cover image Amor y Cohetes

Amor y Cohetes

Gilbert Hernandez, Jaime Hernandez, Mario Hernandez, . . Fantagraphics, $16.99 (283pp) ISBN 978-1-56097-926-5

This collection of the first run of Love & Rockets comes to a fitting conclusion with this swoon-worthy B sides and rarities compilation of all Los Bros Hernandez's non-Palomar, non–Maggie and Hopey stories. Most in keeping with those more familiar story lines is the wonderful “Rocky and Fumble,” about a rebellious, statuesque teenage girl who explores outer space with her adorable little robot pal, where Jaime mines his particular mix of romantic hijinks in fantastic settings. Gilbert's pocket-sized bio-comic of Frida Kahlo may be one of his most well-known works, but it's still a welcome addition. The less-published third brother, Mario, also pops up, with his pulp fiction “Somewhere in California” pieces, which are engaging enough, but lack the punch of Gilbert and Jaime's material. There is plenty to keep the Love and Rockets completist amused, like the stand-alone “Mojado Power!” a story about a couple of migrant workers' night out that features brief cameos from Maggie and Speedy. One of the highlights of Amor y Cohetes is Gilbert's daffy Bem series, an early sci-fi effort that reads like a comic blender of a dozen low-budget '50s B movies. A sublimely satisfying finish to one of the great American comics. (July)