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Review: Vietnamese Memories Book 1: Leaving Saigon

“Courage” is an understated attribute that most immigrants possess but rarely were given credit for, even before our current presidential administration. As most of this xenophobia, has been going on for years, and yet they still came to our shores, which included my family. The fact that you leave the place you have known your whole life, to go somewhere else, to begin anew. To do all that and bring your family with you or to start a family after that, these actions are not what everyone has in them, these actions require fortitude and courage.

This truth rings even louder for those, who consider themselves refugees, as their search for sanctuary leads to them places where they never imagined being including America. Life can be so complicated and comforts like our First World problems becomes nonsense when you realize the problems they have. Thousands of their stories have been told, each one as interesting as the next and ones that should be told repeatedly. In Clement Baloup’s Vietnamese Memories Book 1: Leaving Saigon, the acclaimed author seeks to tell the stories of one family across different time periods as they leave their homeland.

The book begins as a primer for readers as Baloup surveys what he believes they know from popular culture but then quickly does a deep dive into Vietnam’s history. As one family member tells the family history through the cooking of prawn, which shows the power of exposition and the connection food has to one’s family. Each member unveils what their life was during that time and each gives a reason why they left the country of their birth. By book’s end, each family member shows to their family through their stories why love will always lead the way.

Overall, an engaging set of stories that both feel intimate but is universal to every person whose family immigrated over the last century. The stories as told by Clement Baloup are lovely, visceral and enthralling. The art by Baloup is beautiful. Altogether, a great book that pushes the boundaries of storytelling and remembers that true stories are sometimes more interesting than fiction.

Story: Clement Baloup Art: Clement Baloup
Story: 9.6 Art: 9.3 Overall: 9.7 Recommendation: Buy

Humanoids Announces a New Literary Imprint, Life Drawn Focused on Personal and Political Narratives

Humanoids is launching a new literary imprint in 2018, timed to the company’s 20th anniversary of publishing its acclaimed books in the United States. Best known for seminal genre works including The Incal (Alejandro Jodorowsky, Mœbius) and The Metabarons (Jodorowsky, Gimenez) and internationally renowned creators, including Milo Manara and Jose Ladronn, Humanoids will make a bold break from tradition with its new endeavor. Launching on April 4th, the Life Drawn imprint will publish graphic novels featuring deeply personal and powerful political narratives; these are stories grounded in life on earth, not among the stars.

Life Drawn’s debut season features titles representing a wide spectrum of art styles, tone, and social and cultural perspectives:

Kabul Disco: How I Managed Not to Be Abducted in Afghanistan by Nicolas Wild
Publication date: April 4, 2018; ISBN: 978-1594658686; 160 Pages; $19.95
LIFE DRAWN debuts with the first volume of a satire-laced travel memoir by cartoonist Nicolas Wild about his experiences in Afghanistan, drawing an adaptation of of the Afghan constitution. Wild provides insights into international politics, a war-ravaged country and the lives of his fellow expatriates. In a dazzling passage, Wild explores the fragile state of American democracy through the story of a woman who was working for the Bush campaign in 2000 and was responsible for vote counting in one of Florida’s three counties, ultimately making the fateful phone call that helped swing the election. Acclaimed cartoonist Guy Delisle (Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea) declares that Wild’s “satirical and at times absurdist perspective plunges us into the daily life of a group of expatriates in the heart of Kabul, a city still reeling from the last war. His witty sense of humor makes him an excellent travel companion.” Book Two will be published in September.

Vietnamese Memories: Leaving Saigon by award-winning writer and artist Clément Baloup
Publication date: May 29, 2018; ISBN: 978-1594656583; 164 Pages; $19.95
The first of a three-volume testimonial to the courage and endurance of five different families displaced from their native country by war and colonialism and forced to assimilate in unfamiliar lands, watching their heritage slowly disappear. As Doan Hoang, the award-winning director of Oh, Saigon, says in her introduction of Book One, “History is mostly told by the privileged and powerful, and rarely by those who are most affected. . . . In this sumptuously beautiful and important graphic novel, you will intimately bear witness to what so few in the world have been privy to.”

Luisa: Now and Then by Carole Maurel, Adapted by‎ Mariko Tamaki (This One Summer)
Publication date: June 20, 2018; ISBN: 978-1594656439; 272 Pages; $29.95
A queer transformative tale about self-acceptance and sexuality, written and illustrated by Carole Maurel and adapted by national bestseller Mariko Tamaki, Caldecott Award–winning creator of This One Summer. A disillusioned photographer has a chance encounter with her lost teenage self who has miraculously traveled into the future. Together, both women ultimately discover who they really are, finding the courage to live life by being true to themselves. The book will be published in June, timed to Pride Month.

Madame Cat by Nancy Peña
Publication date: July 4, 2018; ISBN: 978-1594658136; 128 pages; $12.95
Hilarious vignettes presenting the love, laughter and frustrations of a pet who thinks she’s an owner! With narrative mastery, creator Nancy Peña brings us bite-sized sketches that appeal to cat lovers of all ages.

Graphic Policy’s Top Comic Picks this Week!

X-MEN RED #1Wednesdays are new comic book day! Each week hundreds of comics are released, and that can be pretty daunting to go over and choose what to buy. That’s where we come in!

Each week our contributors are choosing up to five books and why they’re choosing the books. In other words, this is what we’re looking forward to and think you should be taking a look!

Find out what folks think below, and what comics you should be looking out for this Wednesday.


Top Pick: Incognegro: A Graphic Mystery and Incognegro: Renaissance #1 (Dark Horse/Berger Books) – These are some of the best things I’ve read in a long time in any form. A great examination of race in America wrapped up in a nail biting thriller and more relevant than ever.



Top Pick: X-Men: Red #1 (Marvel) – A new X-Men team with a returned Jean Grey as the leader? I’m intrigued where this one will go and if this is the tipping point of “X” bloat, which we’re already near. But, a big character returning to a world that’s vastly different has me very intrigued.

Avengers #679 (Marvel) – “No Surrender” has been a lot of fun so far. A rare event that’s holding up in quality.

Black Lightning: Cold Dead Hands #4 (DC Comics) – A great mix of action and socio-political commentary. Exactly how it’s supposed to be done.

Carthago (Humanoids) – I’m a Jaws fan, so a comic that sounds like it’s another terror from below with sharks story, I’m in.

Coyotes #4 (Image Comics) – Fantastic horror with so many layers. You’ll be debating what it all means and the symbolism. Don’t think there’s much out there today like this series.

Exit Stage Left: The Snagglepuss Chronicles #2 (DC Comics) – One of the best comics of 2018 so far. This will easily wind up on “best of” lists.

Infinity Countdown: Adam Warlock #1 (Marvel) – A big event is kicking off, big enough that it shook up plans for ongoing series. With a movie coming up touching upon some of the same characters and concepts, this should be interesting.

Mech Cadet Yu #6 (BOOM! Studios) – One of my favorite series. Just so much fun to read. In short, kids and giant robots kick alien ass.

Around the Tubes

The weekend is coming up and lets face it, we’re all just counting down the days until Black Panther. While you wait for that, here’s some comic news and reviews from around the web in our morning roundup.

The Onion – Man Prefers Comic Books That Don’t Insert Politics Into Stories About Government-Engineered Agents Of War – Nailed it.

Kotaku – After 27 Years, Manga Akagi Ends Today – That’s a hell of a run!

The Beat – Help Wanted: Humanoids Inc. Is Hiring! – Looking for a job in comics?

RollingOut – Urbanime founder Chris Walker creates ‘Relic,’ merges hip-hop and comic books – Sounds really interesting.

Bustle – ‘Speak’ By Laurie Halse Anderson Will Be A Graphic Novel & The Author Is Seeking RAINN Donations To Celebrate – An important piece of work.



Comic Attack – Bingo Love

ICv2 – Bizarre Romance

Comic Book – JLA/Doom Patrol Special #1

Newsarama – JLA/Doom Patrol Special #1

IGN – JLA/Doom Patrol Special #1

Jud Meyers has joined Humanoids, Inc. as Director of Sales & Marketing

Humanoids, Inc. has announced that it has hired Jud Meyers as Director of Sales & Marketing.

Jud Meyers began his career in the comics industry behind the scenes at Titan Publishing in London. From 1989 through 1994, he managed and assisted in the launching of the some of the most prestigious comic book retail stores in the UK, including Forbidden Planet and Virgin Megastore. In 2003, Jud opened his first brick and mortar location in Sherman Oaks, California. In just under four years, Earth-2 Comics became the youngest store to ever receive the Will Eisner Spirit of Retailing Award. In 2009, Meyers partnered with Geoff Johns and purchased the legendary San Fernando Valley Golden Apple Comics store. Blastoff Comics, his latest retail location in North Hollywood, California has been thriving since it opened in 2012, earning praise for its dedication to charitable works and the preservation of the vintage comic book market.

Humanoids hires Fabrice Sapolsky as Senior Editor

Fabrice Sapolsky has joined Humanoids as Senior Editor. With 20+ years of experience in the publishing industry, Fabrice’s mission will span the current and upcoming Humanoids universe titles, including a soon-to-be announced imprint.

Fabrice Sapolsky brings his experience, expertise and palette of talents to the legendary publishing company. In France, he created Comic Box, the premier magazine about American comic books, as well as worked with many top European comic book publishers in various capacities. Fabrice is also a critically acclaimed comic book professional: he’s the co-creator of Spider-Man Noir for Marvel Comics, which he also co-wrote, in addition to having published two creator-owned comic book series, One-Hit Wonder (Image Comics) and Intertwined (Dynamite Entertainment). After moving from Paris to New York in 2015, he’s now made the move west, working out of Humanoids’ Los Angeles office, effective immediately.

Review: The Magical Twins

Bruce Lee’s Game of Death is one of those movies, riddled with what-ifs, mostly because of the auteur. There have been articles and documentaries made of this movie, as he did not live long enough to see it to the end. To the average moviegoer, the movie may seem like an average Kung-Fu movie, with enough kicks, punches, and blood to feel action packed. For those of us, who were pretty much obsessed with Bruce Lee, it feels as though he would have said more, as the movie itself is a metaphor for life.

The biggest lesson I extrapolated from the movie, that life changes, and for you to live successfully, you must adapt.  At every floor of the movie, he had to adapt his style, to live long enough to get to the next floor.  Most stories, usually involve a journey, where the hero changes, but very few, have it where the hero can’t use any of weapons. In Alejandro Jodorowsky and Georges Bess’ epic The Magical Twins, this very dilemma plagues the protagonists.

Within the first few pages, an evil invades a enchanted kingdom of Kether, where the King, has recently been taken, but before he is he leaves a message for his children, emboldening them to undertake a rites of passage journey. Unfortunately for them and what their mother, the Queen most feared, they may have gotten soft, and the most glaring condition of the journey, is that they undertake the venture without the use of their magical powers. Much like Bruce Lee’s character in Game of Death, they adapt to every obstacle. By book’s end, their biggest obstacle, proves to be substantial but for the reason neither the Twins would even think of.

Overall, a great coming of age tale, that proves comics can tell stories for all ages. The story by Jodorowsky is exciting, fast paced, and abbreviated enough for the target audience. The art by Bess is luminous. Altogether, a trip most young reader will enjoy.

Story: Alejandro Jodorowsky Art: Georges Bess
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy

Review: Metabarons Volume 3 Steelhead & Dona Vicenta

Being a child of the 1980s, I remember how obsessed the world was with the British Royal family. The world still is but not at the height of when Princess Diana was still alive. Not only the British tabloids were obsessed with the family but the world was as well. The fact that Diana, was not of royal blood, played into it, as initially it was a marriage of love.

Eventually thing went sour, between the two, but the obsession never really ended, as they pretty much made Prince Charles the villain and Diana he princess she was. Despite its tabloid nature and the fact, the royal family, is more symbolic, than possessing of actual power, shows a time in history when the people loved their rulers. This is something every ruler hopes those they rule over, feel. In the last volume of The Metabarons, we find a royal family in shambles, as their climb to build their empire back is an uphill battle.

In the opening pages, we find Aghnar and his mother, Honorata paying the ultimate price to end the fighting amongst the Pthugeran race, which despite their sacrifice, ended their race. Steelhead takes advantage to take over the crumbling empire, but not without the opposition of the las remaining royal families, the Rokhas. What follows is a romance between Lady Rokha and Steelhead, where she finds out her whole life is a lie. By book’s end, a final betrayal, to end the Metabarons, leaves the future uncertain at first, until a future is found.

Overall, the best book of the series thus far, as this iteration proves that Alejandro Jodorowsky knows how to handle melodrama and political intrigue in the same arena. The story by Jodorowsky is action packed and filled to the brim with powerful characters. The art by Juan Gimenez is gorgeous and could hang in any museum. Altogether, a first-rate installment that will have you clamoring for more of this universe.

Story: Alejandro Jodorowsky Art: Juan Gimenez
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

Humanoids Launches HumanoidsKids and Slice of Life Imprints

L.A.-based graphic novel publisher Humanoids Inc. is launching two brand new imprints  that will diversify its already impressive range of graphic novels.

This imprint offers graphic novels for children and Young Adults, with the same attention to art, content, and quality that have made Humanoids one of most world-renowned comic book publishers.

The first title, The Magical Twins, is the first ever children’s graphic novel written by Alejandro Jodorowsky, and sold out within 2 weeks! A revised second printing will be available in December 2017. Illustrated by regular Jodorowsky collaborator Georges Bess (The White Lama, Son of the Gun) the book is a Hardcover, 56pp, $19.95/£14.99 ISBN: 9781594654084.

August sees the release of the first in the Gregory & The Gargoyles trilogy, a competitively priced all-ages adventure about a young and lonely boy’s travels through a long-forgotten world where magic still rules. Written by Denis-Pierre Filippi (Muse, Marshals), Hardback, 96pp, $12.95/£10.99 ISBN: 9781594657986.

In September, Humanoids will release Halloween Tales, by Denis-Pierre Filippi & Olivier Boiscommun. A spooky – yet sensitive – book with three interconnected stories revealing that, on Halloween, it’s always darkest before the dawn. Hardback, 156pp, $24.95/£20.99 ISBN: 9781594656545.

Slice of Life: This new range will offer a wide variety of subjects, from travelogues and  personal journeys, to LGBTQ themes and coming to terms with bereavement. The first two upcoming titles are:

The Retreat: A lyrical and touching tale of friendship put to the test amid death, mourning, and nostalgia. The September 2017 release date corresponds with Suicide Prevention Awareness month. By artist Tom Tirabosco and Pierre Wazem, the author of the bestselling KOMA and Snow Day. Softcover, 112pp, $14.95/£12.99 ISBN: 9781594656156.

Adrift: Gregory Mardon’s poetic tale of a life at sea, exploring how travel, adventure, and chance encounters can shape both individuals and future generations. Softcover, 116pp, $14.95/£12.99 ISBN: 9781594658396.

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