Thursday, April 06, 2006

Eisner Nominees

Okay, time to talk about the Eisners...

Best Short Story:
"Blood Son," by Richard Matheson, adapted by Chris Ryall and Ashley Wood, in Doomed #1 (IDW)
"Monster Slayers," by Khang Le, in Flight, vol. 2 (Image)
"Nameless," by Eric Powell, in The Goon #14 (Dark Horse)
"Operation" (story #5), by Zak Sally, in The Recidivist #3 (La Mano)
"Teenage Sidekick," by Paul Pope, in Solo #3 (DC)

Yeah...I haven't read any of these. I almost picked up Doomed by IDW, but it was a little more expensive than I'd expected, so I passed. I do want to check out The Goon one of these days and of course, I've heard great things about Solo.

Best Single Issue (or One-Shot):
The Bakers, by Kyle Baker (Kyle Baker Publishing)
Ex Machina #11: "Fortune Favors" by Brian K. Vaughan, Tony Harris, and Tom Feister (WildStorm/DC)
The Innocents, by Gipi (Fantagraphics/Coconino Press)
Promethea #32: "Wrap Party" by Alan Moore and J. H. Williams III (ABC)
Solo #5, by Darwyn Cooke (DC)

Promethea #32 was really a great issue and tried to accomplish something beyond just being a great story. that being said, I don't think it should win for that alone...

Best Serialized Story:
Desolation Jones #1-5: "Made in England," by Warren Ellis and J. H. Williams III (WildStorm/DC)
Fables #36-38, 40-41: "Return to the Homelands," by Bill Willingham, Mark Buckingham, and Steve Leialoha (Vertigo/DC)
Ex Machina #12-14: "Fact v. Fiction," by Brian K. Vaughan, Tony Harris, and Tom Feister (WildStorm/DC)
Y: The Last Man #37-39: "Paper Dolls," by Brian K. Vaughan, Pia Guerra, Goran Sudzuka, and Jose Marzan Jr. (Vertigo/DC)

I haven't read either Desolation Jones or Ex Machina (even though I really do admire all artists involved), but between the other two, I would definitely go with Fables. I loved the "Homelands" arc: one of the best of the series, and in face of Y: the Last Man, which I recently dropped (with the latest arc), it's just a better series.

Best Continuing Series:
Age of Bronze, by Eric Shanower (Image)
Astonishing X-Men, by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday (Marvel)
Ex Machina, by Brian K. Vaughan, Tony Harris, and Tom Feister (WildStorm/DC)
Fell, by Warren Ellis and Ben Templesmith (Image)
Rocketo, by Frank Espinosa (Speakeasy)
True Story, Swear to God, by Tom Beland (Clib's Boy Comics)

While Fell is a great series, it's not one I'm especially excited about reading when it comes out. Don't get me wrong: it's always great when I read it. It just doesn't get me thrilled for the nest issue to come out. I may just feel that way because the stories are so self-contained, but I also think I do prefer other comics generally. I recently read the first volume of Age of Bronze, and it is a masterpiece, but I haven't read anything recent. I would personally go with Astonishing X-Men, just from what I've read. It's just smartly written and illustrated.

Best Limited Series:
Nat Turner, by Kyle Baker (Kyle Baker Publishing)
Ocean, by Warren Ellis, Chris Sprouse, and Karl Story (WildStorm/DC)
Seven Soldiers, by Grant Morrison and various artists (DC)
Smoke, by Alex de Campi and Igor Kordey (IDW)

Not a big fan of Ocean. Seven Soldiers has been pretty solid, but I can't say it's more deserving than the other nominees.

Best New Series:
All Star Superman, by Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely (DC)
Desolation Jones, by Warren Ellis and J. H. Williams III (WildStorm/DC)
Fell, by Warren Ellis and Ben Templesmith (Image)
Rocketo, by Frank Espinosa (Speakeasy)
Young Avengers, by Alan Heinberg, Jim Cheung, and John Dell (Marvel)

All Star Superman only had a single issue come out last year (the weakest of the three that have come out), and I have yet to check out Young Avengers...

Best Publication for a Younger Audience:
Amelia Rules! by Jimmy Gownley (Renaissance Press)
The Clouds Above, by Jordan Crane (Fantagraphics)
Franklin Richards, Son of a Genius, by Chris Eliopoulous and Mark Sumerak (Marvel)
Owly: Flying Lessons, by Andy Runton (Top Shelf)
Spiral-Bound, by Aaron Renier (Top Shelf)

I'm really not sure about this one. Owly didn't exactly blow me away. I've been thinking about reading the Franklin Richards book.

Best Anthology:
The Dark Horse Book of the Dead, edited by Scott Allie (Dark Horse Books)
Flight, vol. 2, edited by Kazu Kibuishi (Image)
Mome. edited by Gary Groth and Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics)
Solo, edited by Mark Chiarello (DC)
24 Hour Comics Day Highlights 2005, edited by Nat Gertler (About Comics)

Okay, this is making me feel like I haven't read enough comics...

Best Digital Comic:
Copper, by Kazu
Jellaby, by Kean Soo,
ojingogo, by matt forsythe
PVP, by Scott Kurtz,

Best Reality-Based Work:
Embroideries, by Marjane Satrapi (Pantheon)
Epileptic, by David B. (Pantheon)
Nat Turner, by Kyle Baker (Kyle Baker Publishing)
Pyongyang, by Guy Delisle (Drawn & Quarterly)
True Story, Swear to God (Clib's Boy Comics), True Story, Swear to God: This One Goes to Eleven (AiT/Planet Lar), by Tom Beland

Best Graphic Album-New:
Acme Novelty Library #16, by Chris Ware (ACME Novelty)
The Rabbi's Cat, by Joann Sfar (Pantheon)
Top Ten: The Forty-Niners, by Alan Moore and Gene Ha (ABC)
Tricked, by Alex Robinson (Top Shelf)
Wilmbledon Green, by Seth (Drawn & Quarterly)

I loved both Acme Novelty Library #16 and Top Ten: The Forty-Niners. God, this is a hard one. I would probably go with Top Ten. Just barely.

Best Graphic Album-Reprint:
Acme Novelty Library Annual Report to Shareholders, by Chris Ware (Pantheon)
Black Hole, by Charles Burns (Pantheon)
Feast of the Seven Fishes, by Robert Tinnell, Ed Piskor, and Alex Saviuk (Allegheny Image Factory)
Ice Haven, by Dan Clowes (Pantheon)
War's End, by Joe Sacco (Drawn & Quarterly)

How can you choose between Black Hole and Acme Novelty? But I'm going to, and going by my top ten of last year, it would be Black Hole.

Best Archival Collection/Project-Comic Strips:
The Complete Calvin & Hobbes, by Bill Watterson (Andrews McMeel)
The Complete Peanuts, 1955-1956, 1957-1958, by Charles Schulz (Fantagraphics)
Krazy and Ignatz: The Komplete Kat Komics. by George Herriman (Fantagraphics)
Little Nemo in Slumberland: So Many Splendid Sundays, by Winsor McCay (Sunday Press Books)
Walt and Skeezix, by Frank King (Drawn & Quarterly)

Like I said last post, it probably won't be between Krazy Kat and Peanuts, just because they've been around for awhile. Beyond that, you got me.

Best Archival Collection/Project-Comic Books:
Absolute Watchmen, by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons (DC)
Buddha, vols. 5-8, by Osamu Tezuka (Vertical)
The Contract with God Trilogy, by Will Eisner (Norton)
DC Comics Rarities Archives, vol. 1 (DC)
Fantastic Four Omnibus, by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby (Marvel)

Best U.S. Edition of Foreign Material:
Cromartie High School, by Eiji Nonaka (ADV)
Dungeon: The Early Years, vol. 1, by Joann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim, and Christophe Blaine (NBM)
Ordinary Victories, by Manu Larcenet (NBM)
The Rabbi's Cat, by Joann Sfar (Pantheon)
Six Hundred Seventy-Six Apparitions of Killoffer, by Killoffer (Typocrat)

Well, I do like Dungeon...

Best Writer:
Warren Ellis, Fell (Image); Down (Top Cow/Image); Desolation Jones, Ocean, Planetary (WildStorm/DC)
Alan Heinberg, Young Avengers (Marvel)
Alan Moore, Promethea, Top Ten: The Forty-Niners (ABC)
Grant Morrison, Seven Soldiers, All Star Superman (DC)
Brian K. Vaughan, Ex Machina (WildStorm/DC); Y: The Last Man (Vertigo/DC); Runaways (Marvel)

I would say Alan Moore. He's probably the best writer in comics period.

Best Writer/Artist:
Geof Darrow, Shaolin Cowboy (Burlyman)
Guy Delisle, Pyongyang (Drawn & Quarterly)
Eric Shanower, Age of Bronze (Image)
Adrian Tomine, Optic Nerve #10 (Drawn & Quarterly)
Chris Ware, Acme Novelty Library #16 (ACME Novelty)

Best Writer/Artist-Humor:
Kyle Baker, Plastic Man (DC); The Bakers (Kyle Baker Publishing)
Paige Braddock, Jane's World (Girl Twirl)
Bryan Lee O'Malley, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (Oni)
Eric Powell, The Goon (Dark Horse)
Seth, Wimbledon Green (Drawn & Quarterly)

Yah! Scott Pilgrim!

Best Penciller/Inker:
John Cassaday, Astonishing X-Men (Marvel); Planetary (WildStorm/DC)
Gene Ha, Top Ten: TheForty-Niners (ABC)
J. G. Jones, Wanted (Top Cow/Image)
Frank Quitely, All Star Superman (DC)
J. H. Williams III, Promethea, Desolation Jones (WildStorm/DC)

I think I'll rule out Frank Quitely for his one issue of Superman, and John Cassaday for his latter rushed-looking issues of X-Men...I like all of the artists really. I think I prefer Gene Ha in the end, for his work on Top Ten.

Best Painter/Multimedia Artist (interior art):
Paul Guinan, Heartbreakers Meet Boilerplate (IDW)
Ladronn, Hip Flask: Mystery City (Active Images)
Ben Templesmith, Fell (Image)
Kent Williams, The Fountain (Vertigo/DC)

Best Cover Artist:
Frank Espinosa, Rocketo (Speakeasy)
Tony Harris, Ex Machina (Wildstorm/DC)
James Jean, Fables (Vertigo/DC); Runaways (Marvel)
Jock, The Losers (Vertigo/DC)
Eric Powell, The Goon; Universal Monsters: Cavalcade of Horror (Dark Horse)

What can I say? I'm a James Jean fan.

Best Coloring:
Jeromy Cox, Teen Titans (DC); Otherworld (Vertigo/DC)
Steven Griffen, Hawaiian Dick: The Last Resort (Image)
Steve Hamaker, Bone: The Great Cow Race (Scholastic Graphix)
Jose Villarrubia, Desolation Jones (WildStorm/DC)
Chris Ware, Acme Novelty Library #16 (ACME Novelty)

Best Lettering:
Chris Eliopolis, Ultimate Iron Man, Astonishing X-Men, Ultimates 2, House of M, Franklin Richards (Marvel); Fell (Image)
Todd Klein, Wonder Woman, Justice, Seven Soldiers #0 (DC); Desolation Jones (WildStorm/DC); Promethea, Top Ten: The Forty-Niners, Tomorrow Stories Special (ABC); Fables (Vertigo); 1602: New World (Marvel)
Richard Starkings, Conan, Revelations (Dark Horse); Godland (Image); Gunpowder Girl and the Outlaw Squaw, Hip Flask: Mystery City (Active Images)
Chris Ware, Acme Novelty Library #16 (ACME Novelty)

Talent Deserving of Wider Recognition:
Dawn Brown (Ravenous, Little Red Hot)
Aaron Renier (Spiral-Bound)
Zak Sally (Recidivist)
Ursula Vernon (Digger)

I liked Dawn Brown's Little Red Hot: Bound mini-series a few years back.

Best Comics-Related Periodical:
Comic Art, edited by M. Todd Hignite (Comic Art)
Comic Book Artist, edited by Jon Cooke (Top Shelf)
The Comics Journal, edited by Gary Groth and Dirk Deppey (Fantagraphics)
Draw!, edited by Michael Manley (TwoMorrows)
Following Cerebus, edited by Craig Miller and John Thorne (Aardvark-Vanaheim/Win-Mill Productions)

Best Comics-Related Book:
The Comics Journal Library: Classic Comic Illustrators, edited by Tom Spurgeon (Fantagraphics)
Eisner/Miller, interviews conducted by Charles Brownstein (Dark Horse Books)
Foul Play: The Art and Artists of the Notorious 1950s EC Comics, by Grant Geissman (Harper Design)
Masters of American Comics, edited by John Carlin, Paul Karasik, and Brian Walker (Hammer Museum/MOCA Los Angeles/Yale University Press)
RGK: Art of Roy G. Krenkel, edited by J. David Spurlock and Barry Klugerman (Vanguard)

Best Publication Design:
Acme Novelty Library Annual Report to Shareholders, designed by Chris Ware (Pantheon)
Little Nemo in Slumberland, designed by Philippe Ghuilemetti (Sunday Press Books)
Promethea #32, designed by J. H. Williams III and Todd Klein (ABC)
Walt and Skeezix, designed by Chris Ware (Drawn & Quarterly)
Wimbledon Green, designed by Seth (Drawn & Quarterly)

I think Wimbledon Green is the least spectacular of the nomineess' designs. The others are all stiff competition, but I would probably go for one of Ware's designs, probably Acme Novelty Library, because he's just such a master in this category.

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