Friday, November 28, 2008

Enigma Works Comics

One of the artists I met at the recent National comicbook convention was Luke Mierisch. Luke has this great, clean style to his art. I was privileged to score a pair of comics he produced for Enigma Works. One comics — Tall Tales of Non-Fiction — was written by Dean A. Selleck; the second — Papillon Black — was written by Jason Cookingham.

Both comics are done is a very noir-like stark black and white. both show a skill that totally impressed both myself and my editor, Mark Mazz. After Mark arranged the introduction between the both of us, Luke and I spoke for a bit, and I invited him to contribute to my upcoming Agent Unknown graphic Album. I passed along to Luke the three issues of AU that Dell Barras drew for me back in the mid-‘80s.

Luke and I have chatted at length,and I’ve asked (and he’s agreed) to illustrate the new Stacy Anne Duncan story that I’ve written. I have to tell you that this excites me a great deal, as Stacy Anne was one of the original Division agents that I developed, and I have more stories of her that I not only want to tell, I want Luke to illustrate them.

Anyway, if you attend a show, and wander past Luke in Artists’ Ally. Stop at his table and pick up whatever he is selling, you’ll be seriously very happy that you did. I know that I was.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

It’s a Day, you Turkey!

So today is the day of all Turkeys, and it is time for my annual appeal to everyone to sign the online petition to bring the Spider-Man balloon back to the Macy’s Day Parade.

The Petition is not mine, but I happened across it a couple of years back, so I like to remind everyone of it at this time of the year. As I understand it, Spidey hasn’t been par tof the parade for over a decade, and there are those of us inthe fan community that think that this is wrong. especially given as how popular Spidey is these days (owing mostly to the movies).

Anyway, because we don’t get to see Spidey today, here he is from days of yore.

So, Happy day, you turkeys! Eat ‘em up!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Putting the Bite on Vampires.

One of the comics that I managed to get my hands on recently was Am I Immortal by Shawntie Therrien (published by Free Lunch Comics). This comic continues the story that Shawntie began back in Psychosis! #1. To be sure, this isn’t so much the same story, as it deals with the same characters, themes, and universe. Shawntie you see has something of a crush on Vampires. (Can’t say that I blame her as I have been feeling the same way about Werewülves these days, but that’s an entirely different post. Today, we’re talking about Shawntie.

Over in Psychosis! her stories deal with Meth, while Am I Immortal follows Cain, the other player in her undead opera. Shawntie’s style of storytelling (as I’ve seen in Psychosis!) has tended to be a series of full-page illustrations accompanied by text. with this installment she has chosen to deliver her story in a more traditional manner (panel art with word balloons) . I have to say that I enjoy both, and she is equally adept in both styles. In her Meth stories, we have heard of Cain, but never met him, now (at last) we are meeting this tragic character.

Shawntie brings us right into the story, causing us to care about Cain, even though we don’t know who he is. Her art is very stylistic, drawing us in and washing over us as we move further into her story. This is not your typical vampires, nor is it the weepy, angst-filled vampire-lite crap from Twilight this is a whole world of mystery, lore, and creatures who walk in the night.

I strongly urge you all to head over to the Free Lunch Site and order one of your own (You might want also go to the Guild Works Productions site and pick up the first three issues of Psychosis! as well.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Choice Cuts

So, While I was in Boston a couple of weeks back, I ran into a buddy of mine, David Quiles. I was originally introduced to David by CAG president Keith Murphey. David and I hit it off right away and soon after I picked up one of David’s self-published titles.

David has a very interesting style of art. He likes to get dirty. His art is all full of action, movement violence and darkness. It is truly something to behold. I knew right away that I wanted to collaborate with David on something, only he and I couldn’t quite hit on the right project. Well, it took almost a year, but I finally conceived on an idea that I thought that David would like, and when I pitched it to him he rolled it around in his head for a bit,and really warmed to the idea.

Well, it took me a couple of more months to script out my eight-page idea, and pass it over to him. Well, David is not someone who is going to be rushed, and I had no intention of trying to rush him, so I walked away and let the story simmer with him. Every couple or three months when I would run into him I’d check on the progress and he would have pretty much the same answer, that he was working on it in-between the other things that he was doing, and that was OK with me.

Well I ran into him again last weekend at the Nationals, and he told me that he had not only thumb-nailed the story (which he had expanded to 12 pages), but that he would send me the thumbnails if I texted him at 1:00 in the morning. (Seems he would be working at that that time, just as I was going to bed). I agreed, and sent him a couple of text messages as I went off to bed, and well, this evening I found the art in my in basket.

Let me say that I wasn't disappointed at all with what I saw. this is going to be a great story (due mostly to David’s art, to be sure). I’m hoping that he will be able to finish it off soon, and then get it into print. In the mean time, I think that you should hurry over to David’s site, and check out Choice Cuts along with the other comics that he had produced.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

G-Man Rules!

Anyone who has been reading this blog has probably heard me wax enthusiastic about cartoonist Chris Giarrusso wonderful work on the Mini Marvels. I first discovered Chris’ work in a series of comic strips that ran on the Marvel Comics Bullpen Bulletins pages. Those strips grew into full-page comics, and then to multi-page back-up stories, to digest-sized reprint comics.

Personally, I couldn’t get enough of his stuff, Well, last weekend when I attended the National Comic show, I finally got my chance to actually meet him and tell him how much I have been enjoying his work (I have been corresponding via-email for a bit, but meeting him was fun). During our chat, I picked up a copy of G-Man, his own character (done Mini Marvel style).

G-Man and his brother Great Man are a pair of pint-sized superheroes who run into all sorts of very entertaining adventures (including crossing paths with Eric Larson’s Savage Dragon — the adventures of G-Man have been running in the back of Savage Dragon for some time, apparently). I have to say that I enjoyed G-Man every bit as much as I have enjoyed Mini Marvels. Chris still knows his stuff, and you should check out his web store and buy him out of all his cool stuff — Including downloads, Icons, and Avatars, as well as on-line comics.

Looking back, I recent picked up The most recent Marvel Mini digest and (looking forward), we can expect at least one more Mini Digest that spoofs the Secret Invasion. (The following announcement comes direct from Marvel’s on-line catalog).

Been craving more Mini Marvels since their hit first collection flew off the shelves? February brings you the "Mini Marvels: Secret Invasion" digest! Your favorite tiny heroes face off against Skrull invasions of their own, with awesome cuteness to spare. Also check out a slew of Secret Invasion collections starring the likes of the New Avengers, Captain Britain and MI13, Hercules and more, all out this February!

While the weather outside is chilly, the "X-Men: Inferno" hardcover will surely warm the hearts of '80s aficionados and X-fans alike when it brings the entire crossover together in one edition large enough to knock any late night burglar unconscious! Plus "The Death of Captain America Vol. 3" concludes the trilogy and "Invincible Iron Man Vol. 1: The Five Nightmares" while classics like the original Cloak and Dagger limited series or the Guardians of the Galaxy's first appearances get new hardcovers!

So what are you still doing here? Go visit Chris!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Random Funnybook Stuff

First up, I want to apologize to the folks who have been loyally following this Blog, I haven’t been posting as much these days, and well, that is because I’ve been pounding the pavement for some new clients. A couple of my longest running newsletter clients have in-housed their newsletters (while a local publication to which I have been contributing went to a bi-monthly schedule), resulting in a serious financial setback to me, and requiring me to cast about for some new clients.

Hopefully I’ll be back on a more frequent postings as these things shake out.

In the mean time, why don’t you wade through this list of 75 comics that are being optioned for films slated to be released over the next couple of years. Please keep in mind that not all of these films will be made, and (if history is any indication) many of them will seriously suck.

On another funnybook front, it seems that The NY Times Bestseller list apparently doesn’t include graphic albums — which means that not only did you not see the re-release of Watchmen, but you also won’t see Dabel Brothers comic book publishers book; The Dresden Files: Welcome to the Jungle, an original story by Jim Butcher.

In other funnybook news, I attended the National Comicbook convention in NYC this past weekend, and not only met up with old friends (some of which I hadn’t seen in years), but hopefully put some forward movement on a number of funnybook projects that I’ve had under development for much of this year. As we get closer to completion on these deals, I’ll let you all know. The really exciting about this is that while some of them are for print, a couple are intended for the web.

Now I have to go back to work.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Get ready for a NYC Crime Wave!

No, I’m not kidding, I just read it in this press release form Three J Productions, LLC and Carl Herring Jr. set to launch Crime Wave on NYC.

Carl is a good buddy of mine (and fellow CAGer), who is way talented. not only has he produced a top-flight intro comic to his projected series (The Enforcers) but he also contributed a great Story to CAG #7. Now we cna see yet another incarnation of Carl’s talent as he give us the following:

Carl Herring Jr. founder and President of Three J Productions, LLC is pleased to announce that the company's latest publication Crime Wave Anthology vol 1 is set to debut at New York Comic Con in Feb 09 at the Javits Center. Crime Wave is a collection of three crime dramas that explode off the pages with non-stop action. Two stories feature the FBI duo - Chase and Hunt.

The third story features D.E.A. Enforcers Clayton Jagger and Rio Mendez in their first appearance since the now famous Enforcers Limited Edition Zero Issue. In charge of the books design is Creative Director Ed Traquino. Supplying the interior artwork are two very talented rising stars of the comic book industry, Scott E. Ambruson and Chris Torres. Rounding out the creative team is veteran artist Norm Breyfogle supplying the cover art. Crime Wave Anthology vol 1 is the first of several projects that Three J Productions, LLC has planned for 2009.

Personally I can’t wait to score my copy!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Cool funnybook SWAG

SWAG has been defined as Stuff We All Get. While we truly don’ all get this stuff, it is the term that has been assigned to it. SWAG, well I came away with some pretty cool SWAG from the recent National Comicbook show in NYC this past weekend. Mostly what I came away with was several very cool comics, and a couple of nifty posters. I also picked up some stuff a couple of weekends earlier at the Boston Comicbook show I attended.

This was a very interesting packing for an online comic by Radical Warren. I really enjoyed the very existentialist excursions into the absurd presented by this very funny strip . I haven't been to the site as of yet, but the comic was very cool, and got me to thinking that this would be a very cool way to not only package a strip comic as a promo (while it was cover-priced at .50 I believe that it was given away as a freebie). Currently I'm collaborating with three other cartoonists who are working on three different web comics for me, I think that I just might utilize this packaging technique when the time comes to promote my strips.

Next up was the ashcan Poser (also by Chris “Radical” Warren). this comic was ostensibly a superhero strip, and well, every bit as entertaining. Both of the comics are done in a very minimalist form with the dialogue driving the story and being the focus of each strip. While they both went in very different directions, I found them both to be quite good.

Another cool ashcan I received was from JGM Comics (see previous post). Plus I picked up some Amazing Spider-Man back issues for very cheap, narrowing the number of Spider-Man comics I need to complete my run of this title to less than 40.

I’ll go more into my NY SWAG in a later post. Now, I’m going to go to bed.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Ash Can Comics

Here in comics we have what we like to call Ashcans. When Ashcans where first used, they were literally a small-press run of a comic to establish ownership of the characters in the comic. The term “ashcan copy” originated during the Golden Age of Comics. It was meant to describe a publication that was produced solely for legal purposes (i.e.; trademark), and not normally intended for distribution.

The term “Ashcan” literally means that the printed material was supposed to go straight from the printer into the trash. Ashcan editions frequently contained unlettered stories, unfinished art or even just whatever wastepaper had been conveniently available at the time. The goal in making them was to get something out with the comic’s intended title slapped on as quickly as possible so that the publisher could make some claim to having been the first in print if a competitor tried to publish a similar title.

Needless to say, these days Ashcans function as a limited-edition collector’s copy, as well as a marketing tool for the publisher. Well, over the years, I have acquired quite a number of these little babies. My most recent Ashcan comes to me courtesy of JGM Comics. Two characters from JGM are Ripperman and Shadowflame; a couple of costume superheroes.

I bring this up, because, not only are these comics pretty good, but a future JGM comic is going to be spotlighting a couple of superheros that I’ve developed. Their names are Law and Order, and they pal around and bust up bad guys under the name The Enforcers. Joe who heads up JGM, found me a very talented artist, and well, I’ve seen the art, and I’m panting at the bit to see it in print.

More as it develops.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Hail to the Chief!

Only, who, precisely is that? No really, if I believe Fox News it was this Obama guy, but if I go with [[The Daily Bugle]] it was Steven Colbert. I’m trying to sort it all out, but I’m not so sure whom I can trust on this, especially as I completely distrust all forms of mass media.

So, I figure that I’ll just lay low for a couple of days perhaps make a deal with the Devil or something, but eventually I’ll certainly puzzle it out.

Or at least I hope I do.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

And the Winner is!

Us. We. The American People!

That’s right, we won. A true American has been elected into the White House, and I couldn’t be happier!

Sorry, couldn’t help myself there.

Seriously, how cool is this?

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Cup ‘o (Spider) Joe

So, the other day I mentioned that I was having a cup of Spider-Coco (my last cup, as it turned out), Our good buddy — and regular commenter — Tommy told me that he felt especially jealous over this, so I figured that I’d show him my collection of five Spider-Mugs. They are from three separate purchases.

The “odd” mug was purchased first. then I received as gifts two sets of two mugs each. One set has Spidey on one side and The Hulk on the other, while the second set of mugs (the one that came with the Hot Chocolate mix, I believe) had two different versions of Spidey on the mugs.

As I said, both of these two-mug sets were gifts, and now they are the only mugs from which I drink (coffee, usually) when I am at home.

On a different subject, I attended a Boston comicbook convention today, and while I was there I scooped up 13 Spidey comics (10 for .50¢ each, and the other three for a total of $10.00). Not bad, eh? The really cool thing about this acquisition was that it brought me within five regular comics and three annuals of completing the original run of Amazing Spider-Man.

I scored three issues of ASM, (& two Annuals), a Peter Parker Annual, three issues of Sensational Spider-Man, one Spider-Man the Lost Years, and three issues of Spider-Man Chapter One. Not bad for a day of fun, eh?

More on this story as it develops.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Embrace Change

Yes, I have embraced change. I mean, sure, what the heck? Why not?

No I’m not a traitor to my species, I know that while the fundamentals of our Earth culture are strong, we are in need of a real bail out — not just one that is handled in the same fast-food, slick-ass Persian Bazaar manner with which Washington seems to handle everything else these days. If that sort of a slip-shod approach occurs then I’m afraid that something’s gonna get missed; and I wouldn’t be doing my job if I allowed that to happen and we wound up in Armageddon any sooner than absolutely necessary, because our festering attorneys had predetermined our future based on the path of least resistance.

Someone has to defend us, for the hour of Ragnarok is near...