In her new mini-comic, “Debbie’s Inferno,” Anne Emond takes us deep into the nightmares and misgivings of a young woman and all we have to do is sit back and be amused. There’s plenty to be amused about since Emond is a crackerjack cartoonist in the vein of Lynda Barry. With a spare line and a whimsical touch, she distills angst down to wise and funny bits.
Category Archives: Comixology Submit
“The Cartoon Picayune” has hit its stride with its latest issue and is poised to become a leading voice in comics journalism. These things take time and I’m sure that has not been lost on its editor, Josh Kramer. He began by himself, covering local stories in Vermont and New Hampshire. And now he has contributors from around the world. This is a unique anthology that lives up to spirit of what used to be called literary journalism. And we have reached a point now that finds comics journalism to be more readily accepted and understood. It is a subset of comics that has been steadily developing over the years and The Cartoon Picayune can be relied upon to add to this tradition. Issue Five features two full length stories and two brief stories, each exploring the theme of work.
Isabel Greenberg’s work is just the sort of comics to set your mood on the right track. I’m so glad to see her continue with what she set in motion in her first collected book, “Encyclopedia of Early Earth,” published by Little Brown & Co. (review here). She is following her muse and creating more delightful comics based on fairy tales, myth, and legend. The series is called, “Tall Tales and Outrageous Adventures” and you can find the first installment, “The Snow Queen and Other Stories,” at comiXology right here.
“Fade Out: Painless Suicide” is a one-shot comic written by Beto Skubs; drawn by Rafael de Latorre; and colored by Marcelo Maiolo. It’s a pretty funky little story with a nod to Generation Y. All Kurt seems to want these days is to end it all. Far be it for anyone to point out that Kurt’s life is not so bad, he won’t listen. Yes, this story has its shock value. Don’t expect a morality play here. Kurt is going to die, like it or not. Skubs challenges the reader and knocks out a credible script making you sort of root for the main character’s demise. He certainly runs the risk of alienating many readers.
“Giant Days #1” is just what the doctor ordered if you’re in need of some rather droll humor. John Allison has been dishing out his humor, dry and stylish, for many years. Fans of Allison’s “Scary Go Round” are fiercely devoted to the misadventures of Shelly Winters, which you can check out here. Allison has gone beyond the youthful misadventures of Scary to the schoolgirl sleuths in “Bad Machinery.” And, in between, he created “Giant Days,” featuring Esther de Groot, just starting university, and always ready to get into trouble.
The characters in Giant Days are all quite young, full of spunk, and part of a way of looking at the world, all deadpan and cute. The quirk factor in Allison’s comics falls right in with comics by Kate Beaton and Bryan Lee O’Malley. All three cartoonists don’t seem to have a mean bone in their bodies. Their characters may say things that are snarky and yet they also come across as quite vulnerable, never much of a threat to anyone. Even when things come down to pounding fists and kicks, the genius to keep to a cartoony distance repels any real harm. That is a big part of the appeal. These characters can say and do anything and remain in a cartoon safe zone. That’s the story of a lot of great comics.
You would think this sort of thing is such a piece of cake. The art appears rather simple, yes? The jokes seem so casual and carefree, yes? But, no, it’s not easy cake. It’s not even easy cupcake. The process can be magical, enjoyable, and may seem easy. But it requires the right type of cartoonist: diligent, brave, and full of wit. So is the case with Allison. In Giant Days, he gives us one Esther de Groot, all cute and idealistic. She loves the cerebral and the misfit. Those are the types she wants to hang out with as she starts her life, away from home. But, given her cuteness, the cool girls want to take her as one of their own. Of course, they never expected Esther to have a mind of her own. Sarcastic remarks are made. Cat fights ensue. All in all, just the sort of comic to enjoy with a nice tea and crumpets.
“Boobage,” is a mini-comic by Monica Gallager that covers, or unveils, a very personal preoccupation with a lot of wit and humor. So, what do you instantly think of when you put such greats together as Kate Hudson, Clare Danes, Gwen Stefani, and Bridget Fonda? The one thing that Gallager used to have trouble with was their (and her own) relatively small breasts, or “tits.” It’s okay, she says “tits” a lot. Gallagher isn’t afraid to tackle the tit issue, large or small. This won’t really be of interest to those who objectify and sexualize but it may give them some pause. Hey Jimmy, or whoever, those hooters you salivate over belong to a real human being.
This is exciting news for comics writers and artists looking to connect on a project. ComiXology is sponsoring the Comic Creator Connection at Comic-Con International 2013. This is a one-of-a-kind meet up for up-and-coming creators. ComiXology will guarantee marketing support for qualified participants.
Press release follows:
As part of this week’s ComiXology Submit releases is “The Fez #1.” Roger Langridge has a lovable cartoon style, nice and rubbery, and absurd. “The Fez #1” is a mini-comic in search of a home and maybe you’ll take it in. Mr. Langridge has all his papers in order, mind you. He’s a Harvey and Eisner Award-wining cartoonist and you’ll see he’s got the chops and the sharp humor to prove it.
I don’t know how some critics measure this sort of thing, especially if they’ve never come near ink in their lives. But, as a cartoonist myself, I can tell you that what you see here looks effortlessly smooth, as if the ink just glided onto the page. It’s perfect to evoke this feeling of spontaneous slapstick humor. A villain quakes in his boots at the sight of The Fez. A beautiful woman, an unrequited love, drives our hero over the edge. Simple but fun stuff.
This is a 12-pager and that might be just what you’re in the mood for. You get two full stories and a one-page story. They are silly but also poetic in a way. It sort of reminds me of Kaz’s work but in a more gentle and innocent way. Among the work that Mr. Langridge is known for is “Thor: The Mighty Avenger,”and “Snarked.” You can find a bunch of his work at ComiXology here.
Check it out at our friends at ComiXology here.
Becky Cloonan is a masterful cartoonist. She has a very loose and confident line that comes from years of love and practice of the comics medium. Ink gets in the blood and, like a painter, you’re always ready for your next chance to put brush to ink and paper. Becky Cloonan adds another short story to her Ink and Thunder presence at ComiXology Submit with, “The Demeter,” which runs 31 pages, and you can purchase for only 99 cents here. It is supposed to be the third and final book of a trilogy. While all three books under the Ink and Thunder umbrella are not related, they all share a similar spooky vibe.
Cloonan’s love of ink is infectious. She keeps creating opportunities to dive into that ink. Her artwork is gorgeous and her stories are platforms that allow that artwork to flourish.
That’s not to say that the stories aren’t compelling in themselves. Having read the three books she has with ComiXology, “Wolves,” “The Mire,” and now, “Demeter,” all three are very impressive, and even poetic, horror stories. Cloonan is a pro and she’s managed, over the years, to tap into some quality storytelling chops. She’s as good with words and she’s with artwork. “Demeter” runs very smoothly and naturally. At its heart, it’s a simple little story told with elegance and nicely paced. It’s a cautionary tale warning you to be careful about what you wish for.
Like Paul Pope, you get that unique view from one person as artist and writer. The words, the story itself, comes that much closer to the art compared to a team of artist and writer. That’s just how it is, no matter how closely a team works together. Only you know exactly how to scratch that itch. You can see it on the page.
“Demeter” is far and beyond well worth the price of admission. So, if you haven’t already, you definitely want to go ahead and get the other two books, similar in size and same price point. Just visit ComiXology here.
An odd little old gentleman proves to be very entertaining in this week’s releases from ComiXology Submit. “Short Hand #1” is a breath of fresh air. The main character has star power even if he can barely reach for the stars or just about anything else for that matter.
Meet Oscar Lindstat. He is one big ball of mischief and that has landed him a twelve-month house arrest. He’s 80 years old but he can still give the likes of Lindsay Lohan a run for her money. At the start of our story, “The Toothless Fairy,” we find Oscar is two months into his arrest and he’s triggered a visit from the sheriff and a deputy for tampering with his ankle monitor. Oscar looks sickly and vulnerable but surprisingly spry.
Sheriff Sumner looks worn out just looking at Oscar. That’s why he’s brought in backup, Deputy Woods, who is being lured into making Oscar his very special responsibility. Little does Sumner or Woods know that Oscar never gave up solving crimes and a little ole ankle monitor sure isn’t going to stop him for long. Thanks to crisp writing, by Jason McNamara, and engaging artwork, by Rahsan Ekedal, we quickly buy into the premise.
This comic has a sharpness and confidence to it that serves it well considering that you have a subject that you would suspect to tread along slowly. Yes, Oscar doesn’t move all that fast but this is definitely one of the most quick-witted comics you’re going to come across. “Isn’t it the little crimes that matter the most?” asks Oscar. It’s not a concept that resonates all that well with Deputy Woods. But maybe the guy just needs a little time to figure out what matters the most.
“Short Hand #1” is 25 pages, priced at $1.99, and you can check it out at ComiXology here.