Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Actress and The Bishop

Word has it that Brian Bolland is coming to Singapore.

This would be his second visit to Singapore. The last time he came was in the late 1980s. The Killing Joke just came out and I got it signed.

So you fanboys better stock up on your Bollands for autographs. Top of the list should be The Art of Brian Bolland if you want to impress him. That's a handsome book.

I just picked up the Camelot 3000 hc two, three months back. It has not aged well and even when I finally read it some 20 years ago, I found it choppy. They haven't quite figured out then how to tell and end a story in a 12 issue maxi series. (That's what DC called their limited series then - maxi for anything more than 4 issues and 4 and below, a mini series; Marvel just called series - that was how you tell the diff between the two companies in the mid 80s. They want to make sure you are buying Crisis on Infinite Earths and not Secret Wars)

What was enlightening about the Camelot 3000 hc was Mike W Barr's intro. He said he actually suggested to DC for Bolland to finish drawing all the issues first before soliciting it. DC didn't listen and that led to delays between issues and the series falling off the schedule, which was unheard off in those days. Today, that's the industrial norm. Now I understand that Bolland is slow worker given the details he put into his work. (and maybe why he also draws covers these days; another reason to get The Art of Brian Bolland - collects all the excellent covers from Animal Man in the 80s to Wonder Woman and beyond) The Killing Joke was much delayed when it finally came out in 1988. By that time, Alan Moore had sworn off DC.

Okay, getting back to what you should stock up for Bolland, well, Camelot 3000 is not that bad a series just for the beautiful Bolland art. There's some excellent girl on girl action there which aroused some controversy back in the early 80s. Tame stuff now.

When I was in San Deigo last year, I picked up Camelot 3000 #1 for the heck of it. I should gotten it signed by Mike W. Barr (got him to sign other things instead) if I knew Bolland is coming to Singapore this year.

But, but if you really want to be different, go get Bolland Strips! which I found at Kino yesterday. Stacks of it. I think Kenny is to be blamed for this. We were just talking the other day how difficult it is to go dig out our old issues of A1. (mine are somewhere in my parents' place) The girly stuff. The stories that separate the men from the boys. I've read most of them before but it was fun revisiting The Actress and The Bishop and The Princess and the Frog again after all these years.

Boy, do I feel old.

Think I'll go dig out my definitely-not-mint copy of JLA #200 which has a Batman-Green Arrow - Black Canary sequence drawn by Bolland, probably one of his first works for DC as that predated Camelot 3000.

Or just get him to sign my Killing Joke again. A friend actually got Neil Gaiman to sign on her copy of Sandman a second time when he was in Singapore. The first autograph she got at a signing in London. How fannish.


UPDATE: Just picked up The DC Universe by Brian Bolland (Comic Book Cover Portfolio No 3) from GNB. Beautiful stuff. Go grab.


Joy said...

Hey, you! When are you gonna see Bolland? I'm keen to come with (though I have no idea where my Killing Joke is!).

Parka said...

Cool. Got to let my friend know as well. And I've got The Art of Brian Bolland reviewed on my blog.

cheng tju said...

Joy - yeah, let's go!

B0N0V0X said...

Anywhere I can find a comprehensive listing of his bibliography? I'm already stocking up stuff for his autograph.