Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Gosh! Authority 24/03/10

There are several lovely-looking books languishing on our shelves this week but I challenge you to go past something this orange without picking it up:

The Art of Jaime Hernandez: Secrets of Life and Death is a shockingly gorgeous hardcover full of stuff you’ve never seen before – sketches, childhood Archie-style drawings, unpublished miscellany – all provided by the notoriously private Hernandez along with several photographs from his mohawk days. There’s tons of Love & Rockets stuff (old and new) as well as an introduction by the great Alison Bechdel (Fun Home). Here, read what some bloke wrote about it a little while ago.

There are no preview pictures on the internet so by the power of my brilliant phone I give you a handful of lovingly designed (and badly photographed) pages. My favourite’s the picture of him rubbing shoulders with a visibly nonplussed Robert Crumb. Sadly someone’s big head (mine) got in the way of the light and managed to cast the entire thing in shadow so you’re just going to have to save that one for you visit because I can’t be bothered doing it again.

Great looking book and it even smells nice. Moving on!

The Book of Grickle is another thing that should have come out long, long ago. Grickle is a nonsense nickname bestowed on the author by his father who would try out new ones every week – among the thousands this one stuck. Created by Graham Annable (whose day-job is serving as storyboard artist for Laika Entertainment, the company responsible for last year’s Coraline film) The Book of Grickle is a hand-selected best-of collection of short stories swiped from books now long out of print (one of which Wizard listed among their Top Indie Books of All Time). They’re bleak, immoral, very funny and brilliantly weird little tales. Comicbook Resources have an interview with Annable here along with an animation, more of which can be found at the Grickle YouTube channel, and Dark Horse have a preview of the book. Highly recommended, says me. And Wizard, obviously.

The Newsboy Legion by Simon & Kirby HC Volume 1 is the first restored collection featuring that scrupulous gang of boys from Star Spangled Comics who take on crooked politicians and other unsavoury characters through their self-published newspaper. According to this reviewer, Simon and Kirby provided DC with a hefty load of work before they were swallowed up military service so most of the stuff in this book is solely by them, with only three stories and one cover completed by other artists.

We haven’t seen a Krazy Kat book in a while so this one’s doubly welcome. Krazy & Ignatz: Tiger Tea isn’t another one of the Fantagraphics series of Sunday strip collections but an entirely separate release from IDW of the largely unavailable Krazy & Ignatz dailies. It’s a slim book with roughly a hundred strips from the series’ only extended storyline, the surreal Tiger Tea, in which Krazy imbibes a psychedelic substance. This reviewer reckons it’s a good’un!

Speaking of classics, Drawn & Quarterly have re-released Yoshihiro Tatsumi’s first full-length graphic novel and one of the first ever published examples of gekiga, Black Blizzard. You’ll remember Tatsumi’s autobiographical A Drifting Life from May last year, no doubt. This one’s about a young pianist arrested for murder who ends up handcuffed to a career criminal. After an avalanche derails the prison train they escape into the blizzard outside bound together. Have a preview.

The early work of Gene Luen Yang (American Born Chinese) is collected in a special edition omnibus this week called American Crackers. In it you’ll find two stories; Gordon Yamamoto and the King of the Geeks (Yang’s first comic, a three-issue miniseries about a high school bully whose life changes when an alien aircraft becomes lodged in his nostril), and Loyola Chin and the San Peligran Order (about a teenage rarebit fiend who visits other worlds in her sleep after eating strange foods). Yang did a new 12-pager for the collection which he previews on his blog.

Also out this week is the Winter edition of MOME (that’s volume 17 if you’re counting) starring regular MOME faces Paul Hornschemeier, Dash Shaw (Bottomless Belly Button), Tom Kaczynski, Olivier Schrauwen, Derek Van Gieson, Ted Stearn, Kurt Wolfgang, Laura Park, Rick Froberg, Sara Edward-Corbett, T. Edward Bak and the extraordinary Renee French (The Ticking). Here’s one of those videos we Gosh! folk like so much.

Three trade paperbacks you might be wanting this week includes Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray’s homage to classic disaster films, Last Resort, a book full of excessive violence, the odd fiery death and a few topless woman thrown in for good measure. Here’s an interview with Palmiotti from ages ago.

There’s also Phonogram Volume 2: Singles Club by Kieron Gillen and Jamie McKelvie. Gillen talks here about the Singles Club and the third Phonogram series – or probable lack there-of.

In Northlanders TP Volume 3: Blood in the Snow Gosh! favourite Brian Wood gives you more viking combat than you could ask for. Northlanders #26 is also out this Thursday so you can grab that too while you’re about.

Also in comics we’ve got The Guild #1 (of 3) which gives you the origin of the hit web series as told by the creator and star Felicia Day – that’s Penny from Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog. Click here for a preview. Illustrated by Jim Rugg!

The other biggie this week is Mark Millar’s Nemesis #1 (of 4) illustrated by Steve McNiven. It boldly promises to make Kick Ass look like sh*t. Says Millar in an interview with CbR…

Nemesis is a reversal of the Bruce Wayne or Tony Stark archetype. What if this genius billionaire was just this total sh*t, and the only thing that stood between him and a city was the cops? It's Batman versus Commissioner Gordon, in a weird way. Or maybe a super-villain version of Se7en. A billionaire anarchist up against ordinary people. The Joker's the best thing in the Batman movies, so this guy is a bit of an amalgamation of all the stuff we like.

Throwing around DC characters in interviews caused a bit of a stir but apparently it’s all better now. This one’s bound to be a big one so stick it on your standing order now, folks!

And finally, the shockingly under-publicised UK Web & Mini Comix Thing 2010 is happening this weekend. First you’ve heard of it? Me too! Read this now, then. Gosh! Favourites Marc Ellerby, Ellen Lindner, and Roger Langridge are all going to be there. Go say hello!

-- Hayley


fep said...

think i might buy me a grickle book when it comes out