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Category >> Richard Sala

Daily OCD: 10/12/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Tom KaczynskiRichard SalareviewsPrince ValiantMomeKevin HuizengaIgnatz SeriesHal FosterGahan WilsonDavid BDaily OCDAl Columbia 13 Oct 2011 12:35 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Prince Valiant

Feature: At SF Weekly, Alan Scherstuhl provides you with "10 Reasons Why Prince Valiant Bests All 2011's Adventure Heroes" (starting with "He lances giant crocodiles"), saying "Sure, those glossy lips and that pageboy bob makes him look something like ye olde Ramona Quimby, but don't let that fool you. The star of what is arguably the twentieth century's best-drawn newspaper comic strip, Hal Foster's Prince Valiant is all hero, through and through, for his age and ours. The first four volumes of Fantagraphics' collected Prince Valiant reveal young Foster's creation as both the sum total of the heroic ideals that preceded his debut in 1937 as well as a source of serious inspiration for all the heroes that have followed him, in all media formats, in the decades since."

The Armed Garden and Other Stories

Review: "War and disorder [in The Armed Garden and Other Stories] from the creator of the much-admired Epileptic and, more recently, Black Paths, visually styled to each story’s setting. The first was my favourite to look at: a forest of spears, a torrent of arrows and a swirling sandstorm of bleached bones and skulls against a velvety, light mushroom brown — a tremendous sense of space.... So there you have it: religion, jealousy, conflict and a great deal of transmogrification. Oh yes, death; a great deal of death too." – Stephen L. Holland, Page 45

The Hidden

Review: "It helps if you can illustrate your fever dreams as well as Sala can — lavishly watercolored in brown, saturated orange and yellow, punctuated by bright blue and (especially later) red, [The Hidden] is beautiful to look at, and as usual, he gives us memorable grotesques and lovely girls in equal measure. Those who are fans of the artist’s previous work will find more of what they like here, and will be gratified by the deviation from his usual norm. Those who are new to his efforts will be entertained, I think, by the story, which is a bit of a page-turner, and will like his beautifully colored art. His best since he wrapped up Evil Eye a few years ago." – Johnny Bacardi, Popdose

Nuts

Review: "Dense, claustrophobic, intense and trenchantly funny, the self-contained [Nuts] strips ranged from satire to slapstick to agonising irony, linking up over the years to form a fascinating catalogue of growing older in the USA: a fearfully faithful alternate view of childhood and most importantly, of how we adults choose to recall those distant days." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This!

Ganges #4

Plug: Delivery of an advance copy of Kevin Huizenga's Ganges #4 prompts Tom Spurgeon to declare "I Love You, Comics" at The Comics Reporter

Pim & Francie: The Golden Bear Days

Analysis: Robot 6's Matt Seneca performs a close analysis of a page from Al Columbia's Pim & Francie: The Golden Bear Days: "The genius of the page above is almost too simple: in four panels that follow the minimalist logic of the gag-strip format, it speaks to both the artificial nature of drawings and to the nature of sequence as something that breaks comics apart as much as pieces them together."

Mome Vol. 22: Fall 2011 - Tom Kaczynski

Adieu: Mome contributor Tom Kaczynski bids a fond farewell to the anthology

Daily OCD: 10/11/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Richard SalareviewsPeter BaggeMomeMichael KuppermanMartiLove and RocketsLaura ParkJoe KubertJaime HernandezinterviewsDisneyDerek Van GiesonDaniel ClowesDaily OCDCarl BarksBill Schelly 11 Oct 2011 8:05 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

The Cabbie Vol. 1

Review: "Wearing its stylistic debt to Chester Gould’s classic Dick Tracy strips on its sleeve, this Spanish-produced series [The Cabbie] (which was originally printed in the ’80s) revels in a stark and sleazy noir aesthetic that drags the reader on a vicious trip through the scabrous underbelly of 'the Big City.'... An intriguing throwback to the days of heroes with worldviews defined in terms as rigidly black and white as the panels they battled their way through, this visual and thematic love letter to (and simultaneous critique of) Gould’s tropes is highly recommended for grownups with a taste for refreshingly lurid pulp fiction." – Publishers Weekly

The Hidden

Review: "The Hidden feels like a Poe short story, but Richard Sala actually reaches further back into gothic literature for information, filtering Frankenstein through a zombie apocalypse. Just like Poe, the fun here is all in the telling, and Sala’s campfire-ghost-story illustration is blunt enough to be cynically hilarious and cruelly gory, often at the same time. The allegory is the same as from Shelley’s original, but like the best gothic writing, the fun comes from putting the pieces — all the pieces — together at the end." – David Berry, National Post

Interview: Robot 6's Chris Mautner has a brief chat with Richard Sala about a book that's not ours (the Nursery Rhyme Comics anthology from First Second) but any interview with Richard is worthwhile

Mome Vol. 22

Review: "The final edition of Mome leaves a vacuum that thus far has always managed to get filled — let’s hope the graphic world hasn’t lost its taste for short stories just yet — but it will always be a shame to file something this sharply curated in the shelf. The fifth installment of Devil Doll is likely the most beautiful piece here, and there’s a terrific streak of humour throughout — Laura Perk’s Hobbesian, malevolent George is the pitch-black highlight, but there’s plenty of other strains — all adding up to an end that’s perfectly fitting, but no less unfortunate." – David Berry, National Post

The Art of Joe Kubert

Review: "Last month, Fantagraphics released The Art of Joe Kubert, a wonderful oversized art book that traces the career of the comics legend who has worked successfully in all the major 'Ages' of comics. While seeing the art in a larger format is nice, it's the text that winds through the book that opened my eyes to a lot of new things in comics that I had never known before.... Schelly's words opened up a new world of art critique for me.... The Art of Joe Kubert is probably the best DC book I read in September, and DC didn't even publish it. Fantagraphics did, and a wonderful job they did, from the raw materials to the book design and packaging." – Augie DeBlieck Jr., Comic Book Resources

Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes

Review: "Maybe, perhaps, at last, the time is right for a mass re-evaluation of the Duck comics, as Fantagraphics steps into the breach to produce a definitive library of Carl Barks' oeuvre. Not only do they step in, but they do so fearlessly... The series starts in November with Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes, an impressively affordable $25 hardcover... Happily, the stories look great and the book is a wonder to hold in your hand.... As to the content, itself, it's just as remarkable an achievement in comics as I remembered.... The contents of the book are as good as they're going to get, produced with an eye towards recapturing as much of the look of the original printings as possible, without sacrificing clarity or design. The quality of the black and white line work is top notch, too.... Pre-order today. Just do it. You can thank me later." – Augie DeBlieck Jr., Comic Book Resources

Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010

Interview: Speaking of short interviews about books that aren't ours, there's a Q&A with Michael Kupperman on the Marvel website about his contribution to their upcoming humor anthology Shame Itself

Love and Rockets: New Stories #4

Commentary: Robot 6's Sean T. Collins points out and comments on Bob Temuka's (spoilery) writeup of the new issue of Love and Rockets: New Stories, saying "it’s as good at conveying the unique nature of the 'Locas' saga, the way its stories shift and grow and can be seen differently over time as we and Jaime and the characters all age and learn more about what happened, as well as any piece I’ve ever read."

Links: Another comprehensive round of Hernandez Bros.-related links from Love & Maggie

Ghost World

Commentary: Robot 6's Sean T. Collins again, spotlighting a choice quote re: Ghost World from CBR's report on Dan Clowes & Adrian Tomine's spotlight panel at APE

Studs Kirby: The Voice of America [Sold Out]

Feature: Kudos to Comics Bulletin for including some off-the-beaten-path choices in their "Top Ten Indie Comics That Should Be Movies" list... Studs Kirby: The Movie we would totally like to see

Classic Liquid Television now online - Dog Boy, Invisible Hands & more
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videoRichard SalaDrew FriedmanCharles Burnsanimation 11 Oct 2011 4:22 AM

Via The A.V. Club and other internet sources comes news that MTV has a new website for Liquid Television, and they've posted a whole mess of classic clips from the original run of the beloved and long-departed alternative-animation anthology show (along with some newer stuff, it seems)! Watch Charles Burns and Tony Halton's entire live-action Dog Boy serial (part 1 embedded below)...

Get More: MTV Shows

...Richard Sala's Invisible Hands serial (part 1 below)...

Get More: MTV Shows

...Uncle Louie, with art by Drew Friedman (episode 1 below)...

Get More: MTV Shows

...and many other classics. This is fantastic news, and a definite improvement over the bootleg-quality stuff that's been floating around on YouTube. (Now if the original creators are getting royalty payments from it, that's even better. I also wish they had complete credits on the site but I guess you can't have everything.)

Things to See: 10/3/11 Roundup
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Victor KerlowTim LaneTim KreiderThings to seeSteven WeissmanSteve BrodnerStephen DeStefanoSergio PonchioneRichard SalaRenee FrenchRay FenwickPaul KarasikPaul HornschemeierNoah Van SciverNick DrnasoMichael KuppermanMaxLilli CarréLewis TrondheimKevin HuizengaJordan CraneJohnny RyanJim WoodringJim FloraJasonFrank SantoroFantagraphics Bookstorefan artEleanor DavisDave CooperChuck ForsmanBob Fingerman 4 Oct 2011 3:37 AM

Frank caught in the loving tendrils of the sun by Jim Woodring

• Frank "caught in the loving tendrils of the sun" by Jim Woodring; also "Hopelessly outclassed" and "The descent into wealth"

Grotesque - Sergio Ponchione

A Grotesque "family portrait" and Mr. O'Blique postcards that Sergio Ponchione will be giving away to lucky attendees (I think? the autotranslation's a little iffy) at an upcoming festival in Italy

Totem - Jason/Lewis Trondheim

• Ooh, a Jason/Lewis Trondheim exquisite-corpse wraparound cover for a 2004 issue of Belgian comics fanzine Totem; this and film review potpourri at Jason's Cats Without Dogs blog

From Forlorn Funnies no. 1, Huge Suit and The Sea - Paul Hornschemeier

• Sketches and process peeks at Forlorn Funnies #1 at Paul Hornschemeier's The Daily Forlorn

Focus - Kevin Huizenga

Focus book by Kevin Huizenga

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201110/art-pope-nyr.jpg

Steve Brodner's portrait of Art Pope for The New Yorker (with process sketches); plus sketches of Lamar Alexander and Chris Christie; all of the above with Steve's commentary

Paul Karasik New Yorker cartoon

• Speaking of The New Yorker, Paul Karasik got a cartoon in there! Congrats Paul! (via Facebook)

Mega-Nerd - Stephen DeStefano

• A whole buncha Stephen DeStefano animation artwork for various projects here, here, here, here, here, here, and here, plus Sea Hag

page from Blammo - Noah Van Sciver

Noah Van Sciver presents a spooky story from the latest issue of Blammo

Richard Sala

Movie night Richard Sala-style (year unknown); also some cozy reading and The 7 Deadly Sins

Tim Lane - St. Louis International Film Festival poster

Tim Lane's poster for the St. Louis International Film Festival (along with its conceptual inspiration)

Great Pumpkin Festival

Steven Weissman and Jordan Crane are putting together an elementary school haunted house for some LUCKY KIDS and here's Steven's flyer for it with Jordan's logo for the school (from Steven via email); also from Steven, his latest "I, Anonymous" spot and Stincker sketchin'

Dave Cooper gig poster

• A fun Dave Cooper gig poster for his friend's band (via Facebook)

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201109/forsman-downbylaw.jpg

This comic cover by Chuck Forsman is a fake, but I wish it wasn't

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201110/star-trek-retardedness.jpg

A buncha silly Star Trek doodles by Tim Kreider

Ernest

Jim Varney smiles down from heaven on Johnny Ryan

Prison Pit fan art by Sergio Zuniga

Prison Pit fan art by Sergio Zuniga (at Johnny Ryan's blog, along with one previously posted here)

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/mike/201109/cf-fleury.jpg

Prison Pit fan art by Fréderic Fleury via Twitter

Twain in the Membrane - Dyna Moe

• Mark Twain-via-Michael Kupperman fan art by Dyna Moe (via Facebook, where the artist's profile pic was taken in front of Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery)

comic panel by Csaba Mester

• Speaking of Fantagraphics Bookstore and Facebook, here's a panel from a comic in progress by Csaba Mester featuring the former location posted at the latter location

Plus:

• Another Bob Fingerman character design

• Speaking of Facebook yet again, a Victor Kerlow illustration on the subject

Jupiter and Saturn by Frank Santoro

• Many recent illustrations by Max at his El Hombre Duerme, el Fantasma No blog

Recently discovered previously unseen woodblock prints circa 1939 by Jim Flora

Lilli Carré's new looping animated logo for the Eyeworks animation fest is pretty great (tee hee, the "W" is boobs)

A portrait by Nick Drnaso

• A whole ton of stuff from Ray Fenwick's website popped up in my RSS reader and I'm not sure how much of it is new but why not go check it all out anyway

Straw dog on a bed by Renee French

Computer sketches (that is, sketches done on the computer) by Eleanor Davis

Trubble Club is always fun even if we can't tell who drew what

Daily OCD: 9/29/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videoRichard SalareviewsPaul HornschemeierMomeMichael KuppermanJesse MoynihaninterviewsGreg SadowskiGahan WilsonFrank SantoroDavid BDaily OCDAlex Toth 29 Sep 2011 7:39 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

The Hidden

Review: "Sala creates stories in which brightly colored, cartoony art and characters who speak in casual idiom tell of events that aren’t so much humorous or casual as provocative and scary. In [The Hidden], he combines motifs of a postapocalyptic landscape, wanderers, some vampiric businessmen, and, ultimately, Dr. Frankenstein. The stew works perfectly: readers have no chance to engage in incredulity... Characters are introduced at a steady but manageable pace, and it is only at story’s end that the opening pages become horrifyingly clear. Sala works with a full palette of beautiful, gemlike hues held in generous panels. Even the monsters have individuated faces, which only ramps up the horror." – Francisca Goldsmith, School Library Journal

Interview: Comic Book Resources' Shaun Manning talks to Richard Sala about The Hidden: "It's a story about consequences. It's about what happens when you set wheels in motion that maybe you can't control, that in fact spin completely out of control. What do you do? Do you take responsibility for what comes next or, or do you run away and distance yourself from what you've caused and try to pretend it doesn't matter. And it's about what happens when you finally realize that it's up to you to stop what you started. Is that vague enough?! It's not exactly a 'high concept' description, I'm afraid."

Setting the Standard: Comics by Alex Toth 1952-1954

Review: "A dark horse contender for comics creator of the year can be found in the unlikely personage of the late artist Alex Toth... Setting the Standard aims at... a conceptually sound and compelling [goal]: the publication of Toth's work between 1952 and 1954 for the long-defunct comics publisher Standard... The work is in a variety of sturdy, popular genres. The presentation of the comics themselves proves crisp and strong. The manner in which the increasingly valuable Sadowski and his publisher chose to present the supporting material is even better." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010

Review: "I think the most important thing you need to know about [Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010] is that it made me laugh out loud not once, but close to a dozen times. At one point, during an exchange with a famous cartoon strip writer, I think I laughed for a solid minute. It might have been longer, except the neighbors threatened to shoot me. And if they'd done me in, I'd never have gotten a chance to review this and tell you that this is one of the best books -- if not *the* best book -- I've read all year." – Rob McMonigal, Panel Patter

Nuts

Interview: Comic Book Resources' Alex Dueben chats with Gahan Wilson about Nuts: "On the whole, [the comic] was mostly autobiographical. It just rolled out and it was and continues to be very satisfying to me. It helped me see kids better, too. They're just wonderful. The creativity of children is kind of frightening. They all do these drawings which are just gorgeous and profound, and they'll do poetry. They're brilliant.... I think they're very encouraging because they give you a peek at what we could be if we grew up right. I think there's hope for us all, and kids are evidence of that."

Mome Vol. 22: Fall 2011 - Jesse Moynihan

Interview: At The Comics Journal it's a Mome dude tête-à-tête as Frank Santoro quizzes Jesse Moynihan: "I did some color guides with Photoshop for a piece called Simon Magus (MOME 22). That was helpful but not usually how I do things. Since I’m using a medium that can build layers, it’s not difficult to go back in and edit the color scheme to an extent. For the most part I trust that my eye can decide what needs to happen on the fly."

The Armed Garden and Other Stories

Interview (Audio): On the latest episode of the Panel Borders podcast, Alex Fitch talks to David B. about his new book Black Paths (audio in multiple formats at the link)

Interview (Video): At SPX, Paul Hornschemeier sat down for an on-camera chat with Joe Mochove and Rusty Rowley. "We discuss all of the important topics of the day: Earnest Borgnine, mobility scooters, terrorism, and delicious orange juice," says Paul at his blog. (What is it with the Borgnine?)

Daily OCD: 9/26/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Richard SalareviewspreviewsMoto HagioMichael KuppermanLove and RocketsLos Bros HernandezJohnny RyanJaime HernandezJacques TardiinterviewsGilbert HernandezDaily OCDCarl Barks 26 Sep 2011 7:12 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

The Hidden

Review: "Sala’s work is like a fusion of Hergé and Charles Addams, yielding a simple, cartoon-like style that makes his moments of gothic horror all the more disturbing. ...[The Hidden] is a beautifully pulpy and incredibly imaginative book that gives a fresh spin on a well-used set-up." – Publishers Weekly

Review/Interview: SF Weekly's Casey Burchby, who says "Richard Sala's new full color graphic novel, The Hidden, fuses two classic horror tropes — the story of Frankenstein's monster, and the ever-popular zombie apocalypse — into a new form that is surprisingly free of cliché and enriched with a strange sensitivity, owing far more to the classic horror literature of the 19th and early 20th centuries than it does to more contemporary EC horror comics, slasher flicks, or Stephen King," talks to Sala, who says "...as I began to write the book, elements of it started to seem oddly autobiographical — on some kind of psychological level, that is — and I realized the story had become less about Frankenstein specifically and more about the act of creation and its consequences."

The Arctic Marauder

Review: "This French artist's unabashedly campy tribute to Jules Verne's proto-steampunk adventure yarns [The Arctic Marauder] is all about the art — spectacularly composed black-and-white evocations of arctic landscapes and Victorian contraptions.... Tardi has drawn a tribute to a venerable genre that partakes of its wonders while poking gentle fun at its preposterous twists and turns. The result is pure fun." – Laura Miller, "The Best New Graphic Novels," Salon

Prison Pit Book 3

Review: "Ryan’s line work is at its best in some parts of this volume, showing the ability to continually come up with inventive weird visuals. The first half of the book is nothing but new forms of violence and strange creatures that become different strange creatures. Every page brings a new visual that you will never, ever be able to forget. The second half shows off more minimalist compositions, giving the book an interesting asymmetry. The only bad thing about Prison Pit Book 3 coming out is that it will be another year until Book 4 is released, especially with the cliffhanger that this volume ends on." – Chad Nevett, Comic Book Resources

Review: "Johhny Ryan’s artwork on Prison Pit could be described as cartoonish, but to be honest it’s better described as looking like the insane doodling of a madman, as found etched upon the walls of his padded cell — I would not be surprised to find out that this book was ghost-written by Charles Manson!... Ryan draws gore like no one else, and his creature designs are the stuff of nightmares — one of the monsters in the latter part of the story makes Cthuhlu look like a character from a children’s story!... Prison Pit: Book 3 is a comic unlike anything you’ve ever read before — the plot is outlandish, and the artwork is violent, bloody, gory, and completely unapologetic in its brutality.... Rating: 10 out of 10" – Edward Kaye, Newsarama

Commentary: Robot 6's Sean T. Collins comments on the must-read Comics Journal interview with Johnny Ryan: "I’ve spent years enjoying Ryan’s scabrously offensive humor comics like Angry Youth Comix and Blecky Yuckerella, as well as his extravagantly vicious action comic Prison Pit, and I’ve often wondered where his search-and-destroy ethos originated.... Thanks to Pearson and Ryan’s jawdroppingly candid conversation, I finally feel like I understand..., at least a little."

Love and Rockets: New Stories #4

(Not a) Review (Per Se): "This isn't a formal review, per se, but instead a few gut-reaction thoughts on the remarkable new issue of Love & Rockets: New Stories (#4). I've never bothered to do this before in a review, but the nature of this issue demands that I note that there are spoilers below." – Rob Clough, High-Low

Links: Another comprehensive round of Hernandez Bros.-related links from Love & Maggie (thumbs up for the mug shots)

Analysis: "I really like the formats of both (Beto’s) Love and Rockets: New Stories and (CF‘s) Powr Mastrs. They are really different but somehow very similar. At least to me anyways." – Frank Santoro, The Comics Journal

Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes

Review (Audio): The Extra Sequential podcast discusses "the whacky and funny Fantagraphics collection of Carl Barks’ much loved 1940s Donald Duck stories," Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes: "We tell you why creator Carl Barks is loved for his storytelling prowess and surprisingly funny and absurd humour in his Donald, Scrooge, etc. tales..."

Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010

Interview: Comic Book Resources' Tim O'Shea has a funny and informative Q&A with Michael Kupperman: "Actually I’ve been hearing from [Twain] a lot. I thought that one meeting would be it, but since then he keeps reappearing, asking for help dealing with today’s publishing industry. He’s written a new novel called Prairie Rumpus, which I feel is dated in its use of slang and locale. Meanwhile I’ve got a lot of interest in my novel The Fart Vampires, a lotta heat building up."

Plug: "The most excellent Michael Kupperman has begun touring in support of his time-traveling Clemens-as-superhero comic, Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010. This Saturday night, Kupperman will take his “Twain in the Membrane” book tour to the Mark Twain House in Hartford for a reading and signing." – Michael Cavna, The Washington Post

Preview: Graphic Novel Reporter presents a 9-page sneak peek (excerpted from our own PDF excerpt) of Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010 by Michael Kupperman

from Heart of Thomas - Moto Hagio

Commentary: At About.com Manga, Deb Aoki reports on our publishing announcement regarding Moto Hagio's The Heart of Thomas (note that the "The" was initially left off our announcement by mistake), calling it a "very exciting development" and saying "Fans of  A Drunken Dream and Other Stories will also be glad to hear that Matt Thorn, the translator of this critically acclaimed book will also be handling the editing/translation duties on this title as well."

Daily OCD: 9/21-22/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Richard SalareviewsMichael KuppermanJohnny RyanJoe KubertJacques TardiDrew WeingDrew FriedmanDavid BDaily OCDBill Schelly 23 Sep 2011 1:17 AM

Yesterday & today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Review: "This latest in Fantagraphics' line of books featuring Jacques Tardi and the second of those books to feature an adaptation of the work of Jean-Patrick Manchette is lovely-looking, stylish and bleak as hell.... The short third act, where we learn what becomes of the assassin, proves so ruthlessly depressing it's almost a human rights violation. Tardi's artwork is beautiful here, although you probably already knew that. No one in comics does the frowning face better than Tardi, and Like a Sniper [Lining Up His Shot] proves to be an absolute showcase of down-turned mouths and the unhappy people bearing them.... What a show." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Review: "These are two masters at their best [in Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot]. Crime novelist Manchette pulls no punches in delivering gritty, violent episodes that still can shock even the most jaded reader. Jacques Tardi’s confident, almost brazen artwork is just as dark, cold and gripping. His beautiful fluid lines juxtaposed with the stark ambivalence Martin Terrier, the contract-killer antihero adapts in applying his brutal trade is something that has to be experienced. Get this book!" – "Horatio Hornblower," The Comic Book Snob

The Hidden

Review: "Undisputable fact: a new full-length Richard Sala book is a literary and comics event that makes you sit up and take notice. It's appointment reading, and ought to demand the attention of any serious enthusiast of the medium.... The newest from Sala is the graphic novel The Hidden... This book is a magic trick, the kind you'll want to share with friends because you can hardly believe what you've witnessed when it's all done.... Around the hundred page mark this book started scaring the living shit out of me. Sala's art is wonderful and holds up to a close analysis.... Like his peers from Fantagraphics' all-star squad, Sala conveys internal truth (fear, pride, jealousy) through body language and a minimum of lines. There's not a jot or gesture wasted on the page, and his color work is loose and instinctive but still pleasing." – R.J. Ryan, Comics Bulletin

Prison Pit Book 3

Review: "...[Johnny Ryan] is easily one of the four or five most vital and important cartoonists working today. Prison Pit is like someone making a comic strip out of Mayhem's Live in Leipzig, played at half speed and double the volume your speakers can safely process. If you've never heard that album, then I'll spell it out for you: this is a brutal fucking comic.... The cosmic brutality of Ryan's story is emphasized by his lingering gaze. He doesn't just draw the big action moments, but the lulls and gaps and silences between them. The pace is non-stop, but that doesn't mean it can't slow down. In fact, it's those slowed-down sections that give the skull-smashing and throat-fisting the impact that they deserve." – Patrick Tobin, Multiversity Comics

Plug: "Prison Pit 2 was TACO’s book of the year in 2010, and Prison Pit 3 is the early frontrunner for 2011. Featuring the series’ characteristic extreme ultra-violence, gore, scatophilia, and brutality, it’s another hit from artist Johnny Ryan." – L.A. TACO

Mark Twain's Autobiography 1910-2010

Review: "Here's the plot of Mark Twain's Autobiography [1910-2010]: Mark Twain, freed from the shackles of mortality, bums around the Twentieth Century doing whatever the hell he feels like and occasionally having untroubling yet far-fetched adventures.... Kupperman maintains a straight face throughout this look into the world that might have been, had Mark Twain roamed the earth, immortal and more than a little strange. This poker-faced treatment of juvenile, abstracted humor pays off in strokes both broad and small." – Patrick Tobin, Multiversity Comics

Set to Sea

Review: "Very few words are needed in Weing's debut graphic novel [Set to Sea] to tell the story of a poet wanna-be who is kidnapped by pirates and learns the ways of the sea through hard labor and even tougher battles. The cross-hatch styling is reminiscent of old engravings and perfectly suits the subject matter. Each page features just one frame, full of detail and atmosphere. With hints of The Odyssey, Moby Dick, Popeye and Treasure Island, Weing has created a modern classic in the pirate genre." – School Library Journal

The Art of Joe Kubert

Plug: "Artist, editor, entrepreneur, publisher and cartooning auteur; in his 70-year career in comics this pioneering creator has done it all. The deluxe full-color coffee table book [The Art of Joe Kubert] traces Kubert’s history of comics spanning career from 1938 to the present with beautifully reproduced artwork alongside critical commentary." – "Horatio Hornblower," The Comic Book Snob

The Armed Garden and Other Stories

Plug: "David B. intertwines history and myth in his carefully crafted tales of magic gods and grand battles. A master storyteller, his bold, timeless artwork and literary senses creates a kind of magic all their own. The Armed Garden and Other Stories collects three epic tales of adventure, faith, power, and love." – "Horatio Hornblower," The Comic Book Snob

Even More Old Jewish Comedians

Scene: Daniel Herbert reports on the Friars Club launch party for Drew Friedman's Even More Old Jewish Comedians for The Paris Review: "The crowd’s spirits were high, which seemed due to more than just the release of Friedman’s book, or even the emergence of more canapés. Guests were happy to meet their idols; the comics were happy to convene for an event that wasn’t a funeral. And the celebration of the comedians’ Jewishness was significant."

Things to See: 9/19/11 Roundup
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Victor KerlowThings to seeSteven WeissmanSteve BrodnerStephen DeStefanoRichard SalaRenee FrenchPaul HornschemeierMaxMatthias LehmannMark KalesnikoMarco CoronaMalachi WardLeslie SteinJohn CuneoFrank SantoroDerek Van GiesonDame DarcyBob FingermanAnders Nilsen 20 Sep 2011 1:36 AM

The Ice King - Paul Hornschemeier

Paul Hornschemeier's rendition of the Ice King, from Zack Smith's enviable collection of Adventure Time-themed sketches

From “True Luxury” in Forlorn Funnies no. 1 - Paul Hornschemeier

Paul Hornschemeier is beginning to post teasers of his forthcoming Forlorn Funnies #1 along with the sketches at his The Daily Forlorn blog

2012 - Steven Weissman

This drawing by Steven Weissman appears to be related to the current Barack Hussein Obama strip; plus his latest "I, Anonymous" spot

Adam Ant & Darryl Hannah - Dame Darcy

• Celebrate International Talk Like a Pirate Day with Dame Darcy as she pays tribute to Adam Ant x 2 (plus Darryl Hannah in Splash) — this and more in her new blog update

Max

• Sketches and illustrations by Max at his El Hombre Duerme, el Fantasma No blog

The Creature - Richard Sala

The Creature (which you can buy) and a few sneak peeks at The Hidden on Richard Sala's Tumblr blog

Leslie Stein - from Eye of the Majestic Creature #7

• From Leslie Stein, an excerpt from the forthcoming Eye of the Majestic Creature #7

Gravity - Malachi Ward

• "Gravity," a new painting by Malachi Ward

etchfruits - Renee French

Renee French zooms in on the gross part of a box of fruit; also we all feel like this sometimes

Troy Davis - Steve Brodner

• From Steve Brodner: Ron Paul, Sen. Joe Manshin, Troy Davis (above; all with relevant info & commentary)

sketchbook - Anders Nilsen

Sketchbook stories by Anders Nilsen

The Lovely Sparrows - Tall Cedars of Lebanon - Derek Van Gieson

The Lovely Sparrows CD cover illustration by Derek Van Gieson (click to see wraparound)

Plus:

Matthias Lehmann's sketches and notes for a new comics project

Character designs by Bob Fingerman for a series of post-apocalyptic YA novels he's working on 

An illustration for Bloomberg View by Victor Kerlow

More mythological drawings by correspondence-course teacher Frank Santoro

• Sketchbook strips by Marco Corona at his Il Canguro Pugilatore blog

• Wild-n-woolly sketchbook drawings by John Cuneo

A portrait sketch by Mark Kalesniko

Recent storyboard work by Stephen DeStefano

Daily OCD: 9/19/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Richard SalareviewsPrince ValiantPaul NelsonMomeLove and RocketsKevin AveryJordan CraneJohnny RyanJoe SaccoJacques TardiinterviewsHal FosterGreg SadowskiDrew FriedmanDaily OCDaudioAlex Toth 19 Sep 2011 11:38 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

 Everything Is an Afterthought: The Life and Writings of Paul Nelson

Review: "As journalist Avery documents in this cohesive biography-cum-first anthology of the onetime Rolling Stone record review editor’s oeuvre [Everything Is an Afterthought: The Life and Writings of Paul Nelson], Nelson was a gifted early practitioner of new journalism and, though a child of the Sixties folk and rock counterculture, one of its most vocal critics.... Reading his inconceivably insightful profiles of Bruce Springsteen, Leonard Cohen, Warren Zevon, and Rod Stewart helps make sense of a needlessly guilt- and disappointment-laden life — here was a ­hyper-romantic Midwesterner by birth but a New Yorker by necessity who thought he could transcend mundane cruelties by dedicating himself to the popular arts. Seamlessly incorporating the perspectives of Nick Tosches, Robert Christgau, and Jann Wenner, Avery has crafted both a cautionary tale and a celebration of a noir-influenced writer who deserves a place alongside Lester Bangs for his ability to live, always, in the music. Devotees of folk, establishment rock ’n’ roll, and pulp fiction will rue not having discovered Nelson sooner." – Heather ­McCormack, Library Journal (Starred Review)

The Hidden

Review: "[Richard Sala's] latest appetising shocker The Hidden returns to the seamy, scary underbelly of un-life with an enigmatic quest tale... Clever, compelling and staggeringly engaging, this fabulous full-colour hardback is a wonderfully nostalgic escape hatch back to those days when unruly children scared themselves silly under the bedcovers at night and will therefore make an ideal gift for the big kid in your life — whether he/she’s just you, imaginary or even relatively real." – Win Wiacek, Now Read This

Prison Pit Book 3

Review: "I had the opportunity to do a Q&A panel with Johnny Ryan at SPX last weekend. One of the more interesting parts of discussion was when Ryan said how each volume of Prison Pit had to have a different vibe or theme so that the different books didn’t feel interchangable. That’s certainly true in volume three, as we see the inclusion of a new character, who, while just as violent and vicious as CF, is completely different in attitude and demeanor. Plus, he has one of the most amazing (and utterly grotesque) resurrection scenes I’ve ever seen. There’s also a neat little bit toward the end where it seems like Ryan is heavily drawing upon the Fort Thunder crowd, particularly Mat Brinkman. All in all, it’s another excellent volume." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Prince Valiant Vol. 4: 1943-1944

Review: "This [fourth] volume [of Prince Valiant] covers the most of the WWII years, 1943-44, when the paper shortage was at its highest. As Brian Kane notes in the introduction, this meant creator Hal Foster had to format the strip so parts could be cut for papers that had been forced to shrink their page count.... Still, while no doubt hampered by this new situation, it did nothing to harm his storytelling skills, and Valiant remains a hugely enjoyable action strip, as Valiant battles a variety of ne’r do wells on a quest to find his true love, Aleta." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Mome Vol. 22

Review: "I’ve talked at length before about how good the Mome anthology has been, and while I’m sad to see it come to a close, it’s nice to see it end on such a high note. Seriously, this is the best volume of Mome yet, with standout contributions by Chuck Forsman, Eleanor Davis, Laura Park, Dash Shaw, Jesse Moynihan and Sara Edward-Corbett. But really, there’s not a bad story in this entire book. It might seem weird recommending the last book of a series, but if you gotta only read one of these things, this would be the one." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

Setting the Standard: Comics by Alex Toth 1952-1954

Plugs: "Last weekend, I was at Small Press Expo... and went on a blind spree at Fantagraphics with Four Color Fear, an Alex Toth collection, some books by Jordan Crane and an impulsively bought Jacques Tardi book because CBLDF’s Alex Cox told me I needed it." [Good ol' Alex – Ed.] – Kevin Colden, Robot 6

Even More Old Jewish Comedians

Interview (Audio): Drew Friedman is the guest on last Friday's edition of The Leonard Lopate Show on WNYC, talking about his new book Even More Old Jewish Comedians (stream audio and see a slideshow of images from the book at the link)

Interview: Brian Heater's conversation with Drew Friedman at The Daily Cross Hatch continues: "But a couple of guys claimed that I didn’t get their names right, like Don Rickles. His PR guy contacted us and said, 'he’s really angry. His name is not Archibald, it’s Donald Rickles.' So, we said in the second book 'Don Rickles says his name is not Archibald, so that will be corrected in a future volume.' Sid Caesar was annoyed. He called Fantagraphics and started yelling at Kim Thompson, because he claimed his name is not Isaac. He was on the phone with him for half an hour. He was doing Jewish schtick and German dialect. Kim was amazed."

Safe Area Gorazde: The Special Edition

Profile: At Under the Midnight Sun, Adnan Mahmutovic surveys the work of Joe Sacco

Love and Rockets: New Stories #4

Links: Another comprehensive round of Hernandez Bros.-related links from Love & Maggie

Daily OCD: 9/14/11
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under The Comics JournalRichard SalareviewsJohnny RyanJacques TardiGary PanterDaily OCD 15 Sep 2011 2:42 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Review: "Another brilliant adaptation of a Jean-Patrick Manchette crime novel by Jacques Tardi. If you liked West Coast Blues, well, you absolutely will love [Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot]. If you are a crime fan and haven’t read that work yet, you really must as for whatever reason, it is something that tends to get overlooked. Yes, Tardi’s art style is completely unique and can take a little adjusting to if you’re only used to conventional American / UK styles, but give it a go because he brings gritty crime to brutal, realistic life — and indeed equally cold, hard unpleasant death — like few others can." – Jonathan Rigby, Page 45

The Hidden

Review: "There be monsters; monsters of man’s own making. [The Hidden] is Sala’s second book in colour, rich in red and orange, but it’s the first, I believe, to dispense with all hope and humour — apart from the man with the Marty Feldman eyes. He’s taken the Edward out of Gorey and the tongue from his cheek, replacing it there with shovels, hatchets and stakes!" – Stephen L. Holland, Page 45

The Comics Journal #301

Review: "After a rocky start, the regularly updated, online version of The Comics Journal has become a much more vital outlet for the serious discussion of comics, primarily thanks to the stewardship of online editors Dan Nadel and Tim Hodler. In its new format, the print Comics Journal is a fine companion to that ongoing effort. With the burden of remaining 'current' lifted by the website, the print Journal is free to explore important works with a depth and seriousness rarely found online." – Patrick Markfort, Articulate Nerd

Prison Pit Book 3

Plug: "The new Prison Pit #3 is GLORGEFULL!" – Gary Panter (via Facebook)