Additional Book Information
Series: New York Review Comics
Publication Date: March 22, 2016
by Mark Beyer, introduction by Colson Whitehead
ENJOY THE ECSTASY OF AGONY. Amy and Jordan are just like us: hoping for the best, even when things go from bad to worse. They are menaced by bears, beheaded by ghosts, and hunted by the cops, but still they struggle on, bickering and reconciling, scraping together the rent and trying to find a decent movie. It’s the perfect solace for anxious modern minds, courtesy of one of the great innovators of American comics. Now if only Amy’s skin would grow back ...
This NYRC edition features a recreation of the original, pocket-size, slipcovered paperback, designed by Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly.
Click to enlarge images
Mark Beyer’s 'Amy and Jordan' was one of the great underground comic strips of the late ’80s and early ’90s — the Candide-on-PCP misadventures of a seemingly accursed New York City couple.
—Douglas Wolk, The New York Times Book Review
Almost childlike in its energy and lack of story logic, this is a charming explosion of grotesque comedic misfortune, exactly as the title promises ... Beyer’s calamitous comedy has aged well, its geometric, densely patterned imagery recalling fine art as much as comics and still packing a punch among today’s alternative cartoonists.
—Publishers Weekly, PW Picks
[A]n exemplar of [the] eighties ‘alternative' comics movement. ... Agony is a book filled with pain, misery, brutality, and hopelessness, but our unexpected laughter reminds us that we must carry on, regardless.
—Ivan Brunetti, The Paris Review Daily
Exquisitely, gleefully hopeless.
—The A. V. Club
Mark Beyer’s Agony is a highlight of the 80s art comics movement ... Now available in a new edition as the first release of the New York Review Comics line, the abstract, absurd, and bleakly funny comic book returns, and it’s just as oddly beautiful and relevant as ever. ... Throughout Agony, Beyer’s artwork is odd, alienating, and remarkably effective. A self-taught artist whose work could easily be classified as outsider, raw, brut, or naïve art, Beyer strikes a balance between simple, even childlike figure-work supported by a very dynamic and complex design.
— Comics Alliance
I couldn’t get enough of their misery: I finished it in one sitting and flipped back to the beginning.
—The Paris Review Daily
Gorgeously madcap and brutally inspiring.
Beyer’s work is universal at its heart ... One of the masters of the form.
These are some of my favorite comics of all time, and surely the most perfectly realized vision of urban despair ever to hit the comic page. A must for any fan of bleakness and misery.
He’s one of the flukiest geniuses in comics.
Exquisite poems of urban despair, dreamy and nightmarish.
Perhaps the ultimate urban nightmare comic ... Mark Beyer [is] not only an extremely funny cartoonist, but one of the most progressive as well.
A childhood hell palpitating with adult neuroses.
—The Village Voice
Beyer’s seminal strip is a terrifying New York of the mind.
I hope Mark Beyer’s work will find a place in the canon ... A treasure of the comics medium.
A complete and total original.