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The Comics Reporter’s Holiday Shopping Guide 2012
posted November 27, 2012
After A Significant Delay, Welcome To The Fully-Completed 2012 CR
Holiday Shopping Guide. I'm Sorry For Your Wait.
What follows are several suggestions for comics-related gift shopping. These suggestions are intended to help you along if you've decided that sequential narrative presents and things related to sequential narratives are to be on Santa's list this year.
As I have little chance of actually selecting something for your friend or loved one, please use this as a starting point only
. It's unlikely I'll have discovered just the thing
. More likely what follows will give you an idea as to what's out there, or spark some brainstorming that leads to an idea for something specifically suited to your loved one. I'm also quite certain I'm forgetting a list of items and ideas equally as long as the one that follows. That list is almost certainly filled with quality works and books. I apologize profusely for their absence here. This is not meant to be a comprehensive list, and anyone that thinks such a list is even possible these days may be a fool.
Have fun in the weeks ahead, and please remember a few simple rules about comics gift-giving:
1. When it comes to gifts, comics are best for people that already like them as opposed to people that may like them someday.
2. The bigger the comics fan, the more likely that person is to be very specific about what it is they want. Be careful!
3. Comics don't have the retail saturation of, say, DVDs, and some of the best things are carried by specific vendors or involve an element of handcraft, so make sure you have enough time to receive the thing it is you want to buy.
All that said: gifts are gifts. It's difficult to do anything wrong when giving someone a gift. Happy shopping, and here's to a fulfilling and safe holiday season.
THE COMICS REPORTER BLACK FRIDAY HOLIDAY SHOPPING GUIDE 2012
SEVENTY-TWO REASONS (SO FAR) TO SPEND YOUR SHOPPING MONEY ON COMICS THIS YEAR
AN OPENING SALVO OF GIFTY-TYPE GIFTS, MANY WITH A HOOK INTO THIS YEAR'S COMICS PUBLISHING EVENTS OR SOME ARGUABLE EQUIVALENT THEREOF
1. Los Bros Hernandez At 30
The Hernandez Brothers celebrated 30 years of comics publishing in 2012 with several convention appearance and a general outpouring of goodwill for this staggering accomplishment. They made some of the very best comics the year that Love and Rockets
began; they made some of the very best comics this year. There are all sorts of ways to provide a gift that relates to these great cartoonists, starting here
with their page at their primary publisher, Fantagraphics Books. I really like the series of books represented here
-- because of the nature of their work and how long they've been doing it, there's no one great place to start as much as there is just starting.
You can find the Abrams-published Jaime art book for very cheap
if you look around. I thought this
was a hugely underrated series from Gilbert Hernandez, while others have enjoyed this latest work from Dark Horse
. Fantagraphics is also offering a bunch of anniversary-related books, clumped together and discounted here
. You can also track down original art occasionally offered through the Heritage Auctions site by searching their names
There exist no comics I've enjoyed more than the best from Los Bros Hernandez.
2. Something Or Several Somethings From Oily Comics
One of the exiting stories of 2012 was the rise of micro-publishers and specialty distributors working both mail-order and convention booth sales for their various niche markets. One such is Oily Comics
, which offers its work a la carte
and also occasionally in group subscription form. It's hard to go wrong with any of the crisp minis found on their intuitive, well-designed site
3. Something Written By Ed Brubaker For Image Comics
The writer Ed Brubaker announced his decision to step away from writing comic books for Marvel at the moment. He's splitting his time between film/TV projects and work for Image Comics. He has a small army of collections out for the holidays. I'd recommend two books from Image: a collection of his Scene Of The Crime mini-series
with Michael Lark, and two volumes
collecting his Fatale
series to date, in collaboration with Sean Phillips. It's not hard to find a bunch more work from the writer, but I like those two series because I'd like to see him succeed at Image because with his potential sales levels that's the company where I think he'll find the most profit doing original work.
4. A Trip To A Convention, Or A Segment Of Such A Trip
This is kind of an odd present, but I was thinking about what I would want from a friend or family member with whom I had a Significant Gifts relationship -- I've had a few of those in my time -- and this is what popped into my head. There are really fine comics shows now, all over the country, ones that you can reasonably rely on being the same from year to year. Because of that reliability, you can project or outright buy in advance certain segments of such a trip -- advance tickets, guaranteed hotel rooms, air travel, a shopping budget, a per diem so that the other things can be saved for, etc. Like I said, it's kind of an odd thing, but I can't imagine anyone saving for a trip to, say, Comic-Con, that wouldn't love seeing an air travel voucher in their stocking, or someone heading to Angouleme that wouldn't love receiving an envelope of local currency. I love the fact that comics affords us the opportunity to buy event and lifestyle gifts now.
5. The King-Cat T-Shirt
John Porcellino is one of our greatest cartoonists. Any issue of his King-Cat Comics And Stories
is a perfect comics object. As much as I'd recommend any of John's comics work or the work he distributes or the art he makes as gifts, here I'll make the case for a classic King-Cat Logo T-Shirt
. I think that's a perfect not-comics object. Alt-comics t-shirts have made a comeback since Fantagraphics and a few other companies and individuals took a stab at them in the early 1990s. Plus with the King-Cat shirt, you can send in a photo to the devoted Facebook gallery of good-looking people wearing King-Cat t-shirts
6. A Piece Of Art From The Comic Art Collective
This is a great site/service, where a lot of alt-comics talent has been allowed to upload art offerings for free. They don't have an agent selling for them, but they do get to keep more of what they sell that way. I've bought maybe ten pieces through this site over the years. One thing it's quite good for is the illustration work that a lot of these folks do that never gets seen but is sometimes more frameable and hangable than straight-up comics art.
7. RASL Volumes 1-4
Let's get some more comics in here! Cartoon Books has the four over-sized collections of Jeff Smith's RASL
available for $50 combined; you can also find these volumes in many of your local comic book stores. I greatly preferred reading Smith's science fiction/science fact/noir in this form -- not only is these books' size flattering, but he did a lot of reworking to tweak things about the story. If I'm correctly processing what I know about RASL
, Smith worked really quickly on some of the chapter for immediacy's sake, so the tweaks greatly serve such things as clarity and the emphasis of certain story points. At any rate, I think we're really lucky to continue to have creators making new work that, like Smith, could retire to a life of high-fives and check-cashing from comics already completed.
8. The Complete Calvin And Hobbes Softcover
The hardcover version of this set of Bill Watterson books is a gift-giving perennial and will remain so. It's also nice to see a softcover of this material coming out. I won't be buying one because I have the hardcovers -- I'm a fan, but I'm not a crazy-fan with lots of money -- but if I were to buy one today I'm not sure which way I'd go. For one thing, I bet the softcovers fit more comfortably into one's lap. The standard price reduction that comes with softcovers might be appealing to those that won't do a lot of bargain-shopping before purchase.
9. Building Stories
Hello, book of the year. In fact, I think there's a good chance that Chris Ware's latest might seize a number of overall book of the year honors, including awards programs that focus primarily on prose. With the box set presentation of the work, I think this would make a fun gift, like getting the most beautiful and luxurious offering from Avalon Hill circa 1978.
10. Marvel Comics: The Untold Story
A prose book of the year offering in terms of wide appeal, engaging prose and thorough reporting -- it's a book I'm in the midst of reading. I had someone over the BCGF weekend describe it to me as a younger person's Marvel history in that the 1980s and 1990s period that are of concern to some of us as a creative afterthought but loom large in the memories of those under 40 get a serious, sustained treatment. I'll find out soon if that's true, but I haven't encountered anyone who hasn't been entertained by this hefty tome.
11. Pogo: The Complete Syndicated Comic Strips Vol. 1-2 Box Set by Walt Kelly
We're still in a golden era of strip and comic book archival collections. You can find great works all over the place, but let's spotlight the first slipcovered two-fer in the Fantagraphics effort on behalf of Walt Kelly's Pogo
. That is an acknowledged top 25 all-time comics efforts by a lot of people, top five by others, #1 for several. I love the early Pogo
work best of all the Pogo
work, and these volumes are attractive in a way that's extremely
difficult to guarantee with a post-World War 2 offering. They were cramming the strips into papers by then, making tear sheets and originals an even greater premium than is usual.
12. An IDW Artist's Edition Book
Scott Dunbier and IDW have happened upon a format that not only makes these volumes work as art objects but provides a new reading experience for those of us that prefer to consume comics as narratives. That's a pretty impressive feat. It's hard to know which of these books are available. Some have sold out on the publisher and distributor level but can still be found in comics shops, usually high above the cash register for discerning fans to have brought down off the wall and into their hands. I've enjoyed them all, and think a strength of the series is that even the ones you wonder if they'll work offer something in terms of pleasure and insight. I'm looking forward to the Gil Kane
13. The Team Cul De Sac Book
Richard Thompson retired his beautiful Cul De Sac
newspaper strip this year, and I'm still a little heartbroken as much as I'm looking forward to whatever Richard does next. The Parkinson's charity project Team Cul De Sac book seems like a perfect way to celebrate the strip's passing from current syndication into legend -- it's for a great cause, and you get to see Bill Watterson's only original comics-related art in years and years. In the next couple of years I'm hoping there will be a chance to recommend a complete-strip collection.
14. The Carter Family: Don't Forget This Song
There was a mini-comeback of Alt-Comics Generation Two this year: major efforts either begun or complete from talents like Rich Tommaso, Tom Hart and Jon Lewis, among others. It doesn't get much better than a complete color graphic novel drawn by David Lasky, a little-published cartoonist much-loved by his peers and by discerning comics fans that have had the pleasure of encountering his work in places like Boom Boom
and Urban Hipster
. This collaboration with one-time TCJ
managing editor and JohnStanleyOlogist Frank Young deals with a resolutely mainstream-type literary subject matter -- the origins of the modern music industry as told through the prism of the Carter Family and even includes a CD for an extra-gifty feel. I greatly enjoyed reading it.
15. Original Art From Frank Santoro
I'm quite taken with the original art PictureBox Inc. is offering from the cartoonist and rogue educator (I don't know what that means, really, I just like typing it) Frank Santoro, and would love to buy some for myself and will consider doing so if my budget allows. Santoro has an outsized personality which may or may not distract -- for some folks -- from the appeal of the visuals he puts out into the market. I think some of his recent comics have been pretty great, too.
16. Check Your Favorite Artist's Site/Tumblr/Twitter Account For Personal Offerings
Do you have an artist or several that you enjoy, that you follow on-line in some way or have always meant to follow but never have? Pay close attention over the next several days because a significant number of comics-makers out there are going to offer something
for the holidays. For instance, Dennis Culver is breaking out his print of characters from The Wire
, while Dustin Harbin is offering a discount in his store
for those that use the code word "Dharbmas." The economies of comics function now in a way that personal projects offered by comics-makers are a crucial part of how folks like these make a living, and there is a ton of fascinating material offered this way. It's worth your time to check it out, if only to buy something for yourself.
17. A Desk Made By Dave Kellett's Brother
I'm convinced one of the reasons why Marvel impressario Stan Lee has managed to outlive most members of the Golden Age generation is that he's always stayed fit and trim. He used to write his scripts at home while standing up. More and more writers and artists are taking that option and saving wear and tear on their backs in the process. The above link takes you to a post by Dave Kellett about the desk he fashioned with the help of his brother. If you really wanted to try something like this, I bet it could be done whether or not you can afford this particular type of piece.
18. Something From The Alan Moore Part Of The Top Shelf Catalog
No matter where you stand on work being done with co-creations of Alan Moore that do not involve Alan Moore, there can be little doubt that he's settled into a long and fruitful relationship with the publisher Top Shelf. They have a ton of stuff available, including all three issues of the latest League Of Extraordinary Gentlemen
cycle and hefty volumes of perennials From Hell
and Lost Girls
19. Color Moomin Books From Drawn And Quarterly
Drawn and Quarterly started out publishing the black and white comic strips from the much-loved Moomin characters, but they've ended up with quite the little storehouse of color Moomin works, all of which are lovingly presented and contain the evocative-looking, sometimes-wistful and frequently-funny stories by which their reputation was made. Their kids line is generally pretty strong, maybe as strong as exists anywhere in comics and certainly as consistently excellent first offering to last.
20. A Trade Volume From One Of The Growing Number Of Book-Focused Micro-Publishers Growing Like Weeds: Beautiful, Special Weeds
This was a big year for the emergence or at least rise of small alt- and arts-comics publishers, people focused on putting out just a few books -- at best! -- a year but that work along the lines of bookstore ready comics publishers as opposed to more mini-comics focused comics houses. Buying this kind of book is not only a pleasurable transaction, but it's a vote for diversity in the general marketplace and a general thumbs up in the direction of the individual effort you're supporting. I can recommend a bunch. In fact, I'm sure I'll forget one or two worthy efforts. Uncivilized Books has a bunch of attractive books out right now from Gabrielle Bell
, James Romberger (and his son!)
and Jon Lewis
. Bill Kartalopoulos and his Rebus Books has brought us the first in-one-book effort in English from the French team of Ruppert and Mulot
. Yam Books' Ticket Stub
was a huge surprise to me and maybe the most fun I've had in recent weeks reading a comics trade. The guys from Secret Acres offered up a really pretty Theo Ellsworth book
among other efforts. Everyone loves what Koyama Press is up to, and while a lot of what they did this year was comic-book format comics, Julia Wertz's The Infinite Wait And Other Stories
is a book I'm giving out this year to a couple of people.
21. Something In The Key Of "Massive Omnibus" From One Of The Major Mainstream Publishers
"But Tom," you say. "Are you some sort of snob? How can you be twenty entries in and there's nothing on your list from either of the two major North American funnybook publishers?" The answer to this question, which no one will ever ask me, is that I don't read a ton of superhero comics so I don't see a lot of what they have to offer. When I do dive into superhero books I tend to buy discounted back issues in original comic book form because I'm a nerd with very specific format fetishes. When I look at superhero material in the comics shop on the current sales racks, I tend to admire the massive collections more than the current trades or even the latest issues. Two books that look pretty good to me are the massive Grant Morrison-written New X-Men collection
and the Jack Kirby Fourth World Omnibus series
, both a little bit in the rearview mirror by now. I like the way both of those stories read, and I like the way the Kirby looks. The Morrison is sort of fascinating if you're the kind of geek that likes to ponder how these companies function: a lot of what Morrison does with the comic has long been changed back to status quo or some variation thereof by Marvel, and the revolving door of artists I think diminishes a bit what the writer is trying to accomplish here. Still, I enjoyed reading those books as comic books, so I have to imagine having them all under one cover might be fun.
22. The Shark King
There are enough kids' comics out there for the category to gain its own section in this gift guide, a section which will eventually appear below. My favorite kids' comic of the last year was the exuberantly drawn The Shark King
effort from R. Kikuo Johnson and Toon Books. This is one snappy-looking, pretty comic book, and while the story doesn't transcend its target audience in the way some kids' books might, you'll probably be drinking in the visuals with too much pleasure to care. Or, you know, you could actually give it to a kid and just borrow it for yourself later on.
23. The One Comics-Related Gift I've Given Three Years In A Row: The Little Nothings Series From Lewis Trondheim
I've bundled off these wry memoirs from Lewis Trondheim to a number of friends the last few years, more than one a season. I think they're super-accessible, pretty, funny and show off a couple of the great strengths of comics when it comes to presenting tone and facilitating a kind of casual, narrative density. I'm giving a set again this year, so I'm glad that NBM has put all of them back into print.
24. A Major Digital Comics Purchase
I imagine there's potential for massive discounts on digital comics content in the next few weeks. That is a market that strikes me as being somewhat driven by discounts, plus that's a strategy that many digital content sellers have adapted for the holiday season. One nice thing about this kind of purchase is that a lot of comics readers are still waiting for that big push in order to get in the habit of buying digital comics, so a gift from you might change someone's consumer life. There are any number of providers of this kind of material, and certainly comiXology
is the giant when it comes to offering content that's also on paper (if I bought digital comics on a regular basis, I'd make sure I had that site bookmarked for the next several days). I'm personally enamored of Monkeybrain Comics
for its devotion to new comics content at a 99-cent price point. I'll cover this area again a bit in its own section.
25. An Old Cartoon Book Or Comics Publication Via Stuart Ng Books
I try to visit Stuart Ng Books every time I'm in southern California. They have a big of high-end art, and cartoon books that kind of run the gamut, price-wise.
26. Old Comic Books From Ebay
The foundational auction site eBay is probably still the
great marketplace of old comics. If you've bought a comic book for cheap recently, you likely have on-line auction sites to thank. All the usual warnings apply, but I've purchased some great books this way.
27. Old Comic Books From Mile High Comics
A lot of people bag on Mile High Comics, but I order a couple hundred dollars of stuff from them a year and as long as you avoid some of their more peculiarly priced items -- double-check every price you're given -- I've found them to be quite serviceable. I usually buy lower-grade reading copies from them during sales when you can get extra money off.
28. Old Comic Books From MyComicShop.com
Buddy Saunders' on-line shop is probably the comic shop in North America where year in and year out I drop the most money. A wide selection, half-way reasonably priced -- or so it seems to me.
29. Old Comic Books From Your Local Comic Book Shop
Most comic shops have an array of back issues ranging from stuff under glass to a quarter box or two of bargains. All sorts of comics and combinations of books can make fine gifts. Plus you just shopped local.
WAYS TO GIVE BY GIVING BACK
30. A Donation In Someone's Name To The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum
I was lucky enough to donate some handmade comics to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum this year. I was impressed with my visit, and this was about a full year before they move into a spectacular new location. They could still use funds for that capital drive. They'll treat you like you're special if you ever visit whether or not you give, but I think that they can be counted on to put anything you send them to very good use.
31. A Donation In Someone's Name To The ToonSeum
Pittsburgh's ToonSeum didn't make last year's list, and I got some sternly written e-mails from some of its many fans. Pittsburgh is one of the great North American cities â€“ maybe the greatest â€“ and any excuse to put myself into city limits is greatly appreciated.
32. A Donation in Someone's Name to the scholarship fund at The Center For Cartoon Studies
Help keep tuition low at James Sturm's institute of higher comics learning.
33. A Donation in Someone's Name to The Cartoon Art Museum
Of all comics' donation destinations, CAM may be among the least appreciated and also, as it turns out, one of the stronger performers in terms of routinely fulfilling their mandate.
34. A Donation in Someone's Name to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF)
The CBLDF continues its advocacy work on behalf of free speech issues in comics, having expanded its mandate in the past few years.
35. A Donation in Someone's Name to the Hero Initiative
These good folks focus their attention on older comics creators in need. I've had the opportunity to work with them for the first time this year, and found that to be a positive experience.
36. A Donation In Someone's Name To Child's Play
This charity started by the team of folks behind Penny Arcade
, they focus on fulfilling wish lists from kids at their networks of hospitals.
37. Direct Relief To Someone Whose Life Felt The Impact Of Superstorm Sandy, Or Whose Life Could Be Made Better With a Little Help In Funding
There are always ways to help make someone's dreams come true via sites like Kickstarter
, and there still a few ways to lend a hand to those that felt the impact of this Fall's big storm. If you have a favorite pro that works in New York, I bet they suffered a minor setback of some sort even if they haven't gone public â€“ just the interruption in work is probably being felt right about now. There are also cartoonists like JK Woodward that are making more direct appeals
due to the egregious nature of their financial hit.
38. Buying Items Or Services Related To One Of These Charities
Each one of the above charities at times may offer premiums or items as an inducement for you to donate, or as a flat-out sales mechanism in order to generate cash. The Comic Book Legal Defense Fund
site has a very elaborate store set-up
, such as the print depicted above. You can read about the CBLDF's 2012 fundraiser for the holidays here
WAYS TO GIVE THE GIFT OF ART
39. Something From Lisa Hanawalt
Like many artists, Hanawalt has some things available from a third party
and some things available directly, in this case from an Etsy store
. There's no one better-liked or that offers better looking art than Hanawalt, but I'm including her here in part to remind you to search out your favorite artists for things like this -- Hanawalt alerted people to her offerings through her twitter account
40. A Drew Friedman Print
This may be the only entry were I don't have to say anything. Just look at this stuff.
41. Custom Art From Gary Panter
The great Gary Panter continues to offer up custom art, drawn according to words that you provide him. Forget friends and any and all members of your family, this is what you should get me
42. Custom Art From Johnny Ryan
I have purchased two pieces of custom art from Johnny. The results in each case, one being Judge Dredd here, were phenomenal.
43. Original Art From Comicartfans.com
I'm not familiar with this site, and can't vouch for it, either, but it seems to be a place where comics fans and a few professionals put up galleries of original art they own, including a large "classifieds" section of art for sale. I would imagine that many of the ads on the site might be helpful as well.
44. Original Art From The Beguiling's Art Store
Retailer Peter Birkemoe is a nice man who runs a classy comics business, and I hear he does very well by his client artists. Just a staggering line-up of cartoonists with work available here.
45. Original Art From Fanfare Sports and Entertainment
I don't know a thing about this company except that they strip their name into their jpegs. Looks like a fine line-up of comics talent, though, and it looks like they may more aggressively price to sell.
46. Original Art From Mike Burkey
Again, I have no personal experience beyond knowing they've been around for a while.
47. Original Art From The Artist's Choice
Over 60 artists represented at the site, including many of the finer practitioners of mainstream superhero comics art.
48. Original Art From Denis Kitchen Art Agency
Denis doesn't have as many clients as some people, but they're all heavy hitters like Frank Stack. Kitchen has a long enough track record in the industry I can certainly endorse him, too. I'm not sure if the temporary glitch getting to the original art sales is a temporary glitch or an indication that the site has abandoned this sales track, though.
49. A Poster Or Print From The Beguiling's New Store Section
This is a new section for their store, so I wanted to give it some extra-emphasis this year. The selection is small but everything is super-attractive and affordable.
50. Posters And Prints From PictureBox, Inc.
I haven't seen any of these up close, but PictureBox has been a first-class outfit so far in terms of its comics publications, so I would imagine their prints and posters are of similarly high quality.
51. Prints From Brusel
I have a beautiful Dupuy & Berberian print from these guys. I'm not sure what it's like to order from them, but I bet they have a different suite of artists than most American companies working this part of the market.
52. Prints From Dynamic Forces
I have no idea what their prints are like, but I know they certainly take a different, maybe more aggressive approach than most of the companies here in terms of who they're putting out there.
53. A Print From Todd Klein
Todd Klein has been self-publishing prints featuring his lettering, and they're all a) very handsome, b) co-starring creative talent from various corners of the wide world of funnybooks.
54. Art From Jim Blanchard
And all-time favorite print and portrait maker, and ink-slinger for the ages. Blanchard's print of Redd Foxx should go into whatever museum you'd put things like prints of Redd Foxx.
55. Tom Gauld's Robot Print
Tom Gauld is one of my favorites and his work lends itself extremely well to prints and cards and other items.
56. A Print From Jordan Crane
Always gorgeous-looking; usually slightly disturbing.
57. Print Of A King Features Comic Strip
When Dan Wright and I were doing Wildwood
for King Features, we'd give friends -- and random people that weren't really friends at all -- inkjet-made "prints" of good strips. This looks much more legal.
58. A Print From Steve Bissette
I've seen some of these art objects the illustrator and educator has been doing in partnership with a variety of interesting cartoonists; they're really gorgeous. Poke around a bit.
LET'S GET A FEW STAND-ALONE BOOKS UP EARLY ON FROM LAST YEAR'S LIST; A LOT MORE SHOULD EVENTUALLY BE COMING
59. Nelson, Edited By Woodrow Phoenix and Rob Davis (Blank Slate Books)
This is a big, full-color anthology featuring work from various stalwarts of the surprisingly under-appreciated -- and therefore under-seen by most North American comics fans -- current British comics scene, with proceeds being donated to the homelessness charity Shelter.
60. Richard Stark's Parker: The Martini Edition, Darwyn Cooke (IDW)
IDW has done a really nice job with their various deluxe editions across the line, and that's certainly the case with this edition of Darwyn Cooke's first two Parker
adaptations, bound together and stuffed with extras including an interview from this site. I can't really compare the experiences of reading the actual comics involved, but I know two people have reached for it right off of my bookshelf that didn't ever show interest in the initial publications.
61. Jack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture, Jack Davis (Fantagraphics)
Jack Davis is an outside, little-discussed candidate for Best Living Cartoonist and this is a fine survey of his work.
62. The First Five Books Published By Domino Books For $21
That's a holiday season 2012 special
rather than one from last year, but I wanted to slip it in before I called it a day. Domino is Austin English's imprint, and five books in is a lot further than many publishers get.
63. D+Q's Kate Beaton Wall Calendars
I already bought some of these for friends. Kate Beaton is very funny, and these are attractively produced. Plus there are two
, so you can give them out to siblings without a big fight like the Spurgeon Boys used to have over those Tolkien calendars.
64. Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking
There aren't a whole lot of Charles Schulz-related items that have yet to be published; this holiday-related book is one of the few hold-outs.
65. Brad McGinty's Holiday Cards
These were a big hit last year and should do as well this year; I wish that his site wasn't jammed so I could swipe an image from there instead of wherever this one came from, but oh well. I'll take it down if someone complains.
66. Donald Duck: A Christmas for Shacktown
The latest in Fantagraphics' fine series of Carl Barks ducks comics collections features a lovely holiday story right up front. I used to love the unabashed sentimentalism that saturates a story like this one, at least in the initial pages.
67. Nancy Likes Christmas
I have yet to dig into these Fantagraphics collections generally, let alone this one specifically, but it sounds good. I'm pro-Nancy
68. The Great Treasury Of Christmas Comic Book Stories, Edited By Craig Yoe (IDW)
Craig Yoe's 2010 release features classic Christmas stories, comics made back when hitting the widest possible audience with things they might actually like was the comic book mandate.
69. HarperCollins' X-Mas Short-Story Adaptations
It doesn't get more Christmas-y than this triptych of stand-alone works from HC from I believe 2009: The Gift Of The Magi
, The Fir-Tree
, A Kidnapped Santa Claus
. I liked the Alex Robinson one best.
70. Monster Christmas, Lewis Trondheim (Papercutz)
I greatly enjoyed this stand-alone, translated Christmas fable from Lewis Trondheim. It's slightly odd, but it's also very grounded in what I can remember as a kids' perspective on the holidays and how the adults in my line of sight fussed around it. It also has a basic plot I've rarely seen used -- a family taking a trip for Christmas rather than staying home.
71. Hellboy Ornament
Which one of your frightened, crying children will get to hang this lovely piece of comics-related merchandise? A Spurgeon family tradition for more than a half-decade now.
72. Classic Christmas-Related Comics
These are great novelty gifts for people that collect Christmas items of for someone that like X-property but didn't know they did a Christmas comic. Or you can just buy them this issue of Justice League Of America
, which scared the crap out of me back when it first appeared on the stands.
BARGAIN GIFT IDEAS IN CASE YOU'RE STILL SUFFERING THE EFFECTS OF RECESSION
73. Something via AbeBooks
This is the interface I use to access used bookstores. One thing that such stores tend to have that comic shops don't is classic "cartoon books" from artists like Peter Arno