29 Aug 14

Pointers #1

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Everyone could use a little more “go and see” in their comics lives. We spend a lot of time wrapped up in what we’re interested in, so sometimes we miss new projects or comics. I thought I’d take a few seconds to point out some things you should have a gander at - new projects, ongoing comics, completed series, etc. 

Drew Green (Tumblr: drew-green) promised a new comic earlier this summer, and now Lotus for Help is up and running. I really like the first few pages, it’s a mashup comic that draws on a bunch of really popular yet dissonant sci-fi/fantasy tropes. For example, the three biggest characters thusfar (and Lotus for Help hasn’t been running that long) are a magical girl, a lady in a metroid/megaman style suit, and a wizard with the classic robe and wand. Definitely worth the read.

I’m really loving This TIme by Ian Chachere (tumblr: ianchachere) on Study Group (tumblr: study-group) . The limited palette really works for the comic, and Chachere has a unique eye for movement. I loved the woodcutting scene I pulled for the write up, such an inventive way to show the passage of time and effort. The comic updates on Sundays.

Now’s a good time to check out some of the nominees for the 2014 Ignatz Awards at spx! A great example is the group of artists nominated for Promising New Talent - many of them have giant swaths of work that is online.

Cathy G Johnson (tumblr: cathyboy) has a great collection of work available to read online, including her dark, challenging, and beautiful graphic novel Jeremiah, a comic I’m still reeling from, still thinking about.

Work by Daryl Seitchik (tumblr: darylseitchik)  is also available online. Missy is a combination of genuinely funny moments, bad-assery, and Missy #2, published by snakeoily, really blew me away.

Luke Howard (tumblr: andsoluke) has a really great comic, Trevor, available to read for free on his website. This was published by Dog City Press (tumblr: dogcitypress) in their Dog City anthology. 

Have a great holiday weekend, US readers! I’ll be back on Wednesday, so enjoy the Labor Day holiday!

27 Aug 14
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Manga is a tricky type of comic. There’s a higher barrier to entry due to the flipped pages, cultural cues that may not be easily understood or explained, and there’s a lot of chaff available on the market. It’s hard to know where to start.

Sequential State features manga I think are worth the effort for non-manga readers with a mix of information, a tiny bit of explanation, and some thoughts on why a book or series is good. Feel free to ask questions here or on twitter.

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Shimura Takako is a celebrated mangaka who is primarily known for her manga that feature LGBT topics. Adaptations of two of her comics, Aoi Hana and Wandering Son, have been made into television shows. While Aoi Hana was originally picked up for a digital release by JManga and then Digital Manga, Wandering Son was licensed for print release by Fantagraphics (tumblr: fantagraphics), and the first volume was published in 2011. 

Wandering Son is a slice of life story that features a pair of elementary school children Shuichi Nitori, “a boy who wants to be a girl,” and Yoshino Takatsuki, “a girl who wants to be a boy.”  The series follows the two as they go through the hardships of growing up feeling out of place.  There is a big group of students that they spend time with and grow to be friends with, and we as readers spend a lot of time in these characters heads.

Takako seems very interested in showing us the small moments, the details of these children’s lives, and how those small moments can have a huge emotional toll. When Shuichi’s older sister sees Shuichi wearing a dress or finds Shuichi’s wig. When Yoshino has to deal with menstruation. The teasing and bullying about being to girly or too manly. All of these small things build tensions that end in sometimes dramatic explosions.

Another big reason to read this comic is the strength of the illustration. Takako’s comics are beautiful, she has a knack for shading and motion that feel somewhat unique to her comics. Her linework has a delicate, gossamer feel. Wandering Son also has some of the best body language and expression drawing I’ve seen in a comic to date. I’ve picked a few pages above that I think show some of that off.

Clearly the themes and ideas that explored in Wandering Son have touched some critical nerves. Wandering Son has been recognized by the ALA’s Rainbow List for Children & Teens, YALSA’s 2012 Great Graphic Novels for Teens, and volume 1 of the series was nominated for an Eisner in 2012. There are currently 7 volumes in print.

25 Aug 14
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It’s hard to believe that SPX is only three weeks away! There are a lot of interesting books that are going to be debuting this Fall, and although I’m not going to be able to go to spx this year, here’s what I think you should look for (and what I’ll be looking to grab after the show).

1. Distance Mover by Patrick Kyle (tumblr: patrickkyleillustration) - Kyle’s work is challenging and beautiful. Distance Mover follows Mr. Earth and his protege Mendel as they travel around the world in the Distance Mover machine. Published by Koyama Press.

2. Dear Amanda by Cathy G. Johnson (tumblr: cathyboy) - Cathy is one of the five candidates for the Ignatz 2014 Promising New Talent award, and one look at her portfolio will give you a good idea why. Dear Amanda is about a writer named Belén and her romantic relationship with a co-worker. Self-published.

3. (In a Sense) Lost & Found by Roman Muradov (tumblr: bluebed) - I’ve only recently been introduced to Roman’s comics work via his Kickstarter for Yellow Zine #5, but I’ve seen his illustration work around for a few years. In this book from Nobrow Press (nobrowpress), Muradov explores the idea of innocence as a tangible object.

4. Rift: A Keepsakes Story by Carey Pietsch (tumblr: careydraws) - I absolutely loved Pietch’s Keepsakes, a mini I picked up at TCAF 2014. Rift seems to be a new episode in the same universe. I haven’t seen much in the way of an official announcement yet, but I’m sure that’s coming soon. Self-published.

5. Cat Dad, King of the Goblins by Britt Wilson (tumblr: brittwilson) - Britt’s work has an exuberance and energy that is infectious. Britt and John Marz are starting off Koyama Press’ kids line with two separate books, and this looks like a fun comic no matter what your age. Published by Koyama Press.

6. RAV 1st Collection by Mickey Zachilli - My first experience with Zachilli’s work is the Cool Dog sticker campaign from Kickstarter. Unfortunately I haven’t read any of RAV, but I’ve seen her* frenetic Comics Workbook work and comic comics reviews, which are great.  Published by Youth In Decline (tumblr: youthindecline).

*(thanks Simon for the info/correction, and sorry for being super rude)

7. Rough Age by Max de Radigues - de Radigues’ first longform work to be published in English. It appears to be a slice-of-life story about a group of teenagers. I absolutely loved his mini-comic Bastard which is currently being published in English by Oily Comics (tumblr: snakeoily). Published by One Percent Press (tumblr: onepercentpress).

8. The Hospital Suite by John Porcellino (tumblr: johnporcellino) - I met John briefly at SPACE 2014 and got to see first hand some of his famous King Cat comics and his work with Spit and a Half, his zine and comic distro. John’s memoir of a period of illness and his interactions with the medical community seem timely for me personally as I continue my career in the medical field. Published by Drawn and Quarterly (tumblr: drawnandquarterly).

As always, tell me what I missed! :) What other books are debuting at SPX that you want to pick up?

20 Aug 14
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Review: New Physics by Box Brown

I jumped into a lot of comics subscriptions this Spring. I wanted to get an idea of the current small press landscape, I wanted to push my own boundaries as a reader, and I wanted to read work from people I hadn’t seen before. One of those subscriptions is Yeah Dude Comics 2014 subscription from publisher Pat Aulisio, which has been a bit of a mixed bag for me. Certain work from the subscription like the comics of Laura Knetzger have been wonderful, while others have been less interesting. Box Brown’s New Physics is the latest book from the run.

New Physics is 20 pages of two-color risoprint comics in neon pink and black. 2014 is the year of the neon pink risograph comic, it seems. The comic is the story of Vern, a musician and social media mogul in the far future who slowly builds an audience and then converts it into a cult.  

One of New Physics’ strengths is Brown’s strong eye for page construction and paneling. Vern’s profile links up to the social helmets of new followers in one page. Other pages show websites and social media sharing; part of the comic is Vern’s personal journey, and the other part is the broadcast. Brown is able to tie all of this stuff up very cleanly.

We also get a look at social media through a different lens - Brown imagines how the already social connectivity we live in now will evolve over a few hundred years. It’s not insanity to think that religions could spring up inside social media. Different platforms tend to pull specific crowds of people into them, forming like-minded collectives. It’s a fascinating rabbit hole. Brown also gets to have a little fun with his instagram-like follower pictures and usernames.

I love the parallels that Brown draws between the New Physics cult and the non-denominational mega churches that collect thousands upon thousands of parishioners and put ATMs in the back of the sanctuary. There’s this theme of monetization that runs through parts of the comic - buy the NewPhysics™ Torso Reimaginer, get the hat and T-shirt. Buy your salvation, fools.

New Physics is compelling and cynical view of tomorrow from a cartoonist you should be paying attention to. Recommended.

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Notes: Again, apologies from pulling images off the internet for this review - my scanner can’t handle neon colors very well, they all end up washed out. Because of this, there are some color discrepancies between the images as posted and the final comic d/t the riso print.

Box Brown (tumblr: boxbrowncomics) is cartoonist and publisher with Retrofit Comics (tumblr: retrofitcomics) His recent graphic novel, Andre the Giant: Life and Legend, a biography of the legendary wrestler, was published by firstsecondbooksYou can get a copy of New Physics at Box’s website.

New Physics is published by Pat Aulisio (tumblr: yeahdudecomics). You can see more of the comics published by Pat on his website.

18 Aug 14
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Review: It Never Happened Again by Sam Alden

Earlier this year I did a review/thoughts piece on Sam’s Wicked Chicken Queen from Retrofit. I was thoroughly impressed with Alden’s mastery of graphite and the thoughtfulness of the book. Uncivilized Press has recently released a book with two collected stories, “Hawaii 1997” and “Anime,” the first of which was published on Alden’s tumblr account prior to collection, and the second of which is a brand new story.

I don’t generally make too many comments about a book’s production, but Uncivilized Books has put together a really nice paperback for It Never Happened Again with spot-gloss, lovely contrasting colors, and high quality paper.

In “Hawaii 1997” we see a young Alden exploring Hawaii and a moment of his life that seems both surreal and life-altering. The story shows Sam meeting a girl around his age while on vacation. There is some horsing around and the play of shadow stomping, and a chase scene that allows Alden to work with shadow and texture. The comic flows really well from page to page, much better than it did on screen, and ends with a punch in the gut.

 “Anime” shows a young woman, Janet, who feels very uncomfortable in her own skin. She calls herself Kiki after a character from a Studio Ghibli film and is planning a trip to Japan with a friend. She believes that this trip is going to change her, and that “once I get over there things will just be so much easier for me,” ignoring the finite length of her trip. But what she finds is another foreignness, a more palpable, direct foreignness, than the one she faces at home. Challenged expectations are key to “Anime,” and it’s hard to tell what will happen to Janet in the end. Alden lets his protagonist walk away from the reader as she moves through Japan’s crowded streets. It’s clear she’s just as alone in her land of fable as she is at home.

Alden has a habit of letting his panels go a long way before words are spoken. I find myself thinking about the story in terms of what I see and how I feel while pouring over these quiet moments. I think that is what makes Alden’s stinger endings work so well. The flow of It Never Happened Again lends itself to wandering, and Alden seems to know when to make the wandering stop.

In some ways, the protagonist of both stories is trying to grapple with the world in a way that makes sense, sometimes succeeding, sometimes not. There’s also a sense of trying to push away things, Janet pushing away her father and her given name for something that she feels strongly about, Sam pushing away from his family, his small rebellion of going out when everyone else is asleep on vacation. How the push changes both characters is an essential part of the collection.

Perhaps it is a loss of innocence that makes these comics so compelling– both protagonists have a sense of vulnerability that is showcased throughout the narrative. Sam and Janet both lose a piece of their innocence in their respective stories. Or, viewed another way, the idea of the personal dream plays heavily in It Never Happened Again; the construction of a dream in “Hawaii 1997” and the implosion of one in “Anime.” These dreams and their potential consequences make the characters in Alden’s stories more real and makes the telling more visceral. 

The idea of something never happening again, the sense of being in a specific place and time, is key to the development of both of the stories in the collection, and a key to their success. In their own separate ways, these stories show that moment and its aftermath. In It Never Happened Again, Alden has tied together two very different stories and made them resonate. Recommended.

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Sam Alden blogs at gingerlandcomics and will have work in the upcoming anthology Subcultures. Uncivilized Books can be found at their website and tumblr uncivilizr. You can buy a copy of It Never Happened Again at this link.

15 Aug 14

Quick Picks #2

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I’m still working through my stack of minis, which includes some micropublisher work, a few subscriptions, and even a Kickstarter project or two. Quick Picks is a monthly feature of a set of three microreviews of stuff I’ve read the past week.

Bastard #1, by Max de Radiguès

Max de Radiguès is kicking up a little attention this month because of the recent One Percent Press announcement that his book Rough Age will be available in English for the first time at SPX. Charles Forsman has published another of his comics in English, a mini called Bastard. The 3-in-1 mini is a sub-theme for this Summer’s Oily bundle, and Bastard #1 collects the first 3 minis of a comic that features a mother-son pair of unlikely outlaws as they race from a mysterious crime scene with bags and bags of money.

Radiguès has a clean style reminiscent of Sacha Goerg and Charles Forsman, but what’s different is his specific paneling choices. He sticks with the classic 6 panel page like Forsman, but varies that based on the scenery (two vertical panels combine to make a closet, two horizontal panels combine to show a shopping plaza, etc.). I loved the way he lets the mystery of his story grow just enough to keep you interested and reading, but without giving away too much too quickly.

Verdict: Great sense of character and space in a comic that is the definition of slow burn. Recommended.

Blades & Lazers #1-2 by Benjamin Marra

Blades & Lazers was my first experience with Marra’s work, and many of his comics seem to run on a similar idea, to pay homage the ridiculous fever-dream comics of the 80s. And Blades & Lazers does this with aplomb, featuring V’LARR, a mute 24th degree reaper and blademaster, and V’RONN, a las-slinger. They hunt Galacto-Demons. Yep.

Blades & Lazers has a unique design, in that it’s only two colors (riso print neon pink and navy blue). The story being told sounds like a Star Wars side story – these two characters could easily be found at the Mos Eisley cantina. The stories are interesting, the books are fun, but I wouldn’t say that I’m rushing out to buy more of Marra’s work, just like I’m not rushing out to buy Star Wars comics. Blades & Lazers failed to capture my imagination.

Verdict: Pulpy and a homage to the 70-80s B movie.

Storm Chasers by Ken Mahon

The mysterious appearance of a second moon plays havoc on the Earth’s surface with storms, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. Humans escape to the skies to avoid the weather, while a select few remain on earth. When a sky-citizen falls to the earth, a family of storm chasers saves his life and promises to take him back to the elevator that will get him home. But they are beset by challenges along the way.

Mahon has a lot of great ideas for Storm Chasers, but the execution is lacking. There are two sub-stories that really pull from the main thrust of Storm Chasers, the jealousy/anger of the son character, and the archeological dig of the mother character. It feels like those are pieces that Mahon thought were worth exploring, but they come off as either ham-fisted or disingenuous. Additionally, the book is extremely dark, so at times the art doesn’t pop.

Verdict: A lot of neat ideas that don’t really coalesce as well as they should.

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Bastard is published by snakeoily, and Radiguès’book Rough Age will be published by onepercentpress and will premier at spx

Blades & Lazers is published by Ian Harker’s Sacred Prism publishing venture.

Storm Chasers was published by Cardboard Press as part of their summer 2014 subscription. Cardboard Press is a publishing venture cofounded by Katie Blackwood and Paddy Lynch to showcase Irish comics.

13 Aug 14
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Review: Dinner Ditz by Alexis Cooke

It isn’t often that two of my comics interest seem so perfectly aligned in one project. My interest in manga is what drove me to comics in general, and my experiences at conventions have pushed me towards smaller works and small press. So when a mini from Chromatic Press comes out that has art reminiscent of Natsume Ono, you can bet that you have my interest.

Dinner Ditz is 60 pages black and white comics that takes a lot of its cues from shojo and lighter yaoi manga. Peregrine, who has recently come out and gotten a divorce, wants to connect with his daughter Lottie through cooking, but he’s awful in the kitchen. He enlists the aid of a cooking coach Otho to help him learn to cook better and be less nervous in the kitchen.

Cooke has a good eye for character design. Her male leads are the pensive type with hawkish features and strong jawlines, a similarity to the work of Natsume Ono (the nervous, hawkish guy is the bread and butter of her storytelling). Throughout the mini, the character interactions of Dinner Ditz are the reason it works. The tropes, like the nervous divorcee, are familiar, but the focus is on how two men spend time together, and how a father loves his daughter. Dinner Ditz is at its best when Lottie and Peregrine are on the same page together – there’s a true chemistry in the illustration, and the writing is at its most sincere.

Still, the mini is not without problems. Cooke has a tendency to overuse sound-effect words that explain a face or an action when the meaning could be easily interpreted from her illustration alone. I don’t think I’ve ever seen the words “love nudge” used as a sound effect before. Cooke also over-relies on the profile shot, which makes the comic feel stiff in places. Using a larger variety of character placements, camera angles, and shots would likely improve the flow of the comic and keep the reader’s eye. There were also a few places where the writing felt a bit stilted, especially the opening and closing text.

I think Dinner Ditz is a great start. Cooke’s style is bright and expressive, and Dinner Ditz seems like the beginnings of what will likely be a strong professional career in comics. It’s certainly a cute story. And as Cooke continues to grow as a cartoonist, I’ll be interested to see if she brings us back to the world of Peregrine and Ortho.

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Dinner Ditz is written and illustrated by Alexis Cooke (tumblr: anxiousa), and was published by chromaticpress in their sparklermonthly magazine. Sparkler is in the middle of a subscription drive - $5/month gives you access to a lot of comics, prose, and audio material.

A review copy was provided by the publisher for this review.

11 Aug 14

Linkblogging #3

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Another month, another Linkblogging post. Please note that there is plenty of great stuff on the internet, and this is only stuff I know about. If your stuff isn’t on this page of stuff, let me know.

Have you followed sequential-alt yet? Because you should! Also follow this account, sequentialstate, because you get one more punch on your comics blog punchcard - 10 punches and you get your own free blog.

Kickstarter

Funding for the John Porcellino documentary, “Root Hog or Die,” is coming to close on Kickstarter. John, among other things, runs his own zine distro, Spit and a Half, self publishes comics, and has a book coming out from drawnandquarterly in Fall 2014, The Hospital Suite. You’ve got 6ish days left.

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With 19+ days to go, the Valor anthology has soared past its $20K funding request and looks to have some pretty neat comics. The theme is fairy tales with courageous heroines. You can find the anthology’s tumblr at valor-anthology.

LOVF by Jesse Reklaw is looking for $2.5K and has partial backing from fantagraphics, whatever that means?? Jesse was one of the pioneers of webcomics with his piece Slow Wave. Also, it appears he’s trying to sell the original art of LOVF all as one piece for $5K on his website… which, that’s something.

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Sabrina Cotugno (tumblr: arythusa) has what looks to be a great comic up on Kickstarter, Bleeding Heart, about a scientist in training who rescues an injured werewolf. It appears that this standalone story will be a small part of what looks to be a much larger comic universe called The Glass Scientists. You can find out more at the Kickstarter page. This is something that I think we don’t see a lot of - comics Kickstarters generally collect previously printed material; they don’t often kick off a whole multiverse of comics work.


Read This Thing

Udo Jung’s new webcomic Hyperspace Journey.

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Part one of Persimmon’s Cup, a new comic on study-group by Nick Bertozzi.

robkirbycomics interviews kevinczap on Panel Patter.

News/Reviews/Oddities:

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retrofitcomics has 3 new books available for preorder at their store which should be available at spx.

Zainab at Comics and Cola lists her favorite comics of the year thus-far and has an interview with Inés Estrada that just went live today. I recently did a review of Estrada’s CS, which you can read here.

koyamapress will have a new book from Patrick Kyle out at SPX - Distance Mover. You can see a sneak peak at the Koyama Press website.

Liz Suburbia’s SACRED HEART has been announced for Summer 2015 by fantagraphics. Previously announced at SDCC, but hey, it’s pretty freaking cool. You can see some progress shots here.

If you want to exhibit at TCAF 2015, you don’t have that much time. Application submissions close October 17th.

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Have a great Monday!

8 Aug 14
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Review: QCHQ by Jordan Speer

Jordan Speer’s QCHQ from Space Face Books looks relatively strange and uninviting - its fluorescent coloring, relative lack of structure, and unique illustration style would have likely caught my eye at a convention but I doubt I would have purchased a copy. However, being part of a subscription means getting every book a publisher puts out, which in turn, puts you into contact with books that challenge your comfort level as a reader and puts into your hands books you would have never purchased on your own. In this case, I’m glad for the challenge.

Speer’s QCHQ focuses on the QCHQ company’s quarterly report, with hokey presentation slides with Comic Sans text and strange bolding choices give the official spin on a world that seems to be dying under the weight of its god-client. Speer’s characters and illustrations are rubbery, designed to look like the most advanced graphics of the 90s in lurid, plasticine detail. Demonic blood drips and oozes, dissected frogs lay casually on kitchen tables, and corporate-sponsored blood sport is mentioned in the same breath as quarterly earnings.

QCHQ pulls a lot of reference from 90s computer culture. There’s the illustration style itself which harkens back to the low-poly designs of various computer games from the time, plus the low-tech slide show that looks like it was built with the first version of Powerpoint. But Speer draws from the present, with technical artifacts like slide-lock USB keys, green screen special effects suits, and hash tag graffiti. The resulting mix is something of an anachronism.

In part, Speer seems to be talking about corporate culture as a whole – its unnatural behavior, its relative lifelessness, and backroom deals that are made at the highest of high circles. QCHQ shows the real-world (as real as can be possible in this book) consequences of corporate behavior, and the results are gruesome.

Speer also seems to be particularly interested in outsider observation. One remarkable illustration is of a giant satellite with fists holding the thing together, all made up of mechanical eyes and ears. Surveilling  googly eyes grace many pages (even the cover), and so do cameras. The feeling of being watched is constant throughout QCHQ.

With attractive cartoonish computer-generated art, Speer constructs an alternate world that is cold and plastic. While much of QCHQ is a fantasy world, with its absurd creatures, vehicles, and dump trucks full of cones, cubes, and spheres, QCHQ also feels like an ode to the now. The effect is chilling.

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QCHQ was written by Jordan Speer (tumblr: jordanspeerart) and published by Space Face Book (tumblr: spacefacebooks). You can get a copy at their website.

6 Aug 14
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There’s been a great conversation regarding the work of Mike Dawson this week, somewhat self-inflicted. Dawson posted some honest to god numbers about the number of books he has sold and talked really frankly about his work and his audience.

I honestly didn’t know anything about Mike’s work until earlier this year, when I bought his second book, Troop 142, at the Secret Acres booth at TCAF ‘14. As a former scout, a quick flip through showed a lot of the things I remember from my scouting experience in the late 90s-early 00s. A read of the book late last month showed more of the activity that I remembered from scouting - the roughhousing, the idiotic talk of boys who don’t know anything about women, the personal growth and exploration. But Troop 142 tackles some of the darkest memories of my scouting experience as well – the institutionalized homophobia and expulsion of agnostics and atheists.

Dawson manages to discuss ideas through a slice-of-life storyline that is driven more by the passing of days than any particular plot. David and David, younger boys in the troop who are attracted to each other, deal with bullying and their anger in a very “scout-sponsored” way. The boys are horrified when called “boyfriends” as a joke, and lash out in anger with slurs that ultimately attack themselves. Dawson captures the way that young men communicate very well in Troop 142.

And while Dawson wants to draw attention to these things, Troop 142 is more about vulnerability and the social constructs of adolescent groups than the politics of the scouts. We see boys getting picked on and see egos swell and burst. Fighting breaks out at a moment’s notice over tiny slights, small moments that turn into life-changing moments.

Dawson’s cartoonish illustration style lends it to this kind of story, where the subtleties of human interaction can clearly be displayed on faces that are somewhat larger than life – Dawson uses different body shapes and facial features to differentiate between a large cast of characters, but I admit that I still had problems telling two characters, Jason and Matt, apart. It doesn’t help that the two are seen in a lot of scenes together. I feel like this could have been avoided, given the amount of revision that Troop 142 went through before it was published in book form.

I picked two specific pages that I thought were very well placed at a second read – boys and men from the story all recite the Scout Law – “A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean, and reverent.” In some way, the tenet of the Law that each boy or man recites is their biggest character flaw, and it will take some time for these flaws to show themselves throughout the book. This was a really interesting composition decision that paid dividends later on.

Overall, Troop 142 is hard to categorize. Dawson has created a complex and multifaceted work, simultaneously discussing the politics of a gigantic organization and the emotional frailties of its members. But I think more importantly, Troop 142 carries the weight of these things in the small moments of campfires, tents, and merit badges. Which, honestly, is just like real life.

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Mike Dawson is an Ignatz winning cartoonist and hosts the TCJ Talkies podcast. You can find him at his twitter page or at his tumblr account, mikedawwwson.

Secret Acres is an independent comics publisher based out of Brooklyn. You can find their twitter account here.