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Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #8

Website (not so much as of 2010)

The Wonderful Year #8

It’s hard to complain too much about something that’s getting better with every issue. Or maybe this issue is just so great that it makes me think they’ve been getting better with each issue, who knows? The important thing is that this is one of the best portrayals of a brother/sister relationship through the years that I’ve seen. Plenty of embarrassing things are shown from childhood, but they’re all real things, just things that people don’t talk about once they grow up. Then there’s the strained relationship with her roommate, which goes back to her trying to deal with her brother, and the way things are now. Or the way things were fairly recently, it’s still a bit tough for me to keep track of a linear chain of events in her books. Still, there’s more honest, pure emotion and unstated self-analysis in this issue than most auto-bio books have in their whole run. Contact info is up there, check this one out right away, then go back and get the other issues…

Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #6

Website (not so much as of 2010)

The Wonderful Year #6 Now Available! $2

I think I get it now. I blame the sudden bolt of discovery on drugs. It’s snippets of her life, mostly. Things that she overheard in the day, or thoughts that she had at certain times, or people that she knows, or events that have happened to her or somebody she knows during her life, all thrown together in a comic. Sometimes it stays linear for a while, sometimes it doesn’t, but there’s a definite sense to be made of the whole thing and I’m fairly stupid for not seeing it before. This issue is about her sister, an old friend, growing up, sleeping in, falling, and painting. Other things too, but it’s well worth the effort to discover for yourself. The art was always solid, but I’d swear it’s better this issue than the last. This book is steadily climbing my list of books that I most look forward to, so why not send her a couple of bucks to check an issue or two out? Contact info is up there, but you already knew that…

Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #5

Website (not so much as of 2010)

The Wonderful Year #5 Now Available! $2

You know, I was fairly undecided on this comic before. Becca was kind enough to send me all of the issues that I didn’t have of this series, and now I know what an amazing thing it is. The comics all contain certain elements, which is just about the only thing that holds them together as a series. They all have random quotes, dreams, conversations and overheard dialogue, mixed together in a way that makes it hard to follow in any kind of linear way, but who needs linear? It’s a joy to see snippets of dates that may or may not have happened, conversations which may have been expanded a little bit from reality, and the general chaos that is this comic. If this sounds like it’s a bit too willy-nilly or something, well, you don’t have to buy it. If you like things that make you think (but might not make much “logical” sense to you even after you’ve thought about it), then check it out. It’s only a buck, you know…

Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #2

Website (not so much as of 2010)

The Wonderful Year #2

I’ve almost managed to fill in all the blanks on all of Rebecca’s earlier work, at which point… hm.  Don’t seem to have an ending for that sentence.  At which point the world will be a slightly better place, as samples from all of her comics (that I know of) will be on a currently functioning website?  I’ll go with that one.  This comic, as is the case with most of her book, wanders around a bit, eschewing that “traditional narrative” thing we’ve all gotten used to over the years.  Still, who needs a traditional narrative?  She manages to make her points in other ways.  Subjects in here include various fantasies about funerals, “light as a feather, stiff as a board”, loneliness, watching something irony-free, keeping pedophilia simple, making out with the guy from Blue’s Traveler, and a dream of making out in a sink.  Again, descriptions of this are just about pointless, so I have a tendency to leave it up to the reader… who will quite possibly never see this book, as it’s out of print.  Oh well, that’s the price of reviewing old mini comics.  If you can find this it’s probably only a couple of bucks, but good luck with that…

Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #1

Website (not so much as of 2010)


The Wonderful Year #1

Well, her website is dead and I can’t seem to find any new contact information for her, although I am searching for “Rebecca Taylor comics” on google, so it’s probably hopeless.  Even if I could find anything, I seriously doubt that her earliest issues are still available.  So why bother with a review?  Because when I get the comics rental thing off the ground (the hope is mid-April of 2010, which is theoretically possible), it’s comics like this that are sort of the reason for the project.  Here’s a comic that’s way out of print, but I have a copy just sitting in a box, along with most of her other issues.  Why not share it with the world?  If any of you are thinking I’m coming across like Gandhi, forget it: I hope to be able to eke out a meager living, between that and selling comics.  Then again, who makes any real money from comics?  Wasn’t there a comic in here that has nothing to do with me or this rental idea?  Oh yeah.  There’s not much to it, and I am more than a little hesitant to even review this older stuff, as most of the comics people I’ve talked to would rather their earlier work went away forever.  Their early work is often great, but that’s never stopped them.  This issue meanders, serving as a (more fully realized than usual) sketchbook more than anything else.  Her art has improved tremendously over the years, but you all know that it’s never wise to base your opinion of the artistic talent of these people on their first few issues.  Topics in here include hanging around a coffee shop, trying to figure out how to do her comics, surf music, and getting ripped off at the beach.  They all float around in the general area that is her comic, and it all comes across as things that she silently observed at some point.  If anybody knows of contact information for this woman please send it along to me, as I’m hoping to use her books in this rental idea but have no idea how to get ahold of her.  I’m guessing this is a buck or two, but good luck finding a place to buy it…


Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #7

The Wonderful Year #7 Now Available! $2

This time around I got the idea that the book is a bunch of one page comics with something of a continuing thread, unless, of course, the thread doesn’t continue. One thing’s for sure, though: I’ve run out of things to say about her comics. I like them, and she’s definitely one of those people whose comics are best described as “their’ book. You know, like if you want to describe a Sam Henderson book but run out of words you just say “You know, it’s a Sam Henderson comic”. You’ll be able to say the same thing about her very soon, to everybody I mean, because you can already say it to people who’ve read her book. The main theme in here is aging, or maybe it’s being used, or it could be not wanting to dance. Who knows? There may yet come a day when I sit down with all of these and try to make some serious sense out of them. I hope not though, because what would be the fun of trying to interpret something if I had it all analyzed into a corner? Contact info is up there, it’s still $2 and you should still buy it.

Taylor, Rebecca – The Wonderful Year #4

The Wonderful Year #4 Now Available! $2

What an absolutely incoherent comic. I mean that in the best possible sense, as it was fascinating every step of the way, but I can’t say that I understood much of it. Anybody who’s a fan of John Hankiewicz, and shame on you if you aren’t should check this comic out. It’s about, um… I’ll just tell you what’s in it. There’s a man who keeps saying “There’s a party in my pants”, screenprinting, baby birds, a woman with a shaved head, relationships, cats, harassment, and slapping. Maybe I’d have a better idea what was going on if I had seen any of the previous three issues, or if there was any information at all about the author other than an e-mail address. Still, it takes some work to get through but you’re rewarded with a remarkable sense of disquiet and uncertainty about the world. Well worth the effort to hunt it down, and here’s hoping that e-mail address is right because it’s all I could find…