“I don’t think of myself as a do-gooder cartoonist”
On this episode of The Comics Alternative Interviews, Derek and Andy are honored to have as their guest one of their all-time comics heroes, Gilbert Hernandez. They begin the conversation by asking Gilbert about his two new books, Bumperhead(Drawn and Quarterly) and Loverboys (Dark Horse), and then discuss with him his work on Love and Rockets, his Fritz b-movie books, and the sheer volume of his recent output. Much of the conversation, at least in terms of Bumperhead, centers on the more autobiographical side of Gilbert’s recent comics, presented most notably in last year’s Marble Season. And given their focus on the artist’s own life, of course they discuss 1970s rock — “the Eagles suck” — the role of punk, and impulsive teenage hormones. The Two Guys are also curious about the place of Loverboy in Gilbert’s body of work, asking him if it is a de facto Fritz story — the character, Mrs. Paz, bears the most distinguishing Luba family trait — and even a return, of sorts, to the world he created with his Palomar comics. Along the way, they discuss Gilbert’s more experimental side (for which he won a 2014 Eisner Award), his penchant for being graphically explicit in terms of sex and violence — “I don’t think of myself as a do-gooder cartoonist. I’m not trying to carry the flag of do-gooderness” — and, of course, his work with his brothers, Jaime and Mario, on the legendary Love and Rockets series. In fact, during their conversation, Gilbert reveals big news about the future Love and Rockets, something that he hasn’t even yet discussed with Fantagraphics, giving The Comics Alternative a scoop that both excites them and catches them completely by surprise. You have to listen to the interview to find out what it is!
Be sure to order your copies of Gilbert’s new books, and begin building your Beto library: