Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Much the Miller's Son - A Really Great Comic!

There's a great comic I want to share with everybody that appreciates really good cartooning; it's called "Much the Miller's Son" by Xeric-Award-winning cartoonist Steve LeCouilliard.

In a nutshell, this picaresque romp is a funny re-telling of the Robin Hood story, but seen through the eyes of the little-est of the Merry Men named "Much."

Steve's cartooning style is a gorgeous blend of Sergio Aragones and Hunt Emerson, with skilled and supple brushwork that reminds me of Bill Watterson at his best. I don't know if these guys were Steve's art heroes, but it's the best way for me to explain what I like about his artwork.

His characters are lively and funny, his compositions are full of depth and great staging -- and his occasional use of color is a joy to look at. This guy knows what he's doing!

Of course, you can just see for yourself with these images, or better -- at the Much the Miller's Son website: http://www.muchthecomic.com/

One of the things I love about reading this strip is that each single-page episode has a beginning, middle and end. Like a well-crafted Sunday adventure strip from the golden age of newspaper comics (or fantastic European Bande Dessinées like Asterix, Spirou & Fantasio and Tintin), Steve LeCouilliard is able to build a strong narrative over time, and still keep each and every episode entertaining in its own right.

I was lucky enough to get a copy of the book-version of these comics when I met Steve at last fall's CTN-X Animation Expo. See, Steve is also a storyboard artist, and that was how we made the connection. Anyway, the books are a great choice if you (like me) prefer to read comics on paper instead of onscreen. There's even a new "Much the Miller's Son" collection coming out very soon!

You can read this wonderful comic from the very beginning at http://stevelec.vip.warped.com/comics-frame.html

Newest Episodes here: http://www.muchthecomic.com/

A great place to start is here: http://www.muchthecomic.com/1/

It's the beginning of Book 2, but it starts with a beautiful color section and includes a handy recap.

If you start at Book 2 you can jump right in where the comic really hits its stride.

Keep your eye out for that new book collection! I've already ordered mine!

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