Riffle Comics Spotlight: Genius Giveaway Winner!
We chatted with Vik Gill, the winner of our First Second book giveaway.
1. Which book are you raving about right now?
I cannot get enough of Takehiko Inoue’s REAL. It’s a manga about the people who play wheelchair basketball and those who support them. Mr. Inoue balances his focus between the day-to-day struggles and triumphs of his work’s cast, and the way they turn their circumstances into a source of strength. It’s a very grounded manga that treats its subject matter in a mature, thoughtful way. It’s skillfully drawn and drafted. I love it! Mr. Inoue, author of Slam Dunk and Vagabond, is considered to be a luminary of manga - and REAL affirms it. The work is published by Viz Media here and is up to 11 volumes (over 2000 pages) so far. :)
(Editor’s Note: I’m a huge fan of Vagabond and can confirm that yes, Inoue is the man!)
2. Finish this sentence: When I was a kid, I wanted to grow up to be…
3. What’s the weirdest book, quote, or fact you’ve come across recently?
"[E]ven setting aside traditional moral disapproval of same-sex marriage (or indeed same-sex sex), there are many perfectly valid—indeed, downright boring—justifying rationales for this legislation. Their existence ought to be the end of this case." - from Justice Scalia’s dissent on United States v. Windsor
4. If we were visiting your home town, what would be the one place/item that we would have to check out?
Mm… a place to visit in College Point, Queens? How about MacNeil Park? The grounds have an interesting history; they’ve housed several schools and even a mansion which NYC Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia once used as his summer city hall. It’s a hilly park with a lot of walking paths, though some routes have been temporarily fenced off. I absolutely love looking at the soft lights of LaGuardia Airport ‘cross the East River in the day’s twilight.
5. What song are you jamming to right now?
"Kurt 1" from Kurt Rosenwinkel's latest album, Star of Jupiter. It’s a jazz piece that’s groovy and sidereal.
6. Which author or comics creator do you think is overlooked or underrated?
Tyrell Cannon is one to watch, I think. Though I only discovered him last year, he’s been self-publishing in Chicago for more than 10 years. He recently wrapped up Gary, a contemplative work that presents the reader with moments from the life of a serial killer and asks them to reconcile the mundane parts with the gruesome parts. He’s also got a number of comics that revolve around his character Simon; they evoke philosophical questions in a brutal way. He’s currently working on Victus, and released its first issue just a couple of weeks ago. It’s a book that, by virtue of its physical attributes, compels the reader to take their time with it. It’s oversized and its cover and interior pages have a distinct, interesting texture to them. It almost feels like I’m reading an illuminated manuscript-comic assembled by some particularly creative monks from the middle ages. It’s an interesting work - and I can’t wait to see more. All the gushing aside, it’s clear that Mr. Cannon puts a ton of effort into his work, and it’s good work. Out of the independent artists I’ve read, Mr. Cannon is probably the most mature draftsman - the best at engaging his medium. His clean line art style is very distinctive, too. More people need to read him!
7. What’s your favorite part about reading comics?
Collecting and writing down my thoughts afterwards.
8. If you could give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be?
"There is no spoon."
Thanks for the wisdom, Vik! And thanks for chatting with us. Let us know how genius Genius is!
You can follow Vik on Twitter here! And on Tumblr here. He also writes at Spandexless!
Like what you read? Read more in Riffle!
Gina Rodriguez, Riffle Comics/Graphic Novels Editor
Just saw this today. Thanks for the kind words Vik Gill! And it’s always good to hear people praise Takehiko Inoue. He’s a beast!