[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] THE TOP TEN GRAPHIC NOVELS OF 2018!

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] THE TOP TEN GRAPHIC NOVELS OF 2018!


December 12, 2018    Ryan Carey

    It’s that time of the year again, to go over all that’s come out over the last 12 months and choose favorites. And that’s the key word here, “favorites” — I didn’t read everything that came out in 2018 (who could?), and so make no pretenses to being…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘AMERICAN PSYCHO’ BY BENJAMIN MARRA

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘AMERICAN PSYCHO’ BY BENJAMIN MARRA


December 5, 2018    Ryan Carey

    In a way, I suppose, it makes sense that a cartoonist as image-conscious as Benjamin Marra would find “inspiration” in the ultimate story of excess and artifice, American Psycho, but for a guy who’s spent most of his career deliberately confounding readers as to how much of what he’s doing…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘GO-BOTS #1’ BY TOM SCIOLI

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘GO-BOTS #1’ BY TOM SCIOLI


November 28, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Even by the low standards of licensed toy properties, the Go-Bots don’t get much respect. Yeah, sure, they’ve had some animation revivals (even, I think, a feature-length film or two of the straight-to-video variety) and some comic books here and there, but a lot of that — while…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] THE COMPLETE MATINEE JUNKIE: FIVE YEARS AT THE MOVIES

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] THE COMPLETE MATINEE JUNKIE: FIVE YEARS AT THE MOVIES


November 21, 2018    Ryan Carey

    For more years than I care to admit, I was a compulsive moviegoer. I can kid myself and say it was all in pursuit of material for my Trash Film Guru blog (still a going concern, although now only updated a couple/few times a month as opposed to all…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] 10 “MUST-BUY” ITEMS FOR THE COMICS READERS ON YOUR HOLIDAY LIST FROM FANTAGRAPHICS’ “CYBER MONDAY” SALE

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] 10 “MUST-BUY” ITEMS FOR THE COMICS READERS ON YOUR HOLIDAY LIST FROM FANTAGRAPHICS’ “CYBER MONDAY” SALE


November 14, 2018    Ryan Carey

  On Monday, November 26th, Fantagraphics Books is running a one-day-only “Cyber Monday” sale featuring 40% off nearly everything in their online store — and since they’ve published some of the very best comics to come out this year (as is their custom) , now is the time to sock…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘A LONE DEER AT THE END OF THE WORLD’ BY D. BRADFORD GAMBLES

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘A LONE DEER AT THE END OF THE WORLD’ BY D. BRADFORD GAMBLES


November 7, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Here’s the thing: if I were an editor or publisher, and cartoonist D. Bradford Gambles submitted his new mini, A Lone Deer At The End Of The World, to me — I confess that I’d probably be tempted to reject it. The book’s just too obvious, I’d tell myself (and…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘FEARLESS COLORS’ BY SAMPLERMAN

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘FEARLESS COLORS’ BY SAMPLERMAN


October 31, 2018    Ryan Carey

    French cartoonist Yvan Guillo, better known under his nom de plume of Samplerman, has a technique like no other — and it’s one that leaves me in a real quandary. Digitally manipulating pre-existing (primarily Golden Age, and most likely all public domain) comic book illustrations into hitherto-unforeseen, and uniformly…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘NOCTURNE’ BY TARA BOOTH

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘NOCTURNE’ BY TARA BOOTH


October 24, 2018    Ryan Carey

    At this point in the history of the comics medium — hell, at this point in the history of art in general — irony, particularly humorous irony, by all rights really shouldn’t work anymore. It certainly doesn’t deserve to, the vast majority of the time it doesn’t, and I’m generally…

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[DAILY GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘LARA CROFT WAS MY FAMILY’ BY CARTA MONIR

[DAILY GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘LARA CROFT WAS MY FAMILY’ BY CARTA MONIR


October 17, 2018    Ryan Carey

    When you can construct a fully-formed, emotionally resonant, deeply poignant comics memoir in just 40 pages, you’re probably an extraordinary cartoonist. When you can do it in 40 panels? Then take a well-deserved bow, because you’re downright otherworldly. Now, before you mention it, rest assured that I’m fully aware that it’s…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘TINDERELLA’ BY M.S. HARKNESS

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘TINDERELLA’ BY M.S. HARKNESS


October 9, 2018    Ryan Carey

    My dating experience entirely pre-dates the “Tinder Era,” a fact for which I’m eternally grateful — and who wouldn’t be? After all, as embarrassing as it may be for many people of my generation to confess to their offspring that that they met their other parent at a…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] JIM OSBORNE: THE BLACK PRINCE OF THE UNDERGROUND

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] JIM OSBORNE: THE BLACK PRINCE OF THE UNDERGROUND


October 2, 2018    Ryan Carey

If you’re going to San Francisco — Fuck the “flowers in your hair” stuff and forget the “gentle people” — you’d do better to keep an eye out for the speed freaks, junkies, pickpockets, gutter-dwelling lowlifes, psychotic serial killers, devil-worshipers, and predators of every stripe. The Mamas And The Papas…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] MONKEY CHEF: A LOVE STORY

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] MONKEY CHEF: A LOVE STORY


September 26, 2018    Ryan Carey

    We’ve all been there — dead-end job, dead-end love life, dead-end existence. In his previous autobiographical minis, Chicago-based cartoonist Mike Freiheit has dwelt on these issues in exacting (and often hilarious) detail, but in his longest work to date, the impressive and ambitious graphic novel (parts of which…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘ROLY-POLY’ BY DANIEL SEMANAS

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘ROLY-POLY’ BY DANIEL SEMANAS


September 19, 2018    Ryan Carey

      Not to sound too dramatic — or maybe that should be melodramatic — right out of the gate, but it strikes me that any way you look at it, the much-vaunted “age of reason” is over.   Oh, sure, social and political commentators have been telling us at least…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘PENGUINS’ BY NICK THORBURN

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘PENGUINS’ BY NICK THORBURN


September 11, 2018    Ryan Carey

    It goes without saying that whenever somebody reasonably well-known from another field of creative endeavor entirely “makes the leap” over to comics, a certain hardened, crusty rump of fandom will view said transition (however temporary) with suspicion. Less so, I’m guessing, when it’s a literary personage like, I…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘HOW TO BE ALIVE’ BY TARA BOOTH

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘HOW TO BE ALIVE’ BY TARA BOOTH


September 5, 2018    Ryan Carey

      Toward the tail end of 2017 — yeah, I know, I’m still playing a little bit of “catch-up” here and there, sue me — the always-interesting Retrofit Comics/Big Planet Comics publishing co-venture released one of the more thoroughly engrossing books of the year, cartoonist/painter Tara Booth’s How To…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘LAWNS’ BY ALEX NALL

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘LAWNS’ BY ALEX NALL


September 4, 2018    Ryan Carey

      “In a town like Twin Peaks,” the promotional advertisements for David Lynch’s TWIN PEAKS: FIRE WALK WITH ME informed us, “no one is innocent.” Of course, when his foolishly-lambasted masterpiece (for my money, at any rate) hit theaters back in 1992, Lynch had already made something of a career…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘GRIP’ BY LALE WESTVIND

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘GRIP’ BY LALE WESTVIND


August 21, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Where the “average” wordless comic often comes across as the result of a choice made by the cartoonist to communicate her or his story by means of the purely visual “half” of the medium, Lale Westvind’s 2018-released Grip (specifically, Grip Vol. 1, as this is the 68-page opening installment of…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘RED WINTER’ BY ANNELI FURMARK

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘RED WINTER’ BY ANNELI FURMARK


August 15, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Like love itself, there is a poetry and beauty to Swedish cartoonist Anneli Furmark’s 2018 graphic novel Red Winter (the first of her works to be translated into English, courtesy of its North American publisher, Drawn+Quarterly) — but it’s often understated, unobtrusive, a “part of the scenery,” if you…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] “The Enemy From Within” by Austin English

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] “The Enemy From Within” by Austin English


August 8, 2018    Ryan Carey

  Some comics really make you work. Not as hard as the cartoonist who made them, of course — and Austin English busted his tail (and his hands, and probably even his brain) on his latest solo book, The Enemy From Within, published in late 2017 by Sonatina Comics. The sheer effort that…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] “Soft X-Ray/ Mindhunters” By Alex Degen

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] “Soft X-Ray/ Mindhunters” By Alex Degen


July 31, 2018    Ryan Carey

  Chances are that it would be almost unbearably pretentious, not to mention way less clever than it sounds, if I were to refer to Alex Degen’s latest Koyama Press-published graphic novel, Soft X-Ray/Mindhunters — which originally began “life” as a 44-page comic and now stands, expanded and extrapolated upon, at a…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘The Strange’ by Jérôme Ruillier

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ‘The Strange’ by Jérôme Ruillier


July 24, 2018    Ryan Carey

  Namelessness. Anonymity. Invisibility. For the protagonist in Jerome Ruillier’s new Drawn+Quarterly-published graphic novel, The Strange, these three things are inextricably linked — and while all of them are, to one degree or another, imposed upon him by society and circumstance, the first two are undeniably de-humanizing (even if, fair enough,…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ROOPERT BY AUGUST LIPP

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] ROOPERT BY AUGUST LIPP


July 18, 2018    Ryan Carey

  There’s no doubt about it: “funny animal” comics aren’t what they used to be. Then again, they never really were, at least not the good ones — one way or another, they were always at least a little bit subversive, and whether we’re talking about Walt Kelly’s open socio-political commentary in Pogo…

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IN MEMORIAM: STEVE DITKO (1927-2018)

IN MEMORIAM: STEVE DITKO (1927-2018)


July 7, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Okay, here’s the deal: I had this whole thing done — and probably done better — and I scrapped it. This now-meager memorial to the inimitable, irreplaceable Steve Ditko — artist, creator, visionary, iconoclast — initially had a soaring, elegiac title, was loaded with florid and heartfelt prose, and…

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[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] POOCHYTOWN By Jim Woodring

[GRINDHOUSE COMICS COLUMN] POOCHYTOWN By Jim Woodring


July 4, 2018    Ryan Carey

    Here’s the thing: Jim Woodring’s been at it so long, and done it so well, that it’s almost easy to — dare I say it — take him for granted. There’s really no reason that you (or I, or we) should, though — after all, the guy is…

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