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Old 24th Feb 2006, 22:03   #21
amner
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Default Re: Comics

Quote:
Originally Posted by JunkMonkey
Niel Gaiman on the other hand walks on water
Clearly you've never read American Gods

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Old 25th Feb 2006, 1:30   #22
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Default Re: Comics

This is indeed true. It's been sat on the shelf over there ----> for a while now waiting for me to get to it.
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Old 1st Aug 2008, 10:59   #23
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Default Re: Comics

I find a nerdy joy in comic strips like XKCD and, to a somewhat more twentieth century and less nerdy extent, Dilbert.

But by far my favourite comic strip is Achewood. You need to read it for about a month before it really sinks into your soul, but occasionally they have a fun one-off strip that I figure anyone could love. Today's features a Dilbert smackdown.
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Old 1st Aug 2008, 14:51   #24
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Default Re: Comics

Now I know for sure that I'm getting old. The only Achewood I understood was the Dilbert one, which was, indeed, excellent.
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Old 1st Aug 2008, 15:14   #25
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Default Re: Comics

Quote:
Originally Posted by gil View Post
Now I know for sure that I'm getting old. The only Achewood I understood was the Dilbert one, which was, indeed, excellent.
Like I said, you need to 'get into it'. It took me about a month, but the extended storyline of The Great Outdoor Fight (now available in book form) was what did it for me.

Edit: For anyone who can't help but wonder, it begins here.
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Old 1st Aug 2008, 23:32   #26
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Default Re: Comics

I like Achewood too but not as much as I love Kate Beaton
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Old 8th Mar 2009, 16:34   #27
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I saw the American Splendor movie a few years ago and found it sort of mildly entertaining. It’s a biopic of Harvey Pekar, the writer of the comic book series of the same name, and uses animated sections, double casting and real life footage in amongst the filmed material. It is never laugh-out-loud funny, and not much happens. I was quite perplexed as to its award-haul and cult status.

However, last week I bought The Best of American Splendor, a compilation comic book of Pekar’s work of the 1990’s. After the first couple of stories, I was frustrated and confused – where were the jokes? There’s no punchline! The beginning of the story has no relation to the ending! But because it’s easy to read comic books (and I needed another break from David Foster Wallace), I persevered. Soon I became engrossed in Harvey’s repeated explanations of the inadequacy of his pension plan, and slowly converted to his opinion of comics.

Basically, he thinks comics are a grossly underutilised art-form, the vast majority of which are made for children. American Splendor is strictly autobiographical, real episodes from his life presented through pictures and text. This is because he believes that there is as much drama, tragedy and comedy in the quotidian than in high-concept Hollywood movies. The open-ended and incoherent structure of the stories, which so confused me, results from the fact that the stories are transcriptions of life. Life has no obvious structure, so why should his stories? He writes the text and gets a selection of illustrators to draw them for him, the most famous being Robert Crumb and Joe Sacco (whose Palestine is absolutely essential graphic non-fiction).

My favourite story is when Harvey dinks another car in a parking lot and goes home without notifying the owner. Stricken with panic that he’ll be traced by the police, he opens a fan letter to distract himself. It is written by a Scottish man with autism, who writes at length about his condition and struggles to become a comic book artist himself. The whole thing is transcribed and illustrated over 6 or 7 pages and is very involving. After he’s finished reading, Harvey simply says ‘Wow!’, puts the letter away and goes back to worrying about his car situation. There is no lesson, no turning point and no perspective offered. Just as life really is.

Harvey’s struggles with money, depression, failure and cancer are all marked by the fact that any respite is only temporary. His stories make an illuminating counterpoint to David Foster Wallace’s short story collection, Oblivion, which I’m also reading. Wallace locates terror and tragedy within daily routine, office politics and personal relationships, while Pekar just busies himself with trying to survive. Survival is strangely addictive to witness.
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Old 1st Feb 2016, 23:06   #28
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Default Re: Comics

I'm sure I written about this before but maybe not on Palimpsest

When I were a lad - I'm in my 50s now so we're talking about the 60s and early 70s - there were loads of weekly comics for me to choose from. Loads of adventure stories comics aimed mostly at boys (it was a different world) Lion, Victor, TV21, Countdown there were comics aimed mostly at girls Judy Bunty and the like; humour based comics Beano, Wizzer and Chips,Topper etc etc etc. I know history has telescoped my memory and some of these comics didn't co-exist I'm sure Century 21 was gone long before Countdown came along but there was a CHOICE. As a kid I had a choice of comics to read. Which one you bought would depend, to an extent, on what your friends bought because you would swap your comics. Borrow titles you didn't regularly read from friends and swap them back again.

It was a shock, when my kids came to comic reading age, at how horribly the market has shrunk. These days there are, in Britain, only TWO weekly comics for kids. The Beano (barely recognisable from my childhood) and the relentlessly brilliant and advertisement-free Phoenix (I'm not counting 2000 AD's brand of SF ultra-violence as a kid's comic.)

That's it. TWO. Which is bloody shame because comics are a brilliant way of bridging that gap between 'doing' reading at school. And reading because... well, because it's just the best thing ever.

Through trying to find some comics for my kids - especially my son (now 6) to read I have rediscovered my own long-lost love for the medium. Earlier in the thread here I talked about the greatness of Neil Gaiman. It's true. The bugger made me cry, in public, reading one of his books.

It also made me realise that I had forgotten my love of drawing too.

The result was inevitable: After a brief dalliance with Senga the Scottish Jungle Girl:


'brief' in this case being 20+ pages featuring New York reporters, Nazis in flying submarines, and Bacchanalian Amazons toasting mashmallows I found these guys living in my head:





one day they read a comic book featuring these guys:



It's not art but it is fun.

I may be doing a Kickstarter thing soon to get these suckers into print so I have an excuse to go to the next Glasgow Comicon.
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Old 2nd Feb 2016, 9:00   #29
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Default Re: Comics

Great stuff, JM! Is there dedicated site to point to (aside from Flickr)?

I just signed up to take part in an online course called "Comics: Art in Relationship", as it happens. I've tried one of these before and totally failed to stick with it, but I'd like to see this one through.

EDIT: My god, light-under-the-bushel, JM - some of these are excellent!

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Old 2nd Feb 2016, 15:37   #30
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I liked your panels in Mythaxis, but I always assumed your were "just" a dabbler. Anyway, your Flickr feed has now entertained me for much of the day. I'd better go and get some work done!
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