In Review – Sliced (Quarterly) Issue #3

Sliced (Quarterly) Issue #3 - CoverEdited by Ken Reynolds
Cover by Saffron Knight

Featuring – Jon Laight (Brethren Born/Level 8 Comics), Rory Donald (Griff Gristle/Madius Comics), Ben Peter Johnson (Blythemporia), Kathryn Briggs (Dirty Rotten Comics), Simon Mackie, S.K. Moore (Macbeth GN), Maximilian Meier, David Hailwood (100% Biodegradable) and Brett Burbridge (Death Duty), Dominic B. Aveiro, John Osborn and Tom Mortimer (Dirty Rotten Comics), David Thomas, Daniel Ableev, Saffron Knight, Max Meier and Bob Schroeder

Sliced Quarterly #3 - TEXIT
Art from the story TEXIT written and drawn by Simon Mackie

Ken Reynolds is turning into a power house of the small press community, consistently turning out some great books and supporting and encouraging emerging talent in the UK and Europe.  This is how he goes on to explain Sliced (Quarterly).

Sliced Quarterly is an experimental comic anthology. We give a home to stories that want to push the boundaries of the comic book narrative. We publish ‘slice of life’ stories told in extraordinary ways.

Issue #3 of Sliced Quarterly is continuing to showcase unique comics from fresh and distinct voices in the small press scene, not just in the UK, but from around the world.

This collection features eight stories, including an elegant description of how it feels to share any creative endeavour with a wider audience. A virtual journey through computer generated reality, and a sideways look at how it affects our lives without pixels. A very personal account of a couples struggles when they fall between the cracks of UK immigration policy. The return of the newspaper man and his abstract adventures. A comic that asks: Where does creativity spring from? Muses, inspiration and alcohol. An overlapping metaphor of a narrative which looks at surveillance culture, 70’s noir and nature documentaries. A parable of nationalistic and political isolationism and the props that uphold democracy. And finally, a unique life story told in reverse.

 

A panel rom the story 'Epigraph' written by John Osborn and art by Maximillian Meier
A panel rom the story ‘Epigraph’ written by John Osborn and art by Maximillian Meier

Sliced Quarterly is shaping up to be a free form and experimental box of surprises. Now in its third issue and with a fourth well on the way, I am really looking forward to seeing where it goes next.

Not everything lands 100 per cent for my tastes but to me that seems the aim of experimenting in images and narrative. It is less obsessed, as many UK small press anthologies are, with being hip and cool but rather concentrates on pushing the bubble a bit more and at the same time telling some well performed stories.  Ken caters for each approach and style with respect and panache. Each artist and writer on equal footing and allowed to cut those ties.

An anthology should be an experience, it should have you choosing favourites and opening your mind to different approaches. Nicely done.

So, in keeping with this theory I thought that I would mention a couple of my personal favourites.

Sliced Quarterly #3 - Crowdsurfing

Crowdsurfing
Script by Jon Laight, art by Rory Donald and letters by Ken Reynolds.

A simple story of a message in a bottle thrown out to sea. Two pages long, it’s a story that just how Jon Laight, writer of Brethren Born (read a review of Issue Two here) has grown as a creator over the last year and, in company with the mighty Rory Donald, tells a touchingly funny story with emotional depth in just a few panels. Lovely stuff.

• Find Jon at his website www.level8comics.com or follow him on Twitter @level8comics

• Find Rory and some great examples of his art here on Facebook

Sliced Quarterly #3 - Alle Meine Neue Woerter Sind Libensmittel

Alle Meine Neue Woerter Sind Libensmittel
Script and art by Kathryn Briggs, lettered by Ken Reynolds

A diary/autobiographical comic that is seemingly drawn on graph paper, this is a touching story that talks about the themes of alienation, finding a home and the immigration. Of everything in the book, this is the one that I would like to see in a longer form – it feels like a chunk of a bigger story.

• Find more out about Kathryn’s work at her website www.kathrynebriggs.com or follow her on Twitter @withryn

Mixed up in this issue we get love stories, politics, comedy and a whole lot more. Ken also gives some space to featuring the up and coming publishing house Rats and Crows and features extracts of two of their stories from Slime and SANE6.

Sliced is well worth picking up and it is going to be really interesting to see what road it takes in the next issue.

If you are interested in submitting work for the next issue here are a few links.

 

Antony Esmond

Antony Esmond

Antony Esmond is a comic reviewer and writer – his hips don’t lie.

%d bloggers like this: