The Playboy by Chester Brown

Every Chester Brown's story is a gem – and quite often a gem where he kinda strips naked, both figuratively and literally.

While Paying for It was Brown's recent autobiographic ode to the joys and dangers of paid sex, The Playboy is another brilliant comic memoir of his, focused on his adolescent passion for Playboy mag, masturbation, guilt and shame.

I know not all of you are able to enjoy it – still, I find this book totally adorable.

 

 


Dark Country by Thomas Ott

As usual with Thomas Ott, a couple of pictures is much better than a thousand words. Brrrrr, scary.

 


The Hidden by Richard Sala

My call – The Hidden is nowhere close to Peculia's absolute awesomeness. This Frankenstein-creates-the-end-of-the-world story is, as every Sala's book, beautifully drawn – and even beautifully colored – but the storyline is, ehem, so and so.

Oh well. Enjoy the bloodshed and the macabre!

 


Ed the Happy Clown by Chester Brown

A few days ago our friends came over for a visit, a married couple with three little girls. So the kids started playing, and then my wife realized that one of them, the eldest girl who's about ten years old, is very, extremely quiet, cuddled up and reading a book in a corner. And so she did for twenty minutes or so. Now, my wife thinks: what a nice little girl, but I wonder, what is the book that she's so immersed into? So she glances over her shoulder…

Why am I telling you all this?

Cause Chet Brown made a fantastic book. With a pinch of raving madness, this is a mid-eighties comic strip about a hole to the parallel universe that ends up (in this brave new universe) in a working lad's ass, a book full of blood craving vampires, cannibal pigmies that live in the sewer, a talking penis (!) with the President Ron Reagan's head attached to it (yikes!!), masturbations, castrations, religious punishment, giant hydraulic presses that pump America's shit in this lovely parallel universe (i.e. a guy's arse!), a severed human hand that crawls in search of its prey – whichever madness, you name it, it's all there. This is the most feverishly sick and the most sickly feverish story I've seen in a while. Groovy!

So yeah, keep the adult books well locked up, huh 😉

 


Peculia and the Groon Grove Vampires by Richard Sala

Equally delicious as the original Peculia book, this story is a great homage to old time b&w horror, as well as the 60-70s b-movies, the majestic Count Dracula, Scooby Doo and the rest of the vampire horror fun.

Fast to read and very enjoyable! Mmmm

 


Peculia by Richard Sala

Peculia, a black and white comic book by Richard Sala, is absolutely stunning. Barely one hundred pages, it contains less than a dozen short horror stories about a brave girl named Peculia, her perfect butler Ambrose, her adversary Justine and her secret admirer Obscrus – and many, many monsters. These tales are quite similar to my childhood horror stories – the crawling hands, big ugly creatures lurking in the dark, waiting to grab little kiddies and eat them.

This is like the best ironic comic book horror I've seen in a while – definitely better than the previous Sala's books I've tried.

Also, black and white with no coloring gives it a distinct, rather peculiar feel – which is only spoiled by colors. Mesmerizing. A tiny gem.

 

 


The Walking Dead: All Out War by Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard

In the past ten years I got so tired of reading The Walking Dead, I was truly bored with these twelve All Out War action-packed issues.

Gosh, ten years was too much – I need to give it up. Bury the dead, huh.

 

 


Violenzia by Richard Sala

Yet another macabre short story by Richard Sala, a true master of gothic horror, cults, and scary tales in unique vivid colors.

Funny to read this as a continuation of the Fatale, to see the same ceremonial sacrifices with crooked daggers etc – but with much more irony around it.

A great short, all in all – but only for those of you who are sick enough to enjoy it.

 


Fatale. Book Four: Pray for Rain by Ed Brubacker and Sean Phillips

As much as I was dissatisfied with Fatale Books 2 & 3, I am equally pleased with Book Four: Pray for Rain (collects volumes 15 to 19). The change is drastic – as if Brubacker was completely out of ideas for his past several volumes, and had to fill them with crap in order to fulfill the publishers desires – and, suddenly, he found, I dunno, his own Fatale that gave his the inspiration back.

To my mind, this story arc is equal to a good, hard to take your eyes off the screen slasher movie, when you sit and enjoy the rollercoster. Nice.

And after that, an unfortunate pause. While volumes 20 & 21 are already available and in my iPad, Fatale the series will end in this July, when volume 24 hits the shelves – and I guess, I will have to wait for that – as I never liked reading small 30-page long volumes separately, as I don't really get to enjoy the storyline this way. Okey. Let's see what July brings.

 


Richard Stark’s Parker: Slayground by Darwyn Cooke

The 4th Parker book is as awesome as the first three. Undoubtedly, this the best crime fiction you can get in the moden world. Coupled with the comic book medium, it rocks.

Really, even if you don't like comic books and are afraid of the superhero-poisoned teenage subculture, try Parker. My bet, you won't be disappointed. If they ever publish that in Russian, I'm buying it for my pops on day one.