The Gosh! Authority 14.02.18
It's a heck of a week coming up for events as our programme gets back into full swing for 2018!
First up, if you're reading this on Monday the 12th, there's still time for you to head down for Ryan Holmberg's talk on gekiga manga to celebrate the launch of Fukushima Devil Fish, Breakdown Press' new collection of works by Katsumata Susumu. More details here.
The on Wednesday we have the February meeting of Reads, London's premier graphic novel reading group! This month the group is looking at Beautiful Darkness, the brilliant graphic novel by French creators Kerascoët and Fabien Vehlmann. Here's the skinny.
And then on Thursday we have a stellar line-up of concept artists and costume designers from Star Wars The Last Jedi talking about their work on the blockbuster Rian Johnson film! The talk has sold out, but some returns may be available on the night if you want to chance it, though of course we can't guarantee a seat without a ticket. All the details here.
On with the new releases!
HIGHLIGHTS THIS WEEK
FUKUSHIMA DEVIL FISH GN
Writer / Artist: Katsumata Susumu
Publisher: Breakdown Press
A beautifully produced translation of works by celebrated gekiga artist Katsumata Susumu, beginning with two comics essays from the 80's about the dangers of nuclear power - and the ill-fated Fukushima plant in particular - based on his research into the working conditions of the labourers tasked with maintaining Japan's reactors. It's a fascinating look into a little-understood world where warning bells were ringing long ago. Then the remainder of the collection covers stories from the legendary alt-manga magazines Garo and COM, originally published in the 60' and 70's, and populated with creatures from Japanese folklore and lonely young men bereft of home and family.
Try it if you like: Flowering Harbour / Goodbye & Other Stories / Ichi-F
IS THIS GUY FOR REAL? THE UNBELIEVABLE ANDY KAUFMAN GN
Writer / Artist: Box Brown
Publisher: First Second
Andy Kaufman was one of the greats of American comedy, an enigmatic figure that lived his act to such an extent that even many who were close to him never really knew him. In his latest biographical work, following on from his history of Tetris and chronicle of the life of Andre the Giant, Box Brown attempts to unpick the man from the self-created myth. Known internationally for his role in hit sitcom Taxi, not to mention his time as a professional wrestler, Kaufman was a comics comic, often throwing off convention in an attempt to challenge his audiences with characters who practically begged to be hated. Brown has a deft hand with this kind of thing, so given the subject matter this is sure to be a compelling read.
Try it if you like: Andre the Giant / Tetris / Man on the Moon
THE PRINCE AND THE DRESSMAKER GN
Writer / Artist: Jen Wang
Publisher: First Second
Jen Wang, celebrated writer/artist of Coco Be Good, and artist on the Corey Doctorow-written In Real Life, returns with another solo project that looks to be something pretty special. It's the story of the friendship that forms between a young Parisian dressmaker and a prince who escapes the palace at night dressed in the finest gowns as soaring socialite Lady Crystallia. It's a gender fluid fairy tale as prince and dressmaker negotiate the social mores of the time while attempting to maintain the prince's secret. But how long can it last? It's a great story hook, illustrated beautifully by Wang.
Try it if you like: Fresh Romance / Koko Be Good / Another Castle
Writer: Mark Millar
Artist: John Romita Jr
The original team of Millar and Romita Jr are back with the story of an all-new Kick-Ass. With Dave Lizewski stepping aside at the end of the last mini-series, a vacancy has been left open in the world of scum-stomping. Enter Patience Lee, a thirty-something black mother of two with a history in the military. So something of a departure from a nerdy high school kid then. Not much more is known about the series yet, but with a preview of the first few pages dropping us right into the middle of an action scene which is going decidedly against Patience, we look to be headed back into the kind of no-holds-barred ultraviolence that helped the original series become such a hit. Also, this issue incredibly marks the TENTH anniversary of the original series! Yeesh!
Try it if you like: Kick-Ass / Kick-Ass 2 / Kick-Ass 3
Writer: Dan DiDio, Justin Jordan
Artist: Kenneth Rocafort
The latest New Age of Heroes title to spin out of Metal, introducing high school junior Derek James: the teleporting teen known as Sideways! Spidey-inspired antics ensue as Derek learns the limits of his powers, creating portals into the dark dimension that he can travel through (or presumably toss people in). Looks like a lot of fun.
Try it if you like: Peter Parker Spectacular Spider-Man / Blue Beetle / Teen Titans
TOTAL JAZZ HC
Writer / Artist: Blutch
There's not enough Blutch available in English. The French author is a master, with a versatile line that can go from impressionist swoops and swirls to tight realism with deceptive ease. Perfectly suited, then, to the subject of jazz, both the form and the culture. In this collection of vignettes from Fantagraphics, Blutch informs & entertains as he shows both his enduring love of the form and his humorously barbed frustration with its less endearing aspects (mainly the fans).
Try it if you like: So Long Silver Screen / Coltrane / Billie Holiday
BINGO LOVE OGN
Writer: Tee Franklin
Artist: Jenn St-Onge
A sweet queer love story that covers a span of six decades. A young couple - Hazel and Mari - meet in the 60's and fall in love, only to be forced apart by their families. After both are forced into a socially acceptable path of marriage and children, they meet again in their sixties at a church bingo hall. Reconnecting, they are given the opportunity to seize the opportunity they once lost, if they have the courage to do so.
Try it if you like: Dykes to Watch Out For / Fresh Romance (again!) / Strangers in Paradise
COLD WAR #1
Writer: Christopher Sebela
Artist: Hayden Sherman
The customers of Panacea Cryonics expected to be waking into a bold new future where their failing bodies would be rebuilt, free of disease and death. Instead they're unceremoniously brought into a world were a gun is shoved in their hand and a choice is given: fight or die. It's a grim tale of future war, where the combatants don't know whom they are fighting or why. All they know is that life in the future ain't all it was cracked up to be!
Try it if you like: Lazarus / Altered Carbon / The Forever War
DEATH OF LOVE #1
Writer: Justin Jordan
Artist: Donal DeLay
Just in time for Valentine's Day, it's a Cupidic (?) massacre! Justin Jordan channels his inner Ennis in this gleefully unhinged horror comedy following Philo Harris, a man who gains the ability to see the Cupidae responsible for the state of the world's love lives. After a particularly bad drunken decision (love sucks), Philo ends up going to war with love itself. With a chainsaw.
Try it if you like: Chew / Train of Love / Luther Strange
ALSO OF NOTE THIS WEEK
- BEST OF ENEMIES HC PART THREE 1984 – 2013 - The long awaited final volume in this David B. illustrated history.
- DARK KNIGHTS RISING THE WILD HUNT #1 - The Dark Judg-err-Knights are travelling across the Multiverse in an attempt to stamp out the last resistance to their plans. With none other than Grant Morrison aboard as a co-writer!
- DC MEETS LOONEY TUNES TP - A collection of the recent crossovers, including the excellent Batman / Elmer Fudd.
- GRASS KINGS HC VOL 01 - Collecting the first arc of Matt Kindt and Tyler Jenkins' beautifully illustrated trailer park crime saga.
- JIMMYS BASTARDS TP VOL 01 - Collecting the first arc of Garth Ennis and Russell Braun's James Bond semi-parody.
- KIM REAPER TP VOL 01 GRIM BEGINNINGS - A collection of Sarah Graley's terrific Boom YA series.
- LOVECRAFT MYTH OF CTHULHU HC - Three classic Esteban Maroto Lovecraft adaptations in a handsome new hardcover!
- LUMBERJANES TP VOL 08
- MARVELS BLACK PANTHER ART OF MOVIE SLIPCASE - A beautiful collection of concept art from the latest Marvel movie that is fast becoming a cultural phenomenon.
- QUANTUM TEENS ARE GO TP VOL 01 - Collecting the first arc of the Black Mask series by Magdalene Visaggio and Eryk Donovan.
- RWBY GN - A tie-in manga to the insanely popular anime by studio Rooster Teeth.
- SECRET LOVES OF GEEKS TP - A follow-up to the Secret Lives of Geek Girls, with stories by the likes of Margaret Atwood, Gerard Way, Patrick Rothfuss, Hope Larson, Cecil Castellucci, Valentine De Landro, Marley Zarcone and more!
- SHADE THE CHANGING GIRL WONDER WOMAN SPECIAL #1 - Milk Wars continues in this one-shot by Cecil Castellucci and Mirka Andolfo!
- STAR WARS THRAWN #1 (OF 6) - Jody Houser and Luke Ross adapt the Timothy Zahn novel telling the origin of this ever-popular character.
See you next week!
Andrew & Shaun.