7 biographical comics worth reading
The style of the biographical comic strip about Vincent Van Gogh at first seems ridiculous: simple dialogues, stick-stick-cucumber faces, instead of impressionism and sensitive details – pictures in the spirit of children’s coloring. The book unfolds as Van Gogh goes crazy: colors become brighter, silhouettes blur, the grid on the page dances, the reader plunges into the abyss of madness with the artist. Richard Linklater achieved a similar effect when he turned Downey Jr. and Reeves into cartoons in Haze.
The only controversial point of the book is a stretched happy ending: the story ends on a serene and joyful note just a week before the fateful shot.
Freud Corinne Mayer and Anne Simon
A charming book about old Freud: funny, but not funky, with either conscious or random greetings to the book “1913. The summer of a century. ” With Florian Illyes, Hitler in Vienna almost met young Stalin – and in the French comic strip, the future Fuhrer in the same Vienna walks along the same streets as the father of psychoanalysis. The usually undeservedly demonized Freud in this book is slightly idealized for a change. But even this look is softened by the ironic intonation of the narrator.
“Wanderer” by Anna Rakhmanko and Mikkel Sommer
An ideal – albeit extremely simple – example of what documentary comics are capable of and what is its advantage over other visual art forms. “Wanderer” is the story of a forty-six-year-old homeless man who makes his living by participating in fights without rules under the pseudonym Ali Baba. It is clear that there is no way to shoot a documentary here – a person with a camera will simply not be allowed into the place where the battles take place. But an artist with a notebook can accompany his hero everywhere, without attracting attention. The result was a minimalistic story, at the same time gentle and brutal.
Frida Kahlo by Maria Hesse
The main cartoon of last year was The Secret of Coco, where a Mexican kid went to the afterlife and met a crowd of charming dead people – including Frida Kahlo, the main star of Mexican art. The comic book about Frida fits perfectly into one context with The Secret Coco: a sweet, even naive form and merciless content. Frida from the comic book looks like a paper doll from children’s magazines, but it’s very early for small children to give this book. She tells Frida’s life in all its horror and splendor: illness, fame, unfortunate accident, romance with Rivera and Trotsky, abortion, death. And the amazing story of a striking woman left after all this.
Agatha Christie by Anna Martinetti, Guillaume Lebo and Alexander Franck
December 1926 The most famous writer in the world has sunk into the water: not a note, not a trace, not evidence. In fact, Agatha Christie just left away from fame, the press and an unfaithful husband, hiding in a hotel under a false name. With this graphic novel begins, but Christy’s other life is similar to a fictional story: trips to Iraq and Egypt, work as a nurse in a Red Cross hospital, two world wars, billions of detective stories about Hercule Poirot. This graphic novel looks like a good detective: it’s kind of old-fashioned, a little predictable, but not a second is boring to watch how the authors juggle the plot.
“Franz Kafka” by David Meyrovits and Robert Kramba
Previously, this book was already published in Russian under the somewhat awkward title, “Kafka for Beginners.” Inside is a rather detailed account of Kafka’s life from an unhappy childhood to macabre posthumous fame, in which a cafe (cafeteria!) Is named after a neurotic genius, and his name has become part of pop culture. Kafka’s life and work turns into alarming black and white engravings, where in Prague’s peaceful sketches there is no less chilling horror than in the illustrations for The Hunger.
“Marx” Corin Mayer and Anna Simon
“After the Communists, I hate anti-Communists most of all,” Dovlatov wrote. It seems that both the Communists and the anti-Communists have a lot of reasons to hate this comic strip about Karl Marx. The bearded author of Capital is here, on the one hand, a superhero in a rather literal (red, of course) cloak, defender of the oppressed, utopian and genius; on the other, gigolo, traitor and parasite, whose contempt for those around him is comparable only to admiration for his own wisdom and insight. The output is a vigorous slapstick comedy about a man who wanted to change the world, and the world digested his ingenious theories and ate without even choking.