Ethan Young’s webseries TAILS has been running since 2009 and springs from a 2006 mini-series of the same title. In transit, the comic has appeared in a first collected print volume from Hermes Press, and a second volume is imminent, on Diamond solicitation lists this month. TAILS brings a fictionalized “cartoon Ethan” to life as a comics artist in New York whose universe revolves around his work at a local animal shelter, his family and relationships as the son of Chinese immigrants, and the developing “supernatural” elements that interrupt his efforts to publish his own comics. Hint: dream-worlds and anthropomorphic cats are big distractions when you’re on a deadline. Young’s series is known for its humor, its commentary on cultural heritage and (mis)understanding, and for its outstanding black and white artwork.
Young’s style is fresh and accessible, conveying a remarkable emotional tones through subtle use of lines, and consistently emphasizes the power of inking. It’s not surprising that Young finds plenty of work as an illustrator based upon his eye for striking single panel compositions, but his layouts and pacing are also memorable. TAILS has gained a cult following of its own over its chapter by chapter serialization (usually updated on Mondays), and though Young says his work on TAILS is drawing near to a close, there’s plenty more yet to be posted to conclude the series. A total of three printed volumes will eventually appear from Hermes Press. For those who haven’t read TAILS before, 15 chapters are currently available so dig in!
Hannah Means-Shannon writes and blogs about comics for TRIP CITY and Sequart.org and is currently working on books about Neil Gaiman and Alan Moore for Sequart. She is @hannahmenzies on Twitter and hannahmenziesblog on WordPress. Find her bio here.