The seventh annual volume of Love and Rockets: New Stories, the most important and enduring alternative comics series in the history of the medium, finds Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez writing and drawing at the top of their game. In Jaime's stories, Maggie and Hopey take a road trip and much-needed break from their humdrum domestic lives and travel to visit a "sick friend." And, when the cat's away, Ray visits some old sick friends of his own. Plus Tonta's nutty family! Gilbert offers a veritable suite of stories, including "The Magic Voyage of Aladdin," a sweeping epic of derring-do in which Morgan Le Fey (Fritz) teams up with Aladdin to stop the evil Circle from obtaining the magic lamp; "The Golem Suit," a WWII sci-fi thriller starring "Killer"; and "Daughters and Mothers and Daughters," in which flashbacks to Luba's mother Maria reveal how ugly secrets of the past affect their family today.
This Tuesday afternoon, we've got our heads burrowed in our advance copies of Love and Rockets: New Stories #7. From the magical adventures of Aladdin to a Maggie and Hopey reunion, this is a hundred sweet pages packed with Beto and Jaime goodness.
The seventh annual volume of Love and Rockest: New Stories begins with a six-page excerpt of Gilbert Hernandez's "Killer in Palomar", where the titular protagonist ruminates aloud with her friend, Theo, on the killings that happened as a result of a man seeing her in a movie. Then, we skip over to three pages of Jaime Hernandez's Maggie and Ray, discussing Maggie's upcoming reunion trip with Hopey.
ALTERNATIVE COMICS: THROUGH THE EYES OF THE HERNANDEZ BROTHERS
This Thursday, October 9th at Stanford University, not one but ALL three of the Hernandez Brothers are meeting to give a free talk from 5:30-7:30pm.This event will celebrate alternative comics by bringing renowned artists, the Hernandez Brothers, or Los Bros Hernandez, as they are often called, to campus. As perhaps its most well-known figures, the Hernandez Brothers offer unique insight into the complex dynamics of the alternative comics industry.Love & Rockets, the brainchild of Gilbert, Jaime and MarioHernandez, emerged from the confluence of punk rock culture and the Latino community in Los Angeles in the 1980s. Subversive and groundbreaking, Love and Rockets would come to virtually define alternative comics. With its cast of highly individual, strongly-characterized women, its richly rendered and evocative depictions of barrio life, masterful cartooning and characters that aged in real time, Love and Rockets set the stage for an incredible flowering in alternative comics not seen since the 60s. This public panel discussion will feature Jaime, Gilbert and Mario Hernandez, in conversation with Ramon Saldivar (Professor, English & Comparative Literature, Stanford) and Scott Bukatman (Professor, Film & Media Studies, Art & Art History, Stanford). This event will address the history of alternative comics writ large, and the crucial roles of the Hernandez Brothers, or Los Bros Hernandez, in this story, as artists, independent producers, and Latinos. There will also be a book sale.
This event is possible thanks to the generous co-sponsorship of the Stanford Arts Institute, the Graphic Novel Project and the Creative Writing program, the Program in Modern Thought and Literature, the Program in Writing and Rhetoric, the Division of Literatures, Cultures and Languages, the American Studies program and the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.
This event is free and open to the public. More information here. Stanford University Annenberg Auditorium Cummings Art Building 50 Serra Mall Stanford, CA 94305
San Francisco: The fantasy train, with Hanselmann, DeForge, and Kyle, is making it's way North, and stopping this night at the beloved Mission Comics. To make this tour stop even more exciting, Ed Luce of Wuvable Oaf, is joining them! We hope the good time party vibes of this tour never end, and you can ride the waves by heading to Mission Comics at 5 pm. Kitties in abundunce! (More Details)
Wednesday, October 8
New York: The Society of Illustrators is holding a special lecture series tonight highlighting the work of Drew Friedman and his new oversized, full color spectacular, Heroes of the Comics. A stacked panel team featuring Friedman, Karen Green (Columbia University graphic novels library), Sean Howe (author of Marvel Comics, The Untold Story), and Al Jaffee will be moderated by the comics historian Danny Fingeroth. The lecture runs from 6:30-8:30 pm, and tickets are available through the SOI websites. (More Details)
Thursday, October 9
Portland, OR: One of the best comic shops ever (yeah, I said it) will be hosting some of the best cartoonists ever (yeah, I said it) this Thursday at Portland's Floating World Comics! Celebrating Megahex , Lose #6, and Distance Mover, the boys of summer are hitting fall, which means the tour is winding down. But that doesn't mean the good times are done! In fact, you might have the best time of your life from 5-8 pm this Thursday if you make your way to Floating World Comics! (More Details)
Stanford, CA: Sponsored by Standford Arts, the California univserity is hosting a conversation with Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario Hernandez. They'll be covering a wide range of topics covering the current state of alternative comics, as well as it's history, their influence, and the influence that their latino and punk culture had on them while growing up, and in creating Love and Rockets. It will be hosted by two professors from the University, and it's open to the public! Get schooled from 5:30-7:30 pm! (More Details)
Friday, October 10
Portland, OR: We're keeping them busy this week at Floating World Comics by being lucky enough to have two other rising talents of Lane Milburn (Twelve Gems) and Conor Stechschulte (The Amateurs) join the welcoming PDX community for a signing of their recent successes of sci-fi fantasy and psychological thriller/black comedy. Start your Friday night right from 4-7 pm, with plenty of time to make it to our next Friday outing! (More Details)
Portland, OR: The always changing, always original, monthly comics performance variety show, Grid Lords, has a spectacular line-up of, you guessed it, Hanselmann, DeForge, and Kyle! They will each be combining a reading of their works with musical performances that will be loud, gross and beautiful! Just like everything else they do. Buy a book, get in for free, otherwise it's only 5 bones! Performance begins at 7:30 pm. (More Details)
Portland, OR: The Pacific Northwest College of Arts presents the Super Trash exhibit; a celebration of exploitative art and iamges in cinema, currated by Jacques Boyreau, author of the now available book, Super Trash. The exhibit runs in conjuction with weekly films at the Laurelhurst Theater in Portland. Tonight's film is Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. I had the trilogy on laser disk and watched them all the time; you can't go wrong with anything Indiana, as long as it's not the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. (More Details)
Seattle, WA: Gearing up for a packed fall schedule, the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery present Danny Bland, author of the acclaimed In Case We Die, in conversation with fellow author and musician Jonathan Evison. They will be talking celebrating, and talking about, Bland's new book, I Apologise in Advance for the Awful Things I'm Gonna Do, a brilliant collection of haikus. The conversation/signing event runs from 6-8 pm (More Details)
Saturday, October 11
Seattle, WA: It's the day we've all been waiting for. We finally get to call our little chickies home to roost around the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery (don't worry, we'll put straw down). From 6 until closing, we're going to have a big ol' Fanta fam fest when we're joined by the Hanselmann-DeForge-Kyle tour, AND Lane Milburn and Conor Stechschulte. Like all the stops along the way, there will be books signed, hearts broken, drinks drinked, and maybe some tears teared as the full tour makes it's last US stop. This event is on all the hot ticket events in Seattle this week, so make sure you bring all your friends and enemies (for they shall all be your friends by the end of the night) to Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery in Georgetown from 6-Closing. (More Details)
Sunday, October 12
Seattle, WA: Twenty-two years after the release of his Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel, Maus, Art Spiegelman presents Wordless!, an innovative hybrid of slides, talk and musical performance created with acclaimed jazz composer Philip Johnston. Johnston's original scores, performed with his sextet, accompany the cartoonist's personal tour of the first legitimate "graphic novels" - silent picture stories made by early 20th century masters like Frans Masereel, Lynd Ward, and Milt Gross - and their influences on him. This unique and multifaceted performance begins at 7:30 pm (More Details)
Vancouver, BC: We've made it, the end. A month (or so) long whirldwind tour of cities, spreading the good word. Canadians have been knocking down the border fence for their chance to witness the magic, and Pulpfiction Books has been granted that wish this Sunday from 4-7 pm. Unfortunately that border is stronger than it looks, and Simon Hanselmann will not be able to attend this event, but we're still letting them have DeForge and Kyle. I guess giving them back to Canada is more accurate. We'll miss them bunches. Don't be strangers! Write often! (More Details)
"A mix of evocative, geometric watercolors and fluid pen-and-ink cartoons, How to Be Happy tells stories of sad people, lonely people, strong people, confident people, all trying to find a tiny bit of happiness in life…Davis’ clever and sometimes jaw-droppingly beautiful artwork makes those stories feel real." – Dan Kois, Slate Book Review
"The use of Adam and Eve’s human bodies to communicate to one another, to seek the bliss that’s coming, to lift that weight, is the image Davis wants us to leave with. No moral, no punchline, no muted epiphany — discarded along with all the other distractions, they leave only Edenic bliss behind." – Sean T. Collins, The Comics Journal
"A valuable gem to add to any collection focusing on independent comics and alternative storytelling with its avant-garde narrative voice, classical art style, and brilliantly paced sense of adventure" – Alger C. Newberry III, Library Journal
"Wood (1927-1981) conceived of witzend as a haven where he and his peers could publish personal work and burst the chains of mainstream comics. Though 'personal,' it must be said, often meant drawing generously endowed women flaunting bared breasts." – Dana Jennings, The New York Times
"It felt like a fan publication, but was produced by professionals. It appeared at the dawn of underground comix, but featured standard genre material, including a (great) Wood jungle hero named "Animan." And, most significantly, it had a philosophy that proved problematic, though intriguing." – Jake Austen, Chicago Tribune
"Part biography, part retrospective, part collected chronicles of a comic legend, this is a huge undertaking that pays off in every way you could expect, and a million ways you couldn't." – The Daily Planet
"It's a stunning body of work that brings together loosely personal and wholly fictional stories about joy, anguish, fear and loneliness - emotions all motivated by that essential quest to be the best you can be." – James Cartwright, It's Nice That
"This book contains many more examples of the sorts of stories that made him so rightly famous, including a couple of epic globe-trotting adventures, plenty of swiftly swelling domestic comedies, and two Christmas comics, which Barks seems to have specialized in." – J. Caleb Mozzocco, School Library Journal
"After last issue's splashy stories, this issue is a bit more low-key with regard to Killer and her story, preferring to lay some narrative pipe and give the characters a bit of room to breathe and interact." –Rob Clough, High-Low
"In the 30 years they’ve been writing and drawing Love and Rockets, Los Bros Hernandez have created wonderfully complex story lines and characters... This web of superior magical-realistic storytelling involves readers in the perplexed yearnings of a huge cast of unforgettable characters unaware of their own capacity for general self-delusion and occasional self-discovery." – Publishers Weekly
"Los Bros. are plain-spoken and sympathetic, finding pathos in even the grimiest character." – Newsday
“There are acclaimed filmmakers and novelists who can't do what Jaime Hernandez does — or Gilbert, for that matter. When the two of them are at their most inspired, as they are here, they make almost every other comics creator today look like a fumbling hack." – The A.V. Club
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