Expo 2001 is an anthology of comic book artists and writers that collects 368 pages of comics, interviews, and essays. Expo 2001 is a companion piece to The Expo for 2001(http://www.spxpo.com) which is a gathering of cartoonists and comics publishers in Bethesda, Maryland. The front cover is drawn by Dan Clowes, known recently for the film version of his comic Ghost World, and the back cover is drawn by Jordan Crane. This large volume is sold in stores(and was sold at The Expo) for 7.95 USD, and all the profits go to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund(CBLDF). One can easily find this volume in their local comic book store, or at the CBLDF's webpage at http://www.cbldf.org.
Throughout the anthology we have many different types of comics, we have people trying to be like Robert Crumb, artistic cartoonists, real-life stories, jokes, and many others. This volume is a really nice way to introduce yourself to some independent and lesser known comic people. There's "Hypertruck has seen the Future of Music" a fun little joke on music in culture. "Humanity in Extremis: Mask Suite" is an interesting piece that has characters only speak in symbols. "Je Te Veux" is an interesting piece with no dialogue that shows an artist's love for a model. "The Willful Death of a Stereotype" shows a strange period in writer Chris Staros's life. "Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective" gives us a comedy-noir piece using puns and fairy tales. "Northwestern Parkway" conveys the contradictory emotions that a child can have about a place of relatives. "Aranada's Coat" demonstrates an odd fight between two rather philosophical people and the dangers of vanity. "Game Time" is an odd story from Hey, Mister that shows a family's dislike of capitalist culture. "Stagger Lee on American Bandstand" is an illustrated research paper on the mythology of Stagger Lee and its integration into popular culture. "Abstract Thought is a Warm Puppy" is art spiegelman's analysis of a great American pasttime, Peanuts by Charles Schulz. It is quite well drawn out in the style and characterizations of Schulz as well. Kissing Chaos is a short story from the longer comic by the same name. "Ex Falso Quod Libet" is a sad short story about the loss of a loved one. "On the Clock" is a fun story of the teenage minimium wage person, that reminds me somewhat of Ghost World. Then there is also the dark tale of cycles in "The Millionairs."
Overall, I thought this was a great use for my eight dollars. It had many amusing, interesting, and emotional stories. If anyone wants to just get a comic book that can be easily read, or a wide variety of comics this would be an excellent choice. This anthology only has a single short story that is related to superheroes, and it's spoofing them. So, Expo 2001 is also a nice pull away from the normal grouping of comics which are sold.
The full list of comics, interviews, and essays:
Items that are in italics are interviews of essays.