Smash Pages Q&A: Eli Valley on ‘Diaspora Boy’

The political cartoonist discusses his first book from OR Books.

Eli Valley has been making comics for just over a decade. Unlike most political cartoonists, though, most of his work aren’t single panel comics, but rather long page-size comics intended for a broadsheet publication. In The Forward, +972 Magazine, The Nib and other publications, Valley has been skewering politics and individuals in hilarious, grotesque and inventive ways.

In these longer comics, which show the influence of EC Comics and other horror artists, Valley shows himself a gifted artist, though sometimes his own exaggerations aren’t nearly as grotesque as the actual words spoken by actual people that he’s skewering. Some of his comics have their own shock and awe, as Valley is not afraid to offend people or worry about people’s sensibilities. This has led to problems with some editors, he’s been denounced by individuals, but he refuses to shy away from controversy.

His first book Diaspora Boy has just been released by OR Books with an introduction by Peter Beinart. He took time out to talk about the book and how his work has changed in the past year.

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Sunday Comics: ‘Father’s Day at Sea’ and more

A father learns to relax on a cruise with his daughter, a cartoonist adjusts to Parkinson’s disease, and refugees struggle to survive

Every Sunday, we round up the best comics we’ve seen online in the past week. If we missed something, let us know in the comments below.

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Sunday Comics: Wonder Woman and comics retailing

Check out new comics by Lucy Bellwood, Sarah Mirk, Big Nate and more.

Every Sunday, we round up the best comics we’ve seen online in the past week. If we missed something, let us know in the comments below.

We’ve got a short post this week to leave you more time to read New York Stories, a sampler of great short comics about New York City from some top-drawer talents.

However, we’d be remiss in not mentioning What Does Wonder Woman Actually Represent? by Lucy Bellwood and Sarah Mirk, a look at how Diana has changed over the years.

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Sunday Comics: Dungeons & Dragons and factory closings

Check out new comics by Ted Closson, Sam Wallman and more.

Every Sunday, we round up the best comics we’ve seen online in the past week. If we missed something, let us know in the comments below.

Rise of the Dungeon Master: Gary Gygax and the Birth of D&D

This isn’t a complete comic, just an excerpt of the full-length graphic novel Rise of the Dungeon Master: Gary Gygax and the Birth of D&D, but it’s a satisfying piece of the story that stands well on its own. It’s basically the origin story of Dungeons & Dragons, showing Gygax developing the idea, testing it on friends and family, and self-publishing it after being turned down by a major game company. The story, which is told in second person (as if Gygax was a D&D player himself) is based on an article by David Kushner than ran in 2008 in Wired, and Koren Shadmi is the artist.

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Sunday Comics: The best of what’s online

This week, we’re starting a new feature: A roundup of the best comics we’ve seen online in the past week. If we missed something, let us know in the comments!

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Interview | 5 Minutes with Emi Gennis

The creator talks about her SPX debut from last year, “Baseline Boulevard,” and more in an interview from last year’s show.

Emi Gennis does short comics on fascinating topics, usually quirky stories from history. I first discovered her work when I picked up her minicomic on trepanation (warning: includes graphic images of people drilling holes in their skulls) at TCAF last year. Her other work includes The Radium Girls, about women who were exposed to radium while working in a watch factory in the 1930s; and Franz Reichelt: The Flying Tailor, the story of a man who invented a parachute suit and died testing it on himself. The latter is one of Gennis’s comic adaptations of stories from Wikipedia’s list of unusual deaths.

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