Tag Archives: daniel clowes

Daniel Clowes Returns with Monica


Fantagraphics has announced the Fall 2023 release of Monica, the first original graphic novel by Daniel Clowes in more than half a decade. Monica is the most personal and ambitious book of his storied career.

Monica is a series of short, interconnected narratives that tell the life story — actually, stories — of its titular character. Clowes calls upon a lifetime of observation and artistic inspiration to create his most complex and sophisticated graphic novel yet. Rich visual detail, masterful graphic storytelling, and a novelist’s attention to the vernacular rhythm of language and dialogue combine with a plot full of surprising twists to create a multilayered masterpiece of the form that alludes to many of the genres that have defined the medium — war, romance, horror, crime, the supernatural, etc. — but in a mysterious, uncategorizable, and quintessentially Clowesian way that rewards multiple readings.

Six years in the making, Monica marks the creative apex of an artist whose generation of cartoonists has defined the literary graphic novel. A new book by Clowes is both cause for celebration among readers and a genuine literary event.

Monica is slated to release in October 2023.

Charlie McDowell will Direct Daniel Clowes’ Patience

Charlie McDowell will direct Patience, a film based on the graphic novel by Daniel Clowes. The script is being written by McDowell and Justin Lader. Innisfree Pictures’ Jim Burke and Steven Snyder are producing.

Clowes’ Ghost World, Art School Confidential, and Wilson have both been adapted into film.

Focus Features has been working on the adaptation of Clowes’ graphic novel. The comic was originally released in 2016 by Fantagraphics Books and is a “science-fiction love story about time travel. It describes the misadventures of a man, Jack, after he finds his pregnant wife, Patience, murdered in their apartment.”

Charlie McDowell’s directing credits include The One I Love, The Discovery, episodes of Silicon Valley, Legion, Tales from the Loop, and more.

McDowell confirmed the news in a Tweet:

(via Deadline)

Daniel Clowes and Ed Piskor Get Fantagraphics Studio Editions

Coming October 2019, Fantagraphics Books will release two new stunning additions to their Studio Edition series: Daniel Clowes: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition and Ed Piskor: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition.

The Fantagraphics Studio Edition series illuminates the compelling, painstaking process by which great comics are created. Each deluxe, oversized volume collects over 100 pages of high resolution, un-retouched original art scans, capturing subtle nuances of the artist’s skillful brush strokes and pen lines. These full-size reproductions retain original pencil marks, corrections, and marginalia—fascinating imperfections that provide insights into the creative process of these master cartoonists. This is truly the closest most of us will ever get to sitting in the artist’s studio. 

Daniel Clowes: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition turns the spotlight on one of the medium’s most dynamic creators. This edition draws from Clowes’s nearly 35 years of comics art, ranging from some of his earliest published work, 1986’s Lloyd Llewelyn, to his seminal one-man anthology, Eightball (in which Ghost World was originally serialized), and includes samples from his most recent graphic novel, 2016’s best-selling time travel thriller, Patience.

Daniel Clowes: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition

Ed Piskor: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition highlights the work of this star cartoonist, focusing on his two best-known series: Hip Hop Family Tree and X-Men: Grand Design. In addition to excerpts from these two major comics projects, this edition features dozens of other gems from Piskor’s archives, including commercial art, designs for a line of Public Enemy action figures, and much more.

Ed Piskor The Fantagraphics Studio Edition

Each book will retail for $150. Both Daniel Clowes and Ed Piskor will be doing limited signing events around the US to promote the book.

Movie Review: Wilson

A lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged man reunites with his estranged wife and meets his teenage daughter for the first time.

Based on the celebrated graphic novel by Daniel Clowes, Wilson stars Woody Harrelson in the title role and the end result is a bit mixed in quality. The first thing to understand about Wilson the character is that he’s generally unlikeable. He’s a middle age man that in many aspects is anachronistic and through every situation, he wanders into it’s clear he wonders what his legacy in the world is.

To understand the movie, you need to really understand the graphic novel it’s based off of. Wilson isn’t as much a narrative story as it is a series of short situations that have more in common with newspaper strips than a graphic story. There’s a big picture theme through it all and some work together to form a story, but this isn’t your traditional story. With those short strips (usually a page) the art style too changes mixing up the visuals as a caustic and grumpy tone remains constant.

So Harrelson in the title role has it tough. Even in the comic Wilson doesn’t have much of a personality beyond “dick.” He’s grumpy and gruff and seems to lack a filter saying what he’s thinking as if he’s just given up on societal niceties. So Harrelson is walking into a role where the character is unlikeable and he pulls that off. This is Wilson the comic character brought to life and doing anything beyond “straight guy” honest delivery of the material would betray the character. Adding a sparkle, a smile, a wink, diminishes the character who is none of those things.

Joining Harrelson is primarily Laura Dern as his ex-wife Pippi who’s recovered from what is told to us was a hellish period of her life with stories that aren’t recounted so much as hinted at by things like tattoos. That allows us the viewer to imagine the situations, which honestly is probably funnier than anything Clowes could come up with. Dern does exhausted and weary well and you can see her evolve in her demeanor and appearance as she grows up compared to Wilson’s devolution.

Also joining them is Isabella Amara who plays Claire, the daughter neither know who is the impetus by which the main story gets going. She’s pretty solid but is primarily the audience to Pippi and Wilson’s crazy. She’s not much more than a prop at times for Wilson’s mania or to act as a stand-in for the audience.

Cheryl Hines, Judy Greer, Mary Lynn Rajskub, and Brett Gelman, all stand out during their scenes delivering entertaining performances and controlling the tone or setting it in some ways. Which is impressive since Harrelson is such a presence (for good and bad) in the film.

Directed by Craig Johnson with a screenplay by Clowes, Wilson is interesting in that it attempts to create a narrative but it comes off as a series of vignettes. That really stands out to me as the graphic novel was a series of vignettes. They attempted to create a story out of something that really wasn’t. Some of the funniest moments from the graphic novel is included by what Johnson misses is that interesting visual from the comics. Each story has a different visual and we saw in the comic adaptation American Splendor what and how mixing visuals can work. The film visually would have been stronger if it took some inspiration from that film mixing in different styles including animation with the live action.

The film itself isn’t bad in any way, but it also falls short from what I had hoped (expectations probably didn’t help). The movie feels like a mid-life crisis High Fidelity. Instead of figuring out the direction of one’s life, it’s more focused on what one’s legacy will be. The laughs are there but with such a dark tone it’s an uncomfortable one and with an audience, you could feel that exude from them. Calling this a “dark comedy” is an understatement.

There’s some narrative choices when it comes to the story, especially at the end. Some time frames shift and I left wondering why. If there’s a difference to it all and if so, what it was. Clowes feels like he’s saying something a little different with those choices, but I’m not sure if it’s meant to be different. Some of the message and themes shift a little due to this change.

There’s also issues with the women generally portrayed as all negative, but by the end it’s clear that Wilson corrupts everything he touches and the negativity is a natural and justified reaction.

Wilson is one of the most under the radar comic adaptations of 2017 and it’ll be one that should be debated as to the end result and if it’s better or worse than the original graphic novel. Like American Splendor, Wilson shows not all “comic movies” involve spandex, and some of the most thought-provoking don’t involve them at all.

Overall Rating: 7.65

Wilson Gets a New Trailer

Woody Harrelson stars as Wilson, a lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged misanthrope who reunites with his estranged wife (Laura Dern) and gets a shot at happiness when he learns he has a teenage daughter (Isabella Amara) he has never met. In his uniquely outrageous and slightly twisted way, he sets out to connect with her.

Wilson comes to theaters, March 24, 2017.

Around the Tubes

patience_fc_colors-1It’s new comic book day! What’s everyone excited for? What do you plan on getting? Sound off in the comments below!

While you decide on that, here’s some comic news from around the web in our morning roundup.

Around the Tubes

Complex – The Story of Fantagraphics, the Company That Changed Comics – Cool to see this story and boy are they.

Variety – Movie Based on Daniel Clowes Graphic Novel ‘Patience’ in Development at Focus – Nice to see!

Kotaku – Transformers: Forged To Fight Takes Kabam’s Fighting Game To The Next Level – Sounds fun.

ICv2 – WotC Eliminates Its ‘D&D’ Organized Play Volunteers – Are they getting ahead of a lawsuit?

Wilson Gets a Red Band Trailer

Woody Harrelson stars as Wilson, a lonely, neurotic and hilariously honest middle-aged misanthrope who reunites with his estranged wife (Laura Dern) and gets a shot at happiness when he learns he has a teenage daughter (Isabella Amara) he has never met. In his uniquely outrageous and slightly twisted way, he sets out to connect with her.

Based on the acclaimed graphic novel by Daniel Clowes, Wilson comes out March 24, 2017. The film is directed by Craig Johnson with a screenplay by Clowes. The film also features Judy Greer and Cheryl Hines.

Around the Tubes

Trish Trash Roller Girl of MarsIt’s new comic day tomorrow and we’ve got our picks in a little while. What are you looking forward to?

While you decide on that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web.

Around the Tubes

Kotaku – Cosplayer Arrested For Bringing Fake Gun On Train – Really surprised this doesn’t happen more often.

Forbes – Deradicalizing Pakistan Through Comic Books – A very interested read.

The Beat – Report: March trilogy has sold so many copies the printer ran out of paper – This is amazing and well deserved that it’s in so much demand.

The Beat – Daniel Clowes’ Wilson film gets pushed to 2017 – Can’t wait for this movie.

The Nerds of Color – Hard NOC Live from SDCC 2016: Jai Nitz – The creator of DC’s EL Diablo!

Panels – “Kim & Kim” & Transgender Narratives In Comic Books – An absolute must read.


Around the Tubes Reviews

Talking Comics – Food Wars Vol. 13

ICv2 – Trish Trash: Rollergirl of Mars Vol. 1

Grand Prix d’Angouleme Boycott Announced. Creators Pull Out of Consideration.

via BD Egalite

via BD Egalite

The list of nominees for the 2016 Grand Prix at Angoulême were announced today resulting in a call for a boycott and creators asking to be removed from consideration. The award is (was?) considered a great honor and a sort of lifetime achievement award. The issue? Out of the 30 individuals nominated, not a single woman was included. Rightfully this angered individuals as it’s a slap in the face to the numerous talented female creators out there who deserve recognition.

The award hasn’t had a great history when it comes to recognizing women. As reported by The Beat, out of the 43 year history, only one winner has been female, Florence Cestac.

A group of female cartoonists, BD Egalite (a group that shines the spotlight on sexism in the French comic community), has called for a boycott. The page is in French, but Google Chrome translates it as saying: but Jessica Abel translated it (a much better version than Chrome):

The International Festival of Comics (Angoulême): Women Banned from Comics

5 January 2016

With the announcement today of the list of nominations for the Grand Prix d’Angoulême 2016—and award for which we comics creators are asked to vote—the ax fell:

30 names, 0 women.

We remind you that in 43 years, Florence Cestac has been the only woman ever to receive this distinction. Not even Claire Brétecher, pillar of the 9th Art, has ever received the Grand Prix. She was awarded the “10th Anniversary Prize” in 1983 (a prize which does not prevent its winner from qualifying for the Grand Prix as well).

We protest this obvious discrimination, this total negation of our representation in a medium practiced by more women every year.

With the Grand Prix of Angoulême, the comics world recognizes one of its own for their entire career. This award is not only honorary, it has an obvious economic impact: the media covers the Grand Prix winner extensively, and the distinction makes a huge impact in the bookstore, to the benefit of booksellers, publishers and…the award-winning author.

We simply ask for a consideration of the reality of our existence and of our value.

Indeed, what is the message sent to women cartoonists and those in the process of becoming such? We are discouraged from having ambition, from continuing our efforts. How could we take it otherwise? It all comes back to the disastrous glass ceiling; we’re tolerated, but never allowed top billing. Will we require women in comics to perpetually play second fiddle?

It is no longer tolerable that renowned female creators, known by one and all, are absent from the nominations of this Grand Prix. If comics professionals are expected to select three names from a list decided by the FIBD, this list must be truly representative of comics today. Female comics creators are also significant players in this literary field.

For all of these reasons, the Women in Comics Collective Against Sexism calls for a boycott of the Grand Prix 2016. We will not vote.

Since the announcement Fantagraphics has announced Daniel Clowes is withdrawing from consideration for the award and that the publisher and creator stand with BD Egalite.

In a statement Clowes said:

I support the boycott of Angouleme and am withdrawing my name from any consideration for what is now a totally meaningless ‘honor.’ What a ridiculous, embarrassing debacle

We have seen reports that Riad Sattouf has also withdrawn as of this post. We’ll update when further individuals comment or withdraw.


Daniel Clowes on Tour with Patience

Daniel Clowes on Tour with PatiencePatience is the first all new, original graphic novel from Daniel Clowes in over a half-decade, and also the biggest and most ambitious book yet in a storied career that includes multiple Eisner and Harvey Awards, a PEN Award, and an Academy Award nomination.

Patience is an indescribable psychedelic science-fiction love story, veering with uncanny precision from violent destruction to deeply personal tenderness in a way that is both quintessentially “Clowesian,” and utterly unique in the author’s body of work. This 180-page, full-color story affords Clowes the opportunity to draw some of the most exuberant and breathtaking pages of his life, and to tell his most suspenseful, surprising and affecting story yet.



Tour Dates:

Mon, Feb 29th      Toronto Reference Library      Toronto, ON
Wed, Mar 2nd      The Strand                                NYC
Thur, Mar 3rd       Philly Free Library                  Philadelphia, PA
Fri, Mar 4th          Barnes & Noble                       Princeton, NJ
Sat, Mar 12th        Fantagraphics Bookstore         Seattle, WA
Sun, Mar 13th       Powell’s City of Books            Portland, OR
Tues, Mar 15th      Pegasus Books                        Berkeley, CA
Fri, Mar 18th         Meltdown Comics                   Los Angeles, CA
Wed, Mar 23rd      Green Apple Books                 San Francisco, CA
Tues, Mar 29th      University of Chicago             Chicago, IL
Wed, Mar 30th      Quimby’s                                 Chicago, IL
Thur, Mar 31st      Magers & Quinn                      Minneapolis, MN

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