Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The Gosh! Authority 31/07/08

Hello, and welcome to this, my very last week in-house at Gosh. Fear not, though, for I’ll still be posting in editions of this fine column from a remote location in the near future. But now for the business of the day!

The Big Name release of the week is yet another Gosh exclusive – our signed, numbered, bookplated edition of the first volume of Scalped! Both writer Jason Aaron and illustrator R.M. Guéra have taken time out of their busy schedules to re-write their names 200 times all over our bookplates, and Guéra even went the extra mile of supplying brand new original artwork for it! Not only are they two of the most talented comic creators of the moment, they’re nice guys to boot! But seriously, folks, Scalped is one of the flat-out best comics on the stands, and it’s never too late to catch up. The first volume, bookplate and all, is only £6.50, so what have you got to lose? £6.50, that’s what! But regardless – buy this book! It’s an essential for any fan of Criminal, 100 Bullets, Loveless, Fables, Watchmen or The Sandman. Or Batman.

In other book news, we’ve also got early copies of From Hell artist Eddie Campbell’s latest book from First Second, entitled The Amazing Remarkable Monsieur Leotard. And guess what: they’re all signed too! How utterly ridiculous. We’re spoiling you. The book itself is packed full of lavishly painted artwork and turn-of-the-century big-top showmanship, and is a must for any Campbell fan, so grab them while stocks last!

Next up is another graphic novel, Popgun Vol 2. Those of you who grabbed the first volume will know the score by now – it’s another whopping doorstop of an anthology showcasing the latest and hottest in up-and-coming creators in a Flight vein. Pick of this volume is a man named Derek Yu. In comics terms he’s only ever done spot illustrations and gag comics for magazines in the past, so why do I care? Because he designs really cool video games containing stuff like this:
There’s another graphic novel oddity in this week, in the shape of Scary-Go-Round Book 6: Ahoy Hoy! You’ll have heard me gushing about John Allison’s work in the past (at length in our most recent Gosh Recommends blog post), and my enthusiasm still fails to wane. To summarise: Scary-Go-Round is one of about four good webcomics in the world, and provides a more charming, consistent and enjoyable British comics experience than any magazine or newspaper has to offer. This volume also introduces Desmond, a fish-man who you’ll certainly grow to love perhaps more than is advisable.

It’s a barnstormer of a week from Marvel, kicking off with Black Panther #39! Yep, you heard me! If you haven’t guessed already, it’s because this current run, tying into Secret Invasion, is written by none other than Jason Aaron! The pitch is all-out turf war between the Skrull hordes and the warriors of Wakanda, drawn by Punisher Max: Little Black Book artist Jefte Palo! Aaron is currently the king of making me read comics starring heroes I have no particular interest in, and I don’t expect this run will be any different.

Marvel masterpiece number two is Thor #10, continuing J Michael Straczynski and Olivier Coipel’s reinvigorating run on the title. Hanging onto the godly court drama of previous iterations of the character, while throwing some small-town Oklahoma soap opera elements in as well, this run has become one of the most endearing, entertaining and thrilling comics in recent Marvel memory. For those of you who’ve yet to try it out, this week also brings us Thor By J Michael Straczynski Volume 1 in paperback, collecting the first six issues for only £9.99. It’s Norseome!

Also up is the second issue of Greg Pak and Ron Garney’s Skaar: Son of Hulk. Plenty of people dropped this title on finding it in their standing order boxes, but to my mind this is a terrible mistake! If you like either Hulk or Conan comics, this is the perfect middle ground! It’s also that rarest of things – an ongoing title for a brand new character! As he showed in Planet Hulk, Greg Pak has a real knack for space fantasy, and Skaar should be an automatic purchase for anybody who enjoyed that epic chapter in the life of the not-so-jolly green giant. Ron Garney’s rocking a shot-from-the-pencils look that really does a lot for the title, and it’s lovely to behold in general. I for one am very interested to see where Skaar’s journey takes him!

DC Wildstorm brings us the first issue of the re-re-relaunched WildCATS, and this time it looks like they’re onto a winner! Christos Gage has proved he can deliver the goods when motivated to, and artist Neil Googe has been coming along in leaps and bounds, most noticeably in his work on Welcome to Tranquility. This new series spins out of the end of the world as seen in the excellent recent series Number of the Beast, and Armageddon seems like an awfully cool place to be in the Wildstorm universe!

Big dollops of unsettlingly creamy news fell all over the West Coast of America this week in the wake of the San Diego Comic Con! Excitingly, there’s a deliciously different Black Panther animated series heading to the prime time slot on BET in the states, based on the Reginald Hudlin/John Romita Jr. run that kicked off the current series. The series has an odd paper doll animation style to it, and looks far more interesting than the majority of Marvel’s animated output.

There were also plenty of little odds and ends revealed throughout the expo: a) Eric Powell’s The Goon snagged him Best Humour Writer and Best Multimedia Artist at the Eisners.
b) The Watchmen movie’s shaping up nicely.
c) Bryan Lee O’Malley’s next book will be entitled Scott Pilgrim Vs The Universe and will release next February, and
d) Neil Gaiman’s return to comics was revealed in the form of Whatever Happened To The Caped Crusader?, the post-mortem story to Batman RIP, releasing in January. The story will be spread over two issues – one in Batman, one in Detective Comics. Speculation is rife over what the story will contain, but all we know is that the title’s reference to Alan Moore’s Whatever Happened To The Man Of Tomorrow? is intentional, and it will be drawn by Andy Kubert.

But better than any of that is our great big What If? Back Issue Sale, which we’re calling What If Gosh Had A Back Issue Sale. We’ve got dozens of the classic Marvel What If issues, including What If Venom Had Possessed The Punisher? and the seminal What If Ghost Rider Had Taken Up A Crystal Meth Habit To Deal With The Trauma Of His Father’s Death Instead Of Selling His Soul To The Devil? Each issue is just 40p, so head downstairs for a trip down memory lane. Do it!

This week, to celebrate the release of golden age revival comic Project Superpowers #5, we’re being very generous indeed, and giving away four copies of The Complete Mac Raboy’s Green Lama Volume 1 in hardcover! This is classic pulp adventurer fare with a Buddhist bent, but don’t get too excited! Before you’re allowed one, you have to tell us…

Who is this? And what is their connection to the Green Lama?

If you think you know the answer, just comment on this post on our blog. First four correct answers win a copy of the book. If you can’t sign in to a personal account, you can comment anonymously – but don’t forget to leave your name along with your answer in the comment itself! Please note that the judge’s decision is final and that it is the responsibility of prize-winners to arrange collection of the prize within a period of 14 days, after which any non-collected prizes will be offered to the runner-up.

That’s all for now – see you in the funny pages!
- Tom


benlefoe said...

This is Yanick Paquette, the artist from Terra Obscura. This featured many of the Nedor Comics golden age characters. Some of these characters were also used by AC Comics... which also used the Green Lama! I think that makes sense... is that right?

John Soanes said...

Isn't that Yanick Paquette, who drew Terra Obscura for ABC which had a whole load of old characters in? Maybe including the Green Lama?
And haven't you removed 'Crafty Butchers' from that picture? Oh, it's like Greedo shooting first...

benlefoe said...

I don't think the Green Lama was actually in Terra Obscura...

Anonymous said...

It's yanick paquette.Bernie Price

Anonymous said...

Sorry forgot to mention connection.Yanick was artist on Terra Obcura which had version of Green Lama called Green Ghost.Bernie Price

benlefoe said...

OK I'm willing to bow to Bernie's knowledge and accept that the Green Ghost was a version of the Green Lama... :)

So, we're all agreed it's Terra Obscura artist Yanick Paquette (who was signing at Bristol Comic Con). And the link is that Terra Obscura included a version of the Green Lama (in addition to other AC Comic published golden age characters).

There - I think my arse is fully covered now (I hope).

Anonymous said...

um, I don't think that's four winners yet, and I fancy me some Mac Raboy, so I say it's,um, Yanick Paquette, and the connection is Terra Obscura Green Ghost yadda yadda. Call me psychic!

Gosh! said...

Well done Ben, Jogb, Bernie and Ilya for knowing the correct answer that it was indeed Yanick Paquette. Books in your sections you lucky boys.