The creator of the long running independent newsweekly strip, The City, has created a pitch perfect tale of the classic days of punk rock. Set in his home town of Akron, Ohio, in 1980, PR & TP gives us the senior year and then some of high school loser cum small-town-punk-rock-legend, Otto "The Baron" Pizcok. While the central narrative is entirely fictional, its setting is not, and Derf wryly captures the mid-Ohio ambience and recreates the hot and heavy scene at the main Akron club -- The Bank -- that was, at least for the time chronicled here, the center of the punk scene. Plot, pacing, characterization, the supporting cast -- all are spot on. Punk Rock and Trailer Parks will make for a thoroughly enjoyable read for anyone who likes comics and punk rock and will be a real thrill for anyone who remembers these days.
OK: for those of you who have been putting off checking out Street Angel, one of the most original comic book series of the past few years, featuring breathtaking graphics and a trend-setting new character, and that was a surprise hit when it debuted in 2004 -- there's no reason to wait any longer. And for those of you who are already fans, you'll be happy to learn that when it comes to Street Angel, this new TPB has everything and more: Street Angel issues 1 - 5; all Free Comic Book Day stories; an all-new 12-page Street Angel adventure; pinups from: Jeffrey Brown, Farel Dalrymple, Jesse Farrell, Richard Hahn, Dean Haspiel, Mike Hawthorne, Paul Hornshemeier, Dave Kiersh, Pat Lewis, Jasen Lex, Andy Macdonald, Jim Mahfood, Ted May, Scott Mills, Scott Morse, Bryan Lee O'Malley, Lark Pien, Ed Piskor, Brian Ralph, Zack Soto, Lauren Weinstein, and Dan Zettwoch; a spiffy Sketchbook section; and an introduction by Evan Dorkin.
Before he became a household name as a result of the runaway success of his graphic novel, American Born Chinese, Gene Luen Yang produced two graphic novellas for Slave Labor Graphics: Gordon Yamamoto and the King of the Geeks, and Loyola Chin and the San PeLigran Order. Both are herein collected, along with bonus materials. Both of these tales center on high school life and integrate modicums of science fiction and fantasy with themes of ethnic and group identity. Fans of American Born Chinese might well enjoy seeing Yang feeling his way towards his more mature work, and anyone who appreciates fun, well drawn comics with a sense of humor and solid storytelling might want to take a look.