[ Message Board · Trouble with Comics · Reviews · Essays · Interviews · Audio Interviews · Facebook · writeblog · A Criminal Blog · Kochalkaholic · FAQ · E-Mail ]

Saturday, December 13, 2003

Finding a Holy Grail Comic -- So I went to Aquilonia Comics today in Troy, NY. Only my second trip ever to this store, because it's located in a maze of one way streets that I barely comprehend in a city that has nothing to offer that I have been able to detect.

I walked in and within 30 seconds discovered David Mazzucchelli's RUBBER BLANKET #2, the most difficult-to-find issue of this three issue series. I've let it go on eBay recently because the bidding got up into the 40-50 dollar range, and as much as I like Mazzucchelli, I'm not spending that much money on him unless it's an original sketch or something.

It was cover price and in brand-new condition, and I am thrilled to have a complete set of these now; there's not much that I have collectoritis about, but the work of Mazzucchelli (non-Marvel/mainstream work, anyway) is something I am fairly obsessive about. Not many artists in comics history have made the leap from superhero artist to genuine, noteworthy cartoonist so profoundly and completely.

RUBBER BLANKET #2 includes a number of short stories, and two genuine gems: "Air," about Mazzucchelli's asthma, and "Discovering America," which I had in an Italian collection, but which is even more of a revelation now that I can read it and be certain what it's about.

I've been sensitive to the perils of asthma since cartoonist Raoul Vezina (creator of Smilin' Ed Smiley and a staple of the FantaCo comics line and brick and mortar store in Albany) died from an attack a couple of decades ago. Until then I had no idea what a serious condition it was, and until I read "Air" I never knew Mazzucchelli had it as well. The story takes the personal and applies it to global concerns in a very direct and affecting manner. Great stuff.

"Discovering America" is probably his best RUBBER BLANKET story -- the tale of a mapmaker and his attempts to reconcile his obsessing with mapping reality with his need to map his interpersonal relationships. There's a surprise double-page spread that is surreal and striking.

With the news that City of Glass is coming back into print, hopefully Mazzucchelli's star will ascend again and RUBBER BLANKET will either be reissued or (more preferably) collected in a nice omnibus edition. It's some of the finest cartooning ever, and it deserves a wider audience.


Post a Comment

<< Home





Banks are regarded the best option for making a safe investments as well as having world wide accepted creditcard. People are not only facilitated by loans but also provided debt management consolidation by the leading banks. Students can also get loans as well as apply for student loan consolidation. At the same time high flying insurance companies also contribute to the any one’s life through offering different plans of life, health and dental insurance. Along insurance of life one can also enhance its home security through installing latest home security systems.

This page is powered by ADD.