Home > Commentary and Features
Five For Friday #50—Surface Beauty
posted October 7, 2005
Name Five Comics With Great Cover and/or Production Design
1. Rubber Blanket
2. ACME Novelty Library
3. Teratoid Heights
4. Louis Reil
5. The Mutts
This category is now closed. Thanks to Everyone Who Participated! Results Follow.
1. Forlorn Funnies
4. Black Hole
5. Tales Designed to Thrizzle
Canadian Comic Art Centre
1. Anything designed by Michel Vrana
3. Silver Age DC annuals and giants
4. 1920s Life magazine
5. Canada Jack
1. The BLACK HOLE hardcover, as designed by Charles Burns (yearbook-style pictures featuring Before and After pictures of, I think, the main cast members. Accompanied by self-portraits of the author on the dustjacket. The book looks fantastic, suffused with its own surreality.
2. PLANETARY's heterogenous, content-specific covers have been an integral part of the series, framing the stories, even as they feed into the overarcing storyline. Favourites include this Dave McKean
homage and issue 21's black light affair.
3. Jeff Lemire's Xeric award-winning LOST DOGS.
It's a treasury-sized graphic novel, big to match the barrel-chested protagonist, and the cover is a mighty close-up.The logo and barcode are on the back of the wraparound cover, so all you see leaping out of the rack is the lead's stripey shirt and blood-spattered knuckles. Very eyecatching.
4. BATMAN: THE KILLING JOKE. Specifically, the inside front and back covers, which take the first and last panels (the same raindrop/puddle/ripple image) and enlarge it all to hell. It frames the story the same way an overture frames a larger body of music. Moore's idea, executed to perfection.
5. Brian Wood's covers for GLOBAL FREQUENCY varied in quality, but they all had a strong visual identity and a sense of urgency to match the subject matter. They looked like nothing else on the stands, at the time. My favourite? Issue 7.
And back to SHOWCASE: SUPERMAN. You gotta love a book that features the line "I was Jor-El's college roommate!" If only for the image of Marlon Brando horking like a freshman with Susannah York's bra on his head. There's a tale that Smallville needs to tell.
I'll stick to recent books:
The Clouds Above
676 Apparitions of Killoffer
the new Ben Jones Paper Rad book (I forget the exact title)
1. James Kochalka's Sketchbook Diaries #1-4 -- the cover paintings of James outside with his sketchbook in each of the four seasons are some of his prettiest work
2. Justice Inc. #1 by Joe Kubert for DC -- the clear turquoise sky behind Kubert's drawing of the Avenger is simply gorgeous
3. McSweeney's #13
4. Osamu Tekuza'a Buddha series
5. 100 Demons by Lynda Barry
ACME Novelty Library
Peanuts Parade books
1. Kramer's Ergot
2. Complete Dennis the Menace
3. Complete Peanuts
5. McSweeney's anthology
1. covers: Most of the run of RAGGEDY ANN + ANDY comics, a kids anthology put out by Dell in the mid-1940s.
2. design: The HEY LOOK collection published by Kitchen Sink.
3. design: CAVE-IN
4. design: THE CLOUDS ABOVE
5. cover and design: The HOLIDAY GRAB BAG Christmas Treasury Edition where the Marvel superheroes are running toward you on the cover, and you flip it over, and you see they all are carrying presents, greeting cards, and X-mas stockings behind them.
Billy E. Beechler
Gary Gianni's Corpus Monstrum
Michael Chabon's The Escapist collections
The Collected Peanuts volumes by Fantagraphics
Don Rosa's The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck
Batman Collected by Chip Kidd
1. Chris Ware's Krazy and Ignatz series
2. Seth's The Compete Peanuts
3. Jason's most recent books for Fantagraphics -- You Can't Get There From Here, Why Are You Doing This?, and The Iron Wagon
4. Kevin Huizenga's Or Else
5. Chip Kidd's Pantheon books
1. Calvin and Hobbes Sunday Series
2. Read Yourself Raw books
3. Peanuts The Art of Charles Schultz by Chip Kidd
4. Paul Hornschemeier's Sequential
5. The collected Ripple by Dave Cooper
1. McSweeney's #13 - Chris Ware
2. 100 Bullets - Dave Johnson
3. King Mini Minicomics
4. Tiempos Finales Vol. I - Sam Hiti
5. Fables - James Jean
1. RAW - High Culture for Lowbrows, Vol 2, No 3 (Herriman on cheap newsprint, Panter in vivid violet ink, full color painted work, etc.)
2. GHOST WORLD (The original hardcover with the beautiful dust-jacket and the embossed [?] title on the cover)
3. CRUMB - THE RECORD COVER COLLECTION
4. BLACK HOLE (individual issues)
5. "Comic Art" magazine
Alan David Doane
1. The Maakies books from Fantagraphics -- the perfect format for these strips.
2. American Elf HC
3. Blankets HC
4. Project Superior HC
5. Mother Come Home
1. The EC/Little Lulu/Carl Barks Library sets
2. Superman: Sunday Classics/The Dailies
3. Hank Ketcham's Complete Dennis The Menace
4. Steranko's History Of Comics, Volumes 1 nnd 2
5. Destroy! by Scott McCleod
Sean T. Collins
ACME Novelty Library