Fast Times In Comic Book Editing Review: Squeaky Clean Stories
Shelly Bond’s comics memoir (or is it an autobiography, drawn primarily by Imogen Mangle and guests?), Fast Times In Comic Book Editing, evokes the feeling of a time gone by.
Conflict of interest siren: I backed Fast Times In Comic Book Editing on Kickstarter.
Shelly Bond's comics memoir (or is it an autobiography, drawn primarily by Imogen Mangle and secondarily a host of guests?) evokes the feeling of a time gone by. Specifically, thirty years ago, when comics editors weren't an endangered species, and Vertigo was the talk of the tiny town that's comics. (Is this how the mythical Marvel bullpen felt?)
But it's now 2023, and a lot of Fast Times In Comic Book Editing reads quaint. Bond became an Anglophile young and worked her way up the ladder into a job for Karen Berger. If it reads too good to be true in an age where corporations dispose of editors like they're rotting fruit, it's because there's not a lot of time or space dedicated to the jobs in between Comico and Vertigo.
Speaking of which, the Comico portion of Fast Times In Comic Book Editing is one of the more visually interesting portions, as the Comico office is a dilapidated house in Philadelphia with none of the scale of the Vertigo office to come.
Fast Times In Comic Book Editing has the air of someone telling their college stories to family. It's what's left out that's most interesting. For example, Bond's husband, Phillip Bond, goes from freelancer to husband abruptly without a panel of him proposing or their relationship changing dramatically.
There are hints at a different Fast Times In Comic Book Editing, though. In the back of the book, Bond off-handedly mentions a serial harasser who kept his DC job even as DC fired bond Bond (the last of the Vertigo believers). There's a detail that Bond could've spun off into an entire chapter!
Maybe she wrote about it elsewhere. Maybe it would've poisoned the project. As it is, though, the book reads breezily on a summer's day or during a commute.