Thanks to the independent comics movement, I think we’re living in a Golden Age of comics. Comics no longer have to be drawn in the DC or Marvel styles. They can be painted in oils or watercolors, printed using woodblocks, etched — there’s no longer any limit to the media used to graphically ideas.
The same goes for the subject mater. It no longer has top solely be about superheroes. Any subject is fair game. Harvey Pekar showed us in American Splendor that riveting and compelling tales could be told about being a file clerk.
I’d like to alert you to a graphic novel that I was turned on to at Comic-Con by my friends Rod Dryden and Kris Kobziff. It’s titled Genius. It was written by Steven T. Seagle and drawn/painted by Teddy Kristiansen.
I love everything about it. The dialogue is the freshest, most realistic (and funny) dialogue I’ve read in a long time.
On the surface the story is about the difficulty of being a genius working within a group of geniuses. The understory, however, is a terrific glimpse at the lead character’s relationships with his family members. In this context, Seagle shows a deep understanding for what makes us special and what makes us humorous as human beings.
Kristiansen’s art is perfectly suited to Seagle’s text: delicate yet powerful.
I applaud the publisher, First Second, for bringing this fine work to light.
Pick it up!