The year that was… We could write a fat book about the major events that happened in Chicago this year, from the Northwest Side floods to the passing of the great Studs Terkel to…wait, there was some other huge thing…oh, yeah, the election of our native son Barack Obama as President of the f-in’ United States! But rather than pen grandiose prose, we figured we’d apply the ol’ “a picture is worth 1,000 words” maxim to our year in review and let three noteworthy artists draw their interpretation of the local news, cultural and political happenings that shaped Chicago in 2008.
1. Stephanie Izard skewers her Top Chef competition
2. Donald Trump stakes a claim to Chicago’s skyline, but fails to buy Time Out Chicago
3, 4. Marcus Samuelsson and Laurent Gras lead a mini-invasion of superstar chefs
5. The Chicago Tribune redesigns itself right into bankruptcy court
6. The Joffrey Ballet pirouettes into a grand new home
7. R. Kelly beats an underage-sex rap
8. Batman turns Chicago into one badass Knight hood
9. Chef Grant Achatz wins awards with Alinea, and beats cancer to boot
10. Kanye West gets incensed when his Grammy acceptance speech is cut off
11. Rage Against the Machine inspires a Lolla riot
12. Tracy Letts and Steppenwolf say hello to Tony, Pulitzer and more
13. The Smashing Pumpkins finally come home to play, to mixed reviews
14. Studs Terkel signs off for the final time, but not before inspiring a new generation of watchful scribes
Anders Nilsen is the author and artist of graphic novels and comics including Big Questions, The End and the Ignatz Award–winning Don’t Go Where I Can’t Follow and Dogs and Water. His work has been featured in Best American Nonrequired Reading, Best American Comics and the Yale Anthology of Graphic Fiction, as well as in a variety of magazines and on book covers. He lives with his wife, TOC’s own Heather Shouse, and their cat in Chicago.