Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Gosh! Authority 15/03/11

Just as I predicted, the iZombie TP Gosh! Exclusive Bookplate Edition has arrived. I’m like some sort of Criswell but accurate and with access to future shipping lists, which if we’re being honest is less fun but whatever. If you’ve already ordered a copy (that’s the one signed by Chris Roberson, Mike Allred and Laura Allred that you can only get here at Gosh!) you’ll be hearing from me very shortly.

Mike Allred also turns up in this week’s Yo Gabba Gabba! Comic Book Time HC along with Evan Dorkin (Beasts of Burden), Sarah Dyer (Batman Beyond), J. Torres (Teen Titans Go!), J. Bone (Batman: The Brave and the Bold) and Jamie S. Rich. I have still failed to see a single episode of this TV show, but maybe you have and maybe you’ll probably like this too.

From Fantagraphics you can get the latest instalment in their acclaimed comics anthology Mome, now in its sixth (!) year. There’s stuff from Sara Edward-Corbett, Steven Weissman (Chewing Gum in Church), Sergio Ponchione (Grotesque), Nate Neal, Dash Shaw (Bottomless Bellybutton), Jon Adams (responsible for this sort of thing), Tom Kaczynski, T. Edward Bak, Derek Van Gieson, Kurt Wolfgang, Lilli Carré (The Lagoon), Nicolas Mahler (Van Helsing’s Night Off) and Josh Simmons, whose biography goes “Simmons draws comics about happy bunnies, cirkus folks, and violent sex. He is a nice young man.” Preview as per.

Fantagraphics are still enthusiastically plowing on with their plan to collect every Krazy Kat Sunday page ever, which is about as ambitious a plan as they come. A Kind, Benevolent and Amiable Brick is the penultimate volume of the series, collecting over 150 pieces published between 1919 and 1921. As usual, they’re housed in a handsome package designed by the esteemed Mr Chris Ware so they’ll match the others on your shelf, or near enough, providing he isn’t pulling a wacky Acme Novelty Library design on us. PDF preview at Fantagraphics.

Since I’ve already mentioned a classic strip I could theoretically segue seamlessly into another one if I could come up with a linking sentence. Having failed that, here we go: I’ve been all over Popeye the last few days ever since I saw this picture of E.C. Segar near the front of the latest collection. I mean, just look at this guy’s hair:

Pinched from Popeye Volume 5: Wha's a Jeep?
Thumb is my own.

In the LA Times you can get a glimmer of an alternative reality in which the pipe-smoking sailor man never existed. Imagine that.

Brand new stuff this week includes the likes of Downsized, billed as a Big Chill for the new millennium. Indie creator Matt Howarth normally tells fairly oddball tales but was inspired by a real life event to do this book in which a 50th wedding anniversary gives old friends a reason to reunite and take stock of their lives. He’s inteviewed over at Comicbook Resources and Adhouse Books have a PDF preview. Incidentally, as it’s from AdHouse you should grab a copy now if you fancy it. They’re notorious for letting stuff fall out of print.

From Oni Press (home of Scott Pilgrim) comes Possessions Volume 2: Ghost Table, giving you the next chunk of story about Gurgazon the Unclean, a demon who looks like a five-year-old girl and is trapped in a house for captured spirits. The previous volume was coloured a queasy Exorcist-green, which Fawkes was keen to keep in further books, but judging from this preview it looks like someone’s had a quiet word, or he’s decided against it.

Tony Lee and Sam Hart give you Excalibur: The Legend of King Arthur, the next in their Heroes & Heroines series after Outlaw: The Legend of Robin Hood which went a treat with the American Library Association and turned up on several Best Of 2010 lists. It’s for ages ten and up, so if you’re trying to teach someone about Arthurian legend and Disney’s The Sword in the Stone just ain’t cutting it, this might be more help. No preview on this one so you’ll just have to wait and see.

Neil Gaiman, who also counts librarians among his many fans, sees his children’s book Blueberry Girl released in softcover this week. I wrote about it on the Gosh! Blog back when it debuted in hardcover.

A couple of movie-themed books deserve a mention: The imminent release of the Cowboys & Aliens film starring Harrison Ford means that the 2006 graphic novel about an alien invasion in the Wild West is getting a re-release in hardcover. Then there’s Your Highness TP, which is the prequel to the upcoming film of the same name but with an added exclamation point, written by Danny McBride (him off Eastbound & Down) and Jeff Fradley (The Foot Fist Way) and illustrated by the amazing Sean Phillips (Incognito). Dark Horse have a preview.

Phillips’ frequent collaborator Ed Brubaker (Criminal) launches the good ship Fear Itself with his prologue one-shot The Book of the Skull, illustrated by Scot Eaton. It stars Steve Rogers and Namor, and sets the scene for Matt Fraction’s seven-issue miniseries, set to land next month. It’s the next big event in the Marvel Universe and will no doubt spill over into regular titles Civil War-style, so there’ll be a checklist kicking about somewhere soon. Preview over at Comicbook Resources. Incidentally, we’ve still not received the Marvel Previews we were supposed to get a couple of weeks ago but you can see a full online list of them over at CbR in the meantime.

Steve Rogers and Namor also pop up in Uncanny X-Men Annual #3, written by James Asmus (X-Men: Manifest Destiny) and illustrated by Nick Bradshaw (X-Men: Second Coming). It’s the first part of AsmusEscape From the Negative Zone! story, which continues in Namor: The First Mutant Annual #1 and Steve Rogers: Super-Soldier Annual #1 next month. Preview at Newsarama.

Somewhere next to that in the X-books you’ll find Deadpool: Pulp HC which is the whole four-issue series in one book. Written by Adam Glass and Mike Benson, you’ll probably want it mostly for the art by Gosh! Favourite Laurence Campbell. I linked to a bunch of interviews and a preview when first issue landed in September last year.

Marvel’s flooding the shelves with jumping-on points of late with their Point One line but you can include this issue too: Avengers: Children’s Crusade: Young Avengers One-Shot by regular Young Avengers writer Allan Heinberg. It’s is a stand-alone tale that introduces you to an all-new team of Avengers, illustrated by the legendary Alan Davis (Captain Britain). While trying to find an interview with Heinberg about the book I found this recent one instead, in which he talks about LGBT characters in comics and telly and is far more interesting.

Much like last week’s return of CrossGen’s Sigil, Mark Waid is writing a “soft reboot” of his old series Ruse about Simon Archard, master Victorian detective. “This Ruse series is geared towards new readers–but certainly, you can read these as “continuing adventures” if you’re so inclined. All you have to do is know that here, Partington is firmly set in England, not on some alien world called Arcadia.” It’s a four-parter illustrated by Mirco Pierfederici (Tron: Original Movie Adaptation), previewed here and talked about here.

Non-Marvel titles include DC Comics Presents Batman: Irresistible, reprinting a three-part tale from 2003’s Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight. Written by Tom Peyer (most recently of Tek Janson, the Stephen Colbert comic), with art by Tony Harris (Ex Machina) and Wade Von Grawbadger (Starman), it’s about a guy called Frank Sharp, ugliest dude around, who by some Derren Brown magic manages to convince people to do whatever he wants them to simply by shaking their hands. As with all of the DC Comics Presents titles it has never been collected before so chances are you’ve never seen it.

Also from DC is a new/reboot ongoing series written by its original creator John Rozum and illustrated by Frazer Irving (Batman & Robin): Xombi. In a short, explanatory essay over at DC’s The Source, Rozum writes, “If you’re thinking rotting corpses shambling around looking for living bodies to dine on then you’d be wrong, though it’s possible those sorts of zombies will show up at some point.” He gives you a run down on the history of the title and the characters so it’s worth a read.

That’s it, book-wise, but if you’re still after more stuff and you’re up North why not head over to the Leeds Alternative Comic Fair on Saturday? The last one was such a success they’re doing it all over again. Everything you need to know is at their blog.

-- Hayley