"Any consideration of Larry Young Ė or, more specifically, the books Young writes for his own indy comics line, AiT/Planet Lar Ė must inevitably be as much about the practice of self-advertisement as it about the work itself. Reading the first issue of Youngís new color comic mini-series, The Black Diamond: On Ramp,
a neatly hard-edged series set in a dystopian near future, I was reminded how much canny marketing can add to a pop experience."
"Let me get this straight: you have, in your desk, right now, a roll each of pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters? Larry, you're like some kind of crazy Boy Scout." -- Jared Guenther
Laura Gjovaag, of Bloggity-Blog-Blog-Blog,
on The Black Diamond:
"I have had dreams/nightmares of a road similar to the Black Diamond on and off since I was in High School. The concept is simple, yet unthinkable. A lawless superhighway across the US? But AiT/Planet Lar specializes in the unthinkable, and that's why it appears that this story will work. Mix the unthinkable with the mundane, and you get a tale worth reading."Brad Searles
gives me some love: "Imagine my happy shock to flip a page of the latest Entertainment Weekly
and find AiT/Planet Lar comic main-man Larry Young on their 2005 Must List. There's not a more deserving publisher out there, as the guy doesn't just spend his time making better comics, but Making. Comics. Better.
And also making must-lists. Props to EW for noticing."
has made Smoke and Guns
a Featured Item. Look for it this fall.
When I was in NYC, I missed Jog The Blog's
survey of The Black Diamond: On Ramp,
where I was quite flattered to read that the package reminds Joe of a mid 90s issue of Cerebus
with the story, the text pages, and the looks at other projects. He also realizes that keeping that thing at $2.95 and not being Marvel or DC was quite an achievement.
Missed the kind words from Alan David Doane,
on The Black Diamond,
as well: "...a beautiful, full-colour monthly comic written by Larry and with the best art I've ever seen by Jon Proctor. The near-future sci-fi premise -- revolving around fast cars and a brutal solution to mass transportation -- is so much fun it's amazing no one ever thought of it before.
"Testosterone-driven action comics don't often do it for me, but this one looks to be done right, with energy and smarts to spare, and the colouring is terrific, hyper-real and not quite like any comic I've seen before.
"Coming on the heels of Demo,
I think The Black Diamond
will be a genuine pleasure to pick up every month, very different from AiT's last monthly series, but looking to be equally as entertaining, and a good piece of fiction to spend your summer escaping inside."
on The Black Diamond:
"The first time I read through, I initially wasn't as draw to it as I thought I would. Something about the narration seemed off. But going through a second time, everything seemed to click with me. Reminds me of something an old English professor of mine would use to say, 'The first time you read something you're really just skimming it to get through it. It's the second time through that you actually read
it.' And he's quite right. I skimmed it the first time just to get an idea of what was going, but the second time through I noticed all the little details, and nuances. The conversation about how there's only two kinds of plots, or how all of the sound effects are large, and look as if they were drawn by Paul Pope (which is good in my eyes). Especially with the full-page "CRASH" and the lime-green background. Porno. Completely and totally porno. Which is to say that Jon Proctor -- based on this preview -- does a smash up (pun so very much intended) job with the art, not to mention the coloring. It's vivid and wild, just like a video game."
Dave's going to love that we made an On Sale Here retailer poster of that page he likes for the same reason he mentions he loves it.
gives the shout-out to Rob Osborne, The Black Diamond,
and Sky Ape.
on Surviving Grady:
" Of all of the books out there that are trying to make a buck off the Red Sox 2004 storybook season (and I know that there are more books being published on this subject than there are days in a year), the one for the true die-hard BoSox fan is Surviving Grady
by the good people over at AiT/Planet Lar. The authors, Tim McCarney and Tom Deady (or known on their blog posting respectively as "Red" and "Denton"), give you the raw, emotional roller coaster ride to the point of being clinically bi-polar that is a normal season in the life of a true Red Sox fan. It is a place where the beer flows like wine when the Sox win and when they lose, you feel like your heart has been ripped out, blended into a fine puree and served out of your empty chest cavity to anyone and everyone within shouting distance. The book contains such an in-the-moment fervor that I felt like I was experiencing combat fatigue, reliving every game and trade like it was the night before. If there is a Red Sox fan in your life, you must get this book for them. Also, it would make a great gift for an enemy who's a tortured Yankee fan (which I, unfortunately, know way too many). Truly, Surviving Grady
is the gift that will keep on giving."
on The Black Diamond:
"...one of the more interesting post-apocalyptic stories Iíve read in that (1) itís not even post-apocalyptic and (2) it intelligently channels the reactionary anxieties of our post 9-11 environment to create the backdrop for a very original story setting."
Sean looks at Filler,
too: "Thereís also a real weight to the story and visual scheme that conveys the oppressiveness of trying to get by in the city, and this helps make the characters believable and sympathetic... The book is a little rough in some places, but ultimately it makes for a more genuine work.†Filler
is a smart and atmospheric piece of crime fiction."
Also, make sure to check out Marc Mason's
"Should it be a Movie?" column over at Kevin Smith's www.moviepoopshoot.com site. Marc takes a look at True Story Swear to God: This One Goes to Eleven
("Iíve covered this book previously, and frankly, Iím still at a loss to explain why Disney hasnít snapped this up and put it on screen. They met at Disneyworld, for Peteís sake! Maybe not a big screen adaptation, but certainly it would make for a quality TV production. Baffling why it hasnít gotten done. Baffling.") and says some flattering stuff in his review of the Black Diamond
-Smoke and Guns
-Five Fists of Science
preview book: "Larry Young has been referred to as comicsí version of Jerry Bruckheimer, but I donít think thatís quite right; heís more Francis Ford Coppola, making his own paper movies, producing other quality paper movies, and even producing prose works (such the way Coppola did with his Zoetrope