• Trusty Henchman

Upcoming Comics Spotlight: Miscellaneous

This batch features a year long Image anthology, surreal graphic novels by a cult-favorite comics innovator, the graphic novel debut of Polish animator and cartoonist Wojtek Wawszczyk, surreal tales of new Americana, and Ron English's subversive magnum opus.

 

IMAGE 30TH ANNV ANTHOLOGY #1

(W) Geoff Johns, Declan Shalvey, Wyatt Kennedy, Skottie Young, Mirka Andolfo, Brenden Fletcher, Kyle Higgins (A) Andrea Mutti, Declan Shalvey, Luana Vecchio, Mirka Andolfo, Erica Henderson, Daniele Di Nicuolo (CA) Marcello Costa, Igor Monti


SERIES PREMIERE!


Celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first Image comic with a year-long parade of all-new stories from some of the biggest and best names in comics!


Featuring a combination of ongoing serials and standalone short stories, this inaugural issue kicks off with the first chapters of two 12-part stories: "The Blizzard" by GEOFF JOHNS & ANDREA MUTTI and "Red Stitches" by BRENDEN FLETCHER & ERICA HENDERSON-plus the opening installments of a trio of three-parters: "Gospel for a New Century" by WYATT KENNEDY & LUANA VECCHIO, "Loop / Hopeless" by MIRKA ANDOLFO, and "Shift" by KYLE HIGGINS & DANIELE DI NICUOLO. Plus plus! A first look at DECLAN SHALVEY's upcoming OLD DOG series and an original ongoing comic strip by SKOTTIE YOUNG!

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Why this caught my eye:

That Fletcher/Henderson colab catches my attention the most, but the nature of this year long anthology title just sounds like it could be a lot of fun.

 

PROJECTOR AND ELEPHANT GN

(A) Seth


Two surreal graphic novels about technology, corporatization, and alienation in the modern world by a cult-favorite comics innovator.


In 1968, the British artist and writer Martin Vaughn-James emigrated to Canada. Over the next eight years, he proceeded to produce some of the most mesmerizing and inventive works in comics, light-years ahead of his contemporaries. Among them were Elephant and The Projector, linked graphic novels that guide the reader (and a bespectacled Everyman) through landscapes built out of both the everyday and the nightmarish. Jam-packed superhighways, plummeting horses, vast urban wastelands, colossal businessmen, demented cartoon animals, and interstellar oranges are just a small part of Vaughn-James's prophetic vision of society's turn away from the natural world to the artificial.


Together for the first time in a single volume, designed and edited by Seth and with an introduction by Jeet Heer, Elephant and The Projector stand as a reminder that we have yet to catch up to Vaughn-James.

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Why this caught my eye:

This just sounds like a fascinating package. I'm not too familiar with Vaughn-James, but I stumbled across this article which includes a link to his acclaimed work The Cage.

 

MR LIGHTBULB GN

In this electrifying graphic novel debut, Polish animator and cartoonist Wojtek Wawszczyk uses magical realism to tell a moving tale of finding light in a life full of darkness. Mirroring the world we live in, the protagonist of this graphic novel comes from a broken home. However, in this case, the term is quite literal. Due to freak accidents at the steelworks where his parents work, his mom snapped in half, and his dad flattened like a pancake. As if that wasn't enough to deal with, one day, he suffers his own life-changing experience: mistakenly swallowing molten metal gives him the strange power to radiate heat and light - like a lightbulb. As he grows up, evolving from Bulb Boy to Mr. Lightbulb, he finds that his unique abilities can be a curse and a blessing; while they alienate him from others, they also allow him to shine.


At once surrealist, comedic, heartbreaking, bitterly sarcastic, and deeply sincere, Mr. Lightbulb is an essential work of comics autobio. With bold, expressive ink strokes and brilliant use of visual metaphor, Wojtek Wawszczyk renders an affecting self-portrait, as his protagonist balances challenging family dynamics with his creative ambitions and desire to forge his way in the world. This book, which clocks in at over 600 pages, combines a grand scope with brisk plotting, adding up to a tour de force of artistry and honesty.

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Why this caught my eye:

$30 for 624 pages is kind of a crazy good deal. Also, I was trying to remember where I had seen Wawszczyk's name before and tracked it down to this short animated film from a while ago.

 

PEANUTBUTTER SISTERS & OTHER AMERICAN STORIES

(W) Rumi Hara (A/CA) Rumi Hara


The Peanutbutter Sisters is a glorious balance of contradictions, at once escapism and realism, science fiction and slice of life. Two students explore the urban landscape while following Newton Creek, the polluted Queens-Brooklyn border. As they do, they plan a traditional Japanese play with contemporary pop culture. Another story features an intergalactic race of all living things set in the year 2099 and is a dazzling treatise on the environment and journalism. Hara's innate control of the comics language is refreshingly unrivaled.

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Why this caught my eye:

I'm liking the previews of Hara's work I've been seeing. I've been in a magical realism sort of mood as well and it sounds like that's Hara's jam as well.

 

GREETINGS FROM DELUSIONVILLE HC

(W) Ron English (A/CA) Ron English


Once in the timeline of Planet Earth a spaceship with a crew of alien Rabbbits crash landed....


Welcome to Ron English's DELUSIONVILLE.


A deluxe oversized hardcover coffee table book, Delusionville tells the story of a society that formed as different animals fell down a rabbit hole and created a world with their own mythologies, religion, and politics.


This is Ron English's magnum opus, a subversive rock opera, featuring Ronnnie Rabbbit, and a surreal cast of characters. Buzzards, pigs, sheep, turtles, ducks, wolves, and the "rabbbits" who are caught in the middle of all the insanity that is Delusionville.

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Why this caught my eye:

It's just been a while since I've exposed myself to some of English's work. I'm not saying that's a good or bad thing, I'm just sayin' it's been a while. Additional samples, details, and pre-ordering available here.

 

That's it for this batch, we'll hit up some all-ages and YA material on the next round!

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