#658 John Allison talks “Giant Days” and more

Giant Days

John Allison has been a significant presence on the web comics radar for more than two decades. In 2013, he made the jump to traditional publishing with the fantastic Giant Days series from BOOM! Box, and also switched to only writing, while a selection of top-notch artists (for most of the series, Max Sarin) took over the visuals. Recently he put out the five-issue Steeple from Dark Horse, and started other projects—but now the printing presses, along with everything else, have ground to a halt in the COVID-19 era. The up side is that it means he has time to talk to us about his work, so this week, Tim calls him up!

Critiquing Comics #170 “Moon You”

Moon You

You’re trapped on the moon and you believe that everyone on Earth is dead. Who’d have believed that was the setup for a gag manga? Cho Seok pulls it off in style with Moon You, a hilarious comic that also has heart and some tension, and, yes, a few missteps as well. Tim and Mulele discuss.

Also, what our Patrons said when we asked them what type of podcast content – critiques? superhero movie review? comics industry talk? – we’re the best at presenting.

 

#657 “Berlin”

Berlin

Jason Lutes’ Berlin shows us scenes from the lives of many characters in Berlin as the Weimar Republic disintegrated and the Nazis rose to power. Historical events (including the fallout of World War I) affect the characters while the characters continue trying to control their own lives, or each other’s, and they cross paths in ways that are sometimes easy to miss. And the art is detailed and spellbinding. Tim and Kumar dig into this 542-page masterwork, more than twenty years in the making.

Jason Lutes’ presentation

#656 “My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness”

My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness

Kabi Nagai’s My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness, while it does include lesbian sex scenes of a sort, is less about sex than you might expect. It’s more about mental health, and asserting the right to go against other people’s expectations. Tim and Mulele review, and find that, in spite of our being two straight guys, the story still resonates with us.

Also, could Diamond Comics’ COVID-19-related shutdown mean a simple pause in business as usual? A new era of non-monopolistic comics distribution? Or… the end of weekly “floppies” altogether?

#655 “The Incal”

The Incal

The Incal, Alejandro Jodorowsky and Moebius’ classic ’80s series (originally published in French magazine Métal Hurlant), was very influential on movies as well as comics. In fact, it contains a number of the elements Jodorowsky had intended to put in a Dune film “adaptation” (which bore little resemblance to Frank Herbert’s novel) that never got made. Tim and Kumar discuss this insane, unconventional story.

Louie Hlad review on ComicsBeat

#654 “Akira”

Considering how much Mulele talked up Katsuhiro Otomo’s Akira back in the early days of the podcast, it’s strange that it’s taken us more than 14 years to actually discuss it here. Perhaps because the story sounded heavy and off-putting to Tim — but is that a fair assessment? On the other hand, as great as it is, is it Otomo’s best work? This week Tim, Mulele, Chris, and Oscar discuss this classic manga.

#653 An Age of Dragons, and a Book of Magic

dragonage

Dragon Age has been a successful video game series for over a decade, and the title has moved into a number of other media — including comics, most recently from Dark Horse. Nunzio DeFilippis and Christina Weir have written a number of these, including the current series Dragon Age: Blue Wraith. In this episode, Emmet talks to them about pitching Dragon Age ideas, watching their Academy X students get missiled out of existence, and more.

Embarrassment of Witches

Also in this episode, Tim and Kumar appear as two oldsters reviewing a book aimed at college students who love Harry Potter, Sophie Goldstein and and Jenn Jordan’s An Embarrassment of Witches. OK, Gen Xers.

#652 “Uzumaki”

Uzumaki

Uzumaki is a 1998 horror manga by Junji Ito, unique in its capacity to make the reader simultaneously laugh out loud at its audacity and feel profoundly disturbed. In this episode, Kumar and Dana recount some of the more bizarre stories in this book, and answer the question, “Is it a compelling read?”

Critiquing Comics #169: “Zener: Master of the Mind”

Zener: Master of the Mind

A happy couple’s date is interrupted by a superhero’s fight with a purple monster. The boy is critically injured, and taken by the superhero to lab where he’ll be (painfully, of course) transformed into, presumably, another superhero. Wait, where’s the girl? And, beyond that, where’s the hook? Tim and Mulele critique Zener: Master of the Mind.

#651 “Shazam!”: the movie

Shazam film

David F. Sandberg’s 2019 movie Shazam!, starring Zachary Levi, Asher Angel, and Mark Strong, was a a break from the relentless grimness of many recent DC movies, and yet, it did have horroresque scenes. Of course, Sandberg has a lot of horror on his resume, but is there any comics precedent for horror in Shazam!? Emmet is joined once again by Shazam! expert Brian Cremins to discuss the film, and why Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson should play Captain Marvel… if he hasn’t already.