Posts from 30th October 2008

Oct 08

Zot! 1987-1991 by Scott McCloud

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 251 views

I mentioned this in one entry in my Beginner’s Guide series, and rereading it now in this big collection, I think I may have undersold it a little. This volume collects all McCloud’s B&W Zot!s: it therefore omits the first 10 colour issues, a two-parter with a guest artist (to give McCloud time for his honeymoon), and some very funny stick-figure addenda strips by Matt Feazel. It started as a charming superhero adventure series, one that felt more like Astro Boy than any US series. Zot is the top superhero on an alternate-Earth, a utopian pick-and-mix blend of the history of SF. Zot flies with jet boots and has a ray gun, but his greatest assets are his unshakeable confidence and total optimism. It’s smart and bright, with the best use of speed-lines since Infantino’s heyday, and has some terrific villains – 9-Jack-9 in particular is magnificent, looking like no one else ever, unbeatable and very sinister. McCloud has demonstrated his deep formal understanding of comics in a series of book-length comic analyses since then, so it’s unsurprising how beautifully executed, despite the odd moment of clumsiness in some of the draughtsmanship. These are some of the most delightful and entertaining comics you’ll find this side of Osamu Tezuka*.