• Review: Comics Waiting Room on Ho! The Morally Questionable Cartoons of Ivan Brunetti: "...[I]f the material printed Ho! had been created in, say, Soviet Russia, Ivan would be the biggest star in the gulag. As it is, he’s one of the most twisted and funny motherfuckers putting pen to paper right in the U.S. of A. And I’m damned proud he’s one of us... Brunetti’s latest work is as strong as ever, and maybe even sicker. He’s an amazing cartoonist, and I respect his work immensely, even when some of it makes me queasy… especially if it makes me laugh then feel queasy."
• Reviews: The "What Are You Reading?" column at Robot 6 includes Tom Bondurant on Gilbert Hernandez's Heartbreak Soup ("At first I was afraid that Beto was introducing so many characters I wouldn’t be able to keep up with them, but the deeper I go into the book the better he manages everyone. The writing reminds me of Will Eisner’s slice-of-life stuff from his later career..."), Tim O'Shea on The Complete Peanuts 1969-1970 ("The intro by Mo Willems is great insight into what appealed to many about the series..."), Chris Mautner on A Mess of Everything by Miss Lasko-Gross ("[It] shows a good deal of progression [from Escape from "Special"], both in terms of storytelling and artistry"), and Jeff Lester on The Comics Journal Library Vol. 6: The Writers ("for which a more accurate title might have been 'Gary Groth Browbeats Bewildered Comics Writers'")
• Preview: Urban Aesthete looks at the forthcoming Abstract Comics anthology
• Profile: The Seattle Weekly, previewing Jaime's visit to Seattle, nicely describes Love and Rockets: "It’s a mutable universe that skips between characters at older and younger stages of life, where buxom pro wrestling queens, spaceship mechanics, and touring hardcore bands buoyantly intersect. No one stays lost for long; no grievance goes unforgotten; and deep-fried jungle slugs forever remain a delicacy."
It's a honker today! Lots of good stuff out there:
• Review: Blogger Fionnchú considers the place of Alexander Theroux's Laura Warholic in the pantheon of "big, long, thick" maximalist novels (e.g. Wallace, Joyce, DeLillo, Pynchon)
• Review: The Tearoom of Despair pens a loving ode to The Comics Journal: "...[I]t remains the best magazine about comics I’ve ever had the pleasure to read, offering in-depth analysis that has changed my entire opinion of certain comics... And it has some of the best interviews with comic writers, artists and editors that have ever peen published in any medium... Overall, it is still an absolute pleasure to sit down with a new issue of The Comics Journal and read about the craft and love for the medium that is out there... It has recorded the history of comics with style and panache, has published the liveliest letter page in magazines and has been unfailing in its bid to raise comics as an art form."
• Review: Rob Clough has a typically thoughtful take on The Complete Peanuts 1971-1972: "The latest volume of The Complete Peanuts finds Charles Schulz still at his peak... a perfect blend of fantasy, whimsy, jokes, heartbreak, topical references and sturdy characterization."
• Blurb: The Seattle Times' roundup of notable new local books includes a mention of Humbug: "Includes satirical takes on highway congestion, time travel, consumer reports and perspiration."
• Preview: Fictional or not, The Rack's Lydia recommends Mother, Come Home by Paul Hornschemeier ("Paul Hornschemeier's comics always make me miserable, and in a good way. This is a new edition of my favorite work he's done so far.") and Ho! The Morally Questionable Cartoons of Ivan Brunetti ("I like him a lot, but I think that Johnny Ryan should be cutting Ivan Brunetti a check every month and this collection of gag cartoons will show you why") from this week's new comics
• Preview: The Comics Reporter, same tune, different lyrics: on Boody, "Some of the greatest, oddest comics of all time"; on Ho!, "relentlessly naughty... I like these quite a bit"; and on Supermen!, "I liked this book quite a bit... a bunch of frequently weird, hallucinatory adventure fantasies"
• Preview: Atomic Romance also anticipates Supermen!: "In your face golden age stories by some of the greats of comic book history... I love this because it’s a time of experimentation. The writers and artists are learning their craft and there aren’t any established rules yet. Sure to please fans of I Shall Destroy All the Civilized Planets."
• Preview: Yet more blurbage about this week's new comics, this time from Blog @ Newsarama: on Boody, "comics super-genius Boody Rogers’ work... is almost as beautiful as it is weird. Or almost as weird as it is beautiful. At any rate, it’s really weird and really beautiful"; on Supermen!: "[A] must-read... I can’t recommend this one highly enough"
• Interview: Publishers Weekly chats with C. Tyler about her new book You'll Never Know, Book 1; of the book they say "[Tyler] recreates the experience of thought, in which past and present, parents and children, relationships and variations of the self co-mingle, intersect, and layer over one another. Evocative words and images appear in the background or the margins of Tyler’s panels, drawing out subtleties of the story, or clueing us in to unspoken emotional tones."
Now available for preview and pre-order: the 297th issue of The Comics Journal, featuring extensive interivews with Beetle Bailey and Hi and Lois creator (and Sam's Strip writer) Mort Walker and French artist Emmanuel Guibert (Alan's War). Plus a gallery of art by pioneering caricaturist Thomas Rowlandson, reviews and many more features. Check out the full table of contents here and in the preview slideshow photo & video slideshow preview embedded below. Click here if it is not visible, and/or to view it larger in a new window (recommended).
Our annual Best of the Year issue includes interviews with critics' faves Lynda Barry, Frank Quitely, Dash Shaw, David Hajdu and Mike Luckovich, as well as Best Picks of 2008 from an all-star lineup including Kim Deitch, Anders Nilsen, Emmanuel Guibert, John Porcellino, Mark Newgarden, Johnny Ryan, Paul Karasik and others. Plus, a first look at C. Tyler's upcoming project You'll Never Know, a gallery of comics from Finland's best young talents, and more.
The upcoming February 2009 issue of The Comics Journal is our annual Best of the Year issue, featuring interviews with the year's most acclaimed cartoonists: Lynda Barry, Frank Quitely, Dash Shaw and Mike Luckovich. Plus best-of lists from dozens of comics pros, a preview of C. Tyler's new book, a gallery of new Finnish comics, and lots more. Click here if the embedded slideshow doesn't appear above, or to open a larger version in a new window.
The Comics Journal #295 is chock full of all the comicky goodness that you’ve come to expect from our fine publication! Check it out:
Sean T. Collins interviews writer Brian K. Vaughan about Y the Last Man, Ex Machina, Runaways, Pride of Baghdad, how a career in comics led him to writing for the hit television series Lost, and much, much more.
Paul Karasik presents a conversation with Italian cartoonist Gipi, who talks about Garage Band, Notes for a War Story, the Ignatz books and how he narrowly avoided a life of crime.
Rob Clough offers us a chat with humor cartoonist John Kerschbaum, covering everything from The Wiggly Reader to Pete & Pussy to why he couldn’t figure out why his first editors hated him so much.
Michael Dean examines the page rates paid by the Best American Comics anthology series.
Noah Berlatsky digs into the comic-book closet and finds out what’s hiding back there.
R.C. Harvey examines the life of Flash Gordon/Rip Kirby creator Alex Raymond.
Our comics section this issue: Charles A. Voight’s short-lived newspaper strip The Theorist, in its entirety.
As always, we’ve got free online previews of our Brian K. Vaughan, Gipi and John Kerschbaum interviews to whet your apetite. The Comics Journal #295 — around the comics world in 208 pages! Don’t miss it.
Due later this month, The Comics Journal #295 features interviews with Brian K. Vaughn, Gipi, and John Kerschbaum along with the usual reviews, commentary, comics sections and more. Take a virtual flip-through with this preview. Click this link if the embedded slideshow doesn't appear above, and/or to open it in a new window.
• New York Magazine names Bottomless Belly Button the #2 Graphic Novel of 2008, saying "Shaw's dysfunctional-family epic is so funny and engrossing we'd expect Oprah to pick it, but for all the graphic frog sex"
• Did you know that if you buy the Popeye the Sailor: 1941-1943 (Vol. 3) DVD set you also get an exclusive Popeye mini-comic we produced with a story from our upcoming Popeye Vol. 4 collection? Booksteve noticed