The Best American Comics 2015

  • Title: The Best American Comics 2015
  • Author: Jonathan Lethem Bill Kartalopoulos
  • ISBN: 9780544107700
  • Page: 234
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The Best American Comics As I know well from my own field true vitality consists of stuff that s further off the radar of general acclaim The influx of raw arrivals The deep cuts Jonathan Lethem from the Introduction Featur
    As I know well from my own field, true vitality consists of stuff that s further off the radar of general acclaim The influx of raw arrivals The deep cuts Jonathan Lethem, from the Introduction Featuring Gabrielle Bell, Mat Brinkman, Roz Chast, Anya Davidson, Eleanor Davis, Jules Feiffer, Blaise Larmee, Raymond Pettibon, Ed Piskor, Joe Sacco, Esther Pearl Watson, an As I know well from my own field, true vitality consists of stuff that s further off the radar of general acclaim The influx of raw arrivals The deep cuts Jonathan Lethem, from the Introduction Featuring Gabrielle Bell, Mat Brinkman, Roz Chast, Anya Davidson, Eleanor Davis, Jules Feiffer, Blaise Larmee, Raymond Pettibon, Ed Piskor, Joe Sacco, Esther Pearl Watson, and others JONATHAN LETHEM is the author of nine novels, including Motherless Brooklyn, The Fortress of Solitude, Gun, with Occasional Music, and most recently Dissident Gardens BILL KARTALOPOULOS is a Brooklyn based comics critic, educator, curator, and editor He teaches comics history at the School of Visual Arts More information may be found at on panel.

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      234 Jonathan Lethem Bill Kartalopoulos
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      Published :2020-03-15T15:38:41+00:00

    About Jonathan Lethem Bill Kartalopoulos


    1. Jonathan Allen Lethem born February 19, 1964 is an American novelist, essayist and short story writer.His first novel, Gun, with Occasional Music, a genre work that mixed elements of science fiction and detective fiction, was published in 1994 It was followed by three science fiction novels In 1999, Lethem published Motherless Brooklyn, a National Book Critics Circle Award winning novel that achieved mainstream success In 2003, he published The Fortress of Solitude, which became a New York Times Best Seller In 2005, he received a MacArthur Fellowship


    624 Comments


    1. This year's collection was the first of the series in which I've skipped any selections – and it wasn't limited to just one or two oddballs. Impenetrable samples from Andy Burkholder (on a textual level), Raymond Pettibon (visual and textual) and Lâcher de Chiens (ditto) may be avoided while David Sandlin's and especially Rosier Appel's make little sense in their wordless forms and sections by Jim Woodring and Adam Buttrick were weird for the sake of being weird. I'd say "this is what happen [...]

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    2. Overall, I found Lethem to be somewhere between annoying and intolerable as an editor, and the work in here is hit or miss. But these anthologies are generally hit or miss. I met a few new artists whose work I can now explore, including Diane Obomsawin, Julia Gfrörer and Blaise Larmee (this is a cool site blaiselarmee/) so I don't regret getting it out of the library. The cover is unreasonably grotesque and far from inviting. And that's about all I have to say for now. Maybe I will write more b [...]

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    3. Some decent comics and authors included in this edition. My big gripe is that Lethem is a horrible editor. The way he groups the works makes little sense and provides no discernible context. His intros are throwaways. He semi-apologizes for grouping the female artists together and in another section his intro is a quote from a entry. A disappointment.

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    4. I mildly object to the use of the term, "Best." Among other reasons, if you asked ten random people what they thought the ten best comics of all time were, you'd probably get at least eleven different lists. We're not dealing with quantifiable things here. Do we measure the worth of a comic in terms of milliKirbys or something? I always mentally translate the title as, "The Most Interesting American Comics 2015," or something like that. I was surprised by the absence of some of the usual suspect [...]

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    5. "Best Of" anthologies generally tend to be a pretty mixed bag simply because the concept is a very subjective one. Every year since its inception, however, I've eagerly anticipated the latest release of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt's "The Best American Comics" series precisely because their choice of guest editor has led to some pretty solid subjective picks. Charles Burns, Chris Ware, Scott McCloud, etc. have good taste and that makes for interesting and enjoyable books.This year, the series took [...]

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    6. The Best American Comics series are simply imperative reading. Comics (note the editors don’t need to yank anyone’s chain like they do in the mainstream and deter from the words “graphic novel”) are undoubtedly a booming art form. More comics are being written, drawn and produced than ever, and lucky for us, Bill Kartalopoulos has the monumental talk of finding the choice cuts in this neat and lovely hardcover book series. So the importance of a book like this cannot be understated.The w [...]

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    7. Like most anthologies, this has some hits and some misses. But also plenty of new things!I loved Anders Nilsen's stark retelling of Prometheus, Gabrielle Bell's "Colombian Diaries," Peter Bagge's biography of Margaret Sanger, and Julia Gfroner's tale of ancient Rome. My absolute favorite were by three women who are both artists and storytellers: Diane Obomsawin, Anya Ulinich, and the shocking, hilarious, wild Gina Wynbrandt.

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    8. Awful. I've read this series since its inception and this is the Worst of the series. I'm a fan of Lethem, but his taste in comics sucks, imo. Too many excerpts that are too short to make sense; then there are some that go on for 10+ pages for no apparent reason except to bore. Just an awful selection of terrible comics (with 2 or 3 exceptions).

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    9. Didn't find as many authors who caught my eye as I have in previous compilations, which is unfortunate.

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    10. 2.5I felt like it was a little lopsided, many of the pieces had harsh and or surreal style, but not much beauty or loveliness.

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    11. I definitely dig the use of "taxonomic chapters" in this and last year's volumes.

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    12. This series has been going downhill. Now we're at the bottom of the hill.

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    13. Reading this compilation felt like entering a candy store and trying a sample of all the candies, it was exciting, fun, and in each comic I stopped myself to taste it and see how much I liked it. After trying all of these delicious comics, I ended up with a big list of authors and works that I need to check out. Truth is: I barely know a thing about comics. Before reading this I was conceited when people started a conversation about comics, now I know there’s a lot to learn, a lot to read, and [...]

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    14. "There is so much great stuff in here, as usual," is basically the review for every edition of this terrific collection. I think Lethem is more into experimental/avant-garde stuff than I am so this is not my favorite volume--I like story comics, pretty much, especially true stories--but it is nevertheless as always a total 5-star read.

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    15. Good read.

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    16. Anthologies are really difficult to review. There are so many things in this book-- I'll try to sum it as best I can. The Best American Series is fantastic, and I've never read a disappointing anthology in this series. This one is different and fun because it focuses on more indie comics; there are definitely a healthy amount of selections from big-time graphic novelists/cartoonists, but I saw more authors than usual than I did not recognize at all. The indie artists are REALLY indie and abstrac [...]

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    17. The cover seems appropriate for the contents - mostly crude content with disjointed storytelling and overly shocking images. A thick, disappointing tome with sparse standouts.

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    18. Some beautiful and inspiring comics in this anthology. I was quite disappointed with the introductory pieces. I thought the comic introductions to each section were trite and sexist. For further evidence see the introduction to the section that is only by female comic artists (potentially problematic in itself). It does not follow the same formula as the others, notably the author does not comment on wishing to work or working with any of the featured artists (this happens in every other introdu [...]

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    19. A solid collection of comics published between Sept 1, 2013 and Aug 31, 2014. This year's editor, Jonathan Lethem, did a fine job of organizing the various entries, taking a cue from Scott McCloud in last year's volume. One can argue about the "Best of" pretenses of the series and the potential biases in the selections -- as I've speculated on several times on the podcast -- but you can't deny that each of the BAC books present many MANY comics that may fall below most radars but are nonetheless [...]

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    20. Best American Comics is both an awful tease, a fantastic collection, and a Whitman's sampler of all sorts of things your little brain just could never envision. I felt real joy reading these - and some distress, and some laughter, and more than a few times some outright nausea - but mostly delight. Just now I thought I'd casually Google the contents to remember which were my favorites (the jam session with the line-drawn monster beasts!) and instead stumbled on a thousand more comics to discover [...]

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    21. In his foreword, Bill Kartalopoulos states: "I'm so pleased that _The Best American Comics 2015_ features the work of so many artists who have taken that creative freedom and run so far with it, in so many different directions. May we all follow their lead by finding our own equally unique directions to explore in art and in life" (xiii). As promised, this is a collection of very distinct comics with diverse art styles and messages.

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    22. This was a disappointment for me. I usually really enjoy the Best American Comics series -- lots of varied styles and story lines and I always find something new I'd like to explore more. But this year's, edited by Jonathan Lethem, just didn't have anything all the interesting in it (with a few exceptions, such as Roz Chast, which I'd already seen). And way, way too many excerpts that really didn't make much sense without the context of the rest of the book. Overall, not a fun read.

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    23. I usually end up reading every entry in this series, but I'm often not sure why, since I almost always come away disappointed. This one seems like a particularly weak entry, with a lot of the type of comics that I just don't like/get. It's good to see some stuff that I might not encounter otherwise, but I did not find most of the material here to be worthy of the book's title. There's always next year, I guess.

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    24. Solid and well organized selection. A lot of woman creators without seeming pandering. Editing was really intimate, lethem's notes felt really nice. Choices like putting Gfrorer right after Dalrymple were surprising but worked. I wish he would have kept out some of the annoying old guard of comics (bag) but still. seemed representative of his taste.

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    25. "Comics can be disorienting.And, arguably, they should be."The foreword in this alone is worth checking out, as Bill Kartalapoulos makes a compelling argument for the importance of comics. 3 stars for presenting a solid sampling of the year's best-- read it and you'll be smarter and more interesting in the new year. -Sarah

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    26. I have enough trouble reading graphic novels already, and having so many voices and styles made it even more difficult for me to feel invested. It's good [not necessarily clean] fun literacy practice, though, and I'm not sorry to have worked through the collection. I liked this.

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    27. This year I'd read or at least To-Readed all of the things I liked here. Woot! I liked Lethem's introductions and categories. :)

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    28. Not my favorite of these anthologies, only because there weren't any stand outs. But still enjoyable.

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    29. As always, the majority of the title is accurate.

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    30. Should be subtitled "Really Really Weird Shit".

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