Thursday, September 17, 2015

The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane

The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane
by Philippe Druillet

'The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane' (72 pp) was published by Titan Books (UK) in September, 2015.

[I was alerted to the release of this book by a Comment from PorPor Books Blog reader Eodred Van Cataclysm.]

Philippe Druillet created the Lone Sloane character in 1966 in a comic book titled Le Mystère des abîmes (The Mystery of the Abyss). From 1970 - 1974, Druillet published ongoing episodes of the character in the French comic magazine Pilote; these episodes, which were assembled into 'The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane', have since been compiled in a number of French- and English-language graphic novels, all of which are out of print and selling for rather steep prices.

Fortunately, U. K. publisher Titan Books has acquired the rights to reprint Druillet's works, starting with this graphic novel, which compiles the Pilote material in a large (9 3/4 inch by 12 3/4 inch) hardbound book with quality paper stock and very good image reproduction.

'The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane' is a fun read, one that epitomizes Druillet's unique and imaginative approach to graphic art, an approach influenced by the psychedelic art of the late 60s. There also are echoes in the pages of 'Lone Sloane' of the 'cosmic' artwork of Jack Kirby during his time at Marvel comics, and the meticulous and intricate technique of the French artist Gustave Dore.

Druillet's distinctive handling of the comic book format is also on display in the pages of 'The 6 Voyages'........those readers accustomed to having their comic book pages neatly divided into panels are going to need to re-adjust after seeing Druillet's 'no-boundaries' layouts.

Although Druillet's artwork deservedly takes center stage, his writing is also noteworthy for adopting an offbeat attitude towards space opera, one that mingles sci-fi, psychedelia, and horror influences into something that remains unique among this genre of comics and graphic art.

The lasting influence of Druillet's art and storytelling are readily apparent in contemporary 'psychedelic' science fiction comics, such as Alexis Ziritt's Space Riders from Black Mask comics, and Christian Ward's ODY-C from Image.

Summing up, if you are a fan of sf comics, European comics, or just a fan of great graphic art, then you need to get a copy of 'The 6 Voyages of Lone Sloane', which can be had from your usual online retailers.

And be sure to bank away some additional funds, for in the coming year, Titan will be releasing Philippe Druillet's other epic Lone Sloane saga, Delirius, as a two-volume set ! 

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