At least the weather was nice.

*And I can't even recall how the skies were changing as I wrote LAST WEEK'S REVIEWS:

Above and Below: Two Stories of the American Frontier (nice collection of early comics by James Sturm, with one standing out as truly excellent)

Flaming Carrot Comics #1 (or is it #33?), The Intimates #3, Wild Girl #3 (of 6)

Tux Dog, Deadpan #1 (two delightsome minicomics; if you fell in love with "Kramer's Ergot 5", here's plenty of work by a bunch of those ceators)

Imagine #1 (really good 1978 anthology floppy, featuring the apex of comics storytelling, which was a good deal for a quarter)

Proof of Concept (a collection of pitches and interactions, by Larry Young)

Keep in touch with them all!

*Sigh. I just finished my bag of the greatest snack food ever to grace my table: Nori Maki Arare, wasabi flavor. They’re these rice crackers, about the size of small pretzel sticks only a little thicker, glazed with wasabi, and wrapped in dried seaweed. It’s manna from Heaven, I assure you, and available at my local Asian food establishment. And now I’ve eaten them all, so I guess I’ll move on to my dried banana chips or my wasabi peas. I couldn’t build up the resolve to buy any Crystallized Ginger though; it sounds like something I ought to be using to ward off a mythical beast rather than a delicious snack time respite. Unless snack time itself is the monster, but that’s far too metaphysical for me at the moment.

*Busy day today. Some disappointments, but I’ve got no choice but to keep plunging forward, as there’s always new things to deal with. Like new comics. Lol. That will distract me from my failings. Lols. Rotfl. Look, I am riding a lolercoaster. Here comes the loop. Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeee.



Winsor McCay Early Works Vol. 4: The reproduction quality on this series isn’t always the best although it‘s usually at least passable. Sometimes the lettering is difficult to read, everything gets smudged. Color strips are printed in black and white. On rare occasions entire lines are obliterated, reducing character faces to a mildly suggestive series of dots and scratches. And yet, I’ll buy this volume as I’ve bought the rest, because Checker is doing what they can with the sources and the resources that they’ve got, and they seem truly committed to this series, which I suspect isn’t quite their top seller. I love McCay’s work more than is healthy, and I’m glad to have a regular series of 200+ page books coming out with a ton of stuff I’ve never seen before. This volume collects further installments of the same series we encountered in Vol. 3, so more “Dream of the Rarebit Fiend”, more “Little Sammy Sneeze”, more “A Pilgrim’s Progress”, and a bunch of assorted editorial cartoons and miscellaneous spot illustrations, which is where we get some of McCay’s most lavish linework and dynamic perspectives. Not a great introduction to the man’s work, but established fans will want it as they’ve wanted volumes prior.

Warren Ellis’ Angel Stomp Future and Warren Ellis’ Simon Spector: Well, here’s the rest of the Apparat books, both of them with art by Avatar regulars, Juan Jose Ryp and Jacen Burrows respectively. Ellis is batting .500 so far, with “Frank Ironwine” as a nice success and “Quit City” as a failed experiment, so I’m eager to see how the rest of this line shapes up, especially as we move into the more familiar territories of science-fiction and the weird vigilante.

The Punisher MAX #16: This story is so much smoother in pace than the last arc; it makes a world of difference. In case you missed the first half, Frank and his pair of companions, in possession of the world’s most deadly bacteriological weapon, are holed up in a nuclear missile silo with a good portion of the Russian army surrounding them under orders from a wicked ex-Soviet general and a mysterious Mongolian while a shadow conspiracy involving the US military has orchestrated a terrorist hijacking of an airliner which is now on a collision course with Our Hero’s position. And Nick Fury is having sex with all of the prostitutes in New York City. There just might be enough plot to keep this one humming for another three issues without devolving into boredom or repetition at all, which would definitely be something for this trade-constricted title.

*And that’s it. Quite a light one.

*Wow - just relating the details of Frank Castle’s exciting adventures has improved my mood immeasurably, because mood is impossible to measure, and that’s good news for science but don’t ask me why.