Friday, December 02, 2016

Reader's Diary #1420- Jennifer Grunwald (editor): Strange Tales

In case you can't tell, that's the Incredible Hulk on the cover. Barely recognize him? That's because this Marvel compilation more than lives up to its name. Definitely not canon, these Strange Tales are written and illustrated by indie, avant-garde, and online comics artists. The results are eccentric and varied as those behind it. The only common thread is that they are written around Marvel superheroes.

I didn't recognize anyone beyond Paul Pope, Matt Kindt, and Jeffrey Brown, but I was happy to get the introduction to so many other fine talents. Fortunately, brief creator biographies are provided at the end, so I can follow up with those that jumped out.

And the ones that jumped out the most did so because of either their quirky sense of humour and/or their art. James Kochalka's Hulk comics may not have had the most complex art, but they were hilariously silly and the art fit. Nicholas Gurewitch's art on the other hand was far more technical and serious, but this gave weight to the surprise ending/punchlines.

Of course, in such a collection there were bound to be some that I wouldn't enjoy, some whose brand of humour I didn't get, some art that just wasn't my thing, but overall I found it to be a wildly creative package and give huge kudos to Marvel to supporting those that think outside the box.

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