Saturday, April 12, 2008

The Adventures of Sock Monkey-- Tony Millionaire

How does one describe Tony Millionaire's work? Is it salty like a sailor? is it about drunken toys like Uncle Gabby The Sock Monkey, or Drinky Crow, a sawdust stuffed crow made out of an old pea coat with button eyes. Tony Millionaire is one of my favorite cartoonists. His cartoons seem to escape the panels. He varies the size of his panels and sometimes lets the word slip out of the balloons.

I am not a cartoonist, but I like the elegant black and white ink drawings he uses. They are often quite detailed. I also like the setting of his cartoons; a kind of child's 19th century dreamland populated by irreverent old fashioned children's toys. These toys are boisterous, violent, destructive, vivid and drunken. They are always fighting with mice, birds, bats, alligators, and other small animals.

In The Adventures of Sock Monkey, the places where the stories occur are interesting; aboard old sailing ships and victorian houses. Much of the time the ships or houses end up getting burned down.

Thre are some very interesting moments in the panels. I like when Uncle Gabby the Sock Monkey is talking to the shrunken head from Borneo and I also like when Drinky Crow sings O' Whisky Made The Bosun Call. I also like that when grownups are drawn in the panels, the sock monkey and crow turn into ordinary toys.

The Adventures of Sock Monkey won the Eisner Award for best comic. This graphic novel is a graphic novel which I can read again and again. Despite the toys, this is not a comic for small children. Tony Millionaire has a separate site for his Maakies comic strip.

I read this as part of the Graphic Novels challenge. It is the first graphic novel which I read as my promise to read six graphic novels this year.

1 comment:

ShaneShock said...

A librarian that loves science fiction and fantasy? That makes you a valuable person to know in my book (no pun intended). I hope when my book hits the shelves you give it a read, and then come over and give a word or two about it. Have a goodn’.