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Here again … Birthday Bounty

Right then. So this blogging business didn’t get off to quite the right start.

My last update was around Xmas, and now it’s just after my birthday – that means I have more stuff.

My girlfriend has become quite proficient at buying stuff for me. She got me:

  • The Invisibles, Vol. 1. Yes, I know. It’s shameful that I haven’t already read it, but I’ve only gotten into Grant Morrison’s work relatively recently. This is interesting stuff; not “Wow, I’m absolutely stunned” good, but enteretaining, and I’m planning to pick up the next couple volumes this week. I’ve always loved Jill Thompson’s work – Brief Lives was my first Sandman story – and her depiction of Orlando is nice and creepy. King Mob looks a little too much like his creator, though. I wonder: With KM and Ragged Robin, does Invisibles feature more prominent comic creators than other books?
  • Owly, Vol. 1. How’s that for contrast? Owly is – yes, yes – an owl. He’s a cute litle guy who just wants to make friends. He has some problems with this, since owls are typically regarded as Winged Death. (nobody actually comes out and says that, but it’s fairly obvious) Everyone runs away, leaving poor Owly alone. One day, he saves a little worm who was drowning in a puddle. He looks after the worm, befriends him, then helps him find his way back home. Andy Runton tells the stories without any dialogue; the few speech balloons are filled with pictograms of houses, trees and families. It’s exceptionally well done, and just about the cutest thing you’re likely to read this year. “All Ages” is typically one of those terms applied to Disney direct-to-video pap, but Owly really is for anyone.
  • Falling somewhere in between the cute and the S&M lies Chester Brown’s Louis Riel. Even better, a signed, limited edition copy. Not that I really care about collectibility, but it’s pretty neat nonetheless. I’ve just started reading it, and it’s quite interesting. People outside of Canada (and probably a good man within) won’t likely know the story of Riel, a French/Indian who rebelled against the Canadian government in the 1800’s. Beyond the story itself, I find it incredible that a comic about a Canadian historical figure drawn by an indie cartoonist could find such (relative) fame and success. It gives me hope for the medium.

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