Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Meet Matt Emery...if you dare!

I've known expat New Zealand cartoonist Matt Emery since July 2010, when we first met after I delivered a presentation on horror comics censorship in Australia at the Wheeler Centre in Melbourne, and we've  kept up an intermittent email correspondence on all things concerning antipodean comics ever since. Yet believe it or not, in all this time, I've never actually mentioned Matt's stellar career as both a cartoonist and dedicated comics historian-researcher on this blog, which is bloody disgraceful on my part, as he happens to be pretty damn good at both of these endceavours. So, let me correct this dreadful oversight and tell you a bit more about Mr. Emery and his world.

Matt Emery is the "deranged genius" - and I mean that in the nicest possible way - responsible for Guzumo Comics, truly one of the funniest, and most disturbing comic strips I've yet seen, on screen or in print. It's an unsettling comic-strip universe that evokes memories of Matt Cannon's Red Meat and Matt Groenig's Life in Hell, but with a distinctly dry - and disturbingly surreal - Kiwi sensibility. You can buy The Guzumo Show paperback collection from Black House Comics, or check out Matt's online archive of Guzumo strips. You will laugh. You will cry. And then you will want to lock your front door. Trust me.

When he's not causing ripples of creeping dread amongst the unsuspecting reading public, Matt Emery is fast becoming the Indiana Jones of the Australasian comics scene, busily unearthing fascinating archaeological factoids about Australasian comics and their creators, and sharing his discoveries on his Pikitia Press blog. Oh, and did I mention that he's using this DIY publishing imprint to restore some long-lost Australian comic classics - such as Peter Foster's 1980s graphic novel version of For the Term of His Natural Life? In short, Matt is a one-man comics publishing empire and intrepid comics scholar, whose work you should peruse at your earliest convenience ("Hey, Matt, you can just leave the brown paper bag stuffed with cash on my doorstep, now...")

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