Thursday, February 10, 2005

Daniel Clowes helps the ride home.

Whenever I go on trips, knowing that I'll be in a plane for 1+ hours I usually bring some books that sit on my "To Read" pile, next to the bed. Paperback collections that I've been meaning to read. So, on my flight back last night I caught up with Twentieth Century Eightball by Daniel Clowes.

I've been a fan of Clowes since his old Lloyd Llewellyn days. Twentieth Century Eightball is a collection of 1-3 page stories that really didn't fit in any of his past paperback collections. For the most part it's an enjoyable read.

Some highlights are "Art School Confidential" a nice breakdown of what you can expect if you attend an art school. It often hits too close to the truth.
"The Stroll" is a neat piece of storytelling with each panel of the authors' walk through the city from his point of view.
"Marooned on a desert island with the people on the Subway" has the author imagining what would happen if he were marooned on an island with just the people in his subway car. By just what they look like he breaks down how they would survive.
"Playful Obsession" is warped look at Clowes version of an old Harvey Comic.

My only real complaint with Twentieth Century Eightball is really through no fault of Clowes work, but since so much of his short pieces are really just angry tirades of his lot in life, when compiled here in a collection it can be a tad redundent.
They were great when spread out over 20 some issues of his comic, Eightball but when read one after the other in this book, you need to take a breath.

Twentieth Century Eightball is still a nice addition to your TPB collections, especially alongside other Clowes works like Ghost World and Caricature. If you'd like a copy, you can order it here at Amazon.

I do have to add this panel here though. I think that this is one of the funniest panels EVER in a comic book! It's hilarious on so many different levels!

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