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A COMICA REVIEW BY:

MIKE LEADER


Mike Leader attended the 2008 Comica Comiket event. The following review appeared on his blog Wild Tyme.

Yesterday I shuffled down to the ICA to check out the ‘Comiket’ (I only realised afterwards that it was a portmanteau of Comic and Market) put on as part of the Comics mini-festival.

It was packed to bursting with enthusiastic, earnest artists hustling their work. I was painfully aware of my lack of funds, so decided to take a lot of cards, flyers and online details in place of proper financial support. I’d given myself the budget of ‘the change in my pocket’ (~ £4), and was a little dismayed that it wouldn’t take me too far.

Nevertheless, I managed to have a chat with some of the artists, and compiled a huge list of small press comics to check out in the future. I also met up with Dom from London Loves Comics, and we proceeded to talk about comic-y things in the bar. It was good to have a drink with a like-minded chap, and helped tone down the overwhelmingness of the situation.

In the end, I ferreted out some bargains, mostly old issues or modest collections, and left with 4 comics.

I will probably write more on them in the next few days, but here’s a quick run-down of what I bought.

- A Music Paper, by Alastair Maceachern (‘AM’). A collection of strips based around music fanzines, indie subcultures and amateur journalism.

- I Was a Teenage Bookbinder #2, by Alicia Pang. A short collection of observations about London.

- Morgenmuffel no.16, by Isy. A politically-charged zine that features cartoons and rants.

- Paper Tiger Comix #1. A pretty huge collection of varied comics by various people.

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Reviews

"...a major new international festival devoted to sequential narratives."
Flux

"....plenty of food for thought in terms of fresh reading material ideas..."
Euan Gillespie

"With Comica, the ICA is doing what it does best: reaching out to culture's fringe."
Kulture Flash

"...the viewer's efforts were amply rewarded by the superb quality of nearly every comic in the exhibit."
Alison Frank

"...some of the UK's sharpest cartoonists gathered at the ICA in London for a unique test of creativity and endurance: a 24-hour comic marathon, during which each artist was challenged to create a spontaneous 24-page story."
The New Statesman

"I was about to fall off my chair from overstimulation."
Sarah McIntyre

"...fascinating..."
Redrawn

"...a comprehensive, varied and exciting season that demonstrated the reach and diversity of the art form."
The Comics Journal

"I went in a casual fan, and came out an undisputed Kirbyphile."
Comic Book Resources

"...far and away the best place to find a serious and eclectic showcase of world comics fare."
The First Post