Bryan and Mary Talbot nominated for National Cartoonists Society Reuben Award

Mary and Bryan Talbot. Image courtesy Bryan Talbot

Mary and Bryan Talbot. Image courtesy Bryan Talbot

Bryan Talbot and Mary Talbot are among the 2016 NCS Divisional Award nominees for the 71st Annual US National Cartoonists Society Reuben Awards.

Bryan and Mary are nominated for their project The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia, alongside Jules Feiffer (for Cousin Joseph) and Rick Geary (for Black Dahlia).

The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia

Set against the background of violence and state repression in a turbulent period of French history, The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia chronicles the incredible and outrageous life of Louise Michel, the revolutionary feminist dubbed ‘The Red Virgin of Montmartre’. A utopian dreamer, notorious anarchist, teacher, orator and poet, she was decades ahead of her time. Always a radical, she fought on the barricades defending the short-lived Paris Commune of 1871 against the reactionary regime that massacred thousands of French citizens after the Commune’s defeat. Deported to a penal colony on the other side of the Earth, she took up the cause of the indigenous population against French colonial oppression.

Celebrating the utopian urge in nineteenth-century literature and politics and the origins of science fiction, The Red Virgin and the Vision of Utopia is the third collaboration of best-selling academic and graphic novelist Mary M. Talbot with her husband, the graphic novel pioneer Bryan Talbot. Their first book together, Dotter of her Father’s Eyes, won the 2012 Costa Biography Award.

• It’s available to buy from amazon.co.uk (using this link helps support downthetubes)

Cousin Joseph by Jules Feiffer

With the New York Times bestseller Kill My Mother, legendary cartoonist Jules Feiffer began an epic saga of American noir fiction. With Cousin Joseph, a prequel that introduces us to bare-knuckled Detective Sam Hannigan, head of the Bay City’s Red Squad and patriarch of the Hannigan family featured in Kill My Mother, Feiffer brings us the second instalment in this highly anticipated graphic trilogy.

The story opens in Bay City in 1931 in the midst of the Great Depression. Big Sam sees himself as a righteous, truth-seeking patriot, defending the American way, as his Irish immigrant father would have wanted, against a rising tide of left-wing unionism, strikes, and disruption that plague his home town. At the same time he makes monthly, secret overnight trips on behalf of Cousin Joseph, a mysterious man on the phone he has never laid eyes on, to pay off Hollywood producers to ensure that they will film only upbeat films that idealise a mythic America: no warts, no injustice uncorrected, only happy endings.

But Sam, himself, is not in for a happy ending, as step by step the secret of his unseen mentor’s duplicity is revealed to him.

Fast-moving action, violence, and murder in the noir style of pulps and forties films are melded in the satiric, sociopolitical Feifferian style to dig up the buried fear mongering of the past and expose how closely it matches the headlines, happenings, and violence of today. With Cousin Joseph, Feiffer builds on his late-life conversion to cinematic noir, bowing, as ever, to youthful heroes Will Eisner and Milton Caniff, but ultimately creating a masterpiece that through his unique perspective and comic-strip noir style illuminates the very origins of Hollywood and its role in creating the bipolar nation we’ve become.

It’s available to buy from amazon.co.uk (using this link helps support downthetubes)

Black Dahlia by Rick Geary

In Black Dahlia, Rick Geary turns his attention to a case that still captures the imagination nearly 70 years after it occurred. On 15th January 1947, a woman was walking with her daughter in a Los Angeles neighbourhood. She passed what looked to be a discarded manikin. It turned out to be the body of Elizabeth Short: posed, drained of blood, meticulously scrubbed and cut in two.

From this point, Geary reconstitutes and reveals for us the life of this 22 year old woman who had become known as ‘Black Dahlia’ because of her striking appearance. She had moved to LA to make it in show business. How could her life have ended in such a ghastly fashion? Was it a jealous boyfriend, a rejected suitor or one of LA’s notorious mafia connections whom she had apparently been dabbling with?

The case gets more complex when, days later, a local newspaper receives a cut-out letter from an anonymous ‘Black Dahlia Avenger’ admitting to the crime. More letters follow toying with the LAPD. Eisner Award winner Geary takes us through all the twists and turns in one of the most captivating unsolved mysteries of the 20th century in this latest instalment of his Treasury of XXth Century Murder.

It’s available to buy from amazon.co.uk (using this link helps support downthetubes)

Other comic strip-related nominees include Max Sarin and Liz Fleming (for Giant Days), Gabriel Rodriguez (for Locke and Key) and Stan Sakai (for Usagi Yojimbo) in the Comic Books division;  Meredith Gran (for Octopus Pie), Kathleen Jacques (for Band by Band) and Ngozi Uzaku (for One Check Please) in the Online Comics – Long Form division; and Sarah Anderson (for Sarah’s Scribbles), Ruben Bolling (for Donald and John) and Dave Kellett (for Sheldon) in the Online Comics – Short Form division.

Also nominated were newspaper strip artists Brian Crane (for Pickles), Steve Kelley and Jeff Parker (for Dustin) and Terri Libenson (for Pajama Diaries).

 

The full list of Reuben Award divisional nominees spanning every sector of cartooning, comics and illustration, can be found on the NCS web site.

A cartoon by Reuben Award nominee Ruben Bolling

A cartoon by Reuben Award nominee Ruben Bolling

Newspaper illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Glen le Lievre

Newspaper illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Glen le Lievre

 

Feature Animation illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Cory Loftis (for Zootopia)

Feature Animation illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Cory Loftis (for Zootopia)

Art for the Atomic Rocket TV series by Advertising illustration work by Reuben Award nominees Steve Lambe and Alan Stewart

Art for the Atomic Rocket TV series by Advertising illustration work by Reuben Award nominees Steve Lambe and Alan Stewart

"NIick and Zulu" by Reuben Award Nominee Nick Galifianakis

“NIick and Zulu” by Reuben Award Nominee Nick Galifianakis

Gag cartoon by Reuben Award nominee Will McPhail

Gag cartoon by Reuben Award nominee Will McPhail

Advertising illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Luke McGarry

Advertising illustration work by Reuben Award nominee Luke McGarry

Greeting car art by Reuben Award nominee Dave Blazek

Greeting car art by Reuben Award nominee Dave Blazek

Band by Band by Rueben Award nominee Kathleen Jacques

Band by Band by Rueben Award nominee Kathleen Jacques

Donald and John by Reuben Award nominee Ruben Bolling

Donald and John by Reuben Award nominee Ruben Bolling

Pickles by Reuben Award nominee Brian Crane

Pickles by Reuben Award nominee Brian Crane

Daydreaming by Mark Tatullli

Daydreaming by Reuben Award nominee Mark Tatullli

The Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year is chosen by a secret ballot of the members of the National Cartoonists Society.

The Reuben Award is considered the highest honour that the profession bestows. As with all the NCS awards, the winner need not be a member of the Society.

Previous winners include Milton Caniff, Alex Raymond, Walt Kelly, Ronald Searle, Charles Schultz, Matt Groening and, last year, Michael Ramirez.

The award was previously called the Billy DeBeck Memorial Award, and the recipient received an engraved silver cigarette box.The Reuben was introduced in 1954 and is named after longtime Honorary President Rube Goldberg. The statue is based on one of Goldberg’s irreverent pieces of sculpture. The eight winners who had received the “Barney,” as the Billy DeBeck Award was dubbed, subsequently received Reuben statuettes and are termed Reuben winners in the Society’s annals.

• The winners will be announced on 27th May 2017 at the annual NCS Reuben Awards dinner in Portland, Oregon. View the nominees here

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



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