Grandville Force Majeure original art now on sale

Page 54 of Grandville Force Majeure by Bryan Talbot

Grandville Force Majeure original artwork is now available to buy.



Buy the Heart of Empire Directors Cut

This labour of love from Bryan and myself contains every single page of Heart of Empire in pencil, ink and final full colour format - as well as over 60,000 words of annotation, commentary and explanation from Bryan... - as well as the whole of the Adventures of Luther Arkwright!

Or see the Heart of Empire Directors Cut page for more details.


Join the Facebook group for Bryan Talbot fans for lots of discussions and special offers announced on Facebook first.

 

The Bryan Talbot fanpage is also on Twitter - so give us a follow and join in the conversation!



Also see the Bryan Talbot t-shirt shop! - we've got a vast array of Bryan's images on lots of different t-shirts, as well as other items like mugs and fine art prints: - but if there's anything else you'd like just let us know on Twitter or at the Facebook group.


This is the only place you can buy original Bryan Talbot artwork - except from Bryan in person at a convention.


This is the new version of the Bryan Talbot fanpage
But the whole of the original Bryan Talbot fanpage is still online


Anders Lundgren interviews Bryan Talbot

This interview was originally published on Anders Lundgren's Swedish language comics blog. He sent a translation over here for publication in English, so here's a big public thanks to Anders and: on with the interview!

Anders Lundgren: You are currently on tour promoting the latest instalment in your "Grandville" series. How would you describe the book to people who are yet to pick it up?
Bryan Talbot: A steampunk detective-thriller. I'd say that if someone's looking for a real page-turner with twists and turns and humour and a mad dog serial killer and a sexy badger prostitute, look no further!

AL: In a recent podcast review of "Grandville Mon Amour" I introduced the book as "The Wind in the Willows" for grown-ups. Were you inspired by Kenneth Grahame's book in any way?
BT: Absolutely, along with many other classic stories. In the first book I have a scene with Roderick Ratzi interviewing a mole in his lounge that mirrors the EH Shepard illustration of Ratty and mole having a chat in Mole's home. In the third volume, I have a millionaire based on the selfish, self-important character of toad.

AL: The first book has some of the action set in Rupert the Bear's home village of Nutwood. Any other literary places you feel like visiting in upcoming volumes?
BT: There is a place called Toad Hall in the third book but it's not the same house as in Wind in the Willows.

AL: There are also a number of cameos by comic book characters, doughfaces and animals alike, in the books. What sort of reactions have these received so far? Plans for upcoming "guests"?
BT: The inclusion of Snowy Milou - Tintin's dog - in Grandville was commented on (not adversely) in lots of reviews, especially those of the French edition. Several people have told me they were moved by the character. I think it says a lot about their love for Snowy, as his scene only lasts a page and a half! I have a character based on Nestor the butler in the third book and, in the fourth, characters based on Asterix, Obelisk and Lucky Luke!

AL: I read in an interview that you got the title from French illustrator Jean Ignace Isidore Gerard, who used the nom de plume JJ Grandville. For those curious about this artist, what books/publications can you recommend?
BT: I only have one: "Bizarreries and Fantasies of Grandville", published in 1974 by Dover Books but I heard that they published a new book on Grandville, synchronistically the same month that my Grandville was published.

AL: Grandville was, among other things, famous for heckling royalty and elected officials in publications like "Le Charivari" during the early 1830s. What can you tell us of the satirical streak that runs as an undercurrent beneath all the action and adventure in your "Grandville" books?
BT: I think that it makes the story richer and more multilayered putting in a satirical or philosophical subtext, the first book containing parallels with 9/11 and an an implicit criticism of the way that the American and British governments lied to their own people about Saddam Hussain's supposed weapons of mass destruction. In the second book the subtext concerns the dehumanising effect that terrorism has on its perpetrators and the lasting after effects of their actions.

AL: What do you think of the other unfunny animal comics on the stands today like "Blacksad", "Mouse Guard" and "Hip Flask"?
BT: Blacksad is brilliant, the artwork absolutely stunning. There's a fantastic sense of place in the film noir 1950s setting. I've not read any of the recent Hip Flask comics but some of the artwork I've seen by Ladron is equally great. Mouse Guard is also beautifully drawn but, on the whole, I'm not a huge fan of long fantasy sagas. It's like the Lord of the Rings with mice. I preferred BONE.

AL: Moving on to some of your earlier work, currently the most sumptuous edition of your classic "The Adventures of Luther Arkwright" is only available (unless it's sold out by now) in Czech. This book obviously deserves the Deluxe Edition treatment and wider circulation. Any such plans from Dark Horse?
BT: They've talked about doing an "ultimate edition" but, so far, nothing definite. The Greek edition is also a deluxe production, using the new Czech files but it's A3 size, the same size as the original artwork. It isn't just a coffee table book - with four legs it would be a coffee table!

AL: You once wrote one of the weirder additions to the "Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight" series with your "Mask" story in issues 39 & 40. Have you checked out what Grant Morrison has done with the character in recent years?
BT: No, though I heard it was good. I did eventually check out a couple of his All Star Superman stories, after hearing good things about them. Frank Quietly's artwork is terrific of course but, although I found the stories mildly interesting, I didn't want to keep them to read again. I'll read any genre if the story is brilliant but I'm not really a superhero fan.

(SPOILERALERT!)

AL: A few years ago you released the book "Metronome" under the pen name of Veronique Tanaka, a French-Japanese artist. What sort of reactions did this work receive before and after your subterfuge was brought to light?
BT: It got two or three reviews, all of which were extremely positive. It was even in New York Magazine's best ten graphic novels of 2008, but it didn't sell well. That's why I "came out" to see if my name would help it sell more copies. The thing is, it had zero publicity apart from the reviews so no one's heard of it. The same thing happened with my prose book, The Naked Artist, and Cherubs, written by me and drawn by the brilliant cartoonist Mark Stafford. Both from small publishers. No publicity. Metronome was an experimental graphic novel and part of that experiment was putting it out under a nom de plume. I've no idea what the reaction was when people discovered that it was by me. None, I suspect, as they'd probably never have heard of Veronique Tanaka anyway.

AL: You got a Ph.D. for your monumental book "Alice In Sunderland". Apart from the honour what have been the ongoing effects of this recognition?
BT: I bought myself a sonic screwdriver. Seriously, I do seem to have more respect now from academic and literary people. I actually did buy a sonic screwdriver.

AL: In closing what can you tell us about the next chapter in the "Grandville" saga and other upcoming projects?
BT: Currently I'm drawing a graphic novel created and written by my wife, Dr Mary M Talbot but I've scripted the third and plotted the fourth and fifth Grandville albums. I even have ideas for more. The third will bring out the science fiction side of the setting and will feature an attempted coup d'etat, the fourth is set at Christmas (the stories are all spaced a month apart) and is a religious conspiracy thriller and the fifth has LeBrock fighting against both the police and a gangster mob. They're all designed to be stand-alone page turners but there's definitely a strong story arc over these next three. We'll find out more about Billie and Chief Inspector Rocher - and the doughfaces!