Comics of interest to Fallen Londoners

I’m sure we’ve got some comics-readers hiding among us. Let yourselves be known! Can you think of any titles that might be of interest to fans of Echo Bazaar?

Here’s my first recommendation: Mirabilis - Year of Wonders, a digital comic written by Dave Morris, drawn by Leo Hartas and beautifully coloured by Nikos Koutsis. It’s a historical fantasy, about the return of magic and the suddenly deeply-relevant exploits of the Royal Mythological Society.

Dave has a wittily folkloric take on fantasy that’s as surprising and irreverent as the tales that scared us when we were kids. See for yourself - the first issue’s free online.
edited by Chris Gardiner on 1/13/2012

I can tell you a ton of comics I like though they aren’t very neathian. Plus I could tell you how to get them for free. >_>

I must confess that I havn’t really gotten started on american comics yet (if you exclude Watchmen, which needless to say is nothing short of brilliant), however, I am curious about which suggestions will surface in here.

I do read some of the more mature manga titles. One of my favorite titles is Tezuka’s “Ode To Kirihito” a brutal, but facinating tale with themes of corruption, degeneration, humanity and redemption. Superb storytelling and some interesting new ways of utilising the medium.

“Town of Evening Calm, Country of Cherry Blossoms” contains two short stories spanning a mere 98 pages. Both stories are centered around the impact of the atomic bomb on regular japanese people, the first story unfolding 10 years after the bomb, while the second is set in present-day Japan. The stories are tender and haunting and the artwork is simple but charming. I have often used the first story to illustrate to sceptics that not only can manga stray very far from stereotypical Dragonball/Naruto shonen fighting-genre, but also that it can transcend the medium and break into the realm of actual art.

The last recomendation I will make is Hayao Miyazaki’s epic story of “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind”. Some of you may be familiar with Miyazaki’s Studio Ghibli films (Spirited Away, Princess Mononoke, etc.), and will know to expect from his superb storytelling. The artwork is amazingly detailed and the characters are very nuanced, far more so than in the film version, which roughly tells the story of the first two volumes and whereafter it ties up the story instead of setting the stage for 5 more wonderful volumes.

edited by Malt Jones on 1/15/2012

As I mentioned in another thread, I can’t find a more fitting comic than Gunnerkrigg Court - . Not just for the general mood, the jigsaw mystery plot and the cast of characters; Jack Hyland from chapters 27-28 attracted my attention to something I didn’t know, and I think could maybe have been a source of inspiration both for some gossip about the Vake and the effects of Black Wings Absynthe:

I love Gunnerkrigg Court too. I really like the art style. Makes me want to learn to draw comics…

You better believe I’m a comic fan, I even draw a comic! Sadly I can’t really recommend that one, since it has absolutely nothing to do with anything Echo Bazaar-related.

The Sandman” by Neil Gaiman is a must-read, if you like myths and storytelling in general, and espescially rather insane myths and storytelling.

I also recommend the Nikopol trilogy, its setting is very unlike Fallen London, but there’s something aobut its way to use mythology that I think will be of interest to a Fallen Londoner.

For the streetsmart Fallen Londoner, you can’t go wrong with Blacksad, seriously, CHECK THIS COMIC OUT, it is a french-spanish noir detective comic using Furries and a gorgeous traditional-media artstyle. It might be hard to find if you’re not European, but well worth looking for. It might be a bit futuristic for a Fallen Londoners taste, taking place in the early 60s, but crime is the same in every era.

On a similar theme of furries, there’s the prohibition-era webcomic Lackadaisy Cats, it can certainly give you some pointers about running an illegal establishment with a small crew of misfits, certianly a cunundrum for any criminal-minded Fallen citizen.

Those that want something more amusing might check out Iznogoud, a french comic about an aspiring usurper wanting to take over the throne in a “arabian nights” type setting.

And lastly, a real old school one: Little Nemo in Slumberland, the surreal, dreamlike tone of the comic will appeal to any Fallen Londner who enjoy their Prisoners honey and their stay at the Royal Betlehem Hotel.

Damn, there must be more, that I jus can’t recall right now, these will have to do for now.

People here have good taste! The ones I haven’t heard of/read before look really good. Thanks for the suggestions!

If you’re interested in some ongoing series, I must recommend The Unwritten by Mike Carrey (writer) and Peter Gross (art) with covers from Yuko Shimizu, which always look so darn SNAZZY. If you love reading and books, you’ll probably love The Unwritten.
Tom Taylor is living off of the residuals of his fame. Well more accurately, he’s living off of the fame of the fictional boy wizard (and is more famous than Harry Potter) who shares his name, created by his mysterious father, Wilson Taylor, who disappeared over a decade ago. The only thing more grating than the living off of Fantasy conventions is the fact that he can’t get away from Tommy Taylor, boy wizard, magic messiah and wielder of the wand Glitterspar, to live his own life, having failed at acting (he wasn’t “Tommy Taylor” enough), writing and jazz trumpeting. At a panel, Lizzie Hexam asks, “Who are you?” and then precedes to show that there is less evidence of Tom being Wilson Taylor’s son than anyone thought.
Then Tom gets kidnapped by a deranged Tommy Taylor fan dressed up as Tommy’s vampire arch-nemesis and things get weird. His kidnapper is suddenly much stronger than he should be and intends to kill him with a nail bomb in front of the eyes of the world via live-streaming webcam. Lizzie shows up only to knock him out with aerosol chloroform and the police find Tom, completely unharmed, by the explosion. Things only get more mysterious and stranger from here for Tom.

What is a story? Where does fiction begin and end? Is fame a story that is told again and again? What is a messiah? Can you just make one up? The Unwritten goes into a lot of really interesting questions while all the while being this strange yet wonderful “coming of self” destiny-fulfilling adventure.

I must insist that you look at the softcover first volume because it has my my favorite comic-book introduction penned by Bill Willingham of Fables fame, (which you should also read. It’s “what if fairy tales were real” done as a sweeping war torn and beautiful epic) because he describes this new genre, “LAF” that is finally coming into its own after bubbling somewhat unnoticed for the past decade or two. “LAF” stands for Literature, Animal adventure and Fairytales, which both Fables and The Unwritten are parts of–Fables using fairy tales and The Unwritten using literature. If you haven’t read the literary pieces it references to (and you would have to be not reading the words to miss it), it’s fine. You’ll want to read them. And the series tells you everything you need to know about it in regards to the series, but it IS extra gratifying when you have read said literature. It really makes all those English courses you took feel worthwhile. I have to admit, I have a weakness for anything that implies Mark Twain is a badass by refusing to become the tool of a shadowy, ancient and global cabal who wants to control the production of literature, directing when and where stories of great meaning and weight are written. It is full of classic literature and even if you don’t appreciate that, it’s a wonderfully written series with lots of nods, but never quite references to a lot of books you’ve probably read.

I mention Mike Carrey (like he’s some big name, even though he should be) not only because I love him as a comic book writer, but because of his earlier work on Hellblazer (John Constantine) and The Sandman spinoff Lucifer. Lucifer takes place after The Sandman Volume 4 “The Season of Mists”, where Lucifer, aka fallen Samael, decides to quit being the ruler of Hell and move on with his life. The charade of being the ruler of a place while still being trapped by predestination and The Plan just got too grating after too long so he decides to live on Earth and open a piano bar in LA. It’s serious with dark, almost acidic comedic beats when there are some, and quickly becomes this huge cosmic struggle between the desire for freedom, safety, true command of one’s destiny and destruction, anarchy and the fear of insignificance and impotency.

It is a completed series and is eleven volumes long.

As you can tell, I can ramble all day about these sorts of things so I’ll try to wrap this up.
I also recommend House of Mysteries (on-going) by Bill Willingham (writer), Matthew Sturges (writer), Luca Rossi (artist) and lots of other artists, Morning Glories font=arial, sans-serif [/font]by Nick Spencer (writer) and Joe Eisma (artist), Incorruptible and Irredeemable (on-going) by Mark Waid if you live your superhero stories high-octane and a bit dark, and any Astro City book by Kurt Busiek if you just want a really, REALLY good superhero story without any irony, wannabe/ignorant Moore-esque darkness or residual 90’s x-treme (actually, anything written by Kurt Busiek is awesome for the most part).

I know they aren’t exactly Fallen London books, but I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Owlor: Oh, Blacksad is a brilliant suggestion!

I’ll second victioriangrey’s recommendation of Irredeemable and Incorruptible, too. Hard-hitting superhero epics. Great individually, but something truly special when read as reflections of each other.

My recommendation for today is something for anyone who likes the fact that Echo Bazaar takes a lot of inspiration from classic literature. It’s Roger Langridge’s Snarked, an approachable, funny, deceptively clever book set in a world where the nonsense poems of Lewis Carroll are all true. The art is masterful, the characters are charming. Cartooning at its best.

If anyone lacks a good local comic shop, I can strongly recommend Page 45. They have a ridiculous stock of independent and non-superhero books, operate an amazing mail order service, and love comics.

Oh my so many comics I enjoy are already listed. With this many good be recommending I daresay I must go take a peep at the others mentioned.

I guess I’ll make a contribution as well. Plume has not progressed all that far yet but tells of a girl named Vesper Grey in the Old West and her supernatural companion and guardian Corrick off on an adventure to retrieve her father’s life’s work. The art has a consistent style and has some lovely visual humour and dramatics.
edited by Alerane on 1/28/2012

A webcomic that might be of note for the citizens of Fallen London is Lovecraft Is Missing It concerns the mysterious disappearance of pulp fiction writer H.P. Lovecraft and the strange and mysterious things found when investigating his whereabouts. I prolly don’t even need to mention that this comic features horrors of the Lovecraftian variety. You might not want the Masters to see you reading this little pictural story all too openly, so be discreet…

Aha I have more than I thought, though with a disclaimer. The following aren’t ongoing webcomics, but rather short comics that are complete and online.
I recommend all of them and because they are short I’d say give them a shot, it’s no commitment once done.

Outfoxed by Dylan Meconis - This one plays with humour, of light and dark varieties.
Sarah and the Seed by Ryan A. - This one succeeds in being creepy and cute simultaneously, and has a very strong narrative voice.
The Prince and the Sea - This one is cryptic in a fairy tale way
Darkness by Boulet - Hilarious is all I can say. A good read.

I shall report any others I encounter for you all~

Would people mind if I talked about my own comic? I realize that this thread is not for self-promotion, and it isn’t terrible Neathy, but it might interest a few people, and I have a link to it in my sig, so I might as well let people know what the heck it is. (On that note, am I comitting a faux pas by having a banner in my sig? the norm in this forum seem to be small unintrusive sigs without too much visual clutter, and I am afaid my banner might become more annoying than it usually is since in most forums, everyone has some sort of banner in their sig, or at least enough people have that you learn to unconsciously filter it away. I really do not want to annoy people uneceserily, so I might remove the banner but keep the link if people object)

Anyway, my comic is called Sounds Like a Melody, which of course is a reference to the Alphaville song and a pun on the name of the main character, Melody. She is a young girl who’s gone from the foster care system to the streets (something thats depressingly common in real life). She struggles to survive and find meaning in her life trough her cunning and passion for music. The comic also follows her so far only friend, Annie, who’s a very energetic and imaginative child, a more optimistic incarnation of Calvin essentially. There’s some angst, there’s some joy. There’s lonliness and friendship, hopefully some humour and endless streets, sidewalks and back-alleys. I update it roughly once a week, but have no regular scedule. I do hope it entertains someone.

Since I am off on a tanget anyway, I may talk about the Yoko Tsuno books, my favorites as a kid and something I recently rediscovered. Who’s Yoko Tsuno? Well, just look at my avatar, there she is. Her stories are present-day science fiction in the fine european tradition. Let’s face i, I just like seeing cute japanese girls kick ass with aliens and time machines…

There’s a very brief hint in Echo Bazaar about a Batman-esque victorian superhero. If anyone finds the idea of historical superheroes interesting, check out Marvel 1602 , written by Neil Gaiman, about an alternative earth where superheroes existed in… well, in the year 1602… Have this theme been explored in other books? Because I find the idea intruiging, espescially if it was something that took place in the victorian era, cus that’s basically where some of the elements of the superhero genre comes from. I was actually writing a story just like that once upon a time, it lies unfinished on my computer.

A while ago, DC Comics did a run of Elseworlds books - Alternate Universes for major characters (usually Batman). Some were historical. If you can find it, you might be interested in ‘Gotham by Gaslight’.

And Kelley Jones’s Elseworlds Batman. Great stuff! His Batman actually looks more like the Vake than like anything else… ;-)
“Batman & Dracula: Red Rain” (1992)
“Batman: Dark Joker” (1993)
“Batman: Bloodstorm” (1994)
“Batman: Crimson Mist” (1999)
“Batman: Haunted Gotham” (2000)

Batman & Dracula : red rain I’ve actully read, I was honestly mostly interested in it for the premise, the idea of Dracula vs batman, and it served as my introduction to Dark Age superhero stories.

The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage.
It’s hilarious, involves making lolcats for the queen on a difference engine, and there are quite enough explosions.

Perhaps a bit light and lacking in brooding, but then, I tend to be lacking in brooding myself, so I shall recommend my third favourite webcomic,

Also, Kim Newman’s “Anno Dracula” is set in our time period, in a world where Dracula was NOT defeated at the end of Stoker’s novel. It isn’t a comic, yet, but it is my favourite book in all the world.

Ohhoho! As lady hoping to make a living in comics one day I should hope to have some suggestions!

Firstly The Professor’s Daughter

The humorous bittersweet story of a tomb colonist and the woman that loves him…Well more or less.

Any of the Hellboy or B.P.R.D. comics.

Gotham by Gaslight for fans of the Vake.

I’ve got more but I hold back…for now.

I must recommend Atomic Robo. The title character is a sentient robot built by Nikola Tesla. These days Robo runs Tesladyne and manages his team of action scientists. From time to time various world governments call upon them to deal with bizarre phenomena such as megalomaniacal super-scientists, rampaging pyramids, or giant ants (which Robo is quick to point out are physically impossible). Issue 1 available for free legitimately, or check out one of the Free Comic Book Day offerings. The 2009 FCBD issue was the one that hooked me. Oh, how I love Dr. Dinosaur.