I’ve been looking at a fair bit of comics these days and while I’m no stranger to them (I have an almost complete collection of Calvin & Hobbes), I find the field to be an exciting one these days. And by exciting, I mean that there is so much more to love, all thanks to the wonderful world of the internet.
When I was young, I thought that the comic world was divided only into two different genres – manga and children’s comics. I now know better (of course!), but only because of the world wide web and a random foray into an obscure corner of my local bookshop which yielded a bit of surprise – there were comics for people like me who weren’t into manga and they weren’t just for children! From there on, I realized that there were comics for all sorts of genres and people, and the array out there is dizzying!
One publisher that caught my eye was No Brow. I just received a copy of Leelo & Popo and Birchfield Close in the mail, and they’re both wonderfully different and refreshing:
LEEROY & POPO
Slacker subculture takes centerstage in the first part of a series by Louis Roskosch in Leeroy & Popo. Leeroy, a bear and Popo, a dinosaur goes through post teenage angst and teeter on the side of romance in this growing up tale. Modern and fresh, I thought that there was a certain melancholy in the way the characters are portrayed, which I could identify with! I’m waiting for the next installment, just to see if Leeroy manages to win the heart of his lady love.
The brilliant work of Jon McNaught is captured beautifully in Birchfield Close – a book that describes frame-by-frame of the suburbs in all its mundane glory. Each scene seems to blend into one another effortlessly, much as the day turns into night in places such as these – behind the subtle chatter of neighbours to the quiet unsymbolic passing of days. Throughout the book there’s no conversation; just sounds and noises against backdrops and textures of subtle color. Jon’s a genius.
These two comics are but just the tip of the iceberg! The range of books available at No Brow runs from children’s books to those for adults (or sometimes, big kids) and they are all especially worth picking for those who love illustrations (ahem, someone like yours truly) and not only that, many of them are set to become collectibles that you’ll find yourself digging out after you’re long done with them.