Before there are any complaints, yes, some of these features were originally found in mainstream magazines, not newspapers.
The Broons & Oor Wullie: The Sensational Sixties – The gentle, life-affirming gag humour of ordinary folk in Dundee, Scotland, astonishingly well defined by a superb cartoonist with a prodigious work rate. Every serious collector should have at least one volume. Dudley D. Watkins and D.C. Thomson
Calvin & Hobbes: There’s Treasure Everywhere – It could have been any collection of the boy and his imaginary tiger friend, but this is printed in large format, so better to appreciate the art. “Beautifully composed, wonderfully silly, cleverly written and hilarious”. Bill Watterson and Andrews McMeel.
Frustration – Although French, her observations about the chattering classes applied equally well to Britain, and she scythed through pretension and hypocrisy far more savagely than contemporary Posy Simmonds. Out of print, but don’t let that stop you. Still relevant today. Claire Bretécher and Metheun.
Krazy & Ignatz 1922-1924 – The full page newspaper strip redefined in constantly eye-catching and superlatively inventive work. Any collection from this superbly restored series remains dazzling and fresh almost a century later in some cases. George Herriman and Fantagraphics Books.
Mrs Weber’s Omnibus – A monster collection of all that’s good about the long-running Mrs Weber and Posy strips, with the author weeding out for quality control. How relevent is the work of the 1970s and 1980s today? Extremely. Posy Simmonds and Jonathan Cape
One! Hundred! Demons! – Characters that demand total empathy and then wring your heart out time and again as the author explores the demons of her early life. Plus a complete process guide as to how you can create your own strips. Lynda Barry and Sasquatch Books
The Complete Peanuts 1973-1974 – Again it could have been so many of these beautifully presented collections, but Billie Jean King’s introduction is among the best. New gags accompany the old favourites and the morose undercurrent is fully present. Charles M. Schulz and Fantagraphics Books.
Secret Agent Corrigan Vol 2 – Superbly stylish secret agent action by creators who’d really got into the swing of the daily three panel thriller strip. Exhilirating, exotic and serving up an amazing variety of locations and scenarios. Archie Goodwin, Al Williamson and IDW Library of American Comics.
Star Wars – In Deadly Pursuit – This is great Star Wars adventure, the first of three volumes reprinting the entire 1970s output of Goodwin and Williamson. No apologies for a second dose of the creators. Exciting, true to the films and exquisitely drawn. Archie Goodwin, Al Williamson and Dark Horse.
Strip Joint – Out of print, but used copies are easily found of this expressively drawn and constantly inventive strip, which offers a complete story in around twelve panels. “A hyper-imaginative world of delights” says the review, and that’s about right. Carol Lay and Kitchen Sink Press.