Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Ophestios, 1890

And after a brief break, we're back again with another addition to the still-growing comics section (which I'm already starting to consider trimming down a little bit. We'll see, we'll see). I realize that all of the comics I've added so far have been on the slightly lengthier side. Well let me tell ya, this one is the worst of the bunch. Good thing it's also probably the one I'm most proud of.

"Ophestios" is the comic I produced at the end of my first year at the Center for Cartoon Studies. I had a lot on my mind at the time, principally some ambitious thoughts on "comics as literature" coupled with a mild obsession with the works and philosophy of Bertolt Brecht. Suddenly, I wanted to do a "period piece." And I wanted it to have substance to it, and I wanted it to feel like all that great, depressing Russian and German literature that I'd learned to love in undergrad, oh so long ago. This was the result.

This story was originally intended as the start of a much larger piece, which I eventually set aside, but I think it still functions fairly well on its own. The Comics Journal's Rob Clough had some very nice things to say about it upon its initial release, as did Rich Kreiner more recently. Reading the reviews now makes me almost regret having decided to put this project on hold. But oh well. I'm convinced that the project I'm working on right now, in place of this, is pretty swank too. And there's still quite a few ideas behind the world of "Ophestios" that I still like, so maybe I'll return to it someday.

In the meanwhile, there are hard copies of the book still available for purchase through I Know Joe Kimpel, or through me when I appear at conventions. I wasn't sure if I had much of a desire to pump out another print run once this current batch runs out though, so I thought maybe a second life online might be the best way to keep the piece alive. At the end of the day, it's a story that I still like quite a bit. And hey, maybe you will too. (Be warned though, the comic contains both adult language and situations. Potentially NSFW)

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