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Liquid City Volume 2 OGN Paperback – October 12, 2010
This month's Book With Buzz: "Little Fires Everywhere" by Celeste Ng
From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture - perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. See more
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Liquid City 1 was great, and Liquid City 2 doesn't disappoint either; in this one, though, I noticed that they really work the "city" theme, often to an extreme (come to think of it, so did the other one to an extent...). It starts out right away without a foreword, and jumps straight into "Signs", by Miel, which tells the tale of a young hitman in what looks like woodblock print art, highly stylised and wordless in yellow and black. Very nice indeed. And, after a while, you understand why it's called "Signs". "Worn", by Charlene Chua and Wayne Santos, is an amazing tale of the masks that people wear, as it weaves a tale of fake corporate life. "City" by Zeropointfive is a cool old wusha tale of pirate raiders who murder their way into a fabled city of riches... just to get their just desserts. "Paper City" by Dave Chua & Koh Hong Teng, is a tale of old Singapore, exploring the funeral workers who create paper mansions, boats, mistresses, cars to be burned for the recently departed at funerals. "Red Balloon" by Vic-Mon is a metaphorical/metaphysical tale of a girl who gets her wish... but does she? "Chinky and the Yuan" by Adrian Ngin is about nasty school bullies, done in a stylised children's storybook crayon illustrative way. Nice. "BICOF Story" by Nguyen Thanh Phong, is a visual diary where the comic book illustrator describes a trip to the 12th Bucheon International Comics Festival, inspiring. "The Hunt for Mas Selamat" by Sonny Liew is less about the actual hunt for the notorious terrorist leader who escaped from jail in Singapore and remained at large for over a year, but about events in the lives of certain Singaporeans during that strange time. The art style is very interesting, and varies from section to section, showing what a genius Liew really is. "Missing" by AKS is a creepy tale of a big-eyed girl and her big-eyed dog squatting in an abandoned city block that is... haunted! "Salvage" by Ivan Song is the beautifully-drawn tale of a young diver-for-hire who helps retrieve objects from a village that was flooded by the creation of a dam. "Flooded House, Flying House" by Shari Chankhamma is a bizarre futuristic tale of a mother in a flooded house who has high aspirations for her daughter. "Memory" by Drewscape is a bizarre Blade Runner-like tale of a woman who wants to forget... with a twist at the ending. "The Way Back" by Lefty is about a future city that is rationing water, and the magic realism that takes over one of its finest. Great comic book art in (mostly) black and white. "Urban Myth" by Seiji is a freaky weird Gollum-ish story in a modern city and its sewers. Stylish and dark. "Night at the Stadium" by Lat is a great tale of a football match by the great Malaysian artist. "Orang Minyak" by JC Wong is a magical superhero/super villain tale of the elements. Highly kinetic, a near-masterpiece of layout and design, albeit somewhat busy. Great colours too! "Delays" by Troy Chin is a very human tale of a young man who's under unimaginable pressure from every side of his life. How does he cope? "Invasion" by Kenneth Loh is a freaky tale of superheroes, very nice. "The Box" by Chin Yew is a simply-drawn, efficient surrealistic-emotional tale of a man and his box in the desert. "Jorurney to East Java" by Sheila Rooswitha Putri is a cool illustrated travel diary of a journey to East Java. Great details, very nice illustration. "Win Some Loose Some" by Don & Katherine Low is a boxing tale and a dentist's tale all rolled into one. Nice. The selection closes with "The Adventures of a Robbit" by Christiyani Kabul, a silly little thing about a weird rabbit robot and his brain. Sort of a surrealistic cute Japanese talking animal tale.
The book also has great "history of comic books" sections spread throughout the book, describing how comic book creation developed in various countries around Asia. One is on Cambodia, one is on Indonesia, and one is on the Philippines. The first two are relatively comprehensive and fleshed out, whereas the last one on the Philippines only covers recent events, namely a flood that impacted a whole community of comic book artists, and how they persevered.