‘ahems and ahahs’

Literature, & Etc.

Posts Tagged ‘graphic novel

Zot! by Scott McCloud

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Zot! by Scott McCloud is a comic book created by Scott McCloud in 1984 and published by Eclipse Comicsuntil 1990 as a lighthearted alternative to the darker and more violent comics that predominated the industry during that period. There were a total of 36 issues, with the first ten in color and the remainder in black and white. McCloud credited Astro Boy creatorOsamu Tezuka as a major influence on the book, making it one of the first manga-inspired American comic books. [ Courtesy of Wiki a00005gt2

If you have some money laying around and I realize it has become more and more difficult to find such things, this is definitely worth investing in.

McCloudScott McCloud is known in the comic/graphic novel industry for his seminal graphic novel on the process and art of graphic novels in his two works: Understanding Comics & Making Comics. McCloud was the principal author of the Creator’s Bill of Rights, a 1988 document with the stated aim of protecting the rights of comic book creators and help aid against the exploitation of comics artists and writers by corporate work-for-hire practices.

Zot! centers around a young teenage girl, Jenny Weaver and her friends who befriend Zot!, a cross between 1950’s Superman & Shazaam. Just think good looking, fast-talking, boy-scout with a sense of humor and an astro-boy like array of powers. Jenny & Zot! travel back and forth between two different worlds, Jenny’s world which is our own and Zot’s, a hyperbolic fantastical mirror of Jenny’s. Super-villains travel in and out of both worlds complicating the lives of Zot and Jenny’s friends. What makes this series stand out for me is the way that McCloud manages to keep a fair bit of reality in the types of teenager-like problems that Jenny faces [ sex, drugs, violence, growth, etc.. ], yet throughout these various issues that are brought up in the backdrop of Zot and his various adventures, there is just enough fantasy and escapism. 

I think this is definitely worth picking up and I plan on re-reading mine soon. Cheers. 

Oh and if you have twitter, Scott McCloud is listed and worth checking out, some amazing insight into the writing process of comics if that is where your interest rests. Enjoy.

Written by thebeliever07

May 25, 2009 at 3:20 pm

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Just picked up Yoshihiro Tatsumi’s A Drifting Life, considered to be the “grandfather of Japanese alternative comics”. It is an autobiographical memoir of his life from early childhood and provides a rich history of Japan post-world war. I am only on page 56 of 834, so I have a ways to go but there is something wonderful about sinking your teeth into a really long graphic novel.

Written by thebeliever07

May 4, 2009 at 7:10 pm

Guy Delisle’s Graphic (Travel-Narrative) Comic

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Guy Delisle is a Québécois animator and  has documented in spare, whimsical black-and-white line drawings his visits to North Korea and China. See example below.


I find that the graphic novel is a very interesting form for Mr. Delisle to make use of. Delisle from the two prior graphic novels I’ve read, visits places that are considered by most countries in the world to be unstable and politically dangerous: North Korea, China, and his latest collection, chronicles Burma (Myanmanr). Delisle is fair and balanced in his critique of how these nations operate.  Considering the fact that I am a poor university student and lack the funds to visit many of these places, this is a wonderful way to view these nations. I would reccomend these books to anyone who is interested in foreign countries and anyone who wants an inside look at a different way of living in political states that by western democratic standards are cruel or harsh and uncivil. Worth the time and the money.

Written by thebeliever07

March 21, 2009 at 3:59 pm

Jeff Smith:

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For those who are not aware of the comic genius that is Jeff Smith and his epic series BONE, for shame!



“The series centers around the Bone Family, white, bald cartoon caricatures with big noses who seldom wear much clothing. In the opening pages the three Bone cousins—avaricious Phoncible P. “Phoney” Bone, goofy cigar-smoking Smiley Bone, and everyman character Fone Bone—are run out of their hometown of Boneville after Phoney decides to run for mayor with disastrous results.”- Wiki –


BONE is a series that is part fantasy/adventure/slapstick humor.  It is written for both children and adults and can be read on a number of levels. Well worth checking out. The entire series is out in one massive anthology or you can purchase the individual trade paperbacks in colour if you like as well. Worth your cash.

The reason I am blogging today is that I just picked up the first volume trade paperback of RASL, his newest comic series. I won’t say more than the following: “RASL, a dimension jumping art thief with a tattoo of a woman’s name (Maya) on his left arm, is wandering in a desert battered and bloody.”

If that has not interested you, I don’t know what will. How about a really kickass image! The series is still ongoing and more trade paperbacks will come but you should hit up your local bookstore and pick up both of these series, worth the dough. Cheers.


Written by thebeliever07

March 20, 2009 at 2:34 pm


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Thursdays are usually Blog days. The first part of my week is filled with schoolwork, as well as hotel work and as a result I am either too tired or too busy to update. Quite a bit has happened this past week.

Let us start with the most obvious: Barack Obama: President Elect. While I am pleased to see that there is now a person of color in the Oval Office and that history has indeed been made, I am still wary of this so called “CHANGE!”.

Yes, Barack Obama has a positive message and has run an admirable campaign. But he is also a Harvard Law School Lawyer who has spent his entire life in Politics. Why should I trust this man because of the struggles he’s endured. Or, because of his professing “Yes, We can! Change!” which is a clever rhetorical strategy for any politician to employ, no clever that McCain tried to use this same rhetoric during his speech in the NRC.

I guess that we will all see the results of America’s choice in this President and whether or not he is capable of keeping his promises. Only time will tell. Until then, people will just have to content themselves with a Historical social barrier being broken and the inspiration that this act has engendered in so many people.

Michael Crighton passed away yesterday. And while many will scoff at his “literary” contributions it is still a tragedy when someone as influential as him in the publishing world passes away. I, like most everyone I know who reads on a regular basis, experienced a period where I enjoyed many “airport-books”: Crighton, Clancy, Grisham, etc. And while literary elites will sneer at this type of genre fiction, I would suggest that there is nothing wrong with this particular preference as long as one understands that this is a particular type of fiction and as such to expect Nobel like fiction is to engage in folly. I mean this man has brought us the joy of Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain, Congo, Rising Sun, all books that have been adapted, some good and some not so much. Still his contributions will be missed.

I have yet to figure out what my major Theory paper will focus on. I must choose one particular “piece” and another specific theorists that we have covered in course. I have been considering Ezra Pound’s “The Cantos”, obviously not the entire work, but a few choice Canto and would use this piece in relation with Saussure’s theory on semiotics and language systems. Still not sure yet. We’ll have to see.

Not much else is going in life, just work and school and more work.

Oh and I did pick up the Third Volume of Neil Gaiman’s ABSOLUTE SANDMAN. Only one more to go and I’ll own the entire series in fancy leather-bound volumes. I’m uber excited. I already have the entire series in trade paperback graphic novel form, but this is something altogether different. Cheers.

Written by thebeliever07

November 6, 2008 at 12:27 pm