Amphigorey – Edward Gorey’s tales told in rhyming couplets were produced in the 1960s and 1970s, but their determinedly whimsical nature, incredibly precise faux Victorian settings and the scratchy intricacies of his art ensure they’re still funny. Edward Gorey and Perigree Books/Putnam & Sons.
Archer & Armstrong: The Wrath of the Eternal Warrior – Take one immortal carouser and pair him with the brainwashed innocent raised in a religious cult from birth and trained in martial arts. Surprise follows joy follows hilarity. Fred Van Lente, Emanuela Lupacchino and Valiant Entertainment
Axe Cop 1 – A graphic novel by a five year old? Yup. An imagination unfettered by logic and filtered through an artistic brother leads to laugh out loud adventures of Axe Cop, a joke sustained over six books. “Hilarious from beginning to end”. Ethan Nicolle, Malachai Nicolle and Dark Horse Books
Calvin & Hobbes – Tenth Anniversary Book – As the last Calvin & Hobbes strip ran in 1995, perhaps some people are unaware of a late entry for the 20th century’s funniest newspaper strip. A boy and his imaginary tiger have brilliant gag adventures. Bill Watterson and Andrews McMeel Publishing.
Casanova’s Last Stand – Britain’s foremost cartoonist supplies the farcical adventures of the greatest lover of his era, now an obscure librarian mulling over past victories and planning one final conquest. Long out of print, but buy second hand. Hunt Emerson and Knockabout Books.
Chew: Taster’s Choice – The most hilariously inventive series of the 21st century’s second decade involves a world where food-related powers exist and are constantly used to present grossly ridiculous situations that the creators revel in. John Layman, Rob Guillory and Image Comics.
Dungeon Zenith: Duck Heart – In the wilds of nowhere there’s a castle with monsters and magical spells guarding a massive treasure, os so the legend goes. In this version almost every fantasy cliché is redefined for comic purposes. Joann Sfar, Lewis Trondheim and NBM Publishing.
The Eltingville Club – The failings of the genre obsessive laid bare in desolate, existential masterpieces, yet produced with a love of what’s being satirised. The reason it’s so good? It’s because we all recognise a little bit of ourselves in the cast. Big Bang Theory to the max. Evan Dorkin and Dark Horse Books.
Hello Mr Hulot – A series of two page strips based on Jacques Tati’s beloved awkward, but well-meaning film character. You don’t have to know that to be charmed by the beautiful cartooning and the precise construction of these gag strips. David Merveille and North South
The Smurfs: The Smurf King – A tyrant with distinctive blonde hair who insults anyone who disagrees with him and wants to build a wall around the Smurf village to keep undesirables out? But this was created in 1964. Peyo, Yvan Delporte and Papercutz