Posts Tagged 'Fantagraphics'

Daydreams and Nightmares with Winsor McCay

Winsor McCay (1869?-1934) is best known for Little Nemo in Slumberland (1905-1914, 1924-1927), a magnum opus by virtually any cartooning standard, and Gertie the Dinosaur (1909), acknowledged as one of the first great animated cartoons of his and any era.

Daydreams and Nightmares: The Fantastic Visions of Winsor McCay, 1898-1934 edited by Richard Marschall (Fantagraphics, 2005) features McCay’s additional contributions, with chapters on:

Advertisements

Bill Blackbeard, Comics Historian: 1926-2011

I will only say this: I scoured the The Smithsonian Collection of Newspaper Comics (Smithsonian Institution Press, 1977) as a young lad, and Blackbeard’s commentary in this volume and his essay in The Complete E.C. Segar Popeye (Volume One: Sundays, 1930-1932) were among the first extended historical treatments of comics I ever read. May Blackbeard’s contributions to comics long be remembered.

LINKS:

Bill Blackbeard, 1926-2011 (The Comics Reporter, April 25, 2011).

Bill Blackbeard, R.I.P. by Jeet Heer (The Comics Journal, April 25, 2011).

Bill Blackbeard: Tributes, edited by Dan Nadel (The Comics Journal, April 25, 2011).

Bill Blackbeard, the Man Who Saved Comics, Dead at 84 by R.C. Harvey

Bill Blackbeard Dies at 84; Saved Comic Strips, New York Times, April 29, 2011, by Margalit Fox.

The beauty that is Inkstuds

It didn’t take me this long to read Inkstuds (Conundrum Press, 2010) because I found it tedious; on the contrary, I wanted to savour these interviews and read them in small doses, interspersed with the ongoing consumption of comics—many created by artists featured on the radio show. Kudos to McConnell: with all of the interviews he’s conducted, I don’t know how he decided which ones to put in this volume. I suspect that’s why there’s a “1” on the spine of the book!

In the introduction to Inkstuds, comics scholar Jeet Heer remarks, “McConnell takes a deceptively casual tack, winging his way like a student at an oral exam who is willing to make up for in gusto what he lacks in preparation (6).” This may be especially true when listening to McConnell’s show, but one feature of reading the interviews that I found interesting was how once transcribed on the page, these conversations take on a new life. Now edited, gone are the traces of improvisational filler, instead leaving only a fluid path of ideas. Continue reading ‘The beauty that is Inkstuds’

Wilson: Drama, Pathos, Irony, Etc.

Introducing Wilson

“For the love of Christ, don’t you ever shut up?”

Such are Wilson’s closing remarks in “Fellowship,” the first of Daniel Clowes’ sequential-existential one-page gag strips found in Wilson (Drawn & Quarterly, 2010). Taken collectively, these 77 cartoons amount to Clowes’ first self-avowed “original graphic novel.” This, in spite of Clowes’ previously serialized works having been republished in bound editions, including $@&!: The Official Lloyd Llewellyn Collection (Fantagraphics, 1997), Ice Haven (Pantheon, 2005), David Boring (Pantheon, 2000) and Ghost World (Fantagraphics, 1997), all of which initially appeared in Eightball.

As for Wilson, I was hooked on page one.

The back cover of Wilson describes our protagonist as “…a big hearted slob, a lonesome bachelor, a devoted father and husband, an idiot, a sociopath, a delusional blowhard, a delicate flower, and 100% wilsonesque.” In essence, the beauty of Wilson is that contradictions abound. And in that very encapsulation, Wilson is the penultimate human being. Continue reading ‘Wilson: Drama, Pathos, Irony, Etc.’


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 62 other followers

Advertisements