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REVIEW: Our Gang

September 1st, 2006 1:50pm by ComicList Email

Suspended Animation Review

Our Gang/96 pgs. & $12.95/art & story by Walt Kelly/available at www.fantagraphics.com and comic and book stores.

If you love the Our Gang films and the comic strip Pogo, then you'll love Walt Kelly's Our Gang, right?

Sometimes, logic fails.


Before he created Pogo, master cartoonist Walt Kelly drew a comic book loosely based on MGM's version of Our Gang, the series also called The Little Rascals. He wrote and drew almost 100 Our Gang stories during its 59-issue history that ended in 1949.

Fantagraphics has published the first in a series of trade paperbacks reprinting the entire run.

When I heard of the project, my heart lept. When I read the first volume, my heart fell.

This is not Kelly's best work.

The Our Gang films were character-driven, and herein lies the weakness of the Our Gang comics.

A person's character is partially revealed through his or her voice as well as through body language – the way a person stands and moves. As example, it is impossible in a comic
book to hear Froggy's raspy voice, or capture the complicated gestures and stances that visually help define any person. That Kelly doesn't do so is not his fault.

It is also apparent that Kelly was more comfortable drawing animals than humans at this point in his career. His line work is not poor, it is average. That is Kelly's fault. Poor
coloring in this collection doesn't help either.

Finally, Kelly's dialog and plots are true to the films, but the comics were written for a young audience; adults may find them difficult to embrace.

Therefore, Our Gang #1 is only recommended for diehard Kelly fans, adults who love to read to preliterate children, and for very young readers. MV

Order Vance's history of the American Comics Group in Alter Ego #61 at www.twomorrows.com.

Interested in the exciting Oklahoma Cartoonists Collection and Toy and Action Figure Museum? Go to http://fourcolorcommentary.blogspot.com/

Shudder at Michael Vance's "Light's End" audiotapes narrated by legendary actor William Windom. Star of 18 Broadway plays, 200 TV shows (Murder She Wrote, Star Trek, etc) & 50 movies, Windom will chill you as Vance's prose curdles your blood! Light's End #1: "A Change of Heart" and "Cross Purposes" or #2: "Fall Guy" and "The Zoo" plus the song "The World Roars On". $10 unsigned. $20 signed by Windom and Vance. Cassette or CD from: Vance, 1427 S. Delaware Ave., Tulsa, OK, 74104, or www.starbase21OK.com!

PREVIEWS: Image for November 2006

August 27th, 2006 2:34pm by ComicList Email

Previews of Image Comics that will be published in November 2006, by Ralf Haring.

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REVIEW: Elephantmen #1

August 25th, 2006 12:02pm by ComicList Email

Suspended Animation Review

Well, there's this elephant named Ebony wearing a huge overcoat who walks and talks like a man, and this cute little girl with a bunny rabbit backpack named Savannah who wants to be his girlfriend.

Yeah, I know what you're thinking: do we really need another cute little anthropomorphic comic book?! You know--Bugs Bunny, Uncle Scrooge, Sylvester and that "I tot I taw a puddy tat" little bird--funny talking animals?


Please, don't interrupt again.

So the elephant and little girl are waiting on a sidewalk at night in 2259 AD in front of a Hooters restaurant, and Ebony in having flashbacks as it begins to rain. You see, Ebony is a human-animal hybrid, born of a human mother (that must have hurt!) and created by a scientist for only one reason, to kill.

Even though this first issue just hints at future plots, it should be obvious that Elephantmen is not your typical funny animal title.

After all, it is a very dark night. Ebony's flashbacks are unpleasant, and Savannah's mother is horrified when she catches her daughter talking to a "monster".

The cute but realistic dialog also plays in contrast to brooding, dynamic art that will knock your socks off.

Yeah, it's all here, bud. Intriguing writing and distinctive art both fulfill the technical aspects of good graphic storytelling and lay the groundwork for an excellent new comics title. But excellent comics are about more than competent work.

Great comics storytelling is about a unique vision that grabs your attention and wont let go.

It doesn't really matter if it grabs you because of talking elephants or super-humans in spandex tights, so get rid of your funny animal prejudice.

This one is worth watching.

Elephantmen #1/26 pgs. from Image Comics/art by Moritat, words by Richard Starkings/sold at comics shops and at www.imagecomics.com

Order Vance's history of the American Comics Group in Alter Ego #61 at www.twomorrows.com.

Interested in the exciting Oklahoma Cartoonists Collection and Toy and Action Figure Museum? Go to fourcolorcommentary.blogspot.com/

Shudder at Michael Vance's "Light's End" audiotapes narrated by legendary actor William Windom. Star of 18 Broadway plays, 200 TV shows (Murder She Wrote, Star Trek, etc) & 50 movies, Windom will chill you as Vance's prose curdles your blood! Light's End #1: "A Change of Heart" and "Cross Purposes" or #2: "Fall Guy" and "The Zoo" plus the song "The World Roars On". $10 unsigned. $20 signed by Windom and Vance. Cassette or CD from: Vance, 1427 S. Delaware Ave., Tulsa, OK, 74104, or www.starbase21OK.com!

PREVIEWS: Marvel for November 2006

August 24th, 2006 5:51am by ComicList Email

Previews of Marvel Comics that will be published in November 2006, by Ralf Haring.

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REVIEWS: On The Shelves 08/23/06

August 23rd, 2006 1:32pm by ComicList Email

On The Shelves: 08/23/06, by Guy LeCharles Gonzalez

Reprinted courtesy of Comic Book Commentary.

Reading is fundamental. Don't waste your time reading bad comics out of habit!

The drought continues as I am now three weeks behind in picking up my stash from Midtown Comics. Here's my weekly look at select comic books being released Wednesday, 8/23/06. The full shipping is list available at ComicList.

[NOTE: Not all of these titles will actually arrive in all stores. If your LCBS offers a pre-ordering service, be sure to take advantage of it. If not, find another one; or try Khepri.com or MidtownComics.com]

PICK OF THE WEEK



Kraven's Last Hunt Premiere HC


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PREVIEWS: DC for November 2006

August 22nd, 2006 7:00pm by ComicList Email

Previews of DC Comics that will be published in November 2006, by Ralf Haring.

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PREVIEWS: Dark Horse for November 2006

August 22nd, 2006 7:00pm by ComicList Email

Previews of Dark Horse Comics that will be published in November 2006, by Ralf Haring.

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REVIEW: The Preposterous Voyages of Iron-Hide Tom

August 18th, 2006 1:31pm by ComicList Email

Suspended Animation Review

It can't get much less than this and still be called a comic book.

"Why not?" you might question in your ignorance.

Certainly, a price can't be less than free and that's what The Preposterous Voyages of IronHide Tom cost during the recent, annual "Free Comic Book Day" honored by thousands of comic books shops across America.


In addition, anything less than stick-figure doodles would be prose, not art. And IronHide is stick figures from a tiny IronHide Tom atop a submerged monster on the front cover to the final panel of a despondent Tom stranded on some alien planet.

Therefore, knowing the preferences of your beloved (or not) reviewer, you are now prepared for nothing less than a rip-roaring criticism of this comic book from AdHouse Books. IronHide Tom is nothing less than fun, fun, fun. Why?


Who wouldn't love the wild adventures of this crusty old sailor who rubs shoulders with mermaids, marries a tornado, is tossed about by two Cyclops, and discovers the great beasts that actually hold up our flat earth.

Tom's tales are told is the grand old tradition of lies SO big (wink, wink) that no one believes them but everyone enjoys them anyway.

But what about ye old reviewer's axiom that great comics are a perfect wedding of art and word with neither element overshadowing the other? Huh! What about that old axiom thing?

Er. Uh. Charles Schultz couldn't really draw well either.

Recommended. Really. MV

The Preposterous Voyages of Iron-Hide Tom/30 pages/words & art by Joel Priddy/available at www.adhouse.com.

MINIVIEW: Skyscrapers of the Midwest #3 [AdHouse]. From the 'life is worthless' philosophy and drawn in a scratchy, impressionistic style, teen-aged, nasty, anthropomorphic cats (I think; it's hard to tell) treat each other like crap in what may be Middle School. A giant, unexplained robot stumbles around.

Ho-hum. MV

Order Vance's history of the American Comics Group in Alter Ego #61 at www.twomorrows.com.

Interested in the exciting Oklahoma Cartoonists Collection and Toy and Action Figure Museum? Go to fourcolorcommentary.blogspot.com/

The Acronyms List

AR -
Ask retailer for price
BD -
Blu-ray Disc
CCG -
Collectible card game
CD -
Compact disc
DVD -
Digital versatile disc
FCBD -
Free Comic Book Day
GN -
Graphic novel
HC -
Hardcover
HD -
High definition
LCG -
Living Card Game
MMPB -
Mass market paperback
PVC -
Polyvinyl chloride
RPG -
Role playing game
SC -
Softcover
TBD -
To be determined
TCG -
Trading card game
TP -
Trade paperback
UDA -
Upper Deck Authenticated
WDCC -
Walt Disney Classics Collection
WS -
Widescreen

show more

About ComicList

ComicList was founded Jan. 12, 1995 with the mission of empowering comic book consumers by providing accurate and timely information. By delivering the weekly list of new releases, along with news concerning current and future products available in local and online comic book shops, we enable consumers to meet their goals more effectively.

The new releases list, which details the comic books, graphic novels, trade paperbacks, and other products you will find in your local and online comic book shops, is posted weekly every Monday night. Our site also offers the latest news, previews, and reviews, updated every day.

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Reviewer In Chief: Brandon Borzelli

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