Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The Gosh! Authority 22/12/10

I’ve been waiting days to deploy this photograph of the Gosh! Christmas tree. Please look at it with the reverence and sentimentality it deserves, perhaps even stopping to utter a hushed ‘aaaw’. As for when you can come and see its finely decorated fronds you’ll have to work around these:

Christmas Eve: 10am - 3pm.
Christmas Day: CLOSED
Boxing Day: CLOSED

New comics day this week is Thursday and we’re open 10am ‘til 7pm as per usual. And what awaits you there? Many things, not least of which is a whole bunch of manga. There’s been something of a manga drought of late on the Gosh! Blog but I’ll attempt to make it up to you now. There’s a new volume of Naoki Urasawa’s 20th Century Boys (that’s 12, count ‘em) plus the second instalment of the strange and brilliantly titled I’ll Give It My All... Tomorrow. If you didn’t catch the first volume Comics Worth Reading can fill you in, and we’ve got it in stock if you like the sound of it. Will Bingley (of Gonzo fame) also wants me to point out that Children of the Sea Volume 4 has arrived too and the series is “very good.”

I like the look of A Single Match by Garo veteran Oji Suzuki. It’s another one of those dead fancy Drawn & Quarterly presentations of alternative stuff from the early 1970s only recently becoming available to us lot in the West. D&Q put it thusly:Suzuki explores memory, relationships and loss with a loose narrative style, filling each tale with a sense of unfulfilled longing. He plumbs the dissolute depths of human psychology, literally bathing his characters in expansive shadows that paradoxically reveal as much as they obscure.”

It was published in France a couple of years ago under the title The Red Kimono, so to our bilingual friends I say, “don’t get confused.” There are some untranslated Japanese pages here from when Dirk Deppey picked up some old issues of Garo and excitedly scanned them in, plus a huge PDF preview of a different bit entirely.

Last week we had Jodorowsky and MoebiusMadwoman of the Sacred Heart on our new shelves for a fleeting moment before they disappeared. This week (if you’re quick) you can get your hands on The Incal: The Classic Collection Deluxe Hardcover, which as the superlatives suggest is one excellent book indeed (and there are only 750 of the things around!). Widely considered a masterpiece, The Incal is the sci-fi tale of detective John Difool who accidentally discovers the key to the Universe. It’s presented in its original colours and comes in a swish slipcase too. You can see some pictures of it here. Consider it the Absolute Incal.

From the same publishing house comes Tikitis, a mad looking book from Jerry Frissen and Fabien M, the team who previously brought you Lucha Libre. The retirement of some masked heroes doesn’t go to plan when it transpires their supposedly tranquil tropical island is full of mad scientists, voodoo zombies, jungle warriors et al. Preview at the Humanoids blog.

Duncan The Wonder Dog TP Volume 1 is a thing you might like if you’re a fan of Dave McKean.

In their review, Time’s Techland call the “frantic science-fictional meditation on the relationship between people and animals” the debut book of 2010 and as we’re very nearly at the end of the year that means they’re pretty damn sure of it. The first volume alone is a dense 400 pages long, 28 of which you can read in this ‘ere preview. Writer and illustrator Adam Hines is interviewed by Comicbook Resources and Publishers Weekly.

Duncan the Wonder Dog

As an antidote to Jack Black’s face on the side of buses I suggest Kelley Jones’ (Batman, Sandman) Gulliver’s Travels HC in which he illustrates each chapter of Jonathan Swift’s classic in full colour. Even these days some things do not exist on the internet – a preview of this book is one of those things.

Trickster is an anthology of twenty Native American tales told by Native writers and illustrated by various artists. As with all collections like this there are excellent bits and then there are the other bits with the comic sans lettering that leave you wondering “Why?” That aside it’s a pretty fine looking book and you can read all about it here.

Speaking of anthologies, remember Pood? The first issue came out back in Summer, a huge broadsheet affair in the style of Wednesday Comics but done by a whole gang of alternative comics creators. The second issue is out this week and in it you can find stuff by Jim Rugg, Joe Infumari, Sara Edward Corbett, Hans Rickheit and loads more. Highly recommended.

Edible Secrets: A Food Tour Of Classified U.S. History is a book by Michael Hoerger and Mia Partlow about the shady and bizarre political ventures revealed in declassified intelligence documents – all somehow told through the context of food. The Eisner Award-winning Nate Powell (Swallow Me Whole) provides the illustrations (some of which you can see here) and says “Fred Hampton, Fidel Castro, the Rosenbergs, Ronald Reagan, and the MK-Ultra program are all hopelessly intertwined with top-secret snacking. FOR REAL.”

Joe Sacco is the face of war reportage, comics-wise, but over at the War is Boring website (where comics appear alongside the work of regular war correspondents) they’re giving him a run for his money. Reporter David Axe has been sent pretty much everywhere – Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, Chad, East Timor just to name a few. While there and freed from other assignments, he wrote for himself “explor[ing] his inner conflicts with the same intensity he records the ones between guerrillas and counterinsurgents.” Matt Bors illustrates the comics, a form chosen by Axe because “comics come with baggage that’s useful for what I’m trying to do. Comics lull you into a false sense of security. You think, this will be funny or at least unserious. Then we hit you with the explosions and the dismemberment. That contrast lends a sharpening effect to the awfulness and violence. Also, comics are great for conveying the, ahem, comic moments of being a war reporter: the bizarre Walmart-style arms shows, all the waiting around in crappy bars and hotels, the goofy stories that war-addled fixers always tell.” More of that here.

The hugely popular viral webcomic Axe Cop is collected in trade paperback this week, and previewed here. It was created by 5-year-old Malachai Nicolle and illustrated by his 29-year-old brother Ethan Nicolle. If you’ve not read that story of how that happened go and do it now because it’s sugary sweet.

Also out in paperback is Marvels: Eye of the Camera, the sequel to the Kurt Busiek/Alex Ross Marvels series; Peter & Max: A Fables Novel by Bill Willingham (reviewed here); and Viking Volume 1: Long Cold Fire which includes the original story by Ivan Brandon and Nic Klein along with a pile of never-before-seen stuff.

As for comics, there’s a new one out from Matz and Luc Jacamon, creators of Eisner-nominated crime noir The Killer. Set in the near future, it’s a sci-fi tale of war and the media:

“I'm an avid reader of history, politics, geo-strategy. I have been working in videogames for over fifteen years now, where I am involved with the storytelling of a lot of Tom Clancy titles, like Splinter Cell, Rainbow Six and Ghost Recon, so I like those subjects. Around that time, 9/11 had already happened and the whole world was changing - ramping up toward a bigger war than Afghanistan. Also, reality TV was getting bigger and bigger. It felt to me that the two mixed together would be an interesting topic, especially if we mix in private interests, mercenaries and private companies.”
More of that interview with Matz over at Comicbook Resources. There’s also a preview and an early review.

There’s a new one-shot called The Cape based on a piece in Joe Hill’s highly recommended short story collection 20th Century Ghosts. Jason Ciaramella and Zach Howard adapt it for the comic. There’s a preview here but mind how you go; it might make you cringe like an onscreen kick to the nuts.

Green Lantern gets into the spirit of all things tinselly with Green Lantern Larfleeze: Christmas Special One-Shot by Geoff Johns and Brett Booth, in which the leader of the Orange Lanterns lands on Earth post-Blackest Night. "He finds out there's this being who gives people things, and goes to find him," Johns said referring to Santa Claus. "Hal Jordan has to explain to him what stories are. He's not happy."

And lastly, the new Christmas-themed Beano-annual styled issue of Dodgem Logic features a cracking ghost story by its hairy captain Mr Alan Moore. Fellow contributor Robin Ince says it will be “a spooky joy to skeptics”. There’s also Harry Hill writer David Quantick and Savage Pencil’s new serialised graphic novel about a mental Edwardian painter, plus dozens of pages by the likes of Stewart Lee, Alabama 3, Josie Long, Melinda Gebbie, Kristian Hammerstad, Barney Farmer and Lee Healey.

Merry Christmas, Bedford Falls.
-- Hayley


Tom Crowley said...

Merry Christmas you beautiful old comics and speciality bookshop!

Paul Smith said...

Merry Christmas and a pocket of ZuZu's Petals for you ;)

Denis said...

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