Readers, Get Your Quality Comic Coupons Right Here!

Posted by on August 27th, 2010 at 1:00 AM

Proof that the graphic novel exceeds all boundaries can be found in an annual initiative by one of the more popular news magazines in Belgium entitled HUMO.  As one season ends, another begins and more specifically the bookseason in this case. And with the book season comes the traditonal big push and with the big push comes … coupons! Comic coupons!

The  iniative bears the nomer ‘The Other Comics‘, bringing together comic creators from 9 countries resulting in a reading list of 24 full blown graphic novels that would not be amiss in a McSweeny‘s anthology. Calling it ‘The Other Comics’ could be seen as a bit of a misnomer because it implies the handling of a set of norms put upon another audience but the point is to make people aware of the diversity of the graphic novel and that there is life beyond Tintin, the Smurfs and Marc Sleen’s Nero. And how better to hoist it upon an unsuspecting audience than having it accompany a popular magazine that reaches circulation figures of over 270.000 nationally.

Cover The Other Comic

The object in question is a flimsy, cheaply printed booklet shrinkwrapped with the magazine. A deceiving look for such an excellent package of information and activation. Opening the pages, you’ll find interviews with creators like Dan Clowes, Posy Simmonds and Olivier Schrauwen (whom you should be familiar with right now); a top ten list of the Best of the Best; coupons for a total sum of over € 70 and to top it all off an exclusive interview with Chris Ware. Yes, people we’re still in Belgium here. As a side-note after reading the interviews, it’s funny to note that Ware and Schrauwen – both comic geniuses – tend to put themselves down, devaluating their own work while praising the works of others. Maybe low self-esteem is necessary to keep re-inventing oneself, to make re-invention an obsessive trait. Both creator’s works certainly read as something to obsess over whether you’re a reader, critic or the creator.

Page from The Other Comic booklet

Even if you don’t buy HUMO (like me), the coupon book is available in libraries nationally and you can download the booklet as a pdf file from the web. EVERYBODY MUST GET GRAPHIC NOVELIZED! For the sake of completeness and the naturally curious inclined, here’s the full list of GN’s recommended. Some will look more familiar than others and Dutch titles of non-english work are translated to the best of my abilities and marked in bold. At the least is a reading list worth a mental save while shopping for comics; at its best it is a showcase of some truely exceptional comic work and even if there’s no translation available, you can always do a google search on the artist (start with Bastien Vivés):

Alim – Virgini Augustin
Shutter Island – Christian de Metter & Dennis Lehane
Pretending is lying too – Dominique Goblet
The Killer – Jacamon & Matz
Elvis: the Biography – Reinhard Kleist & Titus Ackermann
Understanding Comics – Scott McCloud
Wilson – Daniel Clowes
Fagin the Jew – Will Eisner
Alan’s War – Emmanuel Guibert
The Stand: Captain Trips – Stephen King
Reynaert the FoxMarc Legendre & René Broens
Prince of Persia – Jrodan Mechner etc
From Hell – Alan Moore & Eddie Campbell
Blue Pills – Frederik Peeters
The Man Who Let His Beard Grow – Olivier Schrauwen
Memories – Jiro Taniguchi
The Telescope – Van Hamme & Teng
Jimmy Corrigan – Chris Ware
Nietzsche: Creating Freedom – On Fray & Le Roy
Wrinkles – Paco Roca
Tamara Drewe – Posy Simmonds
Paris – Maarten Vande Wiele
The Taste of Chloride – Bastien Vivés
Pinokkio – Winshluss

Expect some of these titles to turn up here for an indepth look.

The Other Comics

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