Comics and More (was Re: Best of 2001)
ncase at hedbergmaps.com
Tue Jan 15 19:35:36 EST 2002
>On Mon, 14 Jan 2002, Melissa Proffitt wrote:
>I hear there's a great shop in Minneapolis
Jenwa noted Dreamhaven, which I agree is a great store. So is Big
Brain Comics in downtown Minneapolis: lots of indies, and an owner
who obviously really cares about the form.
> - Bone (Jeff Smith) and its prequel, Rose (Charles Vess): Bone
> is more fun than Rose. Bone's serious, and funny, and all in
> all a wonderful story that takes place in a magical land.
> Another great find for DWJ fans. Particularly the stupid,
> stupid rat creatures and their obsession with quiche.
I just got done reading through the whole set (it's up to issue 45,
and I think 46 is out right around now). The characters are
simultaneously emotionally believable and enormously entertaining,
and while the mystical background has the numbing quality much of
that sort of thing does, it is always broken up with surprising and
often funny characterization. Jeff Smith has a wonderful sense of
comic timing, but he uses it in the framework of a adventure that
starts off picaresque and gradually emerges as a heroic arc. There's
a little over two years left until he finishes the story.
I should note that ROSE is also written by Smith, but illustrated by
Vess. I agree Bone is more fun, but Vess is such a pleasure to look
I really love Gaiman's independent graphic novels with Dave McKean:
Mr Punch, Violent Cases, Signal to Noise. He manages to convincingly
and spookily mix the imagined and "real" worlds. The first two are
drawn in the framework of a memoir, and have some relationship to
Has anyone else followed Chris Ware's "Jimmy Corrigan, the Smartest
Boy in the World?" I found it a difficult but really provoking book,
and I love what he does playung around with the sequential quality of
comics, with a complex, snakes-and-ladders quality to many of his
Finally, though I don't know that I'd recommend it as such, I've been
following Dave Sim's Cerebus for years. He's played so many mindgames
in his 20 years of publication (he swears the series is over as of
monthly issue 300), that it's impossible where his viewpoint actually
sits. But the pages are filled with the vitriol of gender wars; the
main character is a misogynistic, hermaphroditic, heavy-drinking,
ultra-cynical aardvark. It's an acquired taste.
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