiere at SPX in late September, and then show up in stores in late October/early November. Here is a preview!
Next up, likely to be released toward the end of the year, is a double whammy of Niger #3 by Leila Marzocchi (check out the cover of this wild ecological fable), and the fourth and concluding installment of Ponchione's Grotesque (with another standalone story). Then Spring 2010 will, if everything goes well, see the release of the fourth issue of Igort's cartoonist-graphic-novel-a-clef Baobab; the fourth (and concluding) issue of Gabriella Giandelli's hard-to-pronounce magical apartment building story Interiorae; and the third issue of Zak Sally's otherworldly picaresque Sammy the Mouse.
Missing in action at this point, alas, are new issues of the Gipi series Wish You Were Here and Marti 's Calvario Hills, as both cartoonists are focusing on other work at this time, but we're keeping our fingers crossed there will be a new issue of David B.'s Babel sometime in 2010.
Of course, if you've missed picking up any of these issues in the past (including the already concluded three-issue series New Tales of Palomar by Gilbert Hernandez, Reflections by Marco Corona, and Insomnia by Matt Broersma), remember, any comic you haven't read yet is a new comic...
The Comics Journal #295 is chock full of all the comicky goodness that you’ve come to expect from our fine publication! Check it out:
Sean T. Collins interviews writer Brian K. Vaughan about Y the Last Man, Ex Machina, Runaways, Pride of Baghdad, how a career in comics led him to writing for the hit television series Lost, and much, much more.
Paul Karasik presents a conversation with Italian cartoonist Gipi, who talks about Garage Band, Notes for a War Story, the Ignatz books and how he narrowly avoided a life of crime.
Rob Clough offers us a chat with humor cartoonist John Kerschbaum, covering everything from The Wiggly Reader to Pete & Pussy to why he couldn’t figure out why his first editors hated him so much.
Michael Dean examines the page rates paid by the Best American Comics anthology series.
Noah Berlatsky digs into the comic-book closet and finds out what’s hiding back there.
R.C. Harvey examines the life of Flash Gordon/Rip Kirby creator Alex Raymond.
Our comics section this issue: Charles A. Voight’s short-lived newspaper strip The Theorist, in its entirety.
As always, we’ve got free online previews of our Brian K. Vaughan, Gipi and John Kerschbaum interviews to whet your apetite. The Comics Journal #295 — around the comics world in 208 pages! Don’t miss it.
Due later this month, The Comics Journal #295 features interviews with Brian K. Vaughn, Gipi, and John Kerschbaum along with the usual reviews, commentary, comics sections and more. Take a virtual flip-through with this preview. Click this link if the embedded slideshow doesn't appear above, and/or to open it in a new window.