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Category >> Jacques Tardi

Daily OCD: 8/25/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Walt KellyShimura TakakoreviewsmangaKevin HuizengaJesse MoynihanJasonJacques TardiinterviewsIgnatz SeriesEC ComicsDaily OCD 25 Aug 2011 7:21 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "...Shimura Takako tells this story in such a gentle, unobtrusive way, one might believe that this story flows naturally – as if it simply spun itself from nature and is the way it is supposed to be. I think Matt Thorn’s tidy translation, which goes down the mental gullet with such smoothness, is a big reason for how readable this is. Wandering Son is not flashy or aggressive, nor does it pander or try to be hip and stylish. Takako draws the reader in so quietly that some may be surprised to find themselves on a journey of discovery and exploration with these characters. It’s like seeing preadolescence for the first time or seeing it again through fresh eyes and a new perspective.... If only more comic books were so evocative and so clear in their storytelling like Wandering Son, an ideal comic book. Ages 8 to 80 will like Wandering Son. [Grade] A" – Leroy Douresseaux, I Reads You

What I Did

Review: "Of the three books collected in this volume [What I Did], Hey, Wait... is a really evocative portrait of how childhood experiences can affect one throughout his entire life, and The Iron Wagon (which adapts an early-twentieth-century Norwegian novel) is a pretty good murder mystery that makes good use of Jason's deadpan style, but it's the middle entry, Sshhhh!, that really sticks with me, immediately jumping to the top of my favorites among the cartoonist's works.... It's sad, wonderful, exhilarating work, a great example of how amazing Jason is at what he does, and how nobody else can do it like him." – Matthew J. Brady, Warren Peace Sings the Blues

The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec Vol. 1: Pterror Over Paris and The Eiffel Tower Demon

Review: "The plot often takes a sharp turn towards the absurd and downright crazy, but eventually the story always comes back to our heroine. Adele Blanc-Sec takes no crap... It’s really nice to see such a strong female character at the centre of all this mayhem, and her character really pulls the book together.... Tardi’s artwork is great to look at; his panels are vibrant and full of life. In his hands Paris 1911 is a busy metropolitan city still hanging on to its 18th century spirit and facade.... The first volume of The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec left me with more questions than answers, and volume 2’s release date of November seems all to far away! I look forward to reading more of Adele Blanc-Sec’s adventures." – Will Pond, Good Comic Books

Ganges #1

Review: "Glenn Ganges — the protagonist of the first volume of the series Ganges — is a dreamer, an eccentric, a loving husband, but first and foremost a restless man. Meaningless details do not give rest to him, he makes a mountain out of a molehill, and his fantasies replace the reality. Five stories under one cover are the five pieces of a day in the life of Ganges.... I’d like to meet this Ganges." – Ray Garraty, Endless Falls Up

Mome Vol. 22: Fall 2011 - Jesse Moynihan

Interview: Fantagraphics Summer 2011 intern Ao Meng chats with Mome contributor Jesse Moynihan for his school paper, The Daily Texan

EC Comics logo

Commentary (Audio): The Collected Comics Library podcast host Chris Marshall discusses our upcoming EC Comics Library series

Pogo - Vol. 1 of the Complete Syndicated Comic Strips: Through the Wild Blue Wonder

Conflict of Interest: Our own Eric Buckler shares details of our latest Pogo update in his "Indie Comics Digest" column for The Snipe

Fantagraphics SPX 2011 Programming Schedule
Written by janice headley | Filed under Roger LangridgeJohnny RyanJim WoodringJessica AbelJacques TardieventsDiane NoominAnders Nilsen 22 Aug 2011 11:13 AM

SPX 2011 banner

We're all a-buzz over the 2011 Small Press Expo, which is just around the corner on September 10th & 11th in Bethesda, Maryland!  And here are our Fantagraphics panel highlights -- plot your weekend accordingly:

Saturday, September 10th

Excruciating Detail: Drawing the Grotesque
1:00 pm | White Flint Amphitheater

Historical comics ranging from Chester Gould’s Dick Tracy to the horror comics of the 1950s have specialized in images of the grotesque. Sean T. Collins will speak with cartoonists Lisa Hanawalt (I Want You), Benjamin Marra (Night Business), Tom Neely (The Wolf), and Johnny Ryan (Prison Pit) about the act of drawing horrific, visceral, visual detail in contemporary comics that speak to horrors that are both timeless and contemporary.

The Secret History of Women in Comics
1:30 pm | Brookside Conference Room

The increased involvement of women in the comics field over the past several years has been a significant positive change in a historically male-dominated industry. However, just as it’s worth celebrating this progressive revolution, it is also worth noting that today’s women cartoonists are part of a lineage of pioneering women who have made many contributions to the field. Heidi MacDonald will discuss this history with Jessica Abel, Robyn Chapman, Alexa Dickman and Diane Noomin.

 

Anders Nilsen: Questions and Answers
2:00 pm | White Flint Amphitheater

This year Drawn and Quarterly publishes Anders Nilsen’s opus Big Questions. A dozen years in the making, this book sensitively depicts a philosophical crisis in a community of birds whose lives are forever changed by the destructive intervention of human violence. Nilsen has also published books including Dogs and Water, Don’t Go Where I Can’t Follow, Monologues for Calculating the Density of Black Holes, and more. Nilsen will discuss his work with moderator Bill Kartalopoulos.

 

Narrative Logic: Surreal and Obscure
2:30 pm | Brookside Conference Room

The entry of comics as “graphic novels” into the publishing landscape has encouraged work that conforms to the narrative biases of conventional literary fiction. Joe “Jog” McCulloch will talk to Marc Bell (Pure Pajamas), Matthew Thurber (1-800-MICE) and Jim Woodring (Congress of the Animals) about producing graphic narratives that follow less conventional, more associative, and even visually based narrative logics that lend integrity to apparent surreality.

 

Stories of Cultural Identity
3:30 pm | Brookside Conference Room

America’s own culture wars are only part of a global struggle with identity, as nations the world over attempt to address the challenges of assimilating multiple cultures within a stable society. Moderator Rob Clough will talk to Jessica Abel (La Perdida), Marguerite Dabaie (The Hookah Girl), Sarah Glidden (How to Understand Israel in 60 Days or Less) and G. B. Tran (Vietnamerica) about comics that deal with issues of cultural identity.

Johnny Ryan Q+A
5:30 pm | Brookside Conference Room

As comics have increasingly entered into the worlds of literary publishing and gallery arts, Johnny Ryan has almost single handedly extended comics’ satirical, parodistic, disreputable and scatological traditions in his comic book series Angry Youth Comix. More recently, he has entered the realm of visual pulp with his epic, no-holds-barred, manga-inflected graphic novel series Prison Pit. Ryan will discuss the development of his work with moderator Chris Mautner.

 

Sunday, September 11th

 

You Don’t Know Jacques: The Work of Jacques Tardi
1:00 pm | White Flint Amphitheater

In a special slideshow presentation, Fantagraphics co-publisher Kim Thompson will discuss the career of seminal French cartoonist Jacques Tardi, whose work Thompson has been translating in a new series of English-language editions. Relatively unknown until recently in the US, Tardi is a giant of French comics publishing. Active for over forty years and the author of dozens of books, Tardi is a foundational figure of auteurial bande dessinée.

 

Navigating the Contemporary Publishing Landscape
1:30 pm | Brookside Conference Room

In the early 2000s, corporate publishers nearly raced to acquire graphic novels. Now, as the mainstream publishing industry faces severe contractions and as online media assumes many traditional functions of publishing, cartoonists face a rapidly changing publishing landscape, one that includes a resurgent small press. Johanna Draper Carlson will speak with Domitille Collardey, Mike Dawson, Meredith Gran, Roger Langridge and Julia Wertz about publishing options today.

 

Diane Noomin Q+A
4:00 pm | White Flint Amphitheater

Pioneering cartoonist Diane Noomin was among the first contributors to Wimmen’s Comix, the all-female underground comix series. With Aline Kominsky-Crumb, she produced the series Twisted Sisters, and later edited two anthology books by the same name that showcased a new generation of women cartoonists. Celebrating a new book collection of her “Didi Glitz” comics from Fantagraphics, Noomin will discuss her career with moderator Heidi MacDonald.

Jim Woodring: Seeing Things
5:00 pm | White Flint Amphitheater

Jim Woodring first made his mark with his probing, autobiographically-based series Jim. Since then, he has expansively focused on his character Frank, an anthropomorphic cartoon character moving wordlessly through a hallucinatory world of delight and terror, drawn in both meticulous pen-and-ink and gem-like color. His latest book is the Frank graphic novel Congress of the Animals. He will discuss his career in this spotlight session with moderator Ken Parille.









Daily OCD: 8/15/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Willie and JoeWarren BernardSupermenShimura TakakoRick MarschallreviewsPeanutsOlivier SchrauwenMichael KuppermanMarschall BooksmangaKim ThompsonKevin HuizengaJohnny GruelleJim WoodringJacques TardiinterviewsIgortIgnatz SeriesGreg SadowskiGary GrothFrancisco Solano LópezDisneyDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCarl BarksBill MauldinaudioAlex Toth 16 Aug 2011 12:07 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Willie & Joe: Back Home

Review: "...[T]he cartoons in Willie & Joe: Back Home capture Mauldin at a low ebb personally, and ferociously inspired professionally.... The material in Back Home is bitter but witty, and remarkable for its courage. Given the platform of a major syndicate, Mauldin used his moral authority — as a firsthand observer of atrocity, venality, and want — to try and make his complacent countrymen feel a little shame. Where his wartime cartoons had said, 'I am one of you' to grunts in the trenches, his post-war work said, 'What the hell happened to you?' to the people who stayed home. At the time, the public rejected Mauldin’s lectures. Today they’re a blistering reminder that life after WWII wasn’t all suburban bliss and baby boom." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Willie & Joe: The WWII Years

Review: "Told with humor and a great depth of sensitivity, these comics offer a human lens to an epic more often expressed in grandiose terms. Over the past couple of years Fantagraphics has amazed me consistently with its archival releases of seminal cartoonists' work, and Willie and Joe: The WWII Years is yet another fine example." – David Gutowski, Largehearted Boy

Setting the Standard: Comics by Alex Toth 1952-1954

Review: "Toth brought clarity and drama to the page — the equivalent of a top Hollywood director elevating rote material through elegant framing and camera moves.... Nearly every drawing in this book is purposeful and exciting, and they flow together to tell stories so clearly that the words are often superfluous. Setting the Standard is a treasure trove..." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Review: "...Jacques Tardi is certainly in Toth’s league when it comes to rendering seamy genre fare with real artistry. Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot ... is a wonderfully wicked piece of work, tracking a hitman as he tries to sever all ties with his past and retire with his childhood sweetheart. The story’s a familiar one... but Manchette’s approach is especially violent and gory, with a tough twist ending. And Tardi picks up on the sadness underlying the brutality, sketching a black-and-white world where the choice to go to the dark side is irrevocable, no matter how hard characters work to wrest control of their fates." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

The Man Who Grew His Beard

Review: "...Belgian artist Olivier Schrauwen does a fine job of approximating the high weirdness of early-20th-century newspaper comics in The Man Who Grew His Beard, a collection of seven deeply strange short stories.... Schrauwen mixes ink and paint in ways that blur the distinctions between comics and fine art, and he brings back certain themes — instruction and erotica, primarily — that suggest how men try and fail to place parameters on the primal. But The Man Who Grew His Beard isn’t meant to be 'understood' so much as it is to be entered and experienced, in all its wildness." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Ganges #4

Review: "Kevin Huizenga’s Ganges #4 continues the artist’s increasingly masterful hybrid of direct storytelling and experimental abstraction.... The story suits Huizenga’s style, since he can document both the familiar minutiae of daily life and the sense of unreality that takes hold whenever someone is up half the night. Huizenga works in visual motifs of endlessly branching possibilities and spiraling shapes, showing how becoming 'lost in thought' can be terrifying. In short: This is another terrific installment of a series that’s fast becoming a classic." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Mr. Twee Deedle, Raggedy Ann’s Sprightly Cousin: The Forgotten Fantasy Masterpieces of Johnny Gruelle

Review: "Mr. Twee Deedle, Raggedy Ann’s Sprightly Cousin: The Forgotten Fantasy Masterpieces of Johnny Gruelle... collects the strip that illustrator Gruelle created to fill the void left by Little Nemo when Winsor McKay departed The New York Herald. Though not as imaginative as McKay, Gruelle’s Mr. Twee Deedle was every bit as colorful and lavishly rendered, telling gentle fairy stories that explore a rich fantasy world existing in tandem with our own, like children having elaborate playtimes mere feet away from their parents’ more prosaic lives." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club (NOTE: This review was based on samples of the strip provided to the reviewer; the book itself is incomplete and still in production.)

Drawing Power: A Compendium of Cartoon Advertising 1870s-1940s

Review: "...Drawing Power... brings together an eclectic set of examples of comics being used to sell products. The pages are fun to look at — from Mickey Mouse pitching Post Toasties to Dr. Seuss illustrating ads for Esso Marine Products — but the topic is a little too large for a 120-page book, especially one so loosely organized. Then again, maybe that’s the point: to create a reading experience as chaotic and laced with odd beauty as cartooning itself." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Review: "I have long admired Woodring’s brilliant, hallucinatory, and bizarre Frank comics. But his work has taken a leap forward with last year’s Weathercraft and this year’s Congress of the Animals. The Frank world is one the reader benefits by being immersed in. What might seem a bit incomprehensible in a short strip blossoms into a dark Dionysian dream in these two graphic novels.... If I keep mention them together, it is because I believe they beg to be read together. They show different but complimentary sides of Woodring’s vision. And also because these two books combine to form, I believe, one of the greatest achievements in recent comics. If you are a fan of the strange, the uncanny, the bizarre, the hallucinatory, and the fantastic, I can’t recommend them enough." – Lincoln Michel, The Faster Times

The Complete Peanuts 1950-1952 (Vol. 1) [NORTH AMERICA ONLY]

Review: For Magnet, Marc Bianchi of the band Her Space Holiday (they're good!) pens an appreciation of Charles M. Schulz's Peanuts, adding "A good place to rediscover the Peanuts is through the retrospective that Fantagraphics started releasing in 2004. They are complete and total masterpieces, from the elegant layouts provided by famed comic-book artist Seth to the wonderful guest introductions each volume has... If you are ever in a shop that carries these books, I highly suggest thumbing through one of them. Especially the earliest works (1950-1952 or 1953-1954). You are guaranteed to find something that in one panel can tear your heart apart and, in the next, put it back together again."

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "To say that Wandering Son isn't a manga for everyone is perhaps stating the obvious, but despite the potential to make light of its cross-dressing, coming of age tale it proves itself to be an impressively subtle and considered take on growing up within this opening volume.  ...[G]ive it time and you'll find an impressive, character-driven series beneath its simplistic surface that will both charm and fascinate you, leaving you rooting for its characters and wanting to follow them through to (you hope) eventual happiness." – Andy Hanley, UK Anime Network

Supermen! The First Wave of Comic Book Heroes 1936-1941

Review: "Supermen!: The First Wave of Comic Book Heroes, 1936-1941 promises to fill gaps in 'the origins and early development of superheroes and the comic book form.' Editor Greg Sadwoski has assembled an eye-catching collection of stories, magazine covers, and house ads showing unfamiliar faces from the first years of American adventures comics. ...Supermen! is most interesting for what didn’t lead anywhere.... Seeing what didn’t work or become the norm can be as illuminating as seeing what did." – J.L. Bell, Oz and Ends (via Robot 6)

Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes

Plug: "...[D]espite his undeniable gift for crafting  elegant and vibrant storytelling that transcends all genres, sadly there has never before been a comprehensive, affordably priced reprinting of Carl Barks' Disney work…until now. Fantagraphics Books recently announced that it will begin reprinting the entire catalog of the master’s Disney material, beginning with the release of Walt Disney’s Donald Duck: 'Lost in the Andes' by Carl Barks in October, 2011." – Bill Baker, The Morton Report

Plug/Interview (Audio): On Boing Boing's Gweek podcast, guest Ruben Bolling (Tom the Dancing Bug) and hosts Mark Frauenfelder & Rob Beschizza discuss Carl Barks amongst themselves and The Carl Barks Library with our own Gary Groth

Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010

Interview (Audio): The hosts of Comics Alliance's "War Rocket Ajax" podcast talk to Michael Kupperman about his new book Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010, crafting his brand of humor and sundry other topics (such as bleu cheese): "It's about things taking the turn that you don't expect, the ball taking the bounce you don't expect. That for me is an example of trying to make the sentence end up in a place that's different from where it started."

Baobab #1

Interview (Audio): Enjoy a lengthy conversation between Baobab creator/Ignatz Series editor Igort and Inkstuds host Robin McConnell

Ana (Unpublished)

Tribute: At The Comics Journal, Kim Thompson's obituary of Francisco Solano López: "Argentina’s Francisco Solano López was a titan of South American comics, on a level with the great Alberto Breccia, the temporary honorary Argentinean (during the 1950s) Hugo Pratt, and the hugely influential writer Hector Oesterheld (who collaborated with all three)." (Excerpt courtesy TCJ's Tim Hodler)

Daily OCD: 8/11/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under reviewsPeanutsMonte SchulzMickey MouseLilli CarréKim DeitchJacques TardiinterviewsFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDaily OCDCharles M Schulz 11 Aug 2011 7:39 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

The Complete Peanuts 1981-1982 (Vol. 16)

Review/Interview: Vice's Nick Gazin looks at The Complete Peanuts 1981-1982 — "I expected that the quality of the Peanuts comics would be waning by now, but I’m still laughing at the jokes and recognizing the personalities of characters I know in the gang.... It’s a beautifully designed, thick, brickish volume with lots of memorable storylines.... All in all it’s a beautiful two years worth of Charles Schulz’s creative output. It’ll make you laugh, it’ll make you think." — and talks to Monte Schulz about his dad's work on the strip — "The early 80s were a strange time for us. In 1981, Dad underwent quadruple bypass surgery after feeling in poor health for most of the previous year. The idea of surgery terrified him, but the medications he’d been taking had left him so debilitated that surgery became the option he was forced to consider. So he had the procedure and survived, and found a wealth of material from the experience, which he poured into his strip." — and his own career as a writer

Review: "Jaques Tardi has already proven with West Coast Blues that he is just the man for the job when it comes to illustrating the particular brand of noir crime Jean-Patrick Manchette so deftly dished out. There’s a palpable feeling of safeness when you open [Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot] — nothing to do with the subject matter, of course, but with such certifiable masters captaining the ship you’re quite willing to... [trust] that it will lead somewhere totally unexpected, which it does.... Remember that feeling you got in your guts just before the end of Kiss Me Deadly? It feels a bit like that. The first page grabs you roughly by the hair and the book happens in those split seconds before the last page punches your lights out." – Hayley Campbell, The Comics Journal

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "Fantagraphics Books has done an excellent job putting the comic strips of Mickey Mouse in this impressive volume.... Also included in this book is a section on 'The Gottfredson Archives: Essays and Archival Features.' Fans of Mickey Mouse or cartoon strips will enjoy the wonderful stories and illustrations of Floyd Gottfredson created approximately 80 years ago and beautifully presented by the publisher." – Glenn Perrett, Simcoe.com

Mome Vol. 14 - Spring 2009

Interview: At art:21 Thea Liberty Nichols talks to Lilli Carré: "I frequently switch back and forth between working on comics and animation. Sometimes it’s nice to be able to work with pages, where I can really focus on the details and nuances from one panel to the next, and an overall page composition. After I’ve been working on something like that for a while, it feels very freeing to switch to working on an animation, and draw 12 drawings for every second of film. It becomes much looser in terms of each individual drawing, and is more about the overall feel and movement." (Via The Comics Reporter)

The Search for Smilin' Ed!

Lore: Kim Deitch's epic memoir-in-music "Mad About Music: My Life in Records" continues at TCJ.com

Daily OCD: 8/9/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tony MillionaireRobert CrumbPeanutsNate NealJoyce FarmerJacques TardiJack DavisGary GrothDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCarol Tyleraudio 9 Aug 2011 7:00 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Tony Millionaire 1

Interview? (Audio): Tony Millionaire appeared on host Benjamen Walker's radio show Too Much Information on WFMU — we haven't had a chance to listen yet so we don't know exactly what form it takes but you can download or stream the episode here

The Sanctuary

Profile: At GALO Magazine, Emily Crawford Misztal talks to Nate Neal and looks at his debut graphic novel The Sanctuary: "While the language and the ways of the characters in the book will be unfamiliar to readers, the motives that drive them are as old and familiar as the sun. Neal sees the ancient setting as a way to get at the core of what it means to be human—in any era. 'It is a chance for me to examine human behavior on a more universal level,' Neal said. 'Sex, power, revenge, the primal stuff, is underneath everything that we do. There’s more covering over what we do now. With the cavemen, I can strip everything away and get right down to it.'"

Jack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture: A Career Retrospective

Plug (Video): Roger Ash of Westfield Comics sits down on camera to recommend our upcoming release Jack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture

R. Crumb (AP Photo)

News: The Washington Post's Michael Cavna gets Gary Groth's comments on Robert Crumb's withdrawal from the upcoming GRAPHIC festival in Sydney, Australia

Special Exits

Commentary: At Robot 6, Brigid Alverson examines the topic of aging as "the final frontier" of comics storytelling and praises creators such as Joyce Farmer and Carol Tyler for their handling of the subject matter (in Special Exits and You'll Never Know, respectively)

The Complete Peanuts 1950-1952 (Vol. 1) [NORTH AMERICA ONLY]

Feature: Rob Lammle of mental_floss posts an entertaining list of "10 Peanuts Characters You've Probaby Forgotten" — devotees of our The Complete Peanuts series will be familiar with some of them, and some of them give hints as to what to expect in future volumes!

It Was the War of the Trenches

Analysis: At Taking Its Time, Jeff Hayes writes on the use of Jacques Tardi's It Was the War of the Trenches in an academic setting, specifically the high school English classroom: "In using a text like It Was the War of the Trenches, democratic education is being practiced. It is not just because of how the book is constructed visually; we must look at it also as an artifact of importance in presenting how another culture views historical events-how those events may or may not have affected the lives of others we do not think of in the rush of war and the aftermaths that follow as we choose what is important in history and what is not."

Daily OCD: 8/8/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under reviewsRay FenwickLou ReedLorenzo MattottiJosh SimmonsJim WoodringJasonJacques TardiinterviewsDaily OCDAlex Chun 8 Aug 2011 6:42 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

The Pin-Up Art of Humorama

Review: "As with Chun's earlier volumes in the series, it is fantastic to see this work brought back. The original digests were pervasive and invasive...they once arrived by the pallet to newsstands all over the country, but because of their risque and sexist slant, they've been Orwelled right out of our world. It is nice to see them presented here as the art they were. Other than their super-busty raunch (and the occasional spanking) the girly gags of Humorama have aged well because they were hidden for some fifty years. They are also harmless, sometimes woman-friendly and FUNNY." Jim Linderman, Vintage Sleaze

Isle of 100,000 Graves

Review: "Isle of 100,000 Graves represents his first true collaboration, with writer Fabien Vehlmann providing a template that is a remarkable complement to Jason’s deadpan style.... At a crisp 57 pages, Vehlmann and Jason cram a surprising amount of plot and character development into this graphic novella, yet the book has a pleasantly unhurried pace and plenty of room for gags.... The secret hero of this book’s success is the colorist Hubert, who brings a vivid richness to the book that gives it a quality not unlike that of Carl Barks’ work.... The result is pure storytelling pleasure, a kind of narrative eye-candy that is doubly attractive for its sense of restraint and Vehlmann’s deadpan story beats." – Rob Clough, The Comics Journal

The Raven

Review: "I never thought I could look at Poe in a way that was fresh. Poe has been done a thousand times and, while it’s always fun to watch someone else do their thing with Poe’s work, it tends to all go pretty much the same. [The Raven] is different, though. This is scaling back layers of dead flesh — Poe’s, Reed’s and Mattotti’s — and then grafting all of the raw, naked skin together to make a creature that is both disturbing and beautiful.... Knowing that this work came from a musical, I thought perhaps I might be missing a large piece of it, experiencing it through only one sense. I was wrong, however — Mattotti’s art combined with the inherent lyrical quality of the writing to make a more beautiful song than anyone could sing." – Lyndsey Holder, Innsmouth Free Press

Mascots

Review: "Fenwick's use of fonts is fascinating, as he seems obsessed with their aesthetic and decorative qualities as a way of eliciting a certain kind of reaction.... Fenwick slips between the absurd, the thoughtful, the existential and the sublime from page to page, keeping the reader off-balance but engaged.... Mascots flips from image to image with a dream logic that's sometimes whimsical, sometimes creepy, sometimes weird and always vivid. It's that vividness that gives the book its energy and an almost hallucinatory quality. Readers should not expect a coherent narrative but rather simply enjoy the ride." – Rob Clough, High-Low

Jessica Farm Vol. 1

Review: "Josh Simmons picked an interesting way to write a graphic novel... Jessica seems to be a child in an abusive situation but either she’s found how to stay sane within her own imaginary world with a host of friends or she’s found a way to fight back. I’m not sure if her courage is a shield or a weapon. [Jessica Farm is a]n interesting life project and I think, well worth a read." – Terry Grignon, Golbing

The Comics Journal #164 [Sold Out] (Unpublished)

Interview: From the archives, The Comics Journal presents Gary Groth's great, historic 1993 interview with Jim Woodring

The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec Vol. 1: Pterror Over Paris and The Eiffel Tower Demon

Quote of the Week: At The Comics Journal, R. Fiore's review of Luc Besson's film adaptation of Tardi's The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec contains this bon mot: "My rule of thumb is that making a movie out of a comic strip is like making a love song out of a blowjob: You may well make a perfectly decent love song out of it, but it will lack the characteristics one values in the original experience."

Daily OCD: 7/26/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Taking Punk to the MassesShimura TakakoreviewsPaul HornschemeierMickey MouseMaurice TillieuxmangaLou ReedLorenzo MattottiJohnny RyanJaime HernandezJacques TardiFloyd GottfredsonDrew FriedmanDisneyDiane NoominDaily OCDAlex Chun 27 Jul 2011 12:28 AM

We'll be catching up on the past week's Online Commentary & Diversions over the next several days.

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1: Race to Death Valley

Review: "Fantagraphics Books, which has previously done such an amazing job of collecting other classic comic strips like Prince Valiant and Peanuts , once again hits it out of the park with this collection [Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1].... From the beautifully reproduced strips to the densely packed ancillary features, this must be the book that editors David Gerstein and Fantagraphics’ co-founder Gary Groth wanted for years for their own libraries. Their enthusiasm shows in the wonderfully designed package. This book is highly recommended for any Disney fan and fans of America's rich comic strip history." – Rich Clabaugh, Christian Science Monitor

Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide

Review: "Murder by High Tide introduces Maurice Tillieux’s private detective Gil Jordan to America, collecting two 1950s stories from an acclaimed series that has never before been translated into English. Tillieux isn’t quite Hergé, but he’s adept at writing and drawing suspenseful detective stories with brief flurries of action. ...Tillieux’s plotting and deft hand at action, figures, and environments make Murder by High Tide a thrilling read." – Garrett Martin, Paste

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "...Fantagraphics is always a good place to start if you’re worried about trying something new. The venerable comics publisher is a stamp of quality, a guarantee that the vetting process has been serious and that, at very least, the book you hold in your hands will have been beautifully printed. Wandering Son [Vol.] 1 bears all that out.... It’s a lovely, tactile-y rich object, but it’s also a sweet book in terms of content. ...[T]he characters are pleasant to spend time with, the art is emotive and expressive (embarrassment comes up a lot), and there is a gentleness to the whole project that is welcome." – Hillary Brown, Paste

Review: "...Shimura Takako's Wandering Son, with its direct treatment of transgenderism, feels simultaneously natural and singular in the world of manga.... The true distinction of Wandering Son is not its subject matter so much as Shimura Takako's quiet and sensitive handling of it. Fifth grade is a difficult time and age for any author to handle well, and throwing transgenderism into the mix merely adds to the challenge. By keeping the story's focus on the intensely personal thoughts, experiences, and emotions of the characters, Shimura avoids both heavy-handed preachiness and overly melodramatic scenes, keeping the tone of the story sympathetic and realistic and — most importantly — a story." – Caleb Dunaway, Otaku USA

Review: "...Fantagraphics' edition is beautifully presented as a full-sized hardcover with excellent print and paper quality. The volume is just as lovely to behold as it is to read.... Instead of following a strictly linear narrative, Wandering Son provides a somewhat fragmented view. To me, it seems more like a collection of memories, glimpses of important and influential moments in the characters' lives. Though told chronologically, the story has an impressionistic quality to it. Wandering Son is lovely and quiet with tremendous emotional depth.... I was very pleased with the first volume of Wandering Son and greatly look forward to the release of the second volume." – Ash Brown, Experiments in Manga

The Raven

Review: "Brought straight to your chamber door from the ever-awesome Fantagraphics, we finally have The Raven graphic novel. Personally commissioned by Reed, legendary illustrator Lorenzo Mattotti (Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Stigmata) has sketched some remarkably vivid scenes for what amounts to the definitive bard of Baltimore project from New York City’s own poet laureate.... Hardcovered, with a jacket by Grammy-nominated designer Jesse LeDoux, the whole presentation is indeed first-class." – Logan K. Young, Paste

Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind - A Visual History from the Permanent Collection of Experience Music Project

Review: "...Taking Punk to the Masses: From Nowhere to Nevermind... is a dense tome... packed with beautiful photos of EMP’s vast collection of instruments, posters and flyers and assorted rock and punk memorabilia, with commentary and excerpts from the oral history project, featuring testimonials from people like Greg Ginn and J Mascis and Grant Hart and Novoselic, on facing pages. The effect is that of taking a guided tour through the museum, exhibit by exhibit, with headphones on.... There’s an awful lot to look at here, and the book stands up to repeated readings.... Taking Punk to the Masses is a definite keeper for anyone who loves the bands of the Pacific Northwest or the history of rock in America." – John G. Nettles, Flagpole

The Pin-Up Art of Humorama

Review: "Simply put, if you’ve enjoyed any of Alex Chun and Jacob Covey’s series of glamour-girl cartoon retrospectives they’ve assembled for Fantagraphics over the years, you’ll want — if not need — their latest, The Pin-Up Art of Humorama.... As with Chun and Covey’s previous collaborations, the captions to the cartoons rarely matter — sometimes, they don’t even match what’s depicted. All that matters is the art, full of lovely, curvy, super-sexy women whose bra sizes run deep into the alphabet. It may not come in a brown paper wrapper, but yeah, this book’s hot. It spills over with an abundance of retro tease to please." — Rod Lott, Bookgasm

The Arctic Marauder

Reviews: At his High-Low blog, Rob Clough looks at several of our translated volumes of the work of Jacques Tardi: "Tardi is an interesting figure because he felt comfortable writing mainstream material like detective stories, mysteries, fantasy and even science-fiction (though usually of a period nature; The Arctic Marauder, for example is a steampunk book) as well as more experimental and mature fare. No matter what the subject, his books always have a density and meatiness to them that rewards multiple readings. I'll briefly examine each book roughly in order of narrative complexity."

Glitz-2-Go

Plug: Library Journal's Martha Cornog spotlights Diane Noomin's Glitz-2-Go in the latest Graphic Novels Prepub Alert: "Retro-glamgirl DiDi Glitz, Noomin's signature character, originally appeared in the women's comics anthology Twisted Sisters and other collections. Hypno Magazine described her as a 'shamelessly campy, mai-tai-swilling swinger with a voracious appetite for polyester, poodles, and doomed relationships.' Also, 'hysterically funny.' This volume collects nearly 40 years of Noomin comics. Catch this transcript of a Noomin presentation about her work, with sample strips, some NSFW."

Even More Old Jewish Comedians

Plug: I was very excited to present Leonard Maltin with a copy of Drew Friedman's brand new book at Comic-Con, and today Maltin writes on his Movie Crazy blog "Fantagraphics Books had just received its first copies of Drew Friedman’s latest opus, Even More Old Jewish Comedians, which in the 'real world' is still a pre-order item."

Locas II: Maggie, Hopey & Ray [with FREE Signed Bookplate]

Interview: Jaime Hernandez reveals what kind of music he listens to while he's working in a survey on the topic by the Village Voice's R.C. Baker: "When told that one artist interviewed didn't want a fondness for a particularly 'retarded' pop song revealed, he cracks up. 'They don't want you to know they have a heart,' he says. 'I was never afraid to show mine — I put it out there in the comic every time.'"

Paul Hornschemeier

Interview (Video): Lee Keeler of Classy Hands has an on-camera chat with Paul Hornschemeier

Prison Pit

Scene: From Whitney Matheson's rundown of "50 Things I Learned at Comic-Con" at USA Today Pop Candy: "23. Johnny Ryan aims to scare us all. One of the most frightening moments on the convention floor came when a bloody, shirtless man walked up to the Fantagraphics booth and started screaming. Turns out he was portraying a character in Ryan's Prison Pit."

It Was the Win of the Tardi
Written by janice headley | Filed under Jacques Tardieventsawards 23 Jul 2011 9:09 AM

It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi

Last night, we were honored to receive the 2011 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards for "Best Reality-Based Work" and "Best U.S. Edition of International Material" for It Was the War of the Trenches by Jacques Tardi!  It's a privilege to be able to bring Tardi's work to U.S. readers.

Congratulations to all the winners and nominees!

Daily OCD: 7/18/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Trina RobbinsShimura TakakoRobert CrumbreviewsRaymond MacherotPrince ValiantNell BrinkleyMaurice TillieuxmangaJacques TardiHal FosterDave McKeanDame DarcyDaily OCD 19 Jul 2011 2:10 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Wandering Son Vol. 1

Review: "...[L]ike the best coming-of-age stories — comics or otherwise — Wandering Son is meticulously accurate in its details, but universal in its emotions. Gay or not, readers shouldn’t find it too difficult to identify with kids who feel like their bodies and their friends are equally culpable in the worst kind of betrayal, preventing them from realizing the potential they see in themselves." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide + Sibyl-Anne Vs. Ratticus

Review: "The tone of each book is very different, with the Gil Jordan collection favoring clever mysteries, narrow escapes, and broad comic relief, while the Sibyl-Anne book is subtler, dissecting the way miniature societies work, together and in opposition. Both are excellent, though, showing off the strengths of the Eurocomics tradition, with its sprawling narratives spread across small panels, mixing cartoony characters and elaborate backgrounds." – Noel Murray, The A.V. Club

Review: "Reminiscent of the classic Michael Winner-helmed and Charles Bronson-starred The Mechanic, Tardi's follow up to his acclaimed adaptation of a Manchette crime novel West Coast Blues, Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot... delivers a superior sequential thriller. Violent, sexy, and littered with enough shocks to excite the most hardened crime fiction fan, Tardi once again produces one of the finest examples of the genre." – Rick Klaw, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica

Celluloid [Pre-Order]

Review: "McKean has long been established as a master of multimedia imagery and Celluloid represents possibly his finest work. The clarity and seamlessness with which he combines photography with drawings and paintings makes every scene entirely convincing. It’s this hyper-reality that encourages us to submit to the dream-logic of the story." – Gavin Lees, Graphic Eye

Review: "[Celluloid] is a story of sexual growth and empowerment. ...McKean's artwork gains greater dimensionality as his central character grows more assertive.... The pace of the story is left up to the reader, but McKean has created such lush visuals that many will want to linger and examine the intricacies of the imagery presented....Many of the pages are so well crafted in their surrealistic imagery that they could easily hang beside Picasso. McKean has boldly stepped away from the confines of mainstream comic books with this endeavor, and the result is a masterpiece of eroticism that relies heavily on intellect and emotion, rather than just mere arousal or titillation." – Michael Hicks, Graphic Novel Reporter

Meat Cake [with FREE Bonus Comic + Signed Bookplate]

Review: "If Siamese Dream-era Smashing Pumpkins exploded inside a Victorian tea shop, it would look something like [Meat Cake]... The humour is perverse, like an alt-universe Kate Bush who grew up reading penny dreadfuls instead of Brontë, the drawings are obsessively crammed with fever-dream detail, and the author has the advantage of being able to make publicity appearances dressed as her own characters, which is not something most cartoonists should attempt." – Grant Buist, The Name of This Cartoon is Brunswick

R. Crumb (AP Photo)

Profile: Rosalie Higson of The Australian talks to Robert Crumb in anticipation of his visit to Sydney next month for the GRAPHIC festival: "There's a unique timing and way of telling a story with comic panels, different to writing novels or a film script. And there are seasons in the life of any artist. Crumb has dropped all his ongoing characters. 'I'm sick of them all. I'm very critical of my own work, when I look back on it I'm not especially proud, I wasn't really serious enough about it. I'm not sure what it all means for posterity, I have no idea. You can be the world's most favourite artist, and be totally forgotten a few years later,' he says."

The Brinkley Girls: The Best of Nell Brinkley's Cartoons    1913-1940

Interview: At Print magazine's Imprint blog, Michael Dooley chats with Trina Robbins. Dooley: "Trina's 2009 The Brinkley Girls: The Best of Nell Brinkley's Cartoons from 1913-1940 is a stunning collection as well as a detailed pictorial chronicle of the evolution of fashion and style, from Nouveau to Deco." Robbins: "I love clothes. I love lipstick. I love glamor. And obviously, so have many other women, if you look at the large readership of artists like Nell Brinkley and Brenda Starr's Dale Messick. And in the case of younger readers, at all the girls who loved Katy Keene. There probably are still some women who might want to see me, if not guillotined, then at least sent off to a gulag for promoting such work."

Prince Valiant Vol. 1: 1937-1938

Plug: "I was planning to attend [Comic-Con] dressed as Prince Valiant in honor of the lavish reprints of Hal Foster's classic, which I'm collecting, but was told I wouldn't be allowed to bring my 'singing sword' on the plane, so there went that idea. So I guess I'll just go as 'me,' letting others provide the color and dash." – James Wolcott, Vanity Fair

Fantagraphics at San Diego Comic-Con 2011!
Written by janice headley | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoWarren BernardTrina RobbinsShannon WheelerRobert GoodinRick MarschallRichard SalaRaymond MacherotPaul HornschemeierOlivier SchrauwenOil and WaterMomeMickey MouseMichael KuppermanMaurice TillieuxMark KalesnikoMario HernandezMalachi WardLove and RocketsLou ReedLos Bros HernandezLorenzo MattottiJoyce Farmerjon vermilyeaJohnny RyanJohn PhamJaime HernandezJacques TardiGreg SadowskiGilbert HernandezGahan WilsonFrank StackeventsEsther Pearl WatsonDrew FriedmanDavid BCharles M SchulzCCIBill SchellyBill MauldinBen JonesAndrei MolotiuAnders NilsenAlex TothAlex Chun21 18 Jul 2011 9:29 AM

San Diego Comic-Con logo

Fantagraphics is puttin' the "comics" back in Comic-Con as we head to San Diego this week with a slew of scintillating signings, almost two-dozen dynamite debuts, and a collection of comics sure to please any comics fan... and fill those enormous free tote bags they give away at the door.

First up, DEBUTS!

Love & Rockets New Stories 4 by Los Bros Hernandez
• Mark Twain’s Autobiography by Michael Kupperman
• Prison Pit Vol. 3 by Johnny Ryan
• Mome 22, edited by Eric Reynolds
• The Raven by Lou Reed and Lorenzo Mattotti
•  The Art of Joe Kubert, edited by Bill Schelly
• Setting the Standard: Alex Toth, edited by Greg Sadowski
• Esperanza by Jaime Hernanadez
• Like A Sniper Lining Up His Shot by Jacques Tardi
Gil Jordan, Private Detective: Murder by High Tide by M. Tillieux
• The Pin-Up Art of Humorama, edited by Alex Chun
• Drawing Power, edited by Rick Marschall and Warren Bernard
• Sibyl-Anne vs. Ratticus by R. Macherot
• Willie & Joe: Back Home hardcover and Willie & Joe: The WWII Years softcover by Bill Mauldin
• The Armed Garden by David B.
Complete Peanuts 1981-1982 (Vol. 16) by Charles Schultz
• Even More Jewish Comedians by Drew Friedman
• The Hidden by Richard Sala
• The Man Who Grew His Beard by Olivier Schrauwen
• Nuts by Gahan Wilson

Next up, SIGNINGS!

Thursday, July 21st:
1:00 - 2:00 PM    Joyce Farmer / Esther Pearl Watson
2:00 - 3:00 PM    Bill Schelly / Robert Goodin
3:00 - 5:00 PM    Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez
5:00 - 6:00 PM    Frank Stack / Paul Hornschemeier

Friday, July 22nd:
11:00 - 12:00 PM    Joyce Farmer / Bill Schelly / Tim Hensley
12:00 - 1:00 PM    Floyd Norman / Wilfred Santiago / Frank Stack
1:00 - 3:00 PM    Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez
3:00 - 4:00 PM    Paul Hornschemeier / Anders Nilsen / Esther Pearl Watson
4:00 - 5:00 PM    Mark Kalesniko / John Pham / Malachi Ward
5:00 - 7:00 PM    Johnny Ryan
5:00 - 6:00 PM    Jon Vermilyea
6:00 - 7:00 PM    Robert Goodin

Saturday, July 23rd:
12:00 - 1:00 PM        Wilfred Santiago / Bill Schelly
1:00 - 2:00 PM        Joyce FarmerFrank Stack
2:00 - 4:00 PM        Paul Hornschemeier / Johnny Ryan
3:00 - 4:00 PM        Esther Pearl Watson
4:00 - 5:00 PM        Mark Kalesniko
4:00 - 6:00 PM        Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez
6:00 - 7:00 PM        Robert Goodin / Jon Vermilyea / Malachi Ward

Sunday, July 24th:
11:00 - 12:00 PM   Joyce Farmer / Jon Vermilyea / Esther Pearl Watson
12:00 - 1:00 PM    Mark Kalesniko / Frank Stack
1:00 - 3:00 PM    Gilbert Hernandez / Jaime Hernandez / Mario Hernandez

All the action awaits you at our usual spot, Booth #1718!

And don't miss our amazing PANELS!  I won't get into all the details, because Mike did so earlier here on the FLOG, so click on the date to see our previously posted full rundown on each panel!

Thursday, July 21st:
12:30-1:30     Spotlight on Bill Schelly [Room 8]
1:00-2:00     CBLDF Master Session 2: Shannon Wheeler [Room 30CDE]
2:00-3:00     Love and Rockets Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario Hernandez [Room 9]
2:30-3:30     Joyce Farmer: Special Exits, A Memoir [Room 4]
3:30-4:30     Spotlight on Frank Stack  [Room 4]
6:00-7:00     Comics for Social Justice: The Making of Oil and Water [Room 9]

Friday, July 22nd:
10:30-11:30     Comics Arts Conference Session #5: Critical Approaches to Comics: An Introduction to Theories and Methods— Matthew J. Smith and Randy Duncan with panelist, Andrei Molotiu. [Room 26AB]
1:00-2:00     Comics Arts Conference Session #6: Wordless Comics with Andrei Molotiu. [Room 26AB]
12:00-1:00     CBLDF Master Session 3: Jaime Hernandez [Room 30CDE]
1:00-2:00     Publishing Queer: Producing LGBT Comics and Graphic Novels with moderator Justin Hall  [Room 9]
1:00-2:30     The Golden Age of the Fanzine moderated by Bill Schelly. [Room 24ABC]
10:30-11:30     Cartoon Network Comedy: Regular Show/The Problem Solverz and More! The Problem Solverz talent includes Ben Jones, John Pham, and Jon Vermilyea. [Room 6A]

Saturday, July 23rd:
10:00-11:30     50 Years of Comic Fandom: The Founders with Bill Schelly [Room 24ABC]
11:30-12:30     Bill Blackbeard: The Man Who Saved Comics with Trina Robbins [Room 24ABC]
12:30-1:30     Fantagraphics 35th Anniversary  [Room 24ABC]
1:00-2:00     Spotlight on Anders Nilsen [Room 4]
2:30-3:30     The Art of the Graphic Novel with Joyce Farmer (Special Exits, A Memoir) [Room 24ABC]   

Sunday, July 24th:
• Nothing. Come shop with us!

PHEW! And, can you believe it? This is only the beginning! Stay tuned to the Fantagraphics FLOG, Twitter and Facebook for important (we mean it!) Comic-Con announcements all week long!