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Holiday Gift Guide: ‘Super Graphic’

Super Graphic by Tim Leong
Super Graphic

When it comes to the holiday gift-giving season, comic book readers are notoriously difficult to shop for. I mean, most of us are down at the shop buying our favorite stuff every single week, so when the time comes for people who like us to get us something we want, well, a lot of times we already have it. That’s why we’re stepping in with a public service, bringing you comics-related items sure to make the season brighter, whether you’re browsing for a gift or just looking for something to drop hints about so that you don’t get stuck with a random assortment of back issues again.

If you’ve got a fan of interesting and funny arrangements of data on your list, then why not pick up what I am very confident in declaring the best book of comic book related graphs that you can possibly buy? Because really, who doesn’t love to mix superheroes… and math?

Super Graphic by Tim LeongITEM: Super Graphic, by Tim Leong

CLASSIFICATION: Big ol’ book full of charts and graphs

AVAILABILITY: $12.78 on Amazon

I was joking above, but let’s be real here: If the Internet has taught us anything, it’s that people actually do love cleverly constructed graphs almost as much as they love funny cat pictures and pornography, and since those things tend to be pretty awkward to give as gifts for Christmas, Super Graphic is probably one of the best options.

There’s a pretty good chance that you’ve heard of Super Graphic already — Amazon named it the best art and design book of 2013, and we spotlighted it in our own Best of the Year awards here at CA — but even if you haven’t, it’s worth checking out. Author Tim Leong, an occasional ComicsAlliance contributor and the former art director for Complex and Wired, has cobbled together a series of graphs based on everything from the colors of superhero costumes to mathematical attempts to grapple with the existential horror of San Diego Comic-Con, to charting the decline in his faith in humanity every time he sees a “peeing Calvin” bumper sticker. My personal favorite is the Punisher flowchart pictured above, where, in true Frank Castle fashion, every scenario ends with “Kill him.”

That’s the real magic of Super Graphic: It’s very, very, very funny, but in a way that has all this meticulously researched data arranged to back up its laughs. If you’ve got someone on your list who’s ever snickered out loud at a Venn diagram and who also has in-depth knowledge of the X-Men, it’s the perfect gift.

Even if it does have a chart listing reasons to like Cyclops.

 

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