I’m back from the comic shop this week and I got three new comic plus a hard cover collection:

  • Echo – 19
  • Buffy Season 8 – 32
  • Savage Dragon – 157
  • “The Unclothed Man in the 35th Century” by Dash Shaw
  • And now for a review of something I’ve read recently.

  • “The Stuff of Dreams” Issues 1-3 by Kim Deitch
  • I think this is the first thing by Deitch I’ve ever purchased despite the fact that he’s been making comics since the 1960’s. I’m not sure how I managed not to read his work. I bought this series as it was released. One issue a year from 2003 to 2005. This is the first time I’ve read it all together.

    I’m a sucker for stories that are about finding things. Not quests for lost swords and such but stories about people looking for old books, maps, drawings, or whatever. Stories that involve history and the history of obscure and forgotten people and things. The idea that so much of even the recent past is forgotten fascinates me.

    This story purports to be real since it is an autobiographical account of Deitch searching flea markets and Ebay for an old stuffed animal from the 1910’s but then it takes a turn or two into the fantastic. Each issue deals with a different search that starts with the stuffed animal in the first moves to a forgotten actor in the second and finally to a now abandoned town for little people in the third. All the searches are interconnected by a mysterious mythical stuffed animal like cat creature.

    I enjoyed the story though I found it dry at times.That’s probably because there was a thirteen page sequence at the end of issue two that was told as illustrated text rather than comics and repeated a lot of what we were already told at the beginning of the issue. That may be the only part I really found dry.

    Deitch’s artwork is, of course, reminiscent of 1960’s underground comics because that’s where he come out of. I like his relentless storytelling as he tells us about all the forgotten things he’s learned in his investigation into events that happened in and around a New Jersey town back in 1915 when a movie serial and comic strip tie in were creating (or reflecting) a scandal. It also has some fantastic, unbelievable things happening on a south seas island in about the same time period. It’s a wide ranging story.

    So what if a 60’s underground cartoonist was still around making comics in the 2000’s about the far out tales that a search into the forgotten past can reveal? Track down “The Stuff of Dreams” and find out. It has a collected volume.