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Cover of Eightball #8.
|Publication date||October 1989 – June 2004|
|Number of issues||23|
Eightball is an alternative comic book series written and drawn by Daniel Clowes. The first issue was published by Fantagraphics Books in 1989, soon after the end of Clowes's previous comic series, Lloyd Llewellyn. It has consistently been among the best-selling independently authored comics.
Early issues of Eightball featured a mixture of very short, often crudely humorous comics ("Zubrick and Pogeybait", "The Sensual Santa"), topical rants and satires ("Art School Confidential", "On Sports"), longer, more reflective self-contained stories ("Caricature", "Immortal Invisible"), and serialized works. The first extended story to be serialized in Eightball was Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, which ran in issues #1 through 10. Glove was followed by Ghost World (issues #11 through 18). Beginning with #19 each issue of Eightball has been devoted to a single storyline, as opposed to the more eclectic format of the earlier issues. Issues #19 through 21 serialized the graphic novel David Boring, while issues #22 and 23 each consisted of a collection of short, fragmentary stories in diverse styles and formats that meshed into a unified narrative ("Ice Haven" and "The Death Ray", respectively). Also, the issues of Eightball beginning with #19 have been published in full color in a larger magazine-sized format.
|Issue #||1st Print Date||Stories||Notes|
|1||Oct - 89||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, Devil Doll, The Laffin' Spittin' Man, Young Dan Pussey, What is the Most Important Invention of the Twentieth Century?|
|2||Feb - 90||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, The Truth, I Hate You Deeply (Lloyd Llewellyn, What Do You Think George Washington's Voice Sounded Like?|
|3||Jun- 90||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, The Stroll, The Young Manhood of Dan Pussey, What Can Robots Do?|
|4||Oct - 90||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, I Love You Tenderly (Lloyd Llewellyn), The Future, Dan Pussey's Masturbation Fantasy, Sexual Frustration, What Do You Do for a Cold?|
|5||Oct - 90||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, Just Another Day, Playful Obsession, Paranoid|
|6||Jun - 91||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, The Dr. Infinity Story (Dan Pussey), Marooned|
|7||Nov - 91||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, Art School Confidential, Chicago|
|8||Mar - 92||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron, Ugly Girls, Grist for the Mill, Dan Pussey Presents Komic Kollector's Korner, Nature Boy, Give it Up, My Suicide, Dialogues from Duplex Planet||'Ugly Girls' contains a prototype of Enid from Ghost World|
|9||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron|
|10||Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron (conclusion)|
|11||Jun - 93||Velvet Glove, Ghost World, The Party, The Fairy Frog, The Happy Fisherman, Why I Hate Christians, Ectomorph||"Velvet Glove" is a parody of bad film adaptations, using the just-completed Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron as its source, with behind-the-scenes segments showing an increasingly anxious Clowes in talks with a clueless Hollywood producer, and scenes from the resulting movie, in which Clay is a tough, sarcastic police detective who plays by his own rules and makes pithy remarks (such as "what are you lookin' at?") before shooting his enemies. Tina is recast as a space alien who gives "Clay" a ring of power.|
|12||Nov - 93||Ghost World, Hippypants and Peace Bear, The Origin of Dan Pussey, Glue Destiny|
|13||Apr - 94||Ghost World, Buddy Bradley in 'Who Would You Rather Fuck: Ginger or Mary Ann?', Blue Italian Shit, Cool Your Jets, Anomalies and Curiosities of Medicine||The Buddy Bradley story is based on characters by Peter Bagge.|
|14||no indicia||Ghost World, The Goldmommy, On Sports, The Death of Dan Pussey, The Sensual Santa|
|15||Apr - 95||Ghost World, Caricature, Feldman||The Feldman character makes an appearance in the film 'Ghost World'|
|16||Nov - 95||Ghost World, Squirrel Girl and Candy Pants, Like a Weed, Joe, MCMLXVI, Immortal Invisible|
|17||Aug - 96||Ghost World, Gynecology|
|18||Mar - 97||Ghost World, Black Nylon, Latch-Key Kid, Modern Cartoonist||Modern Cartoonist is a pamphlet included with the comic|
|19||May - 98||David Boring, Act I|
|20||Feb - 99||David Boring, Act 2|
|21||Feb - 00||David Boring, Act 3|
|22||Oct - 01||Ice Haven|
|23||Jun - 04||Death Ray|
- Lout Rampage! (Fantagraphics, 1991, ISBN 978-1-56097-070-5) — Short stories
- Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron (Fantagraphics, 1993, ISBN 1-56097-116-9) — Graphic novel
- Pussey!: The Complete Saga of Young Dan Pussey (Fantagraphics, 1995, ISBN 978-1-56097-183-2) — Stories featuring Clowes' character Dan Pussey
- Orgy Bound (Fantagraphics, 1996, ISBN 978-1-56097-302-7) — Short stories
- Ghost World (Fantagraphics, 1997, ISBN 1-56097-427-3) — Graphic novel
- Caricature (Fantagraphics, 1998, ISBN 978-1-56097-329-4) — Short stories
- David Boring (Pantheon Books, 2000, ISBN 978-0-375-40692-8) — Graphic novel
- Twentieth Century Eightball (Fantagraphics, 2002, ISBN 978-1-56097-436-9) — Short stories
- Ice Haven (Pantheon, 2005, ISBN 978-0-375-42332-1) — A reformatted version of the contents of Eightball #22
Ghost World was adapted by Clowes and director Terry Zwigoff into a 2001 feature film of the same name, for which Clowes and Zwigoff were nominated for an Academy Award for screenplay writing. Additionally, the 2006 Clowes/Zwigoff film Art School Confidential was loosely based on a short story of the same name which appeared in Eightball #7.
The comic generated controversy when a high school teacher in Guilford, Connecticut gave Eightball #22 (Ice Haven) to a student as a make-up summer reading assignment. The parents of the student had concerns about the book's appropriateness. The superintendent of Guilford High School said the book was inappropriate for 13-year-olds and placed the teacher on leave. The teacher resigned before the matter was fully investigated.
- List of all issues of Eightball and their contents
- Eightball at Fantagraphics - Order and preview Eightball comic books and merchandise from the publisher
- Arnott, Christopher (2007-09-27). "Handling of teacher, comic issue riles parents". New Haven Advocate.