For reasons unknown—but probably just for the good of society—Kyle Baker (Deadpool, Plasic Man) has put most of his creator-owned body of work online for FREE including early classics, THE COWBOY WALLY SHOW and WHY I HATE SATURN, and later works I Die at Midnight, King David, The Bakers, Special Forces, Nat Turner and more. This is a treasure trove of reading (although some of the scans are a bit small—but who cares: it’s free.)
Wally and Why I Hate Saturn were among the first standalone graphic novels of the post-Maus era and remain as biting and hilarious as when they were written. Cowboy Wally is a behind-the-music look at a kids entertainer, from his early years to his production of Hamlet behind bars. It’s also one of the funniest comics of al times. Saturn is just as funny, a social satire about dating in the 90s that exists in a world long gone by—a long ago place where sexting and OK Cupid didn’t exist—but still hilarious.
Consider these two must reads—both for content and the influence they had on the emerging graphic novel genre—but don’t miss the rest either:
YOU ARE HERE—a man with the perfect life has to figure out how to tell his fiancee about his secret past as a criminal.
I DIE AT MIDNIGHT—a mad who has taken poison has to find the antidote before midnight in this Y2K thriller.
SPECIAL FORCES—savage satire about the our wars in the Middle East as the Army employs special needs troops.
NAT TURNER—the history of the rebel slave
KING DAVID—a retelling of the biblical tale
THE BAKERS—family humor
HOW TO DRAW STUPID —drawing tips for the intelligent
There’s much more at Baker’s website if you poke around.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.