Dark Country by Thomas Ott

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


R.I.P.: Best of 1985-2004 by Thomas Ott

The R.I.P. anthology is a much darker and uglier set of crime/horror stories by Swiss author Thomas Ott than his other books like Cinema Panopticum or The Number.

Full of murder, hate, oppression, torture, suicide, and madness, these stories may repulse quite a few readers. The content is not so much different from a typical Alfred Hitchcock Presents / Tales from the Crypt kind of story, but in a comic book format, especially one drawn by Ott, the stories are much more graphic, disturbing and gory.

I copied here Clean Up!, not so sinister a tale that I was able to get from the book sampler – probably not the best in the collection, but still, it gives a very good idea what to expect.


Cinema Panopticum by Thomas Ott

I found Thomas Ott by pure accident, flipping through the shelves of Newbury Comics in Harvard Sq. The book I got myself back then had a fascinating cover and an intriguing title The Number 73304-23-4156-6-96-8 – and given it was a pricey hardcover packed in sealed cellophane, I couldn't sneak a peak – so I bought it just because of these two characteristics, cover and title. It was worth it – indeed, it was a hell of a read, as far as i remember – though, to be absolutely frank, I forgot the story entirely by now. Will re-visit.

Cinema Panopticum is a shorter book – took me 20-something minutes to flip it through. An intriguing collection of five short horror stories, drawn in line with Ott's unique style. No words used at all, the book is a classy silent movie in comic book format – and not a Chaplin one, but rather Eisenstein's or Vertov's. The content of the stories is quite Kafkian, to say the least, form and plot – and I wonder whether The Champion story was influenced by any chance by Guy Maddin's La Sombra Dolorosa short. Hm.

Absolutely enjoyable and fun.