Good Comics Out April 25: Sailing, Sailing, With Popeye and Teen Boat

Thank goodness it’s a light week, since I have plenty of shopping to do coming up at MoCCA this weekend.

My two book recommendations are at very different ends of the graphic novel spectrum. I haven’t seen Guy Delisle’s newest travelogue, Jerusalem: Chronicles from the Holy City (Drawn & Quarterly, $24.95), yet, but I’m sure it will be in keeping with his earlier volumes, such as Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea. However, unlike his other books, this one is about a city that others may already know more about, or at least have their own perceptions. I’m curious to see how this one is received. The publisher has posted a preview.

From meaningful and insightful to silly fun. Teen Boat! (Clarion Books, $14.99) by Dave Roman and John Green has the tagline “the ANGST of being a teen, the THRILL of being a boat!” That may seem to sum it up, but with this crazy character, a boy who turns into a smallish yacht, Roman and Green tell classic school stories: being used by the popular kid throwing a party, detention, class trip abroad, first kiss, running for class president, learning to drive. It’s like every teen movie wrapped up in one colorful, kid-friendly set of gags. There’s also a Scooby-Doo-like segment when Teen Boat (the actual character’s name) tries to get a job but winds up defeating a gang of monster-truck-driving boat smugglers. I suspect young readers will find this collection imaginatively inspiring and enjoyably goofy.

Popeye #1 cover

Also out this week is Oni Press’ Play Ball, which I’ve already reviewed. That’s another teen-friendly title.

There’s a debut comic issue you want to be sure you check out this week. IDW launches a four-issue Popeye ($3.99) series written by the talented Roger Langridge and illustrated by Bruce Ozella. I’ve had the pleasure of reading it already, and it was great fun, faithful to what I know of the original but thoroughly fresh. Castor Oyl decides to find another Jeep so he can breed Eugene, which leads a bunch of the cast to an island excursion. And Olive gets to show some gumption.

The creators clearly know their material, with Popeye saying, for example, “D’ja think I’m a cowboy?” the first time we see him, just as he did in his first appearance. It’s impressive that each page is structured as a scene, rather like reading the old Sunday pages. You can see here, on the first page, how faithful the style is. All the favorite characters are here, and it’s a wonderful comedy adventure read with terrific action art.

I’m also looking forward to how The Twelve wraps up (Marvel Comics, $2.99). The penultimate issue was satisfying, and I’m glad we finally get the finale.

9 Responses to “Good Comics Out April 25: Sailing, Sailing, With Popeye and Teen Boat”

  1. James Schee Says:

    How many pages is the Popeye comic going to be? I know IDW always has a high price point, and I like the talent, but am curious about price to page count.

  2. Johanna Says:

    It’s 22 story pages, plus 4 pages of ads for Craig Yoe books.

  3. caleb Says:

    James, I think it’s worth mentioning that every page of the book has around 7-9 panels in it too, so although it is at the $4/22 price point I never, ever buy, compared to most modern single issues, it “reads” much longer than it actually is, if that makes any sense at all.

  4. Johanna Says:

    Excellent point. The pages are very full, it’s true.

  5. James Schee Says:

    Yeah, I’ll probably go ahead and but it as I like the talent and Popeye a lot.

    Speaking of price, I think you might want to check your price for The Twelve #12. Since I hope Marvel isn’t charging $12.99 for a single issue.:)

  6. Mikester Says:

    Having just read the new Popeye comic myself, I can definitely say you get your money’s worth. No padding for the eventual trade here!

  7. Johanna Says:

    Thanks, James, I updated it. I think I got confused with the title.

  8. TCAF Teen Boat Comic Features Wonderful Cameos » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] Art Festival, John Green and Dave Roman created a short original story featuring their character Teen Boat! (whose graphic novel debuts at the show). The final panel delighted me, since it was full of […]

  9. My Trip to MoCCA Fest 2012 » Comics Worth Reading Says:

    […] didn’t have a table, but I bumped into him setting up for a sketch session. They are debuting Teen Boat with a release party on a real boat! Ok, it’s a stationery barge, but on Friday, May 11, the […]




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