A multiple Eisner, Harvey, and Glyph award-winner, Kyle Baker
is a more than 25 year veteran of the comics industry. The legendary cartoonist, whose early work in the graphic novel format was essential to its rise in popularity, is a master of the craft, and arguably one of the more underappreciated artists in recent memory.
If you've not previously read any of his work, or you're looking to revisit it but don't own any of his comics, you're currently in luck: Baker has posted his creator-owned comics online, to be read for free,
with animated trailers and previews of some of his upcoming work.Baker has posted
several titles, including The Cowboy Wally Show
(his first graphic novel), Why I Hate Saturn
, Special Forces
, and Nat Turner
, his biographical look at the story of the man who led one of the more famous slave rebellions in history. The scans on the site are not exactly an ideal way to read these titles, but a few of them are currently either out of or nearly out of print, so this is a valuable resource despite the low quality reading experience. For years Why I Hate Saturn
has been at or near the top of the list of graphic novels I recommend to any new reader. The story of New York City columnist Anne Merkel -- a cranky, slovenly, quick-witted, borderline alcoholic -- who is suddenly visited by her long-lost sister claiming to be the Queen of the Leather Astro-Girls of Saturn, Why I Hate Saturn
is full of deeply flawed, intelligent, judgmental, self-loathing, and effortlessly charming characters who'll make you jealous you aren't hanging out with them. It remains one of the best comics I've ever read.
While Baker's work on titles like Plastic Man
and The Shadow
are highly regarded, and rightfully so, his creator-owned work is perhaps best reveals the breadth of his talent. I honestly can't recommend his work enough.
You can check out descriptions of the books he's made available below:
The Cowboy Wally Show
: This original graphic novel acts as a biography for a fictional entertainer named Cowboy Wally. Chronicling his career from his children's program to his movie work to his late night talk show, we witness the hilarious peaks and valleys of Cowboy Wally's life as he stumbles back and forth between success and failure. Whether using compromising pictures of a TV producer to get his own show or shooting a high-budget Hamlet remake in jail while incarcerated for drunken and disorderly conduct, Cowboy Wally always has a story to tell.
: Zone, the unwitting victim of a corrupt recruiter, is a mentally disabled soldier. Felony is a three-time loser who enlisted to avoid life in prison. When the rest of their unit is massacred in Baghdad, these brave American teenagers are democracy's last hope against the villainy of the notorious Al-Quaeda terrorist known as The Desert Wolf.
: The biographical story of the famed Nat Turner, a self-educated slave who led a rebellion in the summer of 1831 that left more than 100 dead, and served as one of the opening salvos in the fight to end slavery.
: David, a poor shepherd boy, becomes an unlikely superstar when he slays a villainous giant single handed. David's sudden fame arouses the jealousy of evil King Saul, who mobilizes his entire army in an attempt to destroy the young hero. What follows is an epic adventure which inludes swordfights, chases on horseback, romance with multiple wives, suspense, corruption and betrayal.
You Are Here
: Noel Coleman's got it made. He has a successful career, a house in the country, and a wonderful girlfriend. He's also been lying like crazy about his secret past. Until now. Within a day of returning to New York City to sell his apartment, Noel's being chased by the cops and stalked by a serial Killer. To top it off, his unsupecting fiancee's followed him to the city with a big suprise. Will he finally tell her the truth? And will eiher of them survive the experience?
I Die At Midnight
: Larry, heartbroken over a breakup with his girlfriend, decides to end it all with an overdose of pills. One second after he's downed the last pill and composed his farewell Tweet, the ex-girlfriend shows up at LArry's apartment door ready to reconcile. Larry is left with scant time to brave the New Year's crowd and make it across town to Times Square for an antidote while keeping his love unaware of his predicament.
Why I Hate Saturn
: Cranky Columnist Anne Merkel is only happy when she's complaining... about her editors, about being single in New York City, about running out of Scotch. But when her long-lost sister shows up claiming to be Queen of the Leather Astro-Girls of Saturn, Anne's going to wish she'd never complained about anything...