Mike Brennan's library outreach has hit the news:
This just in from the prestigious Booklist.
The "*" they mention means "outstanding in the genre." Nice!*STAR*Wood, Brian and Cloonan, Becky.
Demo. 2005. 288p. illus. AiT/Planet Lar, paper, $19.95 (1-932051-42-2). 741.5.
After only a few glances, you grok why indie-comics mavens rave about the 12-issue comic Demo.
Cloonan’s artwork progresses from strength to strength, beginning as an Americanized take on grunge manga
(big eyes, blank faces, bristling or moppy or no hair, lots of little-line detail) in stark black and white, proceeding through reduced lineation and varying amounts of shading to selectively mounting wholly drawn figures on manipulated photo imagery in the last three stories. Also employing a huge range of angles-of-vision and perspective points, it looks like a billion bucks. The story lines aren’t bad, either. They’re about late-teens-to-early-thirties crises of separation from home, lover, or way of life. Early on, protagonists have scary psychokinetic powers, such as killing with a spoken word or concentrated rage and shape-shifting according to others’ expectations. Writer Wood soon modified and eventually dropped that conceit. The hapless young father in the story excerpted for the inaugural Year’s Best Graphic Novels, Comics & Manga
(2006) is just a never-miss rifle shot, and the three twentysomethings in the especially effective "Midnight to Six" are unusual only in having stuck to "The Slacker Pledge" they signed in eighth grade. Lacking recurring characters, Demo
altogether is less reminiscent of other comics series than of a thematic rather than continuous-narrative novel, such as John Horne Burns’ The Gallery
(1947). High praise, maybe, but deserving. ––Ray OlsonYA/M: Mature situations and language but oozing YA appeal. RO.
And as Art Week™ comes to a close, please direct yourself over to Newsarama, where Matt and the boys offer an in-depth look at everything that's coming up soon.
Larry's tears could
cure cancer... but he never cries.
Check out AiT in 2006, with commentary straight from the creators.
To keep wetting your whistle, here's a look at project we saved just for you this Friday. Ladies and Gents, I present: ContinuityContinuity
by Jason McNamara and Tony Talbert. The mind-trip begins in 2006, from AiT/Planet Lar.
****Comics Worth Reading
looks at all three Electric Girl
volumes:There's a lot of imagination on display in these books. Virginia lives in a world where anything can happen, and the author demonstrates that with a wide range of stories and moods. I should also note the excellent use of blacks and backgrounds, and he also does a great job of capturing motion and movement. Overall, there's a very animated feel.
Hmm.. so what can I hit you with next on Art Week™ on the AiT daily update...? Oh, how about this awesome concept sketch of Lana Barnes from Monster Action Network
!Monster Action Network
by Marc Bernardin, Adam Freeman and Robert Atkins, coming in 2006 from AiT/Planet Lar.
Those of you in the Richmond, Virginia area should be sure to check out Velocity Comics
on Saturday, February 11th. Several AiT alumni will be on hand including Becky Cloonan, Brian Wood, Rick Spears and Rob G. Sounds like some good times!
Art Week™ keeps on rolling here on the AiT update with a page from a Tales of the Black Diamond
backup written by Yours Truly, Josh Richardson, and illustrated by Steve McBride, a disciple of the Kubert:
From the "How did we miss this one?" archives comes Brant Fowler's review of Black Diamond: On Ramp
. Brant totally digs on the Jon Proctor art."The art is also amazing. It's a throwback style with a technicolor style palette, and every panel tells a part of the story without unnecessary details cluttering them up. Yet the panels are filled with great detail. The two page splash of the highway at the end is a money shot if ever I saw one."
Sean Maher calls 'em like he sees 'em
: LOADED BIBLE: JESUS vs. VAMPIRES ONE-SHOT Wow: this really sounds like an AiT/Planet Lar book. Even the solicit text sounds like someone who's been studying Larry's style - brings to mind the recent "If the phrase 'gorilla with a jetpack' doesn't do it for you, I don't know what we gotta do."--Josh
Continuing a very special Art Week on the AiT Daily update™, where the Making Comics Better never sleeps, I can let you see the cover and an interior page from Joe Casey and Ian Richardson's Patton
-in-space epic extravaganza Warhead:
The love keeps coming for the Ape-type things. SFist kicks out the jams with a look at The Annotated Mantooth. "We do love some good old fashioned postmodern irony, and Mantooth fits the bill, from the evil robot named "World's Greatest Grandpa" to a plot to make zombies out of the world's Nobel Prize winners. And the annotations -- inspired, we are told, by an annotated volume of Shakespeare -- reveal both the comic's script and the author's intentions, both of which make for an illuminating read."
For all you future-kids out there, with your podcasts and such, would do well to check out Geek4x4's recent transmission
. It's an in depth look at the recent Previews, including Sky Ape: King of Girls
. "By Amara, McCarney, Russo, and Jenkins. I don't know how those names associate with anything, but if you do, just let me know. Looks like it's going to be a fun book."
****New *Skyape*. I'm a happy boy. Skyape brings me all kinds of joy.
You and me both, Mr. Wright.
Here's a little treat to start your week of right: a sneak peek of art from Dugout
, a new book by the Hench
by Adam Beechen and Manny Bello, coming this summer from AiT/Planet Lar.
Reading the good word over at The Ninth Art Lighthouse Awards for 2005,
I see my man Rob G.
getting shown some love on the honor roll for deserving talent: "Rob G's four projects in 2005 really showed his growth as an artist. It started with the collection of one of his first works,
Teenagers from Mars, and continued with his return to the action of
The Couriers (with added mullet), but we also got a glimpse of where he's going with the black, white and red noir of a
Filler and the old school Eerie-style cowboys and zombies of