Sunday, November 16, 2014

Fun House

As someone who considers them self well versed in the world of comics and sequential art, I was kind of frustrated with myself for never having heard of Alison Bechdel. I know Spieleman, and was kind of hoping we'd talk about Chris Ware, but wasn't familiar with Bechdel. So I guess shame on me. But I thought this was really interesting. I'm always drawn more toward the smaller slice of life type stories and such (Alex Robinson for example), so this was really my kind of thing. I thought the artwork was fantastic from an acting point of view. The facial expressions mainly. So much emotion conveyed with so few lines. It really isn't very line or ink heavy at all. It's just what absolutely needs to be there but still accomplishes so much more than artists who might need to use more lines. The story is really interesting too. Not really a story though, as much as it was a short examination of the authors relationship with her father. How he acted, how she could interpret it, and then how she did interpret it. All the different variables she had to consider when passing judgement on her father, since it wasn't ALWAYS this way or that, and then the inner conflict those variables caused. It was just a really sentimental piece that really hit home for me. I will definitely be looking up Alison Bechdel's work for my own personal enjoyment in my own personal time.


  1. Hey Zac,
    I am thinking about offering a new lit. class on Comics and Graphic Novels next fall. Do you think many students would be interested? Do you have any other favorites you would recommend for a class like this?
    Have you read Satrapi's Persepolis? It is incredibly captivating.

    1. I haven't read that one specifically, only that I'm not supposed to read it during summer (the idea being it'll ruin the best part of the year). If you're looking for great examples of the potential of the medium, along with Maus, I recommend anything with Jack Kirby's name on it (since he's literally the King of Comics, The Beatles of sequential art), Will Eisner (also HUGELY important), the work of Harvey Pekar (specifically American Splendor), Sin City by Frank Miller, King City by Brandon Graham, Hellboy by Mike Mignola (any story would work, it's all pretty self contained), The New Frontier by Darwyn Cooke, Kingdom Come by Mark Waid and Alex Ross, Batman: Year One By Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli, Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli, 100% by Paul Pope, Astro City by Kurt Busiek and Brent Anderson, Joe Kubert Presents by Joe Kubert and Co, Criminal by Ed Brubaker and Sean Philips, The Rocketeer by Dave Stevens, Bone by Jeff Smith, Arkham Asylum and All Star Superman by Grant Morrison and co., and then the obvious Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, The Dark Knight Returns by Frank Miller and Klaus Janson, and Sandman by Neil Gaiman.
      Other things you might want to be familiar with but may not work out cost wise are The Incal by Alejandro Jodorowsky and Moebius, Building Stories by Chris Ware, the Hawkeye run by Matt Fraction and David Aja, and Blacksad by Juan Díaz Canales and Juanjo Guarnido.

      Just some really talented masters of the craft who might not have work that could fit into a curriculum like that include: Terry Moore, Chris Samnee, Fiona Staples, Jean Paul Leon, Walt Simonson, Jack Davis, Wally Wood, Alex Toth, Matt Wagner, and Matteo Scalera.

      Hope some of this helps! Any questions feel free to ask, I have an absurd amount of various types of material and resources related to comics and graphic novels, even if I didn't know the answer, I could either find it or know someone who does know. It's a hobby I take pretty seriously.

  2. I like your enthusiasm for the piece. I didn't really notice all the different aspects that you did about the technical side of the making of the comic. I did like her story and the way she presented it. You helped me to appreciate it more-thanks