New for September 2010
Love and Rockets: New Stories #3
by Gilbert & Jaime Hernandez
Break out the champagne, it's here! The third annual installment of the latest incarnation of the greatest comic book series of our times: Love and Rockets. This is the purest manifestation of the Perfect Sphere of True Comics that we mere mortals are likely to encounter here on planet earth. Two stories each by both Jaime and GIlbert, who fairly evenly divide the issue between them. We'll certainly have more to say about this issue before too long.
retail price - $14.99 copacetic price - $11.99
by Kevin Huizenga
And here's another reason to get up in the morning: a new release by Kevin H. This one is fairly convoluted in its conception and execution, but therein lies part of its appeal. Wild Kingdom had its humble beginnings in Super Monster 12 that was first published way back at the dawn of the millennium. This material was then bolstered and slightly reconfigured for the February 2006 release of the fourth issue of Or Else, his since discontinued Drawn & Quarterly series. And, now with Wild Kingdom, the material at last receives its apotheosis. The core meaning of Wild Kingdom is surrounded by a dense underbrush of irony that must be overcome by the reader. In addition, a multiplicity of signification strategies are employed that may throw careless readers off the scent. Only those capable of sustained, dedicated tracking will be able to bag the prize at the center of Wild Kingdom. Get a head start, here.
retail price - $19.95 copacetic PIX special price - $14.95
Make Me a Woman
by Vanessa Davis
Here we have the follow up effort to Ms. Davis's debut collection, Spaniel Rage, published a few years back by the now (sadly) defunct Buenaventura Press. Make Me a Woman, is, at least to our thinking, quite an apt title, for of all the supremely talented female practitioners of comics out there, it is Davis who perhaps most unapologetically embraces her womanhood. Davis pens page after page of voluptuously sensuous comics that retain a strong sense of humor and present the reader with a fully formed sensibility. Check it out, if you think you can handle it.
retail price - $24.95 copacetic price - $22.22
With Palookaville 20, Seth bids a fond adieu to the world of the pamphlet comic book, and steps into the arena of the hardcover annual. Bringing his singular design strengths to bear, this classy little tome continues the tale of Clyde Fans, provides an in-depth look at his "Dominion CIty" project, replete with peeks at some fabulous spreads from his ledger sketchbooks, a batch of selections from his straight-up sketchbooks, volumes seven and eight, and a new (at least to us) 14-page story, "Calgary Festival." Not convinced? Check out this PDF preview.
retail price - $19.95 copacetic price - $17.77
You'll Never Know, Book Two: Collateral Damage
by Carol Tyler
This is a comics work that leverages all the strengths of the form to push the boundaries of intimacy within the medium. In You'll Never Know, Carol Tyler invites us into her home and into her heart and takes us on a guided tour of her family history that spans three generations and is grounded in the trauma that was the Second World War, as it was experienced by one one American who fought there, and the "collateral damage" that it subsequently brought home to his loved ones. There is a lot going on here on many levels, and Tyler's mastery of the form is what makes it possible. You'll want to take your time and savor every page of this deeply moving work that is simultaneously a formal tour de force. You'll Never Know is a self-effacing and stoic achievement that embodies the best traditions of the American midwest, ingenuity and empathy not least among them.
retail price - $24.99 copacetic price - $22.22
A Drunken Dream and Other Stores
by Moto Hagio
forward by Trina Robbins
Founding mother of shojo manga, Moto Hagio finally gets an English language collection! This hardcover volume contains ten tales spanning three decades, and contains some of her very best work, including the novella, "Iguana Girl," which Trina Robbins, in her tubthumping forward, calls a "brilliant tour de force." A Drunken Dream also includes an introductory essay by shojo evangelist Matt Thorn on "The Magnificent Forty-Niners," the generation of female manga artists who revolutionized girls comics in the 1970s, as well as a quite substantial interview with Hagio, also conducted by Thorn. Anyone interested in the history of shojo manga pretty much has no choice but to check this one out, and we think that anyone looking for emotionally powerful yet delicately nuanced comics will find their time spent here rewarded. Fantagraphics has made this easy, by providing this massive 31-page preview. Be sure to take advantage of this, we're confident that you'll find it worth your while.
retail price - $24.99 copacetic price - $22.22
AX: Alternative Manga - Vol. One
edited by Sean Michael Wilson
This much anticipated anthology of manga from off the beaten path premiered at SPX and is now on our shelves. It weighs in at a substantial 400 pages and contains the work of 33 artists, including the recognized figures, Yoshihiro Tatsumi, Imiri Sakabashira, Takashi Nemoto and Kazuichi Hanawa, who have had books published in North America by Drawn & Quarterly, PictureBox and Ponent Mon. More important, perhaps, is the first time looks at lesser known and unknown lights of Japan's alternative manga scene, and they are on ample display here. The material in AX runs the gamut from the crudely drawn and obscenely scatological work of Takashi Nemoto, who makes Johnny Ryan look tame by comparison, to the cutesy cuddly Shinya Komatsu, to the super-polished works of both Keizo Miyanashi (think Paul Gulacy) and Takato Yamamoto (think Suehiro Maruo), to the jaggedly angular Otoyo Mitsuhashi and a world of variety inbetween. Sexual relations are a common thread in many, but by no means all, of the works in AX, and are plainly on display in more than one tale, making this a definite ADULTS ONLY item.
retail price - $29.95 copacetic special price - $23.95
edited (and published) by Ed Choy Moorman
Ed Choy Moorman has managed to pull together a really interesting cross section of artists who have turned in some excellent – and, as best we can tell, previously unpublished – work in this anthology devoted to all things ghostly and benefiting RS Eden. Highlights for us were the contributions by John Hankiewicz and Warren Craghead III, whose works we found truly haunting. Corinne Mucha's "Dorm-Ant Spirits" was plenty of fun, and a nice follow up to her "Growing Up Haunted" from Papercutter 8. Also on hand are Jeffrey Brown, John Porcellino, Lucy Knisley, Will Dinski, Aidan Koch... and quite a few more, including one of Editor Moorman's own.
retail price - $10.00 copacetic price - $8.88
by Matthew Thurber
It's cover-to-cover comics with Matthew Thurber as he takes his readers on another trip deep inside his mind with the ever spiraling "Exploding Head Career Path" and more!
retail price - $4.00 copacetic price - $3.60
by Keith Jones
Here is perhaps the first true "post-Fort Thunder" graphic novel. This lengthy, full color, square format work incorporates many of the tropes associated with the now quasi-legendary Providence, RI comic collective, as well as those of others who have followed in their wake, and uses them in the service of advancing a more normative narrative. This is not a simple regurgitation, but more of a synthetic amalgamation. Those studied in the ways of FT will notice the Mat Brinkman surrounded by swathes of vibrant Paper Rad colors, engaged in dialogues somewhat reminiscent of those of Anders Nilsen in his more experimental works; all dropped into a science fiction setting that might be a distance cousin of Dash Shaw's worlds. And then of course there are all these cats... Quite a heady stew. Here's a tiny taste.
retail price - $29.95 copacetic special price - $23.75
by Pablo Holmberg
Here's another full color work in the square format, but it is different in almost all other aspects of its execution. Eden employs a color palette as subdued as Catland's is loud. While Eden, too, is an otherworldly fantasy, where Catland is a (bizarre and fantastic) heroic adventure replete with theatrical male bonding, Eden is a tale of heart that focuses on quotidian domestic pleasures. Here are a few Copacetic favorites singing it's praises: "Pablo Holmberg's comics feel like they were written by a friend who loves you deeply." -- James Kochalka; "Eden ... immerses us in a perfect little universe, one tiny glimpse at a time." -- Ron Rege, Jr.; "Discovering Pablo Homberg was a revelation to me, and Eden makes for a perfect point of entry into his work." -- John Porcellino. If that was enough to get you interested, then you're ready to take the next step.
retail price - $16.95 copacetic price - $13.75
Diary Comics! - Number 01
by Dustin Harbin
Spend six months with your pen and ink pal, Dustin Harbin, at the regulation rate of four panels per day. The drawing starts out a bit rough (but only by Harbin's own exacting standards), but about half way in he seems to start taking the project a bit more seriously and the precision of the drawing noticeably improves. Dustin's sense of humor may not appeal to all, but anyone who is a sucker for finely inked cartooning at a reasonable price need look no further. This finely crafted production of Koyama Press has all its aesthetics in the right place and will set you back a mere half a sawbuck here at Copacetic.
retail price - $6.00 copacetic price - $5.00
Lucky in Love, Book One: A Poor Man's History
by George Chieffer and Stephen DeStefano
At last, the underrated artistic talents of Stephen DeStefano get the chance to step into the limelight. Lucky in Love is a fictional memoir of that brings its readers an Italian-American coming of age story set in the WWII-era. DeStefano, with the able assistance of scripter, George Chieffet, really brings the era alive. This volume – the first of two – divides the first half of its protagonist's life into three parts: teenage life before the war; life during wartime; and the "triumphant" post-war return. The book's designer, Alexa Koenings, deserves special recognition for delivering a book that looks and feels – from its olive drab cover color scheme to its heavy, ivory paper stock – as though it originated in the era it describes: which goes a long way towards immersing readers in the illusion of going "back in the day"; this achievement is no small potatoes, and is a very real part of the reading experience that simply does not survive the transition to the screen of an e-reader. So, please keep that in mind when you take a gander at this sneak preview on your computer screen.
retail price - $19.99 copacetic price - $17.77
by renée french
The latest offering by mademoiselle French is this chunky square hardcover from PictureBox. It is a tale told in a bifurcated fashion that employs her two distinct representational approaches with a heightened degree of narrative interplay and thrust. The particular narrative being related here is one that can "be read both as an oblique autobiography and as a suspenseful fantasy story" and that references the artists struggles with migraine headaches and Argentine ant infestations. The finely shaded and delicately nuanced pencil drawings that are the artist's trademark have never been stronger.
retail price - $30.00 copacetic price - $26.95
Nancy, Volume 2
by John Stanley
By our count the fifth volume in Drawn Quarterly's nascent John Stanley Library. As with all previous volumes in the series, this one is a finely crafted work of book design by Seth, for whom the John Stanley Library is a lifelong dream come true. This volume is a standout in that it contains one of the most popular of all Nancy comics: Four Color 1034 - Nancy and Sluggo Summer Camp, from the summer of 1959. In addition, the other issues collected each contain an episode of the John stanley creation, "Oona and her Haunted House."
retail price - $29.95 copacetic price - $24.95
by Galen Goodwin Longstreth & Maris Wicks
It's full color fun for the entire family in this extremely kid-friendly comic about a day well spent in the great out of doors. This is another quality publication from our good friends at Tugboat Press, publisher of Papercutter, speaking of which...
retail price - $6.00 copacetic price - $4.95
edited by Greg Means
Yes, it's another fine issue of Papercutter. This time around, Nate Beaty, the official Papercutter endpaper artist (he's done the endpapers of every issue, you can go check, we'll wait...) gets to stretch his legs in the 21-page, semi-epic "Winslow," written by Dave Roche. Then there's a 10-page gem by reclusive fan favorite Farel Dalrymple, "Live With Our Clerics," and, the icing on the cake - a crazy one-pager by Pittsburgh's own Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca, "Eagle, Run." Yet another great issue of Papercutter, which continues to be the best regularly published anthology comic book in North America.
retail price - $4.00 copacetic price - $3.60
by Jillian Tamaki
The latest volume in Drawn & Quarterly's ongoing "petit livre" series, Indoor Voice features 160 pages of drawings and comics in pen & ink, ink wash, water color, and straight up pencil; reproduced in black & white and full color as called for. Jillian Tamaki is probably best known as an illustrator – her work has appeared in many high profile magazines and newspapers – but she may be better known in the comics world for Skim, the Ignatz Award-winning graphic novel she co-created with her cousin Mariko Tamaki. Check out Jillian Tamaki's work at her website, and see what you think.
retail price - $19.95 copacetic price - $14.95
The Flying Destructicate #3: Secret Pockets
A project of Pittsburgh based Encyclopedia Destructica, brain child of Christopher Kardambikis and Jasdeep Khaira, The Flying Destructicate is the project of a single artist. This time around The Flying Destructicate is piloted by Mary Mack Tremonte who has chosen as her theme the secrets we carry around with us in our pockets: hidden yet right there with us at all ties as we walk down the street. She and a dozen fellow artists have assembled – literally, and by hand – a very hands-on work that is easily the most tactilely engaging work currently on our shelves. Pick it up and open it, and you'll see what we mean. This is a hand made limited edition – once they're gone, they're gone.
retail price - $20.00 copacetic price - $20.00
Items from our September 2010 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.
New for August 2010
The Unsinkable Walker Bean
by Aaron Renier; colored by Alec Longstreth Love and Rockets: New Stories #3
What better book to lead off "Back-to-School" month than the first new book by Aaron Renier since his wildly popular Spiral Bound – a graphic novel that had the feel of having germinated in classroom doodles that subsequently took on lives of their own. Fans who have been wondering what Renier's been doing with himself since Spiral Bound's 2004 release now at last have their answer in The Unsinkable Walker Bean, an energetic and entertaining, 190-page, full color graphic novel that is quite the value. One can infer from the raves plastered on the back covers – by the likes of Brian "Hugo Cabret" Selznick ("Gorgeous... Your'e going to love it."), Lane "Stinky Cheese Man" Smith ("Makes me feel ten years old again... The guy's a bit of a mad genius") and Jeff "Bone" Smith ("So beautiful are the drawings, that I can smell the sea salt and feel the spray... Outrageous, and wonderful!") – that it appears that this book is aimed at young readers, but, clearly, as with the works of all the above quoted blurbsters, it is a work that can be enjoyed by comics readers of all ages. This is a magically well-drawn work (and, we can't help but add, it looks as though Renier has gained more than a passing familiarity with the comics of Dan Zettwoch; to which we say, "Hurrah!" Zettwoch being a long time Copacetic fave). Walker Bean contains page after page of fantastic art in the service of story telling and is sure to encourage a burgeoning of comics appreciation in many a reader. (Colored by Alec Longstreth)
retail price - $13.95 copacetic price - $12.75
Amulet, Book Three: The Cloud Searchers
by Kazoo Kibosh
The Amulet series has won a veritable legion of enthusiastic young readers here at Copacetic, and we're certain they will all be happy to hear that the third, 200 page, full color volume in this series has at last arrived – just in time to provide a welcome weekend reward after a week of scholarly striving. Flying monsters, robot pilots, cities in the sky, and more fills the fantastic parallel universe – one that comes complete with prophetic glances into our own – with adventure and thrills. The Amulet series is definitely reminiscent of Miyazaki's work, with The Cloud Searchers bringing to mind Castle in the Sky in particular, so we feel comfortable recommending this book to Miyazaki fans as well as fans of Jeff Smith's Bone who are looking around for something new to read. Anyone who has yet to experience Amulet, or is considering it as a gift, is encouraged to start at the beginning, with the first volume in the series, The Stonekeeper (which is, of course, readily available here at Copacetic, along with it's sequel, The Stonekeeper's Curse).
retail price - $10.99 copacetic price - $9.99
Bone: Tall Tales
by Jeff Smith with Tom Sniegoski
The eleventh volume in the immensely popular Bone series, Tall Tales collects previously published material along with an all-new framing sequence that weaves it all together, featuring Smiley, Bartleby, Ring, Bingo and Todd telling the "tall tales" that fill the collection. The largest portion of the book is a now-colored-by-Steve-Hanamaker representing of the out-of-print, B&W collection Stupid, Stupid Rat Tales, which features three adventures of Big Johnson Bone, that were written by Tom Sneigowski and drawn by Bone-creator, Smith. In addition there is a hard-to-find short story that originally appeared in Disney Adventures Magazine. And, for those readers that pay attention to these sort of things, technically, the story-telling framing sequence that weaves together the "Tall Tales" takes place after the conclusion of the Bone saga, while the stories that they tell take place before, making them prequels of a sort. This volume will set snugly on the shelf next to the previous ten volumes in the Bone saga, and is sure to be enjoyed by all its fans.
retail price - $10.99 copacetic price - $9.99
Set To Sea
by Drew Weing
Adopting both the format and template of Sammy Harkham's Poor Sailor – that of a mini-comic sized hardcover volume composed of a series of single-panel pages dealing with an inadvertent maritime adventure – Drew Weing has attacked the page with a formidable inking technique that calls to mind Roger Langridge's fine work on Fred the Clown. A key difference between Harkham's and Weing's respective mini-epics, is that Set to Sea, while suffering its hero to sustain one rather gruesome injury, is, nevertheless, suitable for younger readers – especially those of a nautical bent, who enjoy finely crafted renderings of 19th century ships and towns.
retail price - $16.99 copacetic price - $15.00
The Anthology Project
edited by Joy Ang & Nick Thornborrow
This is a very attractive, 238 page, full color, hardcover anthology of comics that is designed to appeal to fans of the popular Flight comics anthology edited by Kazu Kibuishi (creator of Amulet; see above) and that is part of the new generation of comics artists and cartoonists who create their work largely using computers. We encourage you to check out the generous apportionment of previews (and plenty more besides) at the elegantly designed website that accompanies this work. Contributing creators include Darren Rawlings, Matt Rhodes, Christine Choi, Jeff Thompson, Chris Ryzebol and Ed Kwong, along with editors Ang and Thornborrow.
retail price - $24.95 copacetic price - $22.22
The Life and Times of Botchan, Volume Four
by Jiro Taniguchi and Natsuo Sekikawa
Long suffering readers of the extremely drawn out release schedule of this collaboration between manga masters Jiro Taniguchi and Natsuo Sekikawa that chronicles the life and times of renowned Meiji era writer, Soseki Natsume now have reason to rejoice with the release of this looooong awaited fourth volume (of ten! - will we live long enough to make it to the end?).
retail price - $19.95 copacetic price - $17.77
MOME 19: Summer 2010
edited by Eric Reynolds
Whew! This issue of MOME is a frantic roller coaster ride of graphilocity that left our minds reeling. The journey begins with this issue's bifurcated cover, which sets the stage for the lead story: the first part of Josh SImmons new serial, The White Rhinoceros. We are then treated to "The Imaginist," Olivier Schrauwen's most fully realized work to date. Next up is Gilbert Hernandez with a new tale of the one and only Roy! Then hold onto your hats for the precipitous plunge that is the tale of "Evelyn Dalton-Hoyt." Within this work's 21 tumultuous pages, author/artist, D.J. Bryant has penned a demonically deft deconstruction of "Driven to Destruction," a 1970s Steve Ditko story originally published in Haunted #4 published by Charlton Comics, that infers (with a little help from Ditko's sideline of bondage comics) a torturous sexual repression at the heart of Ditko's seventies sensibility. So as not to give anyone the wrong idea, let us be clear and state that "ED-H" is a story that is fully capable of standing on its own merits, that can (and will) be wholly appreciated without any knowledge of the work of Steve Ditko; the Ditko angle is, however, vertigo inducing to all long time fans of his work. Then we have Tim Lane's "Hitchhiker," a tale full of Lane's trademarked dark and foreboding pen and ink work, but one that takes an unexpected turn. We then take a pastoral pass through the pastel colorings of Conor O'Keefe in "Vote Lily at the Dog Show" before being put through the twisted sensibility of Robert Goodin in "The Spiritual Crisis of Carl Jung." MOME 19 then closes with the latest chapter in T. Edward Bak's Wild Man. Whew, indeed.
retail price - $14.95 copacetic price - $12.75
The DVD magazine of rare and unseen short films is back in a Pittsburgh-way as it features James Blagden's "animation sensation" Dock Ellis & the LSD No-No, about Pittsburgh Pirate, Doc Ellis's legendary 1970 no-hitter, pitched while tripping on acid. Woah... As always, there is a wide ranging selection of films here, including a half-hour Russian documentary, Bitch Academy, and Plastic Bag, an eighteen minute wonder in which Werner Herzog provides the voice of, yes, "a lovelorn plastic bag." Learn what else is on it, here.
retail price - $19.95 copacetic price - $17.77
Trickster: Native American Tales
edited by Matt Dembicki
This square, full color volume contains over two hundred pages of comics and is the first graphic anthology devoted to American Indian "trickster tales." Over twenty tales in all are adapted into comics form in this "inspired collaboration between native writers and accomplished artists" working to "bring the trickster back into popular culture." This book generated plenty of positive responses (read more at the book's blog, here) and immediately sold out its initial printing and we have only now been able to get outr hands on it. Tales of raccoons and ravens, coyotes and crayfish, wolves, owls, minks and more are given form by a host of comics talents including Pittsburgh's own Pat Lewis. Anyone looking to experience the original American culture in comics form need look no further, Trickster delivers.
retail price - $22.95 copacetic price - $20.00
by Jonathan Franzen
Presumably, anyone interested already knows all about Franzen's new novel, given that it has been the recipient of a stratospheric level media coverage. We just thought we'd let you know that it's available at Copacetic for decent price. It's a good book, actually.
retail price - $28.00 copacetic price - $22.22
Alec: "The Years Have Pants" (A Life-Sized Omnibus)
by Eddie Campbell
Our face is red with embarrassment for not having brought this massive 638 page compendium to the attention of Copacetic customers sooner. "The Years Have Pants" collects all seven previously published Alec books – The King Canute Crowd, Graffiti Kitchen, How to Be an Artist, Little Italy, The Dead Muse, The Dance of Lifey Death, and After the Snooter – and "a generous helping of rare and never-before-seen material, including an all-new 35-page book, titled (you guessed it), "The Years Have Pants." No less an authority than Tom Spurgeon, has stated, "There's no artist working in comics today whose body of work I admire more than Eddie Campbell's." Alec is, for those of you who are unaware, the Alec series is autobiographical, with the title character serving as Eddie's alter ego through which he channels both his inner and outer life in a series of adventures, reflections and fantasies that fold back on themselves to graphically reveal a multi-faceted portrait of the artist. This is, needless to say, an incredible value.
softcover edition retail price - $35.00 copacetic price - $29.75
hardcover edition retail price - $50.00 copacetic special price - $37.50
The Tango Collection
edited by Bernard Caleo; foreword by Dylan Horrocks
Get ready for a healthy serving of comics work from down under. The Tango Collection contains the work of over 50 comics creators from Australia and New Zealand in its 240 black and white 8" x 10" pages. There really is quite a variety of styles and approaches to comics on display here that will amply reward the curious. Feel the funky vibes by checking out this Google™ Preview.
retail price - $26.95 copacetic price - $24.75
Archie: The Complete Daily Newspaper Comics, 1946-1948
by Bob Montana
Here's another fine volume in the Library of American Comics series from IDW. Our hats are off to its creative director, industry veteran, Dean Mullaney, and his crack team. Bob Montana was the Jack Kirby of the Archie Universe, creating the visual and situational template that has endured for nearly 70 years. His work on these strips is absolutely outstanding and it probably represents his career high as an artist; leading to the conclusion that he must have been pretty pumped about appearing in the newspapers. The strip is built from the ground up on the assumption that a significant number of the strip's readership would be unfamiliar with the comic book appearances of the freckled teen and his gang and so have the added value of providing a sort of "origin of Archie." The big surprise reading this sumptuous, oversize 300+ page horizontally formatted, hardcover volume is how good they are! These are really great comics, that pretty much do it all: in addition to the expected gags, teen antics and domestic humor, there are stretches wherein these classic Archie facets are integrated into Roy Crane inspired serial adventures. This volume is really worth celebrating in that – believe it or not – this is the very first time these strips have ever been collected, and so will be – finally – getting the notice they deserve. The level of artistry on display in these strips will go a long way towards solving the riddle of Archie's longevity: he got off to a great start (and, it is worth noting here, Bob Montana shared his studio during these years with the greatest of all Archie artists, Harry Lucey, who obviously was inspired by Montana's work).
retail price - $39.99 copacetic price - $35.00
by John Harris Dunning & Nikhil Singh
Very nice presentation immediately sets this oversize, clothbound hardcover apart from the pack (But, evidently, not enough so that we noticed it when it came out... last year). One part Aubrey Beardsley, one part Mobius, one part Michael Kaluta, one part Theo Ellsworth, all seasoned with an Alan Moore sensibility, combines to yield a neo-Heavy Metal-esque fare that is a special treat. Paul Gravett says, "Our new century demands a new charismatic comic book magician to weave his spells on us. Updating classic conjurers like Mandrake and Doctor Strange with a twist of Oscar Wilde and Aubrey Beardsley, John Harris Dunning and Nikhil Singh have crafted a haunting, hypnotizing master of the mystic arts in Salem Brownstone. Their sharp, surprising storytelling and intense, imaginative illustration combine to create real magic on the page."
retail price - $18.99 copacetic price - $17.17
The Signifiers #1
by Michael Neno
Hailing from Columbus, OH, Mr. Michael Neno is working hard to put the oomph! back in comics. ACTION! ADVENTURE! INTRIGUE! MYSTERY! MAYHEM! All this and more are on hand in the jam-packed 48-pages of the premiere issue of The Signifiers. As the title none-too-subtley implies, there is more than simply these surface thrills at work here. The Signifiers joins Tom Scioli's Myth of 8-Opus and Adam McGovern and Paolo Leandri's Dr. Id, in bringing a post-modern perspective to bear on the works of Jack Kirby – and, to be fair, Stan Lee, as well. All these fine works manage the nifty hat trick of providing good ol' comic book fun at the same time as deconstructing this fun and providing insights into what makes it tick. All of these works, too, focus on the Kirby (and Lee) works from the '60s and '70s, and focus on the psychological and psychedelic aspects that were both implicit and explicit in the comics of this time. There really was something magical in the comic books of those days that we seem, for the most part, to have lost in the comics of today. But a dedicated cadre is working feverishly, around the clock, going without food and sleep, ink-stained hands trembling in the late night candlelight to bring this work back to our desperately craving concsciousnesses before all is forgotten and the reign of Doctor Doom and Darkseid descends.
retail price - $4.95 copacetic price - $4.44
Items from our August 2010 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.
New for July 2010
George Herriman's Krazy Kat: A Celebration of Sundays
edited by Patrick McDonnell and Peter Maresca
Yes, it's true!!! Sunday Press, the fine folks who brought us the game-changing Little Nemo in Slumberland: So Many Splendid Sundays, and its myriad Sunday strip sequels have at last seen their way clear to produce an equivalent volume of that greatest of all( well, at least to us here at Copacetic) Sunday strips, the work that introduced poetry to comics: the one and only Krazy Kat, by George Herriman. Finally, KRAZY KAT as it was meant to be seen: 135 full-size Sunday pages from 1916-1944 Plus, dozens more early comics from George Herriman. Included in this splediferous 14 x 17-inch collection is a sampling of each of Herriman's creations for the Sunday newspaper comics from 1901-1906: Professor Otto, The Two Jackies, Major Ozone, and more, many of which have never been reprinted before. HERE are some sample pages, BUT the whole idea of this book is lost in reading them on a computer screen, so think twice before clicking over: you may want to wait for the real thing.
retail price - $100.00 copacetic price - $95.00
By Brakhage, Volume 2
Here we have it: a whopping seven and a half hours of work by the undisputed master of independent American experimental cinema, selected by his widow, Marilyn Brakhage, and expertly transferred to digital media by the Criterion Collection Crew. While most movie-goers have never even heard of him, it's hard to over-estimate Brakhage's impact on the history of film. Beginning in the 1950s, he opened up a whole new way of thinking about and working with film. It could be said (and so, we will) that what Einstein was to Newton in the realm of physics, Brakhage was to Eisenstein in the realm of film. Learn quite a bit about what's on this 3-disc set by reading this in-depth essay by Ms. Brakhage.
retail price - $39.98 copacetic price - $34.95
The Believer Magazine #70 & #71
Well, once again it's time to remind Copacetic Customers that The Believer is still going strong. #70 is this year's Film Issue, and it comes complete with a jam-packed DVD featuring a crash course in the Yugoslavian "Black Wave". What is the Yugoslavian Black Wave? Well, we don't know either, but we will – once we watch the DVD. #71 has the now elusive Mr. Daniel Gillespie Clowes pinned down in a short but sweet interview where he reveals some of what went into his latest graphic novel, Wilson, talks about meeting up with Adrian Tomine for the first time, and a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Believe!
#70 - retail price - $10.00 copacetic price - $9.00
#71 - retail price - $ 8.00 copacetic price - $7.20
Pittsburgh-is-in-the-house Dept. – In preparing you for the wealth of talent that will be on display at the forthcoming PIX: The Pitsburgh Indy Comics Expo, here's a sample serving of local coimcs productions that are currently on offer here at Copacetic:
by Jim Rugg
A near-perfect embodiment of the mini-comics aesthetic, by that ace Pittsburgh comics all-star, Jim Rugg. A 32-page comics meditation/investigation on/of the post-9/11 American nexus between power and violence, Washington and Hollywood, high culture and pop culture, toys and art, dream and reality, repression and oppression and, finally, the resultant confusion between signifier and signified. Featuring a former President of The United States of America along with you-know-who (or do you?). Heady stuff, and fun to boot!
copacetic price - $2.00
edited by Andy Scott
Andromeda is a made-in-Pittsburgh monthly anthology of comics. And, while it might not yet be operating at quite the level of Diamond Comics (see below), these guys are nothing if not ambitious, and so far they have published the first three issues on schedule and the fourth is promised shortly, so Regular contributors include Nate "Grixly" McDonough and Jess Lavecchia, as well as editor Andy Scott himself, and there are plenty of others who have made their way into individual issues. In order to keep up with their monthly schedule, Andromeda is hungry for fresh contributions and is always on the lookout for new talent and is accepting unsolicited submissions, so any cartoonists reading this interested in having their work appear in the pages of Andromeda should get in touch with Mr. Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
copacetic price - $2.00@
Grixly #1 - 13
by Nate McDonough
While we're on the topic of monthly comic books made in Pittsburgh, the trend-setting example of Nate McDonough is of paramount importance, as he has managed the impressive feat of writing, penciling, inking, lettering and publishing no less than thirteen issues of Grixly within – roughly – the past year. Grixly will put you right smack dab in the middle of the Yinzer-Zone™: not a dimension of sight or of sound, but of mind; a particular mind – that of a dedicated cartoonist living in Pittsburgh. So, as a result, while much of the work you will find in the pages of Grixly – the first twelve issues of which are filled with a hodge podge of short stories, vignettes, anecdotes and fantasias – are straight-up auto-bio, readers will also often confront work that is the depiction of an actual event that took place not on the streets or in rooms of tha 'Burgh, but rather in the imagination of the person whose life has been impacted and imprinted by these. Beginning with the thirteenth and latest issue, however, McDonough is down-shifting to a bi-monthly schedule, with the aim of producing longer issue-length works. It should be interesting...
copacetic price - $1.00@
by Chris Cornwell & Co.
This 12-pager by Pittsburgh's foremost formalist and friends serves up a comics meditation on sacrifice, mortality and transformation. The main course consists of a pair of concise genre deconstructions that are simultaneously penetrating and ironic. These are interrupted by a bracing palette-cleanser of fulsome gross-out humor, and followed by a satiric pairing of propaganda and advertising that extends and concludes the theme.
copacetic price - $1.00
Ten Thousand Things To Do
by Jesse Reklaw
And, speaking of cartoonists with strong work ethics, it would be impossible to pass over the Portland, Oregon-based indie-comics powerhouse, Jesse Reklaw. In addition to his long-running (now well into its second decade) independent newsweekly strip, Slow Wave, Reklaw regularly produces award-winning mini-comics (check out his now out-of-print classic, "Thirteen Cats of My Childhood" in the 2006 Best American Comics, and is a founder and co-manager of the invaluable Global Hobo Distribution. And, as if that weren't already enough, he has endeavored to provide his readership with an intensely (some might say obsessively) detailed comics diary accounting of a year in the life of a cartoonist: Jesse Reklaw, from 17 September 2008 to 16 September 2009. Many Copacetic regulars have already come across the mini-comics that collected this diary in two-month installments, but now one and all have the opportunity to sit down with this chunky tome and plow through the year in its entirety – along with an all-new five-page introduction and five-page epilog. This is a real "page-turner," from its Boggle™-inspired title page through to the final "make your own list" closing page. And, for any crazed comics completists among Copacetic customers, we feel compelled to point out that approximately a dozen of the 365 strips that make up this volume are by (fellow Portland, OR) guest cartoonists, including Andrice Arp, Theo Ellsworth, Sarah Oleksyk, Dylan WIlliams, Clutch McBastard, Aron Nels Steinke and others – and there's even a couple "comic con jam" strips involving way too many cartoonists to mention. Another fine, hard-to-pass-up Reklaw value, we'd say.
retail price - $20 copacetic price - $17.77
Diamond Comics #5 (and, while we're at it – #s 1 - 4, as well) (in fact, #4 is pictured at right)
edited by Jason Levian
Published by the fine folks at Floating World Comics – also located in Pittsburgh's west coast sister-city, Portland, OR – Diamond Comics has nothing whatsoever to do with the comics distribution behemoth of the same name (except, perhaps, a satiric jab), but is, rather, an excellent tabloid newspaper comics publication that provides a refreshingly bracing outlet/showcase for comics work that is focused on visual impact. #5 is the first ALL full-color issue, yet it remains priced at the super-value price of $3.00 that held through the first four issues (all of which have full-color covers and centerfolds). Artists featured in the latest issue include Benjamin Marra, Panayuitus Terzis, Michael DeForge and plenty more. Previous issues feature such contributors as Al Columbia (whose amazing full color centerspread for #4 is worth the price of admission), Dame Darcy, Jason Overby, Aidan Koch, Blaise Larmee, Dunja Jankovic, Josh Simmons, Marko Turunen, Nathan Fox, Luke Ramsay and many, many others! This newspaper is funded, at least in part, by a Kick Starter grant, which, presumably, enabled the full color printing. Check these out!
copacetic price - $3.00@
edited by Greg Means
Well, in continuing our stream of consciousness free association, we will segue from one ambitious Portland, OR comics project to another: namely the little-engine-that-could of comics anthologies, Papercutter – which brings a further association in that it is now, like Grixly, on its thirteenth issue. This issue features: "The Orphan Baiter," a 19-page detailed period piece by Matt Weigle; "Heroes Drink Schmutz," a 10-page look at life through the blurred vision of alcohol, THC and firearms by Tim Root; and finishes up with "Champ/Ulysses," a 3-pager that is a nice formal piece on fighting.
retail price - $4.00 copacetic price - $3.60
Stories Vol. 1: The Green Umbrella Man in the Mirror & Expecting
Stories Vol. 2: Copy • Matthew and Buster • Swimming • Free Hugs
Stories Vol. 3: Catch Me If You Can
by Martin Cendreda
Let's keep going in the small press and self-publishing vein. It seems like we're on a roll here. Here we have three all-new minis, all produced, published, packed and shipped by that Angeleno mini-master, Martin Cendreda! The art and production here is top rate and very reasonable priced considering the effort and low print runs. By turns whimsical, satirical and insightful, these are musts for any and all adherents of the mini-comic form. Recommended!
copacetic price - $3.00@
World War 3 Illustrated #40: What We Want
One of the grand daddies of self publishing, WW3 is still going strong. This issue is cover to cover comics: all 128 pages! Editor Seth Tobocman is joined by Jess Wehrle, Eric Laursen, Fly, Sandy Jimenez, Susan Simensky Bietila, and many others, all working towards creating a vision for "building a new and better society" by presenting this 'list of possible demands" in comics form. This is a thought provoking inspiring collection that should have you asking yourself, "What can I do?"
retail price - $5.00 copacetic price - $4.44
by Nate Beaty
Here's another great comics value: over 200 pages of a life lived in comics, BFF – Brain Fag Forever – is a an enjoyable grab bag of personal comics that has fellow artists singing its praises: "Nate Beaty's straightforward comics are striking in their variety and they form a captivating document of his growing skill and evolving soul." – Ivan Brunetti; "Nate breaks down the structure of the comics page the way he takes apart an old bicycle or a vintage laptop His seething psyche roils to the surface, whether he's slapping his inks down over a carefully observed landscape or painstakingly delineating how another relationship went wrong." - Sarah Oleksyk; "Oh, all these cartoonists look interesting... Wait, what? There is only one?" – Lewis Trondheim
retail price - $9.00 copacetic price - $7.77
by Jeffrey Brown
Well, anytime anyone is on the subject of big fat little books filled with fun personal comics, it's almost inevitable that the conversation turns to Jeffey Brown, who has made this form his mainstay, and has developed one of the most recognized bodies of personal comics work around. Undeleted Scenes finds Mr. Brown back at Top Shelf Productions after a trio of books from mainstream book publisher, Simon & Schuster. The majority of the comics collected in Undeleted Scenes have been previously published, primarily in Minisulk, Feeble Attempts and Be a Man. There are also works that are a bit off the beaten path and so have likely been inadvertently passed over by many of Brown's fans, such as the pieces that originally apperared in Kramers Ergot #4, McSweeney's, Blood Orange, Tilt, Hobart, The Florida Review and Galago. In addition to all these, this 350 page collection contains a decent number of strips that have never been published before. There's something for everyone here!
retail price - $15.00 copacetic price - $12.75
Items from our July 2010 listings may now be purchased online at our new site, HERE.
2008: October - December, New
3Q 2008: July - September, New Arrivals
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current as of 30 September 2010