The newly formatted, 600+ page Comics Journal proved a resounding success with 2011's edition. And 2012's Volume 302 has proved just as essential and exciting to comics readers worldwide.
This edition's cover feature is a long, intimate interview-portrait of Maurice Sendak, the greatest and most successful childrens book author of the 20th century, the author of Where the Wild Things Are, In the Night Kitchen, Outside Over There, Higglety Piggelty Pop, and the illustrator of works by Herman Melville, Leo Tolstoy, and Randall Jarrell. In his longest published interview (and one of the last before his death in 2012), Sendak looks back over a career spanning over 60 years and talks to Gary Groth about art, life, and death (especially death), how his childhood, his parents, and his siblings affected his art and outlook, his search for meaning — and also, on the lighter side, about his love (and hate) of movies. And his unbridled comments on the political leadership of the previous decade have garnered national media attention and controversy. (Read two sample excerpts here and here.)
Sharing equal billing in this issue's flip-book format: Kim Thompson conducts a career-spanning interview with French graphic novel pioneer Jacques Tardi. The two explore the Eisner Award-winner's genre-spanning oeuvre comprising historical fiction, action-adventure, crime-thriller, icepunk and more, focusing on Tardi's working methods (with step by step illustration), collaborations and other media (such as film and animation), and his fascination with World War I. (Read an excerpt here.) Plus, Matthias Wivel examines Tardi's adaptation of Léo Malet's 120, Rue de la Gare.
Also in this issue, Art Spiegelman conducts a wide-ranging aesthetic colloquy on classic kids comics (Carl Barks' Donald Duck, John Stanley's Little Lulu, Sheldon Mayer's Sugar and Spike, and many more) with a group of comics critics and historians. (Read an excerpt here.) Bob Levin provides a revelatory investigation of the twisted history of the "Keep on Truckin" litigation and a fascinating biographical portrait of R. Crumbs lawyer, Albert Morse. (Read an excerpt here.) Warren Bernard writes a ground-breaking historical investigation of the 1954 Senate Subcommittee Hearing on Juvenile Delinquency. (Read an excerpt here and examine the bonus notes and documentation.) R.C. Harvey looks at Bill Hume's Babysan and Donald Phelps examines Percy Crosby's Skippy. Gavin Callaghan looks at proto-cartoonists such as William Blake. (Read an excerpt here.) And a tribute to the late Dylan Williams from his peers and the artists he published.
Plus: How to Draw Buz Sawyer by renowned newspaper cartoonist Roy Crane (and a previously unpublished interview, excerpt here), a new comic by Joe Sacco and one by Lewis Trondheim in English for the first time, Tim Kreider on Chester Brown, Tom Crippen on Mort Weisinger and Superman, Rich Kreiner on "difficult comics," and a visual gallery of and commentary on proto-comics.
Reviews too! (Read an excerpt of Tim Kreider's assessment of Chester Brown's Paying For It here.)
The Comics Journal has been for 37 years the worlds foremost critical magazine about comics. It is now more vital than ever, a gigantic print compendium of critiques, interviews, and comics.
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