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Great comic anthology: Flight #2

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The anthology Flight #2, from Image Comics, is bigger than #1 in many ways. #1 had 22 stories in 208 pages for $19.95; #2 has 33 in 432 pages for $24.95. Many pages are blank where a story ended on a left-hand page, but it's still an even better bargain. I recommend it as highly as anything I've seen this year.

Despite the title, the majority of stories in #2 are not significantly flight-related, but big deal; the quality is even higher. And the proportion of furry stories strikes me as about the same. Only one story is continued from #1, not one of the dozen or so I wish had been continued. Some specifics:...

'Inner Sanctum' by Michael Gagné (creator of Insanely Twisted Rabbits and other strange books): A little nonanthro fox sees a flying saucer land and turn into a pretty flying fox, and frightening and wondrous things ensue. Beautiful. The whole thing is online at http://www.graphicnovelreview.com/issue4/flightvol2.php but not as pretty as the dead-tree version.

'Solomon Fix' by Doug TenNapel (creator of Earthworm Jim): a nice but somewhat odd cat fellow has a tea party for his friends. A party-crashing bear is handled well, but his cousin Donkey (who thinks he's a donkey since one kicked him in the head) comes and disturbs things.

'The Robot and the Sparrow' by Jake Parker (Missile Mouse, Batgirl, animation, etc.): a cute little robot is thrown away, makes friends with a sparrow, tries to learn from it how to dream. Very pretty, could be the start of a longer all-ages work.

'Laika' by Doug Holgate (http://www.f1-comics.com/): a nonanthro dog is shot off to a strange planet in a rocket and meets at least one inhabitant.

'Ghost Trolley' by Rad Sechrist: what the title says. He did the excellent flying-squirrel story 'Jump' in #1 and this is my favorite non-furry story in #2. I want a whole book of him.

'Impossible' by Herval and Aris: a girl is 'protected' by her toys, notably the anthropomorphic airplane, which get between her and 'unsuitable' guys.

'Blip Pop' by Ryan Sias (storyboarded Robots and early work for Bowling for Columbine, does comics for Nickelodeon magazine): a green girl in a street full of goofy-looking aliens buys 'an exciting new drink that can change your life!' And floats off and plays with critters in the clouds. This story just drips fun.

'Mousetrap' by Johane Matte: cat chases mouse in an Egyptian temple, gets stymied when the mouse takes refuge in a lotus pond, finds a clever solution. Very attractive stylized art. See http://www.popimage.com/content/images/flight/johanne2.jpg for a sample.

'Sirius & Betelgeuse' by Jeff Smith (Bone): cute silliness of two people walking across the galaxy.

'The Flying Bride' by Giuseppe Ferrario (Milanese illustrator and animator): mock-silent-film story in which a boy and his cat, bird, and raccoon friends fly their car into a floating castle and rescue Ada from the wicked Mr. Curlson. Delightful mellerdrama.

'Icarus' by Johane Matte: Icarus test-flies Daedalus's designs, which don't work so well. Hilarious!

And that's just for starters. I haven't said anything about the stories by Jen Wang and Kazu Kibuishi ('Maiden Voyage' in #1, one of the stories I wish we had more of) and Phil Craven (so sad) and Rodolphe Guenoden (gorgeous) and Justin Ridge and Bannister and....There are four or five stories of the 33 that didn't do anything for me, but they weren't bad, just not to my taste. Go and buy this book! I've read of plans to take Image back to its crappy superhero roots with the departure of Jim Valentino, but this shows they're still capable of greatness.

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