I was over at Jim Rugg's house last week and, as usual, we sat around looking at comics. He had a copy of Marc Bell's The Mojo Action Companion Unit #1. I remember this comic from when it came out. It was the '90s and autobiographical comics were all the rage.
I flipped through the comic and laughed out loud at this:
Marc is, if you don't know, the creator of the Shrimpy and Paul comic strip:
What's that? You never heard of Shrimpy and Paul? Shame on you!
Anyways, Marc is one of those awesomely wacky Canadian cartoonists like Peter Thompson, Jason McLean, Mark Connery, and a million others I'm probably forgetting. Here is Marc's big deal D&Q book from a couple years ago:
It's magazine-sized. Slick paper. I really like the format.
It seems to be one of Marc's "art zines." The first few pages are packed with some great drawing:
Here's a closeup. It took me about ten minutes to "read" this part of the zine. I think that's a good thing.
After three or four pages of tightly packed black-and-white pages, the book then opens up into full-page one-panel color cartoons:
Then Marc shows off his painting skills (below left) and his short-story writing skills (below right):
For those of you out there who may not be super familiar with Marc's work - check out this interview that Marc did with Dan Nadel here on TCJ.com back when Hot Potatoe came out. Marc is one of those rare artists who actually has an "art career" and a "comics career." He's not one of those art-world snobs who slums it with the comics folks. And he's not a cartoonist who is trying to get out of the comics ghetto and stay out. Great stuff. Pick it up here.
At the other end of the alternative comic book spectrum is Jason Karns. I had never really heard of Mr. Karns until a couple years ago when Jim Rugg showed Karns's comics to me. If you are unfamiliar with Karns's work then check out this interview that Jim did with him awhile back.
Jim just got this in the mail:
This issue has newsprint and glossy pages in it. It is interesting to see how the type of paper used changes the colors. I like both equally. I think Fuckitor is one of the most interesting print jobs out there. Love the size of the book and the feel of the paper. Apparently, Karns does it all himself.
Karns is one of those guys who is almost "too real" to be part of the contemporary comics conversation. Just about everything compared to his work seems "pretentious". Karns is not trying to do a throwback style or appropriate "bad comics" in order to make some sort of art comic. This is the real deal. This shit is SERIOUS! Buy your own copy here.
Over and out. Thanks.