Top Shelf Productions


a week later

December 10, 2006

Well crap, i've just so freaking slammed... i can't believe it's been a week already. Still though, been digging some good stuff lately.

• First, the new issue (#67) of John Porcellino's sublime King-Cat. To be honest though, the first half of this recent volume was too self-reflective for my tastes, and suggests that John's been going through some deep changes in his world. And that's o.k., because the last strip slayed me, and is exactly why i believe John P. is an American Treasure. Titled "Feels Like A Good Day," this is Porcellino at his best; observing the world around him, soaking in the beauty of just being alive and in the moment. Only Kevin Huizenga and James Kochalka are capable capturing these little moments in a similar manner.

"Under the flickering leaves, the light and shadow, like a dream … The cool breeze... Feels like a good day... Feels like reality."

• Also, the one-shot (?) Batman/Spirit by Jeph Loeb and Darwyne Cooke arrived with much anticipation, and it's fabulous. I'm pretty hit or miss with Loeb (a guy whose work i like in direct relation to the artist with whom he's working... i dig ALL of the collaborations with Tim Sale), but in this he makes good juju with the team-up. But the real star is Cooke. This guy is so good it hurts. But this flimsy little comic book pales to what is arguable my favorite comics in my modest collection of books...

• The Absolute New Frontier, written and drawn by Darywn Cooke. Holy mother of god, what an incredible fucking masterpiece of comics goodness. Granted, the story is merely excellent (while not quite in the pantheon of all-time greats), but his art and storytelling should become legendary, if fate is fair. This is the kind of comics that even non-fanboys can only drool over. (Hence helping turn them over to the geeky dark side.) Rivaling X-Men Omnibus and certainly in my Top Five Desert Island Picks, this is a book worth pestering your retailer to crack open the shrinkwrap, if you might be waffling. Trust me.

(Thanks, Bob!)

• Catching up on The Walking Dead, written by Robert Kirkman, and published by Image. My pal Joe at Image graciously sent me the latest two issues. Yes, this is the SINGLE book that i love so much i just cannot "wait for the trade." Some of the VERY best entertainment in any medium today.

• Took a bunch of stuff in for trade to Powell's City of Books today, and picked up the Dedini book by Fantagraphics. Damn this is amazing! An infamous cartoonist working for Hugh during the golden age of Playboy, Dedini's work has NEVER looked as good, and has never had this many pieces collected in a single volume. Cheesecake girls almost as vivid (in their own cartoony way) as either Frazetta or Jack Cole. Stunning.

• Watched The O.C. with The Wife last night, and i'm happy to report that this fourth season is a return to fine form. After the melodramatic death of the whiney-ass Marissa at the end of last season, the rest of the players seem much less distracted. Ryan is actually pretty fun. Indeed, Marissa's little (but equally hot) sister is infinitely more interesting and complex. (Season three wasn't a total bust though, since the Mom-leaves-for-rehab episode featured Seth giving Kristen a copy of Blankets.)

• So we're taking off for Australia in a few days (to visit Lisa's extended family), and we scored such a coup. Little Carter isn't too big on t.v., which is great, but he is a freaking addict of The Wiggles (their songs stick in my head for days... arrggghh!!), and we're taking him to see them live in Sydney!! The little guy's gonna shit his pants. I foresee hundreds of mini temper-tantrums after the last curtain falls, wanting the show to never end.

That's my favorite character in the background, Captain Feathersword.

• Oh, i won't have a computer, so except for maybe one more before i take off, i probably won't post until after New Years. Happy Holidays all around.