AUSA Graphic Novels Featured in New Exhibit

AUSA Graphic Novels Featured in New Exhibit

AUSA's Medal of Honor graphic novel series
Photo by: AUSA/Joe Craig

Graphic novels from the Association of the U.S. Army’s Medal of Honor series are featured in a new exhibit at the Army Heritage and Education Center.

Located at the Army War College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, “Ka-Pow Boom! Understanding the Soldier Experience Through Comic and Illustrative Art” opened in late March and will run for about two years.

“For as long as comics and cartoons have existed, they have provided a platform for Soldiers to express themselves,” the opening of the exhibit says. “From everyday frustrations and challenges, to insights, experiences, and perspectives, insider military humor remains a persistent and consistent aspect of military culture.”

AUSA’s graphic novel series on soldiers who have received the nation’s highest award for valor is part of the “Army Comic Publications” section of the exhibit.

Molly Bompane, the Army Heritage and Education Center’s curator, said the AUSA graphic novels are “captivating and visually stunning in their own right.” She also said she was looking at the different ways that soldiers are portrayed in comics, graphic novels and cartoons, and the AUSA graphic novels highlight soldiers’ “compelling” and very real and heroic stories.

AUSA launched its Medal of Honor graphic novel series in October 2018. Seventeen graphic novels have been released, with three more planned this year. A paperback collection, AUSA’s fifth such collection, is scheduled to be released in the fall.

The series has featured Medal of Honor recipients like Sgt. Alvin York, who received the medal for his actions in France during World War I; Staff Sgt. Salvatore Giunta, who fought in Afghanistan and was the first living recipient of the medal since the Vietnam War; Sgt. Henry Johnson, a member of the famed “Harlem Hellfighters” who served on the Western Front of World War I; Cpl. Tibor Rubin, who fought in Korea and is the only Holocaust survivor to receive the medal; and Master Sgt. Gary Gordon and Sgt. 1st Class Randy Shughart, who gave their lives to save their fellow soldiers during the fierce Battle of Mogadishu in Somalia.

Each AUSA graphic novel is created by a team of professional comic book veterans, including writers and artists whose work includes Batman, The Punisher, Justice League, Superman, Black Panther, Spider-Man and Iron Man.

The digital graphic novels are available here.

The “Ka-Pow Boom!” exhibit is “a wonderful overview of comics and their connection to the soldier experience,” said Joseph Craig, director of AUSA’s Book Program. “It is an honor to see AUSA’s graphic novels displayed alongside classics like Willie and Joe and PS Magazine, as well as contemporary works such as BOB on the FOB and Doctrine Man.”

For more on the exhibit, click here.