“Toyko Days” is a story you might quite justifiably call a “romp.” An ordinary, even dull, American in Tokyo gets tangled up in the schemes of a couple of crazy unnaturally-hair-colored Japanese teen girls to pursue their favorite pop star, who is also, as it happens, a target of the Yakuza. Wackiness ensues.
What makes this story really stand out, though, is the art. I’ve never seen anything quite like it. Hyper-detailed scenes of Japanese streets in cotton-candy tones are grounded (slightly) by the skill with which Fisher (the artist) executes perspective and figure work. Dorky, nose-less people nonetheless have real weight and individuality. You never confuse one character for another although there may be dozens (seemingly) in each panel. It’s just a cornucopia of stuff to look at, and it’s quite clear that Fisher knew well and loved Tokyo (the writer apparently does, too—he lived there a few years). The coloring alone makes this work stand out blazingly from most comics, let alone Vertigo’s output.
What is this “Notable” thing all about? Matt and Jessica are the series editors for the Best American Comics, and are responsible for the Notable Comics list at the back of the book, which is comprised of virtually all the comics we sent to the guest editor that weren’t picked, as well as a number of others that we think are noteworthy for various reasons, but that we didn’t send to the guest editor.
We’ve always hoped readers will delve a bit into the list to find more great stories once they finish reading BAC. Realistically, though, we know that’s tough. What can you know about a story from a title and author? So this is one of a series of posts focusing on each of the Notables from the 2010 Best American Comics.
Have or know of a comic we should look at? Find submission info here.
The “age” suggestion is what we think might be the minimum age for reading and appreciating a work. All works on the list, though, should appeal to older audiences too. It’s a minimum suggestion only.