Michael DeForge is the rare award winning alternative comics creator who’s also found sales success. Since the publication of Lose #1 in 2009 with Koyama Press, the designer for Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time has gone on to win multiple Ignatz and Doug Wright awards, while repeatedly breaking into the New York Times best seller lists.
His next work, Dressing—from which the complete story “Christmas Dinner” is excerpted beow—is a collection of short stories, curated from his prolific portfolio of mini comics, webcomics, and both anthology and zine contributions. It is a spiritual successor to the award-winning collection Very Casual (Koyama, 2013) as a multi-faceted trip through DeForge, work, which is as disturbing as it is prolific.
What stands out about DeForge’s work is its ability to connect with the reader on a very visceral, instinctive level. His commentary, often quite subtle, on the human condition—told through the frantic activities of deer, ants, misshapen rock stars, lonely teens, hypochondriacs, and a menagerie of other sympathetic grotesques—provoke and soothe in equal measure. In “Christmas Dinner,” we’re presented with an imaginary world of tiny gremlins who act out the adolescent aggression of high school students while literally standing on a Christmas dinner—words and pictures present opposite worlds, and create a fine tension.
Frequently compared to Chris Ware, Dan Clowes, Charles Burns and Marc Bell, DeForge continues to make his own path.
Dressing (9781927668221) is published on September 15th from Koyama Press.