Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Here's what they're saying about Action Figure; From the Journals of Richard Marzelak

Ok, ok, I'll tone down on linking/printing the reviews I've been getting for Action Figure; From the Journals of Richard Marzelak after the holidays...really.

But until then...

Here's a review from The Comics Review a site that, well, ast the name states, reviews comics!

- The Comics Review
So i get this package from Baboon Books in the mail the other day, which is weird, since I forgot to update my new address with Chris, TCR's interview admin. I had talked to, via email in 2005 to Richard Marcej over there, and he sent me a christmas card, and some info on a book called Action Figure he was working on. In the Baboon Books envelope was a review copy of Action Figure: From the Journals of Richard Marzelak, and a note. He said that the book _was_ supposed to be the start of a quarerly series, but since the advance order for Diamond didn't make their minimum, which, while not extreme, is high enough that a book without much buzz isn't going to get distributed, which is unfortunate.

I read the book, and enjoyed it enough that i would like to see the next issue, and see where Richard is going.

Starting off the book about 47 years in the future, we see a guy at an estate sale, where he stumbles upon lots of collectibles, but winds up with a more rare fine, the Journals of Richard Marzelak. Richard Marzelak is the semi-fictional main character of this semi-autobiographical book. He works for Hasmark, which is a toy and greeting card company, designing packaging for toys, and spends his nights having lots of sexual interludes with hot babes... ok, he spends his nights trying to make it as a cartoonist. It introduces us to the nose-picking evil boss who gives the job he's been working on to "the new guy", the best friend co-worker Bill, the "new guy" who is really the new girl, and a couple of the other office co-workers and potential hazards to career advancement. Richard also has quite an imagination, daydreaming (cleverly done in red/black, contrasting from the black/white art in the rest of the book). The hook for the hopeful next issue is The Big One, a contract to do the package art for "Bot-Changers", and the selection of the team.

While my quick summary doesnt sound all that funny, Richard has quite a great sense of humor, and it's on every page. Obvious things from his former life as a toy packaging designer and logo designer for Hasbro and greeting card artist for Hallmark make for a lot of subtle humor (Has-Mark anyone?) While most of you might not know it, if you were a child of the 80's, his art might look familiar to you, since he was one of Hasbro's artists for that little toy line, Transformers, in the 80's. KICK ASS!

The art is great, he puts a lot more into faces than most, giving off the emotions and intentions of the characters, which adds a lot to the book. His fake box art for Hasmark is pretty great too. As i said earlier, the daydreaming/dreaming being colored in red really makes those moments pop out.

I hope that you will go to and pick up a copy, and encourage Richard to continue his story...and tell your LCS to carry this book, word of mouth can definately make a book!


Writing Rating: (8.5/10)
Artistic Rating: (8/10)
Overall Rating: (8.5/10)

And as always, for those interested, you can see preview pages click here
and buy it click here.

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