June 16, 2019

ICYMI -- Small Press Comics Criticism and Whatnot for 6/10/19 to 6/14/19

Highlighting some great small press comics criticism being published, as well as other random things that have caught our eye over the past week.


* Rob McMonigal reviews BLACK IS THE COLOR by Julia Gfrörer, appreciating "how well the mood of the story is expressed in the art. There's a real sense of oppression in the theme and having the extensive lines adds to that. Yet at the same time, Gfrorer doesn't try to overdo the details."

* Robin Enrico looks at BTTM FDRS by Ezra Claytan Daniels and Ben Passmore which "is not only an artistic highpoint for both its creators; it is a stunning reminder of the power of comics to explode the reader’s imagination. Daniels and Passmore both establish the mash-up genre of Splat-stick Gentrification Horror Comedy and create a work that utterly defines it."

* Chris Gavaler also looks at BTTM FDRS, writing "that's the whole point of horror -- to drag up our culture's biggest, ugliest globs of unconscious sewage and spread it across a white page for us to see and acknowledge."

* Megan N. Liberty on BASQUIAT: A GRAPHIC NOVEL written and illustrated by Italian author Paolo Parisi, writing "It’s this type of visual, verbal, textural play that makes the graphic novel an interesting form for the Basquiat story."

* Rob Clough reviews SUPERVILLAINS by Michael Kupperman, writing "By using contrasts, defying expectations, assaulting the reader with bizarre images, and mining premises for all that they're worth, Kupperman has created a winning formula."

* Ryan Carey on Sergio Ponchione's MEMORABILIA: "Any work predicated upon stylistic appropriation — no matter how convincing that appropriation may be — is bound to come up short in terms of conveying the inspiration behind that which it’s referencing, of course, and I don’t fault Ponchione in the least for his inability to channel the inner artistic “souls” of his heroes. What I do fault him for is his absolute inability to communicate any sense of what makes their work so special to him, personally, beyond “they were all really good artists.”

* Tegan O'Neil reviews LORNA by Benji Nate which "carries the kind of remit that makes reviews of this nature potentially dangerous: like I say, you don’t really want to overstate and risk burying the book under sophistry. It’s a fun story with a memorable character, produced with wit and no small degree of craft. It’s a pleasant package. I could read five more just like it, and really, can you think of a nicer thing to say about any book? "

* Kevin Bramer on Lisa Hanawalt's HOT DOG TASTE TEST which he found hysterical.

* Tanner Tafelski looks at Jon B. Cooke’s THE BOOK OF WEIRDO: A RETROSPECTIVE OF R. CRUMB'S LEGENDARY HUMOR COMICS ANTHOLOGY which "attempts to resuscitate a comic book anthology’s legacy, smoothing over its more repellant facets."


* Meredith Li-Vollmer interviews GLYNNIS FAWKES about her "unusual pathway to comics—via archaeology—and her two books that will be published this year, Charlotte Brontë Before Jane Eyre and Persephone’s Garden."

* Alenka Figa interviews KAT VERHOEVEN about her webcomic, Meat and Bone, being published by Conundrum Press.

* Kim Jooha interviews AARTHI PARTHASARATHY, "an artist, filmmaker, and writer based in Bangalore, India." 

* Roberto Rodriguez-Estrada interviews VIVEK SHRAYA about "the origins of (her latest book) Death Threat, her and (artist Ness) Lee’s collaborative process, and the craft of the graphic novel."

* Philippe LeBlanc has this SMALL PRESS UPDATE tracking the latest developments of various publishers.

* Avery Kaplan writes a piece for The MNT titled GETTING QUEER COMICS INTO LIBRARIES.

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