Let’s Not Talk About Comics: Roger Langridge
Where do I start when it comes to Roger Langridge? Simply put: he’s one of the funniest comics artists around, and I’m glad to put that on record.
From the grand scatological excesses of Knuckles the Malevolent Nun to Fred the Clown’s distilled schadenfreude, Langridge has a knack for putting together funny comics that actually get funnier with each reading. The well-timed pantomime of Fred is a joy for both surprise and expectation, and it’s rightfully seen as a masterpiece of the medium, at least in my house.
It’s not all about Fred though, and there’s a lot of Langridge work to discover once you start reading, including Zoot Suite, my favourite, which is well worth tracking down. That’s his comics though… I caught up with him for a very brief chat about other things.
So, seen any good films lately?
I’ve got two children under the age of five, so most of the films I see these days have talking animals in them.
What books do you have on the go at the moment?
Summer Lightning, by P G Wodehouse. I discovered Wodehouse very late, just a few years ago, and was completely taken by surprise. Having seen various film and TV adaptations, I thought I had the old boy’s number, and was totally unprepared for the astonishing beauty of his prose.
It’s that which keeps me coming back; certainly not the plots, or should I say plot, which is very much of the “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” school.
What about music? Heard anything good lately?
I am so far out of the loop where music is concerned I’m not even sure where the loop is any more. Although I can recite most of the lyrics from The Lion King by heart.
What’re you having for tea tonight?
Couscous, with a kind of casserole made from butternut squash and cashew nuts. First time, and very nice.
Oh, go on then – what comics are you working on?
I thought you’d never ask. I’m currently finishing off a Doctor Who story for the Christmas issue of Doctor Who Magazine, #390 I think – it’s called “Death to the Doctor” , with a very funny script by Jonathan Morris. Then I’ll be doing the next in an occasional series of short backup stories for Marvel, featuring the Fin Fang Four (from 2005′s Marvel Monsters books). There’ll be a few of those coming up over the next several months; the first one will be appearing in Giant-Sized Avengers, which should be out any day now. Scott Gray is once again on board as co-conspirator.
Also on the boards: I’m doing a piece for Beasts II, from Fantagraphics, edited by Jacob Covey. My “beast” will be Spring-Heeled Jack, Victorian scourge of the Penny Dreadfuls.
And last but not least, I’m attempting to pound a story into shape for a “graphic novel” (horrible term – I mean a really long comic) called “The Pictures Are Better on the Radio”, which I intend to serialise on my website from January. I’m teetering on the brink of abandoning it and jumping into something easier, because the size of it (probably 250-odd pages) is scaring the life out of me. Find out in January if I managed to grab it by the throat, wrestle it to the ground and kick it to death.