The Eternaut (Hardcover)
Fantagraphics, 9781606998502, 368pp.
Publication Date: November 24, 2015
2016 Eisner Award Winner for Best Archival Collection/Project—Strips! Seminal Argentinian science fiction graphic novel whose main character is still viewed as a symbol of resistance in Latin America.
This originally appeared as weekly installments from 1957-59. Juan Salvo, the inimitable protagonist, along with his friend Professor Favalli and the tenacious metal-worker Franco, face what appears to be a nuclear accident, but quickly turns out to be something much bigger than they had imagined. Cold War tensions, aliens of all sizes, space—and time travel—this one has it all.
About the Author
Francisco Solano Lopez (1928-2011) was an Argentine comic artist who created a number of works about corruption and repression in his home country. As a result, he was forced to produce many of these works in exile. Later in his career, Lopez focused on erotic comics, winning First Prize for ‘Best Erotic Author’ in the Barcelona Erotic Salon and the Diario de Aviso's Prize for 'Best Realistic Cartoonist'.
Praise For The Eternaut…
— Ray Olson
A sense of hope underlies the series, and it can be read as the struggle of the everyman to shirk off the yoke of oppression and to circumvent the cycle of slavery that war begets.
— Shea Hennum
...The Eternaut is a particularly compelling work, and it occupies an interesting point in Latin American literature. ... In much the same way that Tarantino spins poetry from trash cinema, Oesterheld constructs a political allegory out of sci-fi serials and adventure novels. ...[I]ts apocalyptic lens facilitates its argument that anything can be overcome by unity, by refusing to accept oppression; it is, at the end of the day, a paean to the human spirit.
— Shea Hennum
Oesterheld and López’s Argentinian classic from the 1950s [is] newly translated by Mena with a deftness and energy befitting the Borgesian, literary quality of the narrative... Elsewhere, López’s vigorous and occasionally terrifying drawings bring us from one hair-raising moment to the next, one part R. Crumb, one part Goya, one part Edvard Munch. ... These two stories, of course, point to a larger one: that of how we deal with the daily catastrophes and pitfalls of human existence, with or without extraterrestrials.
— Max Winter
...[T]here is more to [this] brilliant comic than meets the eye. It is at once both science fiction and political allegory. But fear not. Although Fantagraphics’ magnificently luxurious edition comes with all the necessary historical information, you need know nothing of Peronism to enjoy it. This is one of the most exciting comics you’ll ever read.
— Rachel Cooke
...[The Eternaut is] one of the pillars of South American comics…
— Chris Arrant
The Eternaut may just be the most interesting graphic novel of the season. ...[M]ore than just a rollicking science fiction story, [The Eternaut] is a national saga for the fight for freedom from repressive government... And it’s gorgeous.
— Heidi MacDonald
[The Eternaut] is considered one of the greats of Argentinian comics and one of the great genre books ever, period... and to have a fancy version of it available for libraries and readers is a dream come true.
— Tom Spurgeon
...I’m absolutely enamored that Fantagraphics was able to finally get this graphic novel published in English. Two of the most radical creators in Buenos Aires have a breadth of inspirational and beautiful work that has long been unrecognized to the modern audience. This is some of my favorite kind of science fiction -- political allegory and teeming realism coupled with the absurd, limitless boundaries of space, time, and science.
— Roderick Ruth