Crucial things to remember this week regarding your happiness: don’t trudge through the rain on Wednesday for new comics because wet shoes and trousers compounded with the dearth of new stuff on the shelves will be too much to bear and one of us will have to sit down and cry. Viz-like Top Tip! AVOID THIS by coming in on Thursday, when the new comics are actually due. Avoid this even more thoroughly by coming in on Thursday afternoon when we are more likely to have them out of the boxes. It’s the bank holiday’s fault, or more specifically: the Queen herself’s.
BIG NEWS this week is we’re rolling out even more technological ways in which you can stay in contact with us. Julia set up a Gosh! Flickr account where you can see photos from the Jeffrey Lewis event (above), Comix Reader #4 launch party, Craig Thompson signing and etc. And the Gosh! Tumblr has been prodded awake once more so if you like tumbling then go tumble there.
Tomorrow night is the (delayed) Comics Gosh!p reading group kicking off at about 7pm. We’ll be discussing Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell‘s From Hell with Howard Hardiman and and our own Julia Scheele‘s The Peckham Invalids as our small press companion. Both choices are down to Steve who when asked to recommend anything with invariably find something from South London. South Londoners in particular: your presence is required. Tea and coffee is provided, as well as mugs and seats also. Swish.
THIS SUNDAY you should wrench yourself out of your pajamas like we’re going to do and come along to Nobrow‘s East London Comics & Arts Festival in Shoreditch. We’re deploying Tom and Julia to man the shop and they’re going to haul lots of heavy boxes of good stuff with them. At 3pm you can catch the very excellent Tom Gauld (Goliath) signing stuff at our table for which we’ll have to shift some books out of the way. Special treatment, like. Head over to the ELCAF website for details, maps, and make sure you check out the full program because they’ve got lots of talks and stuff on. Also: other exhibitors include Jack Teagle whose Fight #2 is out this week.
Not this weekend but the weekend after is the Alan Moore and Kevin O’Neill signing. Hopefully the sun will be out and no one will be washed down the Berwick Street river with all the pigeons and potatoes. The new installment of the League should be with us very shortly, as will the Black Dossier vinyl in which Moore does his best Elvis impersonation. We’ve updated the original post to include a guideline on what to bring and what they guys will sign – we’re strictly limiting it to The Black Dossier and Century: 1910, 1969 and 2009 simply to keep the line moving so nobody misses out. Please don’t bring your entire Moore collection along because you’ll only have to schlep it home unsigned. (And don’t even think about whipping out a copy of Beyond Watchmen – not even if you think it will be totally hilarious. It will be nothing more than completely awkward.) At the risk of repeating the last line of that original blog post verbatim: these signings are always very busy. Get there early. Bring friends. Bring snacks. If you run out of stuff to read we are here to help.
While we’re on it, coming up on the events calendar in July is our Sean Phillips Fatale book launch and art exhibition (for which the man himself will be in attendance, obviously) and Tom Humberstone (of Solipsistic Pop) is launching his new thing – Ellipsis — on the 27th. There’ll be a proper post about that very soon.
But enough of that.
In this week’s late delivery you’ll find the first issue of a new series by Brian Wood. It’s ongoing but deliberately finite, so Wood says there’ll be no meandering along the way. In this interview at Comicbook Resources they try and pry some details out of him with regard to the actual plot of the thing (nutshell: post-worldwide disaster, environmental-action trawler Kapital scours the earth for missing sistership, The Massive) but he’s remaining mysterious and spoiler-free, talking instead about the extra stuff you’ll get in the comic if you opt for the print version rather than the download. If you like the sound of it then you can close that Comixology window and come see us in the basement. “It’s the politics and world-building of DMZ mixed with the man-against-nature aspect of Northlanders” he told Newsarama. “All this is by design; I wanted to take the best of those two books, use what I learned, and create a new project that takes it all to the next level. It’s like a supergroup in comics form!” Preview at CbR.
Speaking of massive, there’s a Tom of Finland book out this week. It’s compiled by the lady (Dian Hanson) whose bibliography includes The Big Butt Book, which we don’t stock but I wanted to type. Tom of Finland: Bikers Volume 2 charts Tom‘s obsession with bikers right from 1940 before Brando was anywhere near starring in The Wild One, to the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s stuff when all the guys are in black leather, white T-shirts, Levi’s and big boots. It’s 272 pages of illustrations, film still and posters, personal photographs, sketches, and Tom‘s own reference photos, making it “far more than another Tom’s Comics retread” promises Taschen. They also provide you with a reversible “panic jacket” for the discreet buyer. Which is nice.
Confusingly titled Mort Meskin: Out of the Shadows is not just a softcover reprint of From Shadow to Light: The Life & Art of Mort Meskin of two years ago, though I thought it was. Meskin is the highly influential Golden Age artist who for some reason is nowhere near as well known as peers Joe Kubert or Steve Ditko. He was the first guy to draw Sheena of the Jungle, shared a studio with Jerry Robinson, worked for Simon, Kirby and Stan Lee, but unless you’re an expert on old comics you’ve probably never heard of him (unless you bought that book from two years ago obviously). Out of the Shadows collects a lot of his old stories from ancient yellowing comics and reproduces them in full colour. Not sure how much overlap there’ll be with the other book and Fantagraphics ain’t saying. Here’s a PDF preview.
Other books include Gosh! Favourite Laurence Campbell (Punisher) doing the pictures for The Dark Tower: Gunslinger – Way Station HC which is always a good thing, and Flesk Prime, a hardover art book which showcases five dudes (Craig Elliott, Gary Gianni, Petar Meseldzija, Mark Schultz and William Stout) along with some pieces they chose themselves. The Flesk website has all the specifics and some preview bits too.
In comics there’s a five-part American Vampire series by Scott Snyder called Lord of Nightmares which serves as a good jumping-on point if you’ve been thinking about it (preview here). On Free Comic Book Day Oni Press gave away the entire first issue of Nunzio DeFilippis/Christina Weir and Christopher Mitten‘s (Criminal Macabre) Bad Medicine in the hopes you’d like it enough to pick up the second. That day has come and we have the first issue (a regular £2.20 version) for those who missed it (preview).
“Did you dig on Prophet #21? Stop reading this article and purchase Ken Garing’s Planetoid #1 right now,” says iFanboy, adding: “I’m serious.” It stars Silas, an ex-soldier turned space pirate, stranded on an alien planet and MacGyvering an existence out of whatever he finds there. It’s Garing‘s debut as a comics writer/artist and he talks about it all here.
PunisherMAX has ended but they’re digging the series back up for another five issues. Untold Tales of PunisherMAX #1 is not by Jason Aaron and Steve Dillon but novelist Jason Starr and Roland Boschi. In Brian Michael Bendis‘ Spider-Men #1 (of 5) Peter Parker comes face to face with the young Miles Morales and they do stuff (preview here). Spider-Man: The Graphic Novels collects a bunch of older stories that you might be missing in your collection: Hooky, Parallel Lives, Spirits of the Earth, Spider-Man: Fear Itself et al, and DC Comics Presents: Superman Adventures #1 gives you four previously published all-ages issues in comic, by Mark Millar.
Finally, Drawn & Quarterly put this picture on Twitter yesterday and I can’t stop looking at it. I close the window but 2 minutes later it’s open again, and there they are, Seth and Ware, just doing this.