The third trade paperback collection of this series I’m lettering has arrived, comprising issues 1-5 of the “Age of Doom” storyline. If you’ve been reading this fine series, you probably recognize many of the characters as homages to golden age and silver age superheroes and supervillains from the past, but all with Jeff and Dean’s unique perspective. In these issues we got into some more recent territory that was quite familiar to me. So familiar that I had to be careful not to get too close to myself, if you see what I mean.
That made it all the more fun, and I think readers will enjoy the inside joke. It also advances the story, unveils more of the mysteries and secrets that Jeff has so carefully planned, and continues to surprise and entertain. Or at least, I think so.
Not sure if this is out now, but if not, if will be soon.
When I got into comics as a pro in 1977, collected editions of monthly comics in any form were unknown. That began to change with the success of THE DARK KNIGHT and WATCHMEN collections in 1986, and today a moderately successful comic is almost sure to be collected in one or more trade paperbacks, while a very successful one, like BLACK HAMMER, can expect a hardcover edition as well. Dark Horse has gone all out and produced an oversized deluxe hardcover containing the first 13 issues and first annual for the series, the same kind of format DC calls their “Absolute Editions.” It has large format art printed on high quality thick paper, a place-mark ribbon, and lots of extra material. The only area where they skimped a bit was on the glued rather than sewn binding. Even so, this is a book that should last for many decades. Who is buying $50 volumes like this? I have no idea, but someone is, or they couldn’t be published. The material inside is quite good, but I don’t know if I’d call it quite worthy of this treatment. Your opinion may vary, and if BLACK HAMMER is everything to you, you’ll want this. I believe it’s available now.
I didn’t know about this handsome series until I received these two volumes from Fantagraphics last week. I lettered one story in each volume. The books are European album size I think, with pages 8.5 by 11 inches, therefore larger than any U.S. printings, and on much better paper with sewn bindings, too. I imagine Don’s epic “Life of Scrooge,” which I lettered, is in some of the previous volumes, I haven’t seen those. I love Don’s work, and loved working on his stories, but I remember the stories included here (“Vigilante of Pizen Bluff” and “The Quest for Kalevala”) well enough that I don’t plan to reread them. I will probably reread the other Rosa stories that I didn’t letter, I don’t remember them nearly as well. There’s lots of extra material including commentary by Don and plenty of his art that I haven’t seen before. At 224 pages each for $29.99, this seems like an excellent series, and one I would recommend as Christmas presents for young and old alike. Not sure when they are available, but check with your comics retailer or Fantagraphics.
I had a bunch of incoming packages waiting when I got back from our Thanksgiving trip, and this is one. Writer Gerard Way captures the feel of the Grant Morrison Doom Patrol while going his own way, and Nick Derington, the regular penciller and cover artist, has a style which I find charming and fun while still nailing a wide range of material from dark to light. I had fun working on it. Should be out soon.
One of my favorite projects has been given the Absolute treatment, meaning oversized art with top-quality binding and paper and the book in a box. Here’s one side of the box with what I think is a new painting by Alex Ross… Continue reading →