Hey! There’s rats on your shelf! Oh wait that’s also Matt Furie’s shelves, groaning with the weight of some of the best books ever made. Most of these books you probably wouldn’t even know existed before! And the best bit is that with each odd, rare publication comes a brief, yet candid explanation of why Matt likes each one. To know that the creatures he creates are spawned out of this kind of library is at once comforting, and hilarious. Thanks, Matt! And nice rats btw.
Dungeons and Torture
This is what seems to be a floppy kids’ book detailing a basic history of humans torturing humans. It’s no wonder people were ruled and enslaved when the fear of being impaled, gutted or burned to death loomed near.
Ghana Movie Posters
My friend Alvin gave me this book that has a collection of hand-painted movie posters from Ghana. The proportions of the people are weird and the scenes illustrated are often violent or sexual, or both. There are a lot of mutants, decapitated heads in pools of blood and also some scary voodoo shit. It’s actually really funny!
This Is Weird
I had this book as a kid and I used it as a starting point for my own children’s book. It’s a simple story of three kids that go to a weird island and through a ghost town and eventually encounter a ghost. It reminded me of something that I would enjoy drawing as a kid. Castles, snakes, dungeons, spiders, that kind of stuff.
My friend Ray from Hamburgereyes put this out quickly after the San Francisco Giants won the Baseball World Series in 2010. The Mission District, where I lived at the time, got really crazy until eventually people were burning stuff in the middle of the street, jumping on top of buses while passengers were still inside, graffitied all of the buses, and eventually a car almost ran someone over and the mob dragged a guy out of his car and beat him up until riot police showed up. Good times!
My collection of Ben Jones/ Paperrad zines
Ben Jones/Paperrad changed the way I looked at art and comics and informed a lot of my current artistic vocabulary. The way he made comics was very loose and personal and I found them to be really fun to read and relatable. Really funny comics covering a range of topics including lesbians, veganism, having a cool attitude, nuclear war, getting high and traveling.