ComicsBook - 2004
Famed as one of the great innovators in comics history, Krigstein was oneof the first cartoonists to consciously experiment with pacing and layout forpsychological effect. This impressive coffee-table book follows his developmentfrom his heavy-handed crime and romance comics of the late 1940s to hisexpressionist masterpieces for EC Comics a few years later. Employing a varietyof artistic styles and inking techniques, Krigstein emerges as a restlesstrendsetter, moving from a loose, sketchy style to a dense horror technique,depending on the story. Unfortunately, the reprinted comics stories also showhow Krigstein was handcuffed by the period's trite themes and "shock" endings.Many of the stories are so hackneyed they're barely readable today, and wheneditor Sadowski mentions that a story about a pirate with an ape for a sidekickwas a Krigstein favorite, one can only wonder why. However, at EC, Krigsteinfound writers similarly dedicated to pushing artistic boundaries, and thesecollaborations are the book's finest: "Key Chain," in which a crime in akey-making shop leads to madness, or "In the Bag," a gruesome story of a copfollowing a suspicious character whom Krigstein elevates to art with his moodystorytelling and withering ability to capture human weakness with a few lines.The quality is heightened by Marie Severin's masterful recolorings throughout.
Publisher: Seattle, Wash. : Fantagraphics, 2004.
Branch Call Number: 741.5973 K92
Characteristics: 230 p. : col. ill. ; 31 cm.