Isn't It a Bit Early for the Best Comics of the Year?
Although it's theoretically not released for another couple of weeks, The Best American Comics 2006, edited by Harvey Pekar, has been making the rounds, and I saw a copy for sale today. As pretty much everybody's expected, it's a nice-looking book with some great comics. Crumb, Jaime Hernandez, Chris Ware, Joe Sacco, Alison Bechdel, and a host of other cartoonists are featured inside. Read Pekar's Introduction, in which he explains the choices he made over what to include.
One thing I noticed, though, is that this claims to be the best American comics of 2006, but it's only September. Pekar clearly has chosen these some time ago, so that makes it even less timely. A quick look at the copyright page revealed mostly 2005 copyrights with a sprinkling of 2004. Nary a 2006 copyright for any of the reprinted material. I haven't really looked that closely at the various other installments in Houghton Mifflin's annual Best American series, and I don't know how closely they align to the year they claim to represent. This is the first comics collection in the series, so maybe we should simply accept it as The Best American Comics of the Last Couple of Years. That quibble aside, even if you've read a handful of these comics already, this collection is well worth your time to support.