Brown: With Ollmann’s GG nod, the comics get a little more respectable

Something happened this month that doesn’t happen often: The comics just got a little more respectable.

Content of the article

Something happened this month that doesn’t happen often: The comics just got a little more respectable.

Content of the article

A graphic novel, Joe Ollmann’s Fictional Father, was shortlisted for the fiction category of the Governor General’s Literary Awards when the nominees were announced on October 16.

I gave the Hamilton illustrator-writer’s latest version a rave review in this space in April. I then predicted that Fictional Father would make numerous Top 10 graphic novel lists in 2021, but I did not anticipate such institutional recognition.

I couldn’t be happier for Ollmann, or for graphic novels as an art form.

This isn’t the first comic to be nominated or win a GG award, but Ollmann’s shortlist seems fair, as he’s one of Canada’s top storytellers across all genres.

I have mixed feelings about graphic novels transcending (if that’s the right word) the awards reserved for comic book creators and seeping into mainstream accolades (if that’s the right word). But at the end of the day, if it’s good for the industry, I totally agree.

If winning awards means more work and more acceptance from comic book creators, I say a thousand flowers are blooming.

And if you haven’t had the chance to read Fictional Father, indulge yourself. It tells the story of Caleb, the miserable son of a famous unionized cartoonist, the twist being that while his father’s diary strip centers on a loving father and son duo, Caleb’s famous father is a human being. garbage can.

Or get one of Ollmann’s other books. I would recommend The Abominable Mr. Seabrook, Science Fiction and Happy Stories About Well-Adjusted People.

Ollmann is one of those rare artists who can capture people in all of their imperfect glory. His work resonates with so many readers because his characters are portrayed as a mixture of admirable and loathsome qualities.

The winners will be announced on November 17th and Joe in southwestern Ontario is supporting you.

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Twitter.com/DanatLFPress

GRAPHIC NOVEL

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