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Baker's Dozen

Dr. Manhattan: Jeffrey Lewis' Favourite Comics
Aug Stone , December 15th, 2015 10:22

Aug Stone talks to the NYC musician and comic book creator about bizarre autobiographies, superheroes and (SPOILER) a whole lot of Alan Moore, as he finishes his UK tour in support of new album, Manhattan

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Ben Snakepit - Snakepit
I briefly lived in Austin, Texas from 2000 to 2001. Ben Snakepit was a guy who was doing autobiographical comics there at that time. I was doing similar comics but he's continued doing his thing every single day for the past 15 years. He does three panels every day and it's very punk rock. Almost nothing happens but I find it just completely entertaining and addictive and I love following it. His style of putting his life forward is really what makes it work. Little repeating things - the way he's always so happy when it comes to getting paid at the end of the week for all these really low-class jobs that he does… None of it makes any real sense to describe, because there's very little worth describing in it, but as an experience of reading you get very quickly engrossed in it. It's very different from most other comics because he's not a comic book nerd. He's living the life of being in punk bands and getting drunk at parties. The comic is just this mission that he's on every day to make these three panels.

I also like how he lists what he's listening to at the time of each strip. The records are such a weird bizarre assortment of different sorts of bands and music. And of course because he's doing one strip every single day, there's a huge list. Plus I really like his tastes in music. The weird things that are always unexpectedly popping up in his listening habits, that's a big part of the entertaining aspect of reading Snakepit. There's certainly bands that I wouldn't have heard of, like a lot of death metal or crusty punk, if he hadn't listed it. And now I recognise the names. It's a really fun comic that I will gladly continue reading as long as he keeps doing it.


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Rockin' Rom
Dec 15, 2015 11:32am

Great selections, eloquent descriptions. I haven't thought about Rom the Spaceknight in years, I must be a similar age to Lewis I guess, how I loved that comic.

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Jeff
Dec 15, 2015 7:46pm

The world of comics is extremely dense with amazing work, and has been for decades... but Alan Moore is one of those writers where, if somebody asked me about the single best author in the medium, it would be a no-brainer. Miracleman, Swamp Thing, and Watchmen alone... and that's ignoring a LOT. Those are my "big 3" from him.

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Ott
Dec 15, 2015 9:58pm

Very well written, great insights.

Do any of you know the book "Flicker's Fleas"? (http://www.amazon.com/Flickers-fleas-Ken-Struck/dp/B0006RXSA6)

I picked this up in early '00 in Tallinn Estonia, in a local comics shop. A completely bonkers story of a heroin addicted saxophone player, who has inherited a flea sircus. Wierdly delirious and a paranoid book.

I was just wondering if any of you has ever heard of it, or knows anything about it?

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Scott
Dec 16, 2015 12:39pm

Love Peepshow, one of my all-time favourite comics, great to see it mentioned here.

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Grimbo
Dec 17, 2015 7:32pm

In reply to Jeff:

Those are all fantastic, but I would add "From Hell" to that list. "Swamp Thing" is a gorgeous series, though.

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danlor
Apr 5, 2016 2:12pm

I'm always amazed at not finding these lists filled with 2000AD stuff, particularly Dredd. As far as I'm concerned Dredd is the best comics character ever made, and 2000AD by itself can easily compete, in terms of quality, with the entire American industry. It almost never gets a mention tho.

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