At Comic-Con International on Saturday, Drawn and Quarterly shared their spring/summer line-up for 2018, which includes titles from Matthew Thurber, Nick Drnaso, Shigeru Mizuki, Rina Ayuyang and more. Here’s a rundown of what they shared:
A new printing of Love That Bunch, by Aline Kominsky-Crumb, which I covered previously.
Sabrina by Nick Drnaso: “When Sabrina disappears, an airman in the U.S. Air Force is drawn into a web of suppositions, wild theories, and outright lies. He reports to work every night in a bare, sterile fortress that serves as no protection from a situation that threatens the sanity of Teddy, his childhood friend and boyfriend of the missing woman. Sabrina’s grieving sister Sandra struggles to fill her days waiting in purgatory. After a videotape surfaces, we see devastation shown through a cinematic lens, as true tragedy is distorted when fringe thinkers and conspiracy theorists begin to interpret events to fit their own narratives.”
Art Comic by Matthew Thurber: “Matthew Thurber’s Art Comic is a blunt and hilarious assault on the swirling hot mess that is the art world. From sycophantic fans to duplicitous gallerists, fatuous patrons to self-aggrandizing art stars, he lampoons each and every facet of the eminently ridiculous industry of truth and beauty. Follow Cupcake, the Matthew Barney obsessive, Epiphany née Tiffany Clydesdale, the divinely-inspired performance artist, Ivanhoe, a modern Knight is search of artistic vengeance, and his Squire, Turnbuckle. Each artist is more ridiculous than the last, yet they are tested and transformed by the even more absurd machinations of Thurber’s fantastical art world. Can the Free Little Pigs destroy this blighted system? Will “The Group” continue its indirect assassination of promising young artists? Can artistic integrity exist in this world, amidst the capitalist co-opting, petty rivalries, otherworldly portals, heavenly interventions, and murders at sea?”
Blame this on the Boogie by Rina Ayuyang: “Inspired by the visual richness and cinematic structure of the Hollywood Musical, Blame this on the Boogie chronicles the adventures of a Filipino American girl born in the decade of disco who escapes life’s hardships and mundanity through through the genre’s feel good song and dance numbers. Ayuyang explores how the glowing charm of the silver screen can transform one’s reality, shaping their approach to childhood, relationships, sports, reality TV, and eventually politics, parenthood, and mortality.”
A Bubble by Geneviève Castrée: “Drawn near the end of her life, surrounded by the nature and calm of Anacortes, Washington, Geneviève Castrée drew one final gift for her two-year-old daughter, the stunning board book A Bubble. Leaving behind a last note for a young child is an incomprehensible task; Castrée responds with grace and subtlety. Using precise, exquisite drawings of herself and her daughter, changes in their daily routines are depicted as a greater story unfolds. Castrée and her daughter float from page to page, encased in a bubble that protects them from the outside world. A contemplation of love and loss, A Bubble is a lasting declaration, a final memory, a comfort for others experiencing grief, and a beautiful archive of one of the world’s most talented cartoonist’s final artistic achievements.”
The Mushroom Fan Club by Elise Gravel: “Elise Gravel is back with a whimsical look at one of her family’s most beloved pastimes: mushroom hunting! Combining her love of getting out into nature with her talent for anthropomorphizing everything, Gravel takes us on a magical tour of the forest floor and examines a handful of her favorite alien specimens up close. While the beautiful coral mushroom looks like it belongs under the sea, the peculiar lactarius indigo may be better suited for outer space! From the fun-to-stomp puffballs to the prince of the stinkers—the stinkhorn mushroom—and the musically inclined chanterelles, Gravel shares her knowledge of this fascinating kingdom by bringing each species to life in full felt-tip marker glory.”
Carnet de Voyage by Craig Thompson: Originally published by Top Shelf, this looks to be a hardcover reprinting of Thompson’s travel journal, detailing the trip he took to do research for his graphic novel Habibi.
The Strange by Jérôme Ruillier: “The Strange follows an unnamed, undocumented immigrant who tries to forge a new life in a Western country where he doesn’t speak the language. Jérôme Ruillier’s story is deftly told through myriad viewpoints, as each narrator recounts a situation in which they crossed paths with the newly-arrived foreigner. Many of the people he meets are suspicious of his unfamiliar background, or of the unusual language they do not understand. By employing this third-person narrative structure, Ruillier masterfully portrays the complex plight of immigrants and the vulnerability of being undocumented. The Strange shows one person’s struggle to adapt while dealing with the often brutal and unforgiving attitudes of the employers, neighbors, and strangers who populate this new land.”
The Dangerous Journey by Tove Jansson: The Moomins creator “takes us on a beautifully illustrated and delightfully quirky journey through Moominvalley, perfectly capturing the experience and its emotional impact as seen through the innocent eyes of Susanna, our main character. Susanna is bored with her life: her cat is too content; her surroundings—too gentle. She craves adventure when there is none to be had. But when a new pair of glasses appears in front of her, she gets an opportunity to live the bold life that she has always longed for as her surroundings are transformed into a dark and sinister landscape. At first afraid, but then her daring side takes over and she moves forward to an unknown destination, meeting some familiar faces along the way. Combatting everything from an exploding volcano to a fierce winter storm, from mysterious monsters to stormy seas, Susanna and her newfound friends are given the adventure of a lifetime.”
Kitaro’s Yokai Battles by Shigeru Mizuki: “Featuring seven stories by Japan’s beloved monster master Shigeru Mizuki, Kitaro’s Yokai Battles features some of Kitaro’s strangest foes yet—including his good pal Nezumi Otoko who decides that he should be the star of the comic! With friends like these…who needs enemies?” The stories in this 192-page volume are collected from the 1960s Golden Age of Gegege no Kitaro. The stories appear in English for the first time in a kid-friendly edition; uncut and unedited, with translations by Mizuki-scholar Zack Davisson.