Shakespeare Gets Mobbed Up In FAMILY TIES

If there’s any doubt to the continuing influence and power of Shakespeare’s work, the Alaskan crime story would do little to sway that argument.  In Eric Hobbs and Noel Tuazon’s Family Ties, King Lear is reimagined against the backdrop of a crime family dealing with the patriarch’s onset dementia.

Here’s what the critics are saying:

“A superb graphic novel that should appeal to students of Elizabethan drama and of grandiosely brutal gangster stories.”

Seattle P-I

“The real star of this production is Tuazon, whose fragile linework competes bold swaths of inky grays to create just the right atmosphere for this murky tale of hubris and denial.”

Guttergeek

 

“A  very solid read, and worth checking out.”

Things I Like

 

“And in great tragic fashion, there is no neat and satisfying conclusion to this story. The narrative threads are roughly cut, similar to Tuazon’s renderings, and we’re left with a drama without any “real” ending. The ambiguity, though, is all part of the narrative’s unsettling tone and feeds into its dark realism. What we have in Family Ties is a story that leaves you feeling raw and uncomfortable, wondering if perhaps your own relationships are similarly problematic or unresolved.”

Comics Alternative

 

“Highly recommended especially for connoisseurs of Shakespearean drama and gritty crime stories alike.”

Midwest Book Review

 

The best part about Family Ties, and the reason I’d recommend it, is the art, by Noel Tuazon, all black and white. And gray. Lots of gray. His figures and objects are mostly minimalist sketches, and the “coloring” is various shades of gray watercolor, which I, in my non-art history background, associate with traditional Chinese and Japanese nature paintings. Meaning that the story is just automatically moody and exotic-looking.

Comics Bulletin

“A great concept — a version of King Lear set among a crime family in Alaska, with the aging boss father facing dementia and two ambitious daughters.”

Comics Worth Reading

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