Friday, March 24, 2006

Tom Spurgeon has published his Top 50 comicbooks of 2005. I’ve only read about half the list, so I’d better pull my socks up!
Top 50 Achievements in Comics Publishing, 2005
50 -- Pyongyang by Guy Delisle
49 -- Skyscrapers of the Midwest #2 by Josh Cotter
48 -- Goddess Head by Dash Shaw
47 -- Night Fisher by R. Kikuo Johnson
46 -- The Recidivist #3 by Zak Sally
45 -- Seaguy by Grant Morrison and Cameron Stewart
44 -- Copper by Kazu Kibuishi
43 -- Mutts by Patrick McDonnell
42 -- The Clouds Above by Jordan Crane
41 -- Solo by Various
40 -- Ed the Happy Clown by Chester Brown
39 -- Franklin Fibbs by Hollis Brown and Wes Hargis
38 -- Poor Sailor by Sammy Harkham
37 -- Nil: A World Beyond Belief by James Turner
36 -- The Perry Bible Fellowship by Nick Gurewitch
35 -- Oliphant by Pat Oliphant
34 -- Cromartie High School by Eiji Nonaka
33 -- Achewood by Chris Onstad
32 -- Dungeon by Lewis Trondheim and Joann Sfar
31 -- The Wonder Volume 1: Portraits of a Remembered City by Tony Fitzpatrick
30 -- The Rabbi's Cat by Joann Sfar
29 -- Batman: Year One Deluxe Edition by Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli
28 -- War's End: Profiles From Bosnia 1995-1996 by Joe Sacco
27 -- We All Die Alone by Mark Newgarden with Dan Nadel
26 -- Top Ten: The Forty-Niners by Alan Moore and Gene Ha
25 -- Buddy Does Seattle by Peter Bagge
24 -- Tales Designed to Thrizzle #1 by Michael Kupperman
23 -- Or Else by Kevin Huizenga
22 -- ACME Novelty Library #16 by Chris Ware
21 -- Chimera #1 by Lorenzo Mattotti
20 -- King-Cat Comics and Stories by John Porcellino
19 -- Paper Rad, B.J. and da Dogs by Dan Nadel
18 -- Der Struwwelmaakies by Tony Millionaire
17 -- 676 Apparitions of Killoffer by Killoffer
16 -- Diary of a Mosquito Abatement Man by John Porcellino
15 -- Wimbledon Green by Seth
14 -- The Push Man by Yoshihiro Tatsumi
13 -- Ultimate Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons
12 -- Complete Crumb Comics Volume 17 by R Crumb
11 -- The ACME Novelty Library by Chris Ware
10 -- Ice Haven by Dan Clowes
09 -- Late Bloomer by Carol Tyler
08 -- Black Hole by Charles Burns
07 -- Buddha Volume 6 by Osamu Tezuka
06 -- The Complete Peanuts by Charles Schulz
05 -- Walt and Skeezix by Frank King
04 -- Epileptic by David B.
03 -- Little Nemo in Slumberland -- So Many Splendid Sundays by Winsor McCay
02 -- Krazy + Ignatz: The Second Decade 1925-1934 by George Herriman
01 -- The Complete Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson
I celebrated a friend’s birthday last night in Shoreditch, which is always an education for a country lad like myself. I haven’t been drinking round there, or its inbred sister neighbourhood Hoxton, for a long time now because, quite frankly, the stink of daddy’s money puts me off my beer. We ended up in the Medicine Bar and as I looked around I spotted the usual fashion partitions– geek chic (think thick NHS glasses and V-neck jumpers), freak chic (try to imagine what you’d look like if you got dressed in the dark and half your wardrobe had been swapped for fancy dress), 70s chic (including the wispy, unkempt moustaches this year, which I think is hilarious) – but there was a new look on the scene that caught my eye.
Chav chic.

I blame Mike Skinner (He's The Streets guy and this is a picture of him).

My favourite part of the night was watching The Guy Who Had Taken Some Really Dodgy Pills And Was Dancing Like He Was Having A Fit For Hours On End. At one point, in the middle of a Depeche Mode song, he suddenly stop pogoing and spasming and screamed at the top of his lungs ‘Why is nobody dancing?’
This despite the fact that the dancefloor was full.

I’ll put my claws away now…

I went to see V For Vendetta this week. I really enjoyed it overall, but didn’t like the way they tried to humanise V and bring him a bit closer to the Hollywood Hero template (he even gets to kiss the girl!) - the original book suggested that it takes a lunatic to start a revolution, and I think something important was lost when that idea was taken out. I also didn’t much enjoy his Terrorism For Idiots speech, which unpicked a lot of the subtlety in the storytelling that was to follow. I was relieved to see they cut the chapter where Finch takes acid and visits the ruins of the concentration camp, though, which for me, is the only low point in the book. V’s demise was much more dramatic in the film, and I still can’t decide if that’s good or bad, and I really didn’t mind the much-panned ending (which I won’t spoil here in case you haven’t seen the film yet).

I think I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I hadn’t reread it only last week, but I’m glad I did anyway, because it reminded me just how great it is. It’s sickening that this was practically Moore’s first long form story and he pulled it off with such class. I think he was younger than me when he started it.

Juggling lots of work this week, but there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Juggling prevails.

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