Flight: Volume One

Consider my surprise on finding all volumes of the Flight series one evening at a branch of the Singapore Public Library! Flight is an anthology of comic works by creative young artists that is edited by Kazu Kibuishi. He is famous for his Copper series which I am familiar with. Published in 2004, Flight: Volume One brings together 22 creations from young independent artists, some of them brilliant in their vision and artwork, all loosely based on the theme of flight.

A couple of works which I loved in this volume are by Kazu Kibuishi and Neil Babra. Copper: The Maiden Voyage is by Kazu himself, filled with his trademark characters Copper and his talking dog Fred. Living in their dream world, which will seem surprisingly familiar to anyone who had a childhood, they build their first plane and attempt flight. Taj Mahal by Neil Babra attempts a different take on the flight theme. The protagonist is an Indian who returns home from America and we see a different India through his prism.

Flight: Volume One was a good enough compilation of comics that I am now interested to read the rest of the series! 🙂

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Tintin In The Congo

Tintin In The Congo is the second book in the original Tintin series. Tintin and Snowy set off on an adventure to the (then) Belgian colony of Congo in Africa. They travel by ship and in Congo take the help of a African boy named Coco. Many times in their adventures and hunts in the bush, they are harmed by a thief. Later, they find out that he was sent to kill him, so that his boss (Chicago mafia) can profit from the diamond business in Congo.

Not much of the sophistication of the later Tintin comics is seen in this one. The drawings are in black-n-white. Tintin and Snowy have started to look much like their later selves. The book is filled with characters and names stereotypical of the colonial times and slave trading. It might come off as racist today, but one should remember the time that this book was created. Tintin In The Congo is only for the diehard Tintin fan.

Tintin In The Land Of The Soviets

Yours truly is a big Tintin fan. However, I had not read 2 rare issues – Tintin In The Land Of The Soviets and Tintin In The Congo. Tintin In The Land Of The Soviets is the first Tintin comic. Compared to the extremely refined art in the later Tintin comics, the art here is amateurish and in black-n-white. The story (I guess) is aimed at children, since it is full of gags and not serious. Tintin, the Belgian reporter sets off to Russia to see the how the Communist regime is doing. The Soviet secret police try to kill him many times, but he escapes all the attempts. He discovers that the Russians are actually dying of hunger, while the Russian propaganda just shows off that they are doing well to the outside world. Not much of an adventure there! Tintin looks a bit fat and grubby, Snowy talks and its all funny! Not to be missed for the nostalgic value.

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