March: Book One was easily one of the best graphic novels of 2013. Not only did it begin a story of immense historical consequence-- the mid-20th Century fight for civil rights in the American South-- it also told that story from a strong, personal perspective. That perspective came from U.S. Rep. John Lewis of Georgia, who serves as the reader's guide through some very weighty material.
Now, the pressure's on. Lewis, his co-writer Andrew Aydin, and artist Nate Powell are getting set to release March: Book Two in early 2015, and their challenge is to follow up a lauded text -- one that's been used in a good many classrooms since publication -- with a second chapter that gets more violent and shows just how difficult the struggle for civil rights really was.
ComicsAlliance chatted with Powell and Aydin for a few moments at Comic-Con International in San Diego to talk about that challenge, the difficulties of depicting such intense violence, and creating what's being regarded as an official historical text.
A nomination for a Harvey Award, named for legendary MAD Magazine cartoonist and editor Harvey Kurtzman, is unquestionably the most prestigious honor that has ever been bestowed on a comic book about NASCAR. Seriously. It happened in 2009 with NASCAR Heroes.
The Harvey Awards have released the list of this year's nominees. As you might expect, the usual suspects like Hawkeye and Daredevil were honored, along with other nomination leaders Saga and Quantum and Woody. Archie, Valiant and Image all received a good amount of nominations, but it's BOOM! Studios, along with its Archaia imprint, that earned the most recognition with 26 nominations; well more than any other publisher.
Image Comics' Humble Bundle offer, which ended about two weeks ago, was a notable success with tens of thousands of readers naming their price for contemporary comics. Top Shelf Productions is part of the site's newest book offer, which will benefit Doctors Without Borders and the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.
Buyers can snag three Top Shelf books through the site: March Book One by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell; From Hell by Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell and Ed Piskor's Wizzywig.
True Detective creator Nic Pizzolatto has claimed that Alan Moore Moore and Grant Morrison were the first writers to excite him about the possibilities of storytelling.
With everyone looking to solve the many remaining mysteries of True Detective, it’s tempting to ask: are comic books the key? Pizzolatto’s spectacular Moore crib aside, I’d go with with a big no. Ain’t nothing going to settle the debate around Carcosa let alone Marty Hart’s hot dating skills, but comics do represent a largely unexplored and appropriately strange route into the show. So without further ado here’s our by no means exhaustive guide to True Detective and weird comic books.
SPOILER WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for True Detective, Top 10, From Hell and some of The Invisibles.
Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill's 2013 follow-up to their League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Century series was a bit of a left turn for the series. Nemo: Heart of Ice was a spinoff featuring the new Captain Nemo traveling in the antarctic.
Top Shelf announced today that the team is continuing the spinoff series with a new world-spanning adventure for Janni Dakkar, this time in 1941 Germany (of sorts). The book, titled Nemo: The Roses of Berlin, will be out in March, and is available for pre-order now.
James Kochalka has a Christmas present for us all.
A brand new comic, Superf*ckers Save Christmas, is available for $1.99 on ComiXology as of today. The issue's story started out an episode of Cartoon Hangover's Superf*ckers animated series, but as the episode never saw fruition, Kochalka adapted as a comic.
The last twelve months offered comic book readers a wide variety of work ranging from the most crowd-pleasing superhero epics to the most idiosyncratic of indies, and the return of old favorites to the emergence of exciting new talent. It was a busy and productive year for the industry, and one we’re pleased to celebrate with what we’re certain will be an uncontroversial, unenumerated list of awards that will prompt only resounding agreement and unbroken fellowship amongst our readers in the comments below.
If you’re like some of the ComicsAlliance staff, you’re a fetishist for expensive hardcover books that are available only in absurdly limited numbers and packaged in exquisite slipcases and loaded with supplemental material and artwork. With the gift-giving season rapidly winding down, people like us are looking for those last-minute gifts that are so expensive and so impressively large that they could never actually seem like you totally forgot to get your shopping (or blogging) done in a timely and responsible manner. The best sort of gift along those lines is of course the deluxe edition comic or art book, and I’ve put together a list of some great ones that you can still find at your local comics stores and online booksellers before the clock runs out on the season.
NOTE ON PRICES: We have included the list prices for each item. Because of holiday sales, you will very likely find discounts at your local comics shops, Amazon and elsewhere.
Despite her obligations as a television host, a political pundit, and a celebrated author, Rachel Maddow still manages to find time in her schedule to catch up on the comics she loves. An avid comics consumer, Maddow has written introductions for comics (Greg Rucka and JH Williams III's Batwoman) as well as spread the word of graphic novels she loves to any member of congress who will listen. So when a book like March -- the first in a three part autobiography from civil rights icon Congressman John Lewis -- comes along, it's right in her wheelhouse, and it's no surprise she'd go to the source to talk about it.
Congressman Lewis was joined by March co-writer Andrew Aydin and illustrator Nate Powell on The Rachel Maddow Show last night to discuss their best-selling graphic novel, as well as Martin Luther King AndThe Montgomery Story, the civil rights comic produced in 1958 that taught readers the ways of non-violence and inspired Congressman Lewis to use the medium to share his story.
The comic book, animation, illustration, pinup, mashup, fan art and design communities are generating amazing artwork of myriad styles and tastes, all of which ends up on the Internet and filtered into ComicsAlliance's Best Art Ever (This Week). These images convey senses of mood and character -- not to mention artistic skill -- but comic books are specifically a medium of sequential narratives, and great sequential art has to be both beautiful (totally subjective!) and clear in its storytelling (not so subjective!). The words and the pictures need to work together to tell the story and create whatever tone, emotion and indeed world the story requires. The contributions of every person on a creative team, from the writer to the artist(s) to the letterers, are necessary to achieving a great page of sequential storytelling.
It is the special nature of comic books that we're celebrating in this all-new recurring feature: Best Sequential Art Ever (This Week).
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