You know, I’m actually old enough to remember when “Drawn and Quarterly” referred to the publishing schedule. Is there a single thing in their catalog that comes out four times a year? I’m mostly only annoyed because they have a tendency to publish books like this, which are (in the comical grand scheme of things) tiny slices of wonderfulness, yet they come out so infrequently that I often have to find the old issues and re-read them to remember what happened when the last issues came out a year or so ago. Anyway, Atlas #3. The first half of the book is cartoon Dylan’s continuing quest for Emil Kopen, in which we get a very brief glimpse into the oppression of his part of the world. The second half answers questions that I’ve had for years, namely what happened to Pickle and why Dylan’s output seems to have ebbed so much. Or at least it might do that if this is autobiographical. It uses Dylan’s name and refers to Pickle and the years since, but there’s no way to know how much is artistic license and how much is exaggerated for the comic. Either way it’s fascinating, funny and brilliant, much like damn near everything this man touches. Oh, and in case you haven’t noticed, after years of reading Pickle and the at least mildly transformative experience of reading Hicksville, my objectivity with this man has long since gone out the window… $3.95 Oh, and here’s his page on the D & Q website.
You know, I didn’t realize how much I missed Dylan coming out with comics on a regular basis until I read this one. Remember how I mentioned that Pickle was my favorite comic when it was coming out? I think Atlas might be my new favorite. It’s the story of Emil Kopen, a cartoonist in Corucopia and his life. Kind of like it’s A Good Life if You Don’t Weaken by Seth, or at least I think it might end up being like that. It’s hard to tell from one issue. There’s also a silent story that I think might be a tale from Emil’s past and a story about Hicksville by James Kochalka. I don’t know how long it’s going to take for this book to be serialized. It’s projected now to be a series of 12 80 page comics with backup stories each issue from different cartoonists about Hicksville. No idea who’s slated to be doing stories and that’s fine, I like surprises. You can’t really go wrong with 100 pages of comic for $3.95. I already can’t wait for the next book to come out to get this story started. I buy all the individual comics anyway, but this looks like the type of thing that everybody should just go ahead and get all the issues. The stories in the back alone look like they’re going to be worth the price of admission….