Another week, another amnesia mystery. However, the high-level craft of Greg Rucka and Toni Fejzula adds a bit of gloss to a routine set-up.
On Saturday I will be exhibiting with Zach Mason, an excellent cartoonist and my Comics Workbook Magazine co-editor, at Smudge Expo here in DC. Look I made cardboard stands for my books and everything I am so prepared. I don’t know if anyone who follows me on this thing is in the area but if so you should drop by. I’d love to chat with you.
Original covers by John Byrne from Space: 1999 #3-6, published by Charlton Comics, March-September, 1976.
An excerpt from 73 Notes sur la bande dessinée (73 Notes on Comics)
Translated by Andrew White. The full translated text of 73 Notes on Comics will be published in Comics Workbook Magazine #4.
There are three types of games to be played with images. These three…
The Absence, a collection of Martin Stiff’s six-issue post-war mystery story from Titan Comics, is a dense and atmospheric tale of how we can never truly leave the past behind, and how our sins can always be judged.
It’s got its glitches, but Hacktivist, published by Archaia, is a relevant and well-executed mini-series that’s well worth a look.
Apropos of nothing: a trip down memory lane.
I first got drawn into comics seriously via the spinner racks at the bus station news stand in the small town of Chorley, where I grew up. (We lived in the town centre, and I’d be dispatched every evening for our copy of the Lancashire Evening Post and whichever of my mum’s magazines was out that day.)
What drew me in? I can’t remember exactly, but at 14 or 15 I didn’t know anyone else who was into comics (I still don’t, really), and it might have seemed an opportunity to plunge into something big and immersive that would be mine.
I also had a sense that US comics offered a rich mix of imagination and a slightly kitchy ‘guilty pleasure’. I do remember that World’s Finest, with its double bill of Batman and Superman, seemed like too good to miss.
The first issue of any American comic that I remember picking up was actually World’s Finest #311 ('Hacker', by Joey Cavalieri, Stan Woch and Pablo Marcos: Will Superman’s robot spell DOOM for Gotham?)
I started to pick up other titles (mostly DC), and soon noticed that the haphazard distribution of the day meant that every newsagent had a different selection of titles, some going back for months.
Before long I was regularly yomping the length and breadth of Chorley, scouring every single newsagent for ‘back’ issues of the titles that I was enjoying.
And I think #305 ('Lost in the Void', by David Anthony Kraft, Trevor von Eeden and Pablo Marcos) was as far back as I got with World’s Finest. It certainly stuck in my memory.
Sadly and inevitably, most of my ‘ordinary’ comics got lost along the way, through a house move, four years of pinging back and forth to university, the death of my parents and my ultimate relocation to London. The house I grew up in was compulsorily purchased and demolished to make space for a shopping precinct. Even the bus station isn’t there any more.
But sometimes I still get a slight rush: a sense of the excitement I felt in those first few months after falling through the mirror into the four-colour world.
As you were.
My next zine, coming later this year, is a little anthology called PRATFALL. Yes, from the BRILLIANT MIND (i.e. me) that brought you Tablegeddon last year, comes this collection of stories by cartoonists recalling true painful and/or humiliating accidents. From up top: yours truly, Rob Kirby, suffering from a kind of a freak accident during my less than halcyon days of waiting tables in “Stuck;” MariNaomi relates a cautionary tale of why maybe cartoonists should avoid bowling in “Bowling Blues;” Noah Van Sciver ably demonstrates why one should always Bend The Knees when lifting. Among the other amazing cartoonists who will be contributing their own tales: Tony Breed, Neil Brideau, Tessa Brunton, Cara Bean, Max Clotfelter, Kelly Froh, Gabrielle Gamboa, Becky Hawkins, Carrie McNinch, John Porcellino, Kenan Rubenstein, Aron Nels Steinke, and Jason Viola. From what I hear, a few of these stories are doozies!
This is a “flash” comic I did for Flashed: Sudden Stories in Prose and Comics, a creative experiment that Sari Wilson and Josh Neufeld are spearheading. Participants include Nick Bertozzi, Andrea Tsurumi, Dean Haspiel, John Porcellino, Junot Diaz, Sheila Heti, and Myla Goldberg. Pressgang, an innovative small publisher out of Butler University, has invited us to put together this collection — it’ll debut in 2015.
QU33R, edited by Rob Kirby and published by Northwest Press, is a diverse but consistently excellent collection that belongs on the shelf of any serious fan of the comics medium.
REDUCED INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING RATES
Good news! After sending out our first shipments over seas we’ve found that we can charge much less for shipping! International subscribers have already received refunds via paypal. Subscribe here.Canada/Mexico full year - $17 cheaperInternational full year - $12 cheaperInternational half year - $12 cheaper
Canada/Mexico half year - $9 cheaper
After only publishing 7 books in 2013, we ARE BACK to a 12-comics-a-year schedule! In 2014 we’ll be releasing comics from these HOT comics artists!
Get a Half-year, Full-year or PDF-only Subscription at the store!
OILY still has some fight left, you chumps.
Announcing the first Oily Bundle for Spring 2014
This pre-sale helps make sure the artists are paid and we can offset the cost of printing and supplies. Think of it as kickstarter without the kicking.
Bundle will begin Shipping March 17th, 2014
Limited to 200 pieces. Prints and envelope are exclusive to the bundle.
The Lizard Laughed (28 pages) by Noah Van Sciver
Word and Voice 11 by Aaron Cockle
Ox & Co. by Jeff Lok
title TK by Charles Forsman
Bundle Envelope by Alex Schubert
Tell your friends
P.S. I hope to add a few more items in the next few weeks to sweeten the pot.
Forgotten masterpiece: “The Outsider” by H. P. Lovecraft, adapted by Alec Stevens, from Prime Cuts #1, published by Fantagraphics, March 1987.
Five of the six superb covers from the issues of Martin Stiff’s self-published comic The Absence (I couldn’t find a decent version of #2).
The series is coming out any time now in a collected edition by Titan:
As a coastal village in southern England struggles to recover from the losses of war, it is rocked by the return of a man long hoped dead: the disfigured Marwood Clay.
In a place where everybody hides a guilty past, and unspeakable past crimes lurk just beneath the surface… what terrible secrets has this exile brought back with him? And what happened during his absence?
While Marwood struggles to rebuild his life, newcomer Dr. Robert Temple builds a strange house for himself, on the hill overlooking the town. Clay is consumed by a nightmarish past he cannot remember, Temple by visions of a future he cannot prevent.
And then a young boy vanishes on Christmas Day…
It’s mysterious and atmospheric and well worth a look. Martin Stiff has been the best-kept secret in the UK comics world for years, but hopefully this publication will give him the breakthrough he deserves.