By John Pham (Fantagraphics Books)
Self-publishing wizard and minicomic genius John Pham has joined with the wonderfully progressive Fantagraphics to release the first volume in a proposed twice-a-year book series dedicated to the sheer joy of pictorial storytelling in our modern, miracle-free world, which any adult fan just won’t be able to resist.
This initial offering, a sublimely designed landscape-format tome printed in quirky two-tone (Magenta and Cyan combined to produce a huge variety of colours welcomingly familiar to anybody who grew up reading Beano or Dandy) features a series of intertwined tales featuring the odd denizens of ‘221 Sycamore St.’
Poignant and surreal by turns, the lives of exhausted ‘Mildred Lee’, dubious stud ‘Vrej Sarkissian’, the tragic and disturbing religious studies teacher ‘Hubie Winters’ and those guys ‘Los Hermanos Macdonald’ are a captivating and laconic examination of the kind of people you probably wouldn’t like or make time for…
The silent, deadly pantomime of the house cat seeking safety outside is worth the price of admission alone, but when the abstract and symbol-stuffed existences on display here shuffle into your head and just sit there twitching, you too will wonder how you ever got on without this creator on your “must-read” list.
© 2008 John Pham. All Rights Reserved.