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Category >> Johnny Ryan

Daily OCD 12/19/12
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under William S BurroughsWalt KellyTrina RobbinsRichard SalaPeanutsPat ThomasNoah Van SciverMichael KuppermanMalcolm McNeillLove and RocketsLilli CarréJustin HallJosh SimmonsJohnny RyanJoe DalyJames RombergerJaime HernandezJacques BoyreauJack JacksonHarvey KurtzmanGilbert HernandezGary PanterEC ComicsDisneyDaily OCDCrockett JohnsonChris WrightCharles M SchulzCarl BarksBasil Wolverton 19 Dec 2012 11:17 PM

The last peanut of a day of Online Commentaries & Diversions aka the news you missed while present shopping, latke eating and flying:

The Lost Art of Ah Pook is Here Observed While Falling

• Review: The Comics Journal and Rucker crack the two books focusing on Malcom McNeill and William S. Burrough's artistic collaboration, Observed While Falling (the memoir) and The Lost Art of Ah Pook is Here. (the art book) "The art is awesome, the memoir is engaging. . .Ah Pook is in a characteristic style of Burroughs’s middle period.  He mixes a true-adventure story with bitter anti-establishment scenarios, gay sexual fantasies, science-fictional visualizations of chimerical mutants, and apocalyptic visions of a biological plague. . .The results are staggering—the best pictures of dicks that I’ve ever seen. . . ."

On the memoir "One of the pleasures of McNeill’s memoir, Observed While Falling, is reading about hear about his conversations with Burroughs.  Old Bill laid down some tasty aphorisms. . . Ah Pook is a word/image virus.  Study these new books and enjoy the disease."

 Love and Rockets Library box set

• Interview: Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez of Love and Rockets are interviewed by Tim Hodler, Dan Nadel and Frank Santoro on The Comics Journal. Jaime talks about becoming more popular cartoonists, "So Gilbert and I kind of set up our own ground where we go. We go, you love Raw? Raw’s East Coast? Love and Rockets is West Coast. And they go, 'So West Coast is primitive and old-fashioned?' Fine. It’s not art school."

Review: Comics Alliance features several of our box sets on their Holiday Gift Guide: Deluxe Editions. On the Love and Rockets Library Collection, by Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez Andy Khouri states,  This indie comics mainstay has been going for nearly 30 years, making Love and Rockets as intimidating to some new readers as even the densest superhero mythologies. Luckily, Fantagraphics has made the Los Bros Hernandez saga about a massive cast of startlingly lifelike characters digestible in the form of affordable reprint volumes published in chronological order."

Plug: Ode to Love and Rockets and Sonic Youth by a fan on Buzzfeed.

Corpse on the Imjin!

Review: Douglas Wolk reviews Harvey Kurtzman’s EC stories in Corpse on the Imjin! for the New York Times. "Kurtzman’s writing could be bombastic — nearly all of these stories’ titles end in exclamation points — but, as the United States became mired in the Korean War, his reeling disgust at the horrors of war (and his thick, slashing brush strokes) made for shockingly bold rhetoric."

 Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010  Tales Designed the Thrizzle Vol. 1  Tales Designed the Thrizzle Vol. 2

•Review: The Atlantic lists Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010 by Michael Kupperman as one of The Best Books I Read This Year. Chris Heller says "Kupperman’s brilliance isn’t just in his humor, though. Mark Twain’s Autobiography is meant to be read in small doses, no more than half a dozen pages at a time. Trust me: You don’t want to gorge on a book that’s this weirdly amusing. But after a peek into Kupperman’s hysterically twisted mind, you’ll keep wanting to go back for more."

• Plug: Liquid Television spotlights Michael Kupperman, Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010 and Tales Designed to Thrizzle Vols. 1 and 2 ."You may recognize him (or not) from some of his comedy writing for legit platforms (SNL, Huff Post, etc). He does a comic called Tales Designed to Thrizzle that’s pretty good."

The Hypo

• Review: The Denver Westword is proud of their hometown hero, Noah Van Sciver, and his critical acclaim for The Hypo. Read on!

• Review: Comics Bulletin releases its 2012 Best Graphic Novel List and The Hypo by Noah Van Sciver makes it. "Van Sciver's toolkit includes the pens and pins of pathos and pain, self-doubt and angst, as much as it contains determination and fortitude. The Lincoln of The Hypo transcends his time, place, and even (or maybe especially) his name. . . It stands as a true example of the capabilities of this medium to deliver stories in a truly visceral manner," writes Daniel Elkin.

• Review: Unshelved comics review The Hypo by Noah Van Sciver. Gene Ambaum writes,"The mood of Lincoln’s life in Springfield, Illinois, is well-expressed via the rough-hewn, cross-hatched skies, floorboards, and backgrounds."

Spacehawk

• Review: Tim Callahan has nothing but love for Spacehawk by Basil Wolverton on Comic Book Resources. He states, "Wolverton's world is a weird and ugly and beautifully innocently horrible charmingly delightful one, and it has more in common with the absurd genre riffs from something like Pendleton Ward's Adventure Time or Jesse Moynihan's Forming or Tom Gauld's Goliath than it does the bland superhero melodrama of 'Marvel Mystery Comics'."

Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge: Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Dal Tokyo

• Review: Comics Bulletin's Favorite Reprints Books of 2012 include Gary Panter's Dal Tokyo and our Carl Barks reprints. In reference to Carl Barks' Uncle Scrooge and Donald Duck, "I would not hesitate to say that Fantagraphics’ reprints of Barks’ Duck comics may very well be the best collection series that any comic company is doing today! . . Each story is funny, smart and just plain fun and Fantagraphics treat each and every panel on the page with care and detail," states Nick Boisson. Jason Sacks writes "[Dal Tokyo is] a freaking godsend from the reprint editors at Fantagraphics because it unearthed an amazing, surreal, brilliant lost classic that's like an artifact from some amazing parallel dimension.. . Readers are asked to bring our perceptions to these pages, to bring our intelligence and passion and appreciation for abstraction and love for everything that feels different and yet the same as everyday life."

• Review: School Library Journal files Walt Disney's Donald Duck: A Christmas for Shacktown by Carl Barks in the Dewey (Huey and Louey) decimal of their hearts. J. Caleb Mozzocco says "[It] features another 200 pages of master cartooning from 'The Good Duck Artist' in a nicely produced bookshelf- or backpack-ready hardcover edition. . .  the Barks books are great comics for kids and adult fans of the medium."

• Review: Uncle Scrooge: Only a Poor Old Man makes the Best of or Our Favorite Books of 2012 list on the Village Voice. Alan Scherstuhl states, “Sprightly, inventive, wise, and more exciting than 60-year-old-duck tales should be, Barks's work already stands at the top of any list of history's greatest comics. It should also rank high among stories, period.”

• Plug: J. Caleb Mozzocco reveals the many coats of Uncle Scrooge (SO FAR). Find a cut that works and get it in every color, right?

Sexytime

• Review: Brooklyn Based thinks Sexytime edited by Jacques Boyreau is for you and suggests books for reading and giving. "This book is a journey into the aesthetic of porn," states Jon Reiss.

Heads Or Tails

• Interview: Alex Dueben interviews Lilli Carré on Comic Book Resources about comics and animation. "I loved designing and arranging the [Heads or Tails]. Figuring out which pieces to include and the best order for them took quite a while, since I wanted each story to speak to the one before and after it, and to have a good flow despite the shift in styles. It was like making a high-stakes mix tape."

• Review: North Adams Transcript and John Seven look at Heads or Tails by Lilli Carré. "The multi-faceted Lilli Carre -- author, illustrator, animator -- presents stories that are as gentle as they are cryptic, in which the darkness of her themes meld perfectly with the sweetness of her style. . .Carre’s short work is collected and celebrated, revealing a creator of power, easily on the level with lauded types like Chris Ware."

The Furry Trap

• Review: Hooded Utilitarian makes it through Josh Simmons' The Furry Trap (probably with all the lights on in the house). James Romberger writes it is “packed cover to cover with shudders that cannot be anticipated, that grow worse as they progressively become less clearly defined. The last narrative is the most frightening because it is a straightforwardly articulated bit of cinematography on paper that, as with the most effective of suspenseful creations, gains in impact from what is never shown, the reader’s mind having already been prepared by the foregoing tales to expect the worst.”

The Complete Peanuts 1985-1986 Peanuts box sets Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking

Review: Lettering master Todd Klein on the Complete Peanuts Vol. 18 1985-1986 . "Thirty-five years into his fifty year run on this strip, Charles Schulz continues to keep me smiling and laughing. . .Highly recommended."

Review: Comics Alliance features several of our box sets on their Holiday Gift Guide: Deluxe Editions. On The Complete Peanuts Collection box sets by Charles M Schulz. Andy Khouri writes,Reprinted in chronological order with the highest production values, any one of these books would make an auspicious addition to any bookshelf.

Review: School Library Journal looks at Charlie Brown’s Christmas Stocking by Charles M. Schulz. J. Caleb Mozzocco says, "Schulz’s Peanuts has always been unique in its ability to speak to audiences of adults and children simultaneously. . . Nice then to have a comic that can speak to kids, adults and the little kids the adults used to be all at the same time—even if only for a quick 40 pages or so."

Pogo Vol. 2

Review: HeroesOnline looks at The Complete Syndicated Pogo Vol. 2 "Bona Fide Balderdash" by Walt Kelly. “Pogo certainly belongs on any informed list of the top 5 newspaper comic strips of all time.  The artwork is stunning, the pacing is fast, the characters simply come alive on the page; the plot-lines are crazy and labyrinthine and above all hilarious . . . Fantagraphics does the Kelly oeuvre proud with beautiful production values and insightful introductory material,” states Andy Mansell.

Dungeon Quest 3

• Review: Dungeon Quest 3 by Joe Daly is the Best of Year 2012 on the Forbidden Planet International site.  Clark Burscough writes, “Deceptively simple looking artwork contains hidden depths, and the mythology that Joe Daly is building up around these characters and their world is starting to get properly out there.. . And on top of that – it’s laugh out loud funny. I can’t go into precisely why, because it’s also laugh out loud filthy. Something for everyone in these books.

7 Miles a Second

• Interview: Comic Book Resources and Alex Dueben interview James Romberger on his collaboration of 7 Miles a Second (and Post York). On his love of New York-centric books, “It is strange that I'll get used to an aspect of the landscape, but so often, I will come out to find it gone and replaced with something completely different. Still, I also love that shifting quality and the multiculturalism of the city; it is my primary subject,” says Romberger.

Listen, Whitey!

• Review: Listen, Whitey! on NPR Music for its MUSIC compilation. Matt Sullivan, assistant to author Pat Thomas, talks to Michaelangeo Matos about the project to accompany the book. "There's no way that Sony or EMI were going to [automatically] say yes to the Bob Dylan or John & Yoko tracks, because they get those requests all day. Years ago, Pat went to Bob Dylan's office and got those guys to approve it. The same thing with Yoko. . ."

Pretty in Ink

• Plug: Speaking of 2013, Johanna Draper Carlson of Comics Worth Reading can't wait for Pretty in Ink: American Women Cartoonists by Trina Robbins to come out! 

Blacklung Los Tejanos and Lost Cause

• Review (reprint): Publishers Weekly reissues their prime reviews on Blacklung, Heads or Tails, and Los Tejanos and Lost Cause

• Plug: Nick Gazin of VICE posts pictures a friend sent of the Spain Rodriguez tribute murals made this month in Brooklyn.

Plug: Why doesn’t Richard Sala take on the Caped Crusader? A question posed by Michael May on CBR.

• Plug: Johnny Ryan's Prison Pit shirts and vinyl figurines are on sale at Monster Worship for the truly tainted souls.

• Plug: Justin Hall (editor of No Straight Lines) has a new comic in the comics edition of SF Weekly. Enjoy!

Angry Youth Comix to round out your digital comix collections
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Johnny Ryandigital comicscomiXology 19 Dec 2012 8:43 AM

Angry Youth Comicx #11 on iPad

Is this happy-go-lucky holiday season getting on your nerves? Are increasingly sentimental anthropomorphic animals for the flippin' birds? Johnny Ryan is here to serve you. This week comiXology and Fantagraphics released Angry Youth Comix issues #11-14 for you to enjoy in the midst of madness. In addition to the sex, violence and scatological filth on display, Angry Youth Comix delivers equal opportunity antagonism toward every race, gender, sexual orientation, political persuasion and religion, as well as jokes about international and humanitarian tragedies, in abundance. That being said, it is only available via the filthy filthy web so buy it and read it on your computer instead of going to that meeting.

$1.99 is the crazy amount of money for the eyeball tickling guffaws you'll emit when reading Angry Youth Comix. Head over to comiXology now to download. Then you'll get to find out exactly what happens to Loady McGee, Sinus O'Gynus and Blubbina LaQuiche.

"Let me tell you something: In this increasingly cynical world of happily self-imposed isolation and sneering judgement, one graphicish novella, with pixie-like tickles, appears through the misty mist to take us all by the hand gently unto the night. You hold in your hand that very thing. Johnny Ryan's Angry Youth Comix. Now go away." – David Cross

Daily OCD 12/7/12
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Walt KellySteven WeissmanRon Regé JrNoah Van SciverLorenzo MattottiLilli CarréJohnny RyanJoe DalyJasonGary PanterDisneyDaily OCDChuck ForsmanCharles M SchulzCarl Barks 7 Dec 2012 3:18 PM

The cutest Carré animation of Online Commentaries & Diversions*:

Walt Disney's Donald Duck: A Christmas for Shacktown Charlie brown's Christmas Stocking

• Review: Chris Sims on Comics Alliance looks at the first story (and title story) of the latest Carl Barks collection: Walt Disney's Donald Duck "A Christmas for Shacktown." Sims says, "At 32 pages, it's a sprawling epic (By Barks' standards, anyway) that hits those beautiful Holiday themes of altruism and the spirit of giving. Although to be fair, it does get a little closer to cannibalism than most other Christmas comics.

• Review: Speaking of Christmas comics, John Seven of the North Adams Transcript reads Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking by Charles M. Schulz. "As with the best of Schulz's work, the humor alternates between deadpan and over the top, and the presentation of religion and holidays both is both irreverent and respectful at the same time. Schulz was a multi-faceted writer and could tackle contradictions through great simplicity. Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking stands as gift from the past that is greater than the size of the package. It's a real treasure."

Dal Tokyo Barack Hussein Obama The Cartoon Utopia

• Review (audio): Comic Books are Burning in Hell take you on a whirlwind, family road-trip of a podcast review of Gary Panter, Dal Tokyo and his occasional critics (Andrew Arnold). "Panter is very good at drawing altered states." "What was loose, scrappy and punk rock becomes much tighter." "The later stuff in here is the quote, unquote nicest drawing Gary has ever done, most acceptable comicswise." The evolution of one man's comics.

• Plug (video): Last Gasp makes a cute and cool holiday gift guide featuring Dal Tokyo by Gary Panter, Barack Hussein Obama by Steven Weissman and The Cartoon Utopia by Ron Reje, Jr.

• Plug: Creator of Barack Hussein Obama, Steven Weissman, runs around looking for vintage comics with Love and Rockets co-creator, Mario Hernandez at the Comics Alliance. Need a hot tip? "They stick a lot old stuff in between the new stuff so I always look for the brown spines,"says Mario.

The End of the Fucking World

• Review: On the North Adams Transcript, John Seven enjoys Charles Forsman, Oily Comics and The End of the Fucking World. "When I started, I didn't have a real plan for [TEOTFW]," Forsman said. "I just wanted it to be fun. After laboring over the other book, I wanted to have fun again, because when you're working on something for awhile, you can get bogged down in the details."

• Plug: On the Forbidden Planet International site, Simon Moreton praises The End of the Fucking World by Charles Forsman as "It evokes that intoxicating, teen slacker vibe, a cool, calm, detached horror and the intelligence of a well-paced, keenly told tale."

Dungeon Quest 3

• Review: Filth and Fabulations includes Dungeon Quest 3 by Joe Daly in a Best of 2012 list. "The riffing on classic roleplaying tropes is often hilarious, but the true comedic brilliance of the series lies in the way Daly writes the often drawn out pages of dialogue between the main characters. He manages to capture the way people talk in real life perfectly."

Athos in America

• Review: MTV Geek's Best of Graphic Novel 2012 List includes Athos in America by Jason. "A series of short stories that put Jason's insecurities and imperfections on display in an occassionally uncomfortable and frequently moving way," states Eddie Wright.

The Hypo

• Review: MTV Geek's Best of Graphic Novel 2012 List counts Noah Van Sciver's The Hypo as Numbah One! "A big-budget movie can't capture the subtlety of Lincoln's personality like it's done here," states Valerie. Eddie Wright chimes in and says, "In Van Sciver's well-researched, moving portrait of the troubled president, he's painted as a nuanced, difficult, intriguing and most of all, human figure."

Prison Pit 4

• Review: Noah Bertlatksy of The Hooded Utilitarian looks at Johnny Ryan's Prison Pit 4, the importance of genitals in an invulnerable society. "Prison Pit is a hyberbolic, endless series of incredibly gruesome, pointless, testosterone-fueled battles with muscles and bodily fluids spurting copiously in every direction. . .  everybody, everywhere, is a sack of more or less constantly violated meat, to whom gender is epoxied (literally, in this sequence) as a means of more fully realizing the work of degradation."

Pogo Vol 2

• Plug: David Allen of the Daily Bulletin takes a look at all the comic strip reprints out currently, ready to read Pogo: The Complete Syndicated Strips Vol. 2 "Bona Fide Balderdash" by Walt Kelly. "Through his nonsense-spouting critters in the Okefenokee swamp, Kelly often satirized government and national politics, taking on the Red Scare and coining the phrase "We have met the enemy and he is us. But 'Pogo' also had slapstick combined with wordplay and whimsy. Nice to have 'Pogo' back."

The Crackle of the Frost
 
• Plug: Ng Suat Tong deconstructs The Crackle of the Frost by Mattotti and Zentner on The Hooded Utilitarian.

Heads or Tails

*referring to Lilli Carré's looping animation she made for Heads or Tails! Too irresistable. 

This Week in Fantagraphics Events: 12/3-12/10
Written by janice headley | Filed under Steven WeissmanRenee FrenchMartin CendredaMalachi WardLove and RocketsLilli CarréLast VispoJohnny RyanJohn CuneoJaime HernandezGilbert HernandezGabrielle BellFemke HiemstraFantagraphics BookstoreeventsEsther Pearl WatsonEleanor DavisBlabAndrice Arp 4 Dec 2012 12:30 PM

Last Vispo at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery

Thursday, December 6th

Seattle, WA: It's your last chance to see our exhibit for The Last Vispo Anthology: Visual Poetry 1998-2008 at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery! Prints are a ridiculously-cheap $25 each! (more info)  

Friday, December 7th

Seattle, WADutch artist Femke Hiemstra debuts her latest collection "Let the Devil Wear Black" at Roq La Rue, with Blab #18 cover artist Ryan Heshka! (more info)   

Love and Rockets 30th Anniversary - Gilbert Hernandez - Jaime Hernandez

Saturday, December 8th

Seattle, WA: The Love and Rockets 30th Anniversary Celebration comes to the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery with guests of honor Jaime & Gilbert Hernandez! We'll also have a special musical performance from Geneviève Castrée! (more info)   

Giant Robot Post-It Show 8

 • Los Angeles, CA: Esther Pearl Watson and Mark Todd present the Eighth Annual Giant Robot Post-It Show, with work from Andrice Arp, Gabrielle Bell, Lilli Carre, Martin Cendreda, John Cuneo, Eleanor Davis, Renee French, Johnny Ryan, Malachi Ward, and Steven Weissman! (more info)   

Daily OCD 11/29/12
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Rich TommasoJustin HallJohnny RyanJacques TardiGary GrothFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDaily OCDclassicsChris WareCharles M SchulzCarl Barks 29 Nov 2012 7:18 PM

The first snowflake of Online Commentaries & Diversions: 

Naked Cartoonists

• Review: Publishers Weekly enjoys Naked Cartoonists, edited by Gary Groth. "The litmus test for any collective work based on the idea of one page per artist is whether the whole is greater than the sum of the individual parts. . . [Naked Cartoonists] no trouble achieving that goal. . . Dan Piraro (Bizarro) deserves kudos for his strategically-located likeness of Garfield . . .

• Plug: Elliot Bay Book Company shows off a copy of Naked Cartoonists from their store and Dave states, "Hilarious. Scary. Weird. And just plain bawdy. If this is wrong, I don’t want to be right."

• Review: Print Magazine (issue 66.3 June 2012) gingerly flips through the pages of Naked Cartoonists. "Does your Sunday morning routine consis of reading The Wizard of Id and thinking, Gosh, I wish it had more nudity? Then Fantagraphics Books has just the thing for you." While out-and-about obscenity is rare, "there are moments of genuine creepiness, as when Jeff Keane, heir to The Family Circus, drops trou along side his fictional self, Jeffy.

Prison Pit 4

• Review: Speaking of nudish things, Slate takes the time to slog through Prison Pit 4 by Johnny Ryan. Noah Bertlasky states, "For those who find filthy, blotchy tactile ink clots, überviolence, or body horror even remotely appealing, you need to buy this and its predecessors immediately."

Blacklung

• Review (audio): The boys on the block (Comics Books are Burning in Hell) review violent comics so naturally Blacklung by Chris Wright is included. The book affected the reviewers since it's "basically Chris Wright drawing terrifying shit" and Wright's drawing style falls in between "Old newspaper comics, like E.C. Segar's Popeye and Roy Crane's Wash Tubbs and Usagi Yojimbo [by Stan Sakai]."

Donald Duck: A Christmas for Shacktown Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking Mickey Mouse: Hause of the Seven Haunts

• Review: New York Journal of Books looks at Walt Disney's Donald Duck: A Christmas for Shacktown by Carl Barks. Mark Squirek writes, "What he was really doing was showing us the absurdity of human behavior. . . This is a book that can be enjoyed by everyone from six to eighty. . . This is classic art and storytelling from a master of the form. Carl Barks ranks right up there with Jack Kirby and Will Eisner. If you love the frustrated, quacking, crazed Donald from the cartoons of the forties, you have to read A Christmas for Shacktown.

• Review: The Christian Science Monitor unwraps Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking by Charles M. Schulz. Rich Clablaugh takes another sip of cider and says, "The design of the book is marvelous, thick off-white stock printed in two colors – red and green of course. . .Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking is sure to bring a warm smile to readers young and old. A yearly reading of this little gem can in itself become a new tradition for the Christmas season."

• Review: Westfield Blog looks at archival prints from Fantagraphics. Roger Ash recounts, "Popeye, Pogo, Charlie Brown, Mickey Mouse, and many other classic comic strip characters live on at Fantagraphics in outstanding collections. If you aren't reading any of these, you should be."

The Cavalier Mr. Thompson

• Review: Forbidden Planet International writes about Rich Tommaso's graphic novel, The Cavalier Mr. Thompson. "What the Cavalier does very well is encompass the zeitgeist of an era and people vividly. . . or the most part you’re happy to be led through the rooms and ravines, over train tracks and down corridors as a gentle narration of tales from times gone by ensconces you comfortingly," says Zainab.

No Straight Lines NY Times Book Review

• Review: Glen Weldon writes a large article in the New York Times Book Review on our newest anthology on queer comics. "With No Straight Lines [editor Justin Hall] has produced a useful, combative and frequently moving chronicle of a culture in perpetual transition; to read it is to watch as an insular demimonde transforms itself, in painful fits and joyful starts, and steps out into a wider monde."

It Was the War of the Trenches

• Review: Graphixia looks at Jacques Tardi's It Was the War of the Trenches. Scott Marsden states, "Seeing Tardi’s portrayal of the horrors of trench warfare and his vision of the random senselessness and brutality that accompanies it reminds us to reflect on our (mis)conceptions of history, drawing attention to the fractal realities that are embedded in events that have been experienced internationally. . . it feels far closer to reality than the propagandized historical materials offered by the typical academic publishing industry. . .

Hotwire Issue 1

• Review: Rob Clough reposts his review of our Hotwire anthology, this time on High Low. "A book for those who read Ghost World or American Splendor and [want] to know where to go next."

Chris Ware

• Review: Chris Ware is profiled on the NY Review of Books on Jimmy Corrigan through Building Stories.

Giant Robot's Post-It Show 8 Curated by Esther Pearl Watson and Mark Todd!
Written by janice headley | Filed under Steven WeissmanRenee FrenchMartin CendredaMalachi WardLilli CarréJohnny RyanJohn CuneoGabrielle BelleventsEsther Pearl WatsonEleanor DavisAndrice Arp 27 Nov 2012 10:30 AM

Giant Robot Post-It Show 8

Write yourself a note so you don't forget! It's time for the Eighth Annual Giant Robot Post-It Show, curated by our own Esther Pearl Watson with her equally-awesome husband Mark Todd!

Each one-of-a-kind Post-It masterpiece is merely $20, and this might possibly be the biggest Post-It Show yet with over 2,000 submissions! And there's over 260 artists involved, including our own Andrice Arp, Gabrielle Bell, Lilli Carre, Martin Cendreda, John Cuneo, Eleanor Davis, Renee French, Johnny Ryan, Malachi Ward, and Steven Weissman!

The Giant Robot Post-It Show 8 runs from December 8th through 16th at GR2 [ 2062 Sawtelle Blvd., Los Angeles, CA ] with an opening reception event on Saturday, December 8th from 6:00 - 10:00 PM. Come prepared to "cash-and-carry"!

Prison Pit fan art by Guy Davis
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Things to seeJohnny Ryanfan art 23 Nov 2012 2:09 PM

Prison Pit fan art by Guy Davis

There's been some great Prison Pit fan art since the series started but if I were Johnny Ryan I'd be putting my feet up and basking in this one for a while: Guy Davis renders the unnamed hulking oafspawn from Book 4. Dig it bigger here.

Cover Uncovered: Prison Pit Book 5 by Johnny Ryan
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Johnny RyanComing Attractions 16 Nov 2012 3:09 PM

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201211/pp5_color_final.jpg

Nobody can ever accuse Johnny Ryan of slacking. Prison Pit Book 4 is still warm on the shelves and already Johnny has turned in the cover art for Book 5, which won't be out until Fall of next year. What is that floating death head tank thing? Who are those guys? What kind of crazy shit is gonna happen in this one? WHAT KIND???

Daily OCD 11/14/12
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Wally WoodSteven WeissmanRon Regé JrRobert CrumbPeanutsLilli CarréJoost SwarteJohnny RyanJim WoodringJaime HernandezJacques BoyreauHarvey KurtzmanHal FosterGreg SadowskiGary PanterFloyd GottfredsonEllen ForneyEC ComicsDisneyDaily OCDChris WrightCharles M SchulzCharles BurnsCarl BarksBasil Wolverton 14 Nov 2012 6:20 PM

 The first rain-free (HA!) day of Online Commentaries & Diversions:

The Cartoon Utopia

• Review: The Comics Journal looks at Ron Rege Jr.'s The Cartoon Utopia. Katie Haegel writes, "Almost impossible to categorize, the work in Cartoon Utopia is both fully realized in a formal sense and wonderfully idiosyncratic. Like, it’s really out there. . . to me the work is much stronger when it depicts magic in action, which Regé accomplishes by telling us stories about historical figures and their relationship to the natural world."

• Review: Robot 6 reviews The Cartoon Utopia by Ron Rege Jr. Chris Mautner writes "with Rege drawing science, new age spiritualism, the occult, astrology and Jungian archetypes to come up with a personal grand unification theory. There are no plots or characters in the book to speak of, instead Rege merely muses and illustrates his theories, which mainly have to on the interconnectedness of all living matter."

• Plugs: Best covers of the week by Andy Khouri on Comics Alliance. Ron Regé Jr's The Cartoon Utopia: "This cover really makes me smile, and maybe gives me a sense of four-color spiritual well-being. But cartoon utopia looks more outdoorsy than I expected."

• Review: Page 45 enjoys the gentle pages of The Cartoon Utopia. Stephen L. Holland states, "Regé is back with a spiritual manifesto and ode to creativity: a singular, secular vision delivered with all the fervour of a religious sermon. It’s a call not to arms but to peace and perception unshackled from the conditioning of ages, exhorting all to see new possibilities, infinite possibilities, so enabling one’s full potential to be realised in both senses of the word."

Barack Hussein Obama

• Review: Barack Hussein Obama by Steven Weissman is reviewed on Bookslut. Martyn Pedler says, "His Obama begins as a kind of smug, stoner everyman: telling 'your momma' jokes, discussing old movies with visiting dignitaries . . .  Weissman’s pages -- drawn in ballpoint into a moleskin notebook -- use a four-panel gag structure that makes the book immediately addictive."  

• Review: Publishers Weekly takes on Barack Hussein Obama by Steven Weissman.". . . readers will likely have to be content with being one part giddy and three parts puzzled. . . Perhaps that’s Weissman’s point: that the farce of contemporary politics has the capacity to make one simultaneously giddy, confused, and disenchanted."

• Interview (audio): Speaking of Steven Weissman, Obama and the elections, he is interviewed on KPFK 90.7 FM's show Beneath the Surface

Charle Brown's Christmas Stocking  Heads or Tails

• Review: Comics Worth Reading looks at Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking by Charles Schulz. KC Carlson says, "Charlie Brown’s Christmas Stocking is the perfect stocking stuffer for any Peanuts fan — which is probably most of the planet!"

• Review: Comics Worth Reading looks at Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking by Charles Schulz. KC Carlson says, "Charlie Brown’s Christmas Stocking is the perfect stocking stuffer for any Peanuts fan — which is probably most of the planet!"

• Review: Cartoonist Lilli Carré finds herself Boing-Boing-ed. Brian Heater describes Heads or Tails collection, "These strips, which originally in the pages of places like The Believer and Mome, find the artist dipping her toes into new pools, the sort of freedom afforded by the low commitments of the short story form, often to truly wonderful effect."

Prison Pit Book 4  
 • Interview: Eddie Wright of MTV Geek interviews Johnny Ryan about Prison Pit 4 and why us humans love it so much. "Well, I think it connects to comic fans because it's the stripped down essence of what popular superhero comics are, which is men beating the living shit out of each other. People love it."
 
• Review: Reglar Wiglar spit takes while reading Johnny Ryan's Prison Pit 4. Chris Auman says, "This is Ryan’s depraved ID unleashed in its purest form: blood, guts, genitalia and fecal matter abound—actually they don’t abound so much as they’re sprayed all over absolutely everything in a fantastical sci-fi orgy of digustedness.
 
Came the Dawn Corpse on the Imjin! Spacehawk
 
Blacklung Dal Tokyo Spacehawk Mini
• Plugs: Best covers of the week by Andy Khouri on Comics Alliance. continues with Wallace Wood's Came the Dawn: "And while we're talking smart use of interior art, here's another superb example. This collection is all about the mastery of Wally Wood, so the cover presents a taste of his work in an uncluttered and respectful way, while also establishing a trade dress for Fantagraphics' new EC artists line." Chris Wright's Blacklung: "I see a lot of Joann Sfar in this densely demonic and stylishly constructed cover, and that's enough to convince me to investigate the work of newcomer Chris Wright." Spacehawk mini-comic by Basil Wolverton: "Basil Wolverton may be best known for his grotesque caricatures in MAD Magazine, but he worked in a lot of genres. Spacehawk was evidently one of his early works, and if this gorgeously lurid cover is anything to go by it was a delightfully daffy sci-fi pulp."

• Review: Booklist Online carves out a place in their hearts for Wallace Wood's Came the Dawn. Ray Olson writes, "This volume presenting all his horror and crime stories chronologically shows him refining what is at first a crude though powerful sense of mise-en-scène into one that is assured, highly detailed, and lightly caricatural."

• Review: AV Club reviewed all our new books Came the Dawn by Wallace Wood and Corpse on the Imjin by Harvey Kurtzman. Noel Murray writes, "in writer/artist-driven volumes, printed in black and white, with additional essays and archival material . . . [and] both immediately reveal the value in the artist-driven approach. . . Feldstein’s stories were like the comic-book equivalent to some of the seediest B-movies, and Wood’s art fit Feldstein’s text, with lots of deep shadows and wrinkles reflecting a complicated world." On Basil Wolverton Spacehawk, "As with Kurtzman’s war comics, it’s remarkable to see art so twisted applied to such vivid pulp tales—almost as though Wolverton was trying his hardest to be Alex Raymond, but couldn’t help turning out images to rival Salvador Dalí." Gary Panter's "Dal Tokyo would evolve, strip-by-strip, into a distinctly Panter-esque swirl of science fiction and pure abstraction, in keeping with the artist’s one-of-a-kind sense of design, and his pursuit of comics that resemble music and poetry."
 
•Plug: Web Cast Beacon reviews all free Halloween Comics Fest freebies. They enjoy Tales from the Crypt and Spacehawk. YES, mail in those ad coupons, people. 
 
Problematic
• Interview: Jim Woodring is interviewed by Peter Bebergal on hippies, hallucinations and all the good stuff that goes into his latest work, Problematic, a skechbook. "I frequently saw things at night — silently jabbering heads at the foot of my bed, distorted animals and objects hanging in the air over me. Often I saw a huge staring eye that made me vomit with fear."
 
Mickey Mouse: House of the Seven Haunts Mickey Mouse: High Noon at Inferno Gulch
• Plug: On Boing-Boing, Mark Frauenfelder tips his digi-hat to Floyd Gottfredson: "Gottfredson's Mickey is a plucky, goodhearted imp, bursting with energy and impulsively eager for adventure. . . [Carl] Barks will always have a special place in my heart, but I've added Gottfredson to my short list of great American cartoonists."

The Lost Art of Ah Pook

• Review: Page 45 looks at The Lost Art of Ah Pook and Stephen L. Holland ponders "Malcom Mc Neill has taken the time to put this eye-frazzling book of art – some of it sequential – into context, for the work itself is very much lost. . . There are vast scenes of ancient ritual, carnal lust and very modern warfare transcending time just as they were always intended."

Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge: Only a Poor Old Man Action! Myster! Thrills!

• Review: Booklist Online likes Walt Disney's Uncle Scrooge: Only a Poor Old Man by Carl Barks. Ian Chipman states, "from the bitter cold of the Klondike to the bottom of the Caribbean. . . Barks’ comics are an absolute treasure that have aged remarkably well, and are finally getting wide-scale publication to introduce them to a new generation of readers."

• Review: Gene Ambaum of Unshelved happily views covers from Action! Mystery! Thrills!, edited by Greg Sadowski. "Beautiful full-color reproductions of unblemished comic book covers show the amazing art and the breadth of genres on the newsstands before Fredric Wertham screwed everything up in the 1950s. . . The colors are bright, and the art is just plain fun."

Is That All There Is? Prince Valiant 2: 1939-1940
• Review: Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte gets reviewed on Bookgasm. JT Lindroos states, ". . . it’s impossible not to enjoy this ultimately all-too-brief volume for every single panel it presents. Swarte is consistently projecting an incisive and curious mind at work, perfectly tuned to his showstopping skills as an artist nonpareil."

• Review: Comic Book Daily reviews Prince Valiant Volume 2: 1939-1940. Scott VanderPloeg write, "All of it beautifully drawn as only Hal Foster could. Each page is a visual feast that begs to be savoured."

Sexytime The Complete Crumb Comics

• Review: Rod Lott of Bookgasm spends a long, loooong time checking out Sexytime. "[Editor Jacque Boyreau] has a knack for picking images; much like Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart and hardcore porn, Boyreau knows it when he sees it. And luckily, he shares it, this time from the visual-presentation experts of Fantagraphics Books — a match made in poster-art heaven."

• Plug: Matt Bielby writes about The Complete Crumb Volume 1 by R. Crumb in Comic Heroes Magazine: "It's incredible stuff, much of it obviously for completists only, but even the most obscure volumes track a fascinating, and developing, world view."
 
Charles Burns   Ellen ForneyJaime Hernandez
• Interview: Charles Burns is interviewed on Cult Montreal by Emily Raine about The Hive, his creepy artwork and the Black Hole movie. "It’s not my intention to be creepy per se, or that’s not the reason I’m writing stories. I think they end up being whatever they are. Maybe I’m just a creepy guy, I don’t know."

• Interview (audio): One of our favorite creators, Ellen Forney, speaks to KUOW/NPR on bi-polar disorder, comics and her new work, Marbles. 

• Plug: Jaime Hernandez will be at the Copenhagen Comics Fest in Copenhagen, Denmark in June of 2013. Mark them calendars!

Prison Pit 4 to rip the shit out of your iPad
Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Johnny Ryandigital comicscomiXology 14 Nov 2012 3:53 PM

Prison Pit 4 on iPad

Today marks the same-day release of Prison Pit Book 4 from Fantagraphics in bookstores and at comiXology, we're getting into the giving swing of things. In Johnny Ryan's latest 'raging flume of blood and cum' as Joe McCullough says, we find Cannibal Fuckface has just about had it with prisoners messing with him. He discovers the only way to escape the Caligulon is to brainfuck the Slorge and create a giant, brainless oafchild that only knows how to annihilate everything in its path. 

116 gristly pages of smackdowns, foaming villians and unsympathetic bowel movements can be yours in the $12.99 book thrillbent on making sure you never touch your genitals again in the same way. Without puking. 

"There's no point in trying to explain Prison Pit. You can only experience it to understand it. Start buy buying all of them at once if you haven't yet. . . It wears its intentional stupidness and violence on its sleeve while also showing off Johnny Ryan's sophisticated sense of composition and black and white ink prettiness." -Nick Gazin, VICE

"Hey are you doing any more scary guys made out of tar ripping each other's dicks off? You know why I like those? Because you don't have to read all them stupid words and stuff. Right? Haa ha, hey Johnny wanna come over and play? Ha Ha!" - Tony Millionaire


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