Month: July 2009

Video of Dig Comics Q&A panel from Comic-Con

The illegal bootlegger and hardened criminal DaneInLA has posted two more videos to his YouTube account. The two videos capture the entire Q&A panel that immediately followed the screening of Dig Comics at Comic-Con International: Independent Film Festival this past weekend.

So now thanks to modern technology, it’s almost like you were there! Except with poor sound quality and a small yet erratic earthquake no one else but you seems to notice.

The panel consisted of Miguel Cima (host/writer/director), Scott Shaw! (animator and interviewee) and myself (associate producer). Also seen is producer and editor Dirk Van Fleet.

And in case you missed it, here’s the introduction from the panel with a special appearance by Edward James Olmos:

Dig Comics wins Best Documentary at Comic-Con Film Festival

Yesterday’s Comic-Con Film Festival Awards were passed out. Dig Comics won for Best Documentary!

ScreenCrave.com live-blogged the awards show and has a picture of host/creator/writer Miguel Cima giving his acceptance speech. Behind him is Tiina Teal (who played the challenging role of Miguel’s “actual girlfriend” in the movie) and my cybernetic eye.

Edward James Olmos makes special appearance at Dig Comics screening

The screening of Dig Comics was a big success! Thank you to everyone who attended!

We had a special surprise for those that made it*. Edward James Olmos helped us introduce the film. Our friend and audience member Dane Hill was there with his fancy flip camera to record the excitement. So here’s some endorsed bootleg video for you:

If you haven’t heard, Edward James Olmos’ Olmos Productions is partnering with us to expand this into a long-form piece. So, his appearance wasn’t entirely random.

In case you’re among the few that have never heard of him, Edward James Olmos is mostly known for being an incredible actor. Most people know him either from the recent “Battlestar Galactica” TV series on the Sci-Fi Channel or from the classic Blade Runner movie. He’s been nothing but immensely supportive and enthusiastic about Miguel Cima (our host/creator of Dig Comics) and our work.

More about Dig Comics.

*Well, OK we ended up having 2 surprises. Stan Lee (spokesman for Marvel Comics and co-creator of Spider-Man) strolled by with a huge mob behind him just minutes before our start time.

New to Comics? New Comics for You! 7/22/09

[UPDATE: It looks like Citizen Rex #1 did not ship this week and is late. Sorry if you went looking for it. I haven’t heard when it will show up but I assume in the next week or so.]

[Comic-Con officially starts tomorrow, so there’s tons of stuff coming out this week to take advantage of the mobs.]

Never read a graphic novel before? Haven’t read a comic book in years?

Here’s some brand new stuff coming out this week that I think is worth a look-see for someone with little to no history with comics. That means you should be able to pick any of these up cold without having read anything else. So take a look and see if something doesn’t grab your fancy. If so, follow the publisher links or Amazon.com links to buy yourself a copy. Or, head to your local friendly comic book shop.

Disclaimer: While it may seem like it, I do not live in the future. For the most part, I have not read these yet, so I can’t vouch for their quality. But, from what I’ve heard and seen, odds are good they just might appeal to you.

The Weasel Patrol – $9.99
By Ken Macklin & Lela Dowling
104 pages; published by About Comics; available at Amazon.com

13 short, rambunctious tales about The Weasel Patrol, an unlikely and all-weaselly force of intergalactic troopers. These stories, fun enough for kids and funny enough for adults, originally appearing in anthologies, where they built a loyal fan base. The first time in book form, it contains such tales as “The Intergalactic Crimefighters Convention”, “Big Boba’s Eat & Fill”, and “Roboweasel”.

Wacky weasels and their hairy hijinks! It’s goofy fun for all ages! Yes, it’s a comic book that’s actually comic-y. Go figure. Here’s a PDF file to sample the silly.

Awakening Volume One – $19.95
By Nick Tapalansky & Alex Eckman-Lawn
144 pages; published by Archaia Studios Press; available at Amazon.com

The once peaceful city of Park Falls has been tainted by a series of gruesome murders and missing persons. Cynthia Ford, known as the town crazy, finds retired police detective Derrick Peters and relates to him her belief about what’s going on in town. Her explanation – Zombies! Unable to ignore Cynthia’s information, though not sharing her beliefs, Derrick and others in the town explore the mystery as weeks turn to months and the death toll rises. Follow the first half of Park Falls’ year-long struggle for answers in this collected edition of the first five issues of the Archaia existential horror series.

I’m getting a bit burnt out on zombies but existential horror? Sign me up! Plus Archaia has a great track record of high quality productions. There are plenty of previews of the first 4 chapters right here.

Citizen Rex #1 – $3.50
By Mario & Gilbert Hernandez
24 pages; published by Dark Horse Comics

“What compels life without a soul?”

Comics legends Gilbert and Mario Hernandez join forces to present a bizarre, sexy view of the future and what it means to be human. Twenty years ago, the most famous, lifelike robot in the world was engulfed in scandal, arrested, and deactivated. Since then, an anti-robot movement has developed, while body modification is in and prosthetic limbs have become hot, black-market items.

Stories like these are the stock-in-trade of gossip columnist Sergio Bauntin, whose startling revelations earn him the constant scrutiny of both the mob and the city’s mysterious investigators, the Truth Takers. When Sergio catches wind of sightings of the long-missing robot celebrity CTZ-RX, all of these interests will collide in violence and intrigue.

It’s sci-fi adventure with beautiful women by Los Bros. Hernandez!

The Hernandez Brothers are pillars of independent comic books, a loose style classification for comics that have provided an alternative voice to the mainstream super-hero adventure comics. Their creation Love & Rockets has been immensely influential and critically praised for good reason. The series has been running since 1981. I highly recommend it. The three brothers also do side projects unrelated to that series, such as this one here. Looks good for some off-beat science fiction. [UPDATE: It looks like Citizen Rex #1 did not ship this week and is late. Sorry if you went looking for it. I haven’t heard when it will show up but I assume in the next week or so.]

Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451: The Authorized Adaptation – $16.95
By Ray Bradbury & Tim Hamilton
160 pages; published by Hill & Wang; available at Amazon.com

“Monday burn Millay, Wednesday Whitman, Friday Faulkner, burn ’em to ashes, then burn the ashes.”

For Guy Montag, a career fireman for whom kerosene is perfume, this is not just an official slogan. It is a mantra, a duty, a way of life in a tightly monitored world where thinking is dangerous and books are forbidden.

In 1953, Ray Bradbury envisioned one of the world’s most unforgettable dystopian futures, and in Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451, the artist Tim Hamilton translates this frightening modern masterpiece into a gorgeously imagined graphic novel. As could only occur with Bradbury’s full cooperation in this authorized adaptation, Hamilton has created a striking work of art that uniquely captures Montag’s awakening to the evil of government-controlled thought and the inestimable value of philosophy, theology, and literature.

Including an original foreword by Ray Bradbury and fully depicting the brilliance and force of his canonic and beloved masterwork, Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 is an exceptional, haunting work of graphic literature.

Hill & Wang (tee-hee) puts out some very good stuff. I’m kind of embarrassed to say that I’ve never read the original book. It seems like one of those things you’re supposed to have done in life. This looks like a pretty cool way to experience the story. Here’s a 13-minute video interview with Ray Bradbury about this project with images from the graphic novel. Or you can watch the shorter 2-minute version. And the Amazon page has a couple of pages.

You Have Killed Me – $19.95
By Jamie S. Rich & Joelle Jones
184 pages; published by Oni Press; available at Amazon.com

Things just can’t get any worse for Antonio Mercer. A private eye by trade, a dame from his past has re-surfaced in his life as a client along with all of the emotional baggage he thought he’d left behind forever. Of course, this unusual client doesn’t have just any case – her family is mixed up with seriously dangerous people and the body count is just starting to pile up!

Here’s a mighty fine looking preview. Two comic creators that deserve more attention because they always put out reliably high-quality stuff. These two previously collaborated on the romance 12 Reasons Why I Love Her.

Dig Comics featured on NPR affiliate KPBS

Dig Comics host and creator Miguel Cima was interviewed this morning about the documentary, comics and this year’s Comic-Con. San Diego’s NPR affiliate KPBS Radio 89.5 FM broadcast the program “These Days” hosted by Maureen Cavanaugh. The episode also includes interviews with Comic-Con’s Director of Marketing David Glanzer, film critic Beth Accomando and Prof. Rocco Versaci (author of This Book Contains Graphic Language: Comics As Literature).

You can listen to the entire interview online at KPBS.org. Miguel comes in just before the 9-minute mark.

New to Comics? New Comics for You! 7/15/09

[Getting late…]

Never read a graphic novel before? Haven’t read a comic book in years?

Here’s some brand new stuff coming out this week that I think is worth a look-see for someone with little to no history with comics. That means you should be able to pick any of these up cold without having read anything else. So take a look and see if something doesn’t grab your fancy. If so, follow the publisher links or Amazon.com links to buy yourself a copy. Or, head to your local friendly comic book shop.

Disclaimer: While it may seem like it, I do not live in the future. For the most part, I have not read these yet, so I can’t vouch for their quality. But, from what I’ve heard and seen, odds are good they just might appeal to you.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep #1 – $3.99
By Philip K. Dick & Tony Parker
32 pages; published by Boom! Studios

THE BOOK THAT INSPIRED THE FILM BLADE RUNNER COMES TO BOOM with backmatter by Warren Ellis!
Worldwide best-selling sci-fi writer Philip K. Dick’s award-winning DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP? has been called “a masterpiece ahead of its time, even today” and served as the basis for the film BLADE RUNNER. BOOM! Studios is honored to present the complete novel transplanted into the comic book medium, mixing all new panel-to-panel continuity with the actual text from the novel in an innovative, ground-breaking 24-issue maxi-series experiment!

San Francisco lies under a cloud of radioactive dust. The World War has killed millions, driving entire species to extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldn’t afford one, companies built incredibly realistic fakes: horses, birds, cats, sheep… even humans. Rick Deckard is an officially sanctioned bounty hunter tasked to find six rogue androids — they’re machines, but look, sound, and think like humans – clever, and most of all, dangerous humans. Rick Deckard, Pris, The Voight-Kampff Test, Nexus 6 androids, the Tyrell Corporation: join us for the publishing event of the year!

Oh and the by the way, this story inspired the movie Blade Runner.

Interesting idea. Usually when something is adapted to comic book, there’s a writer to re-work the source material. But this comic is apparently taking the original novel word-for-word and having an artist illustrate it out. Here’s a preview, so you can get a feel of what this will be like in execution. I’m not completely sold on the concept but I like that it’s something different, and it’s worth noting. And I’m sure sci-fi fans will want to check this out.

Creepy Comics #1 – $4.99
By a bunch of people
48 pages; published by Dark Horse Comics

What’s black and white and clawing its way onto your reading list? It’s the newly resurrected Creepy, of course! Now, don’t fret, my putrid pets — these new terror tales are cut from the same cursed cloth as the outlandish originals, telling contemporary horror stories with gorgeously ghoulish art from a lineup that’ll make you lose your head!

Original Creepy artist Angelo Torres teams up with devilish Dan Braun on “Hell Hound Blues”; Michael Woods and artist Saskia Gutekunst serve up a dose of “Chemical 13”; Neil Kleid and Brian Churilla provide “All the Help You Need” at a weird weight-loss camp; and jaundiced Jason Shawn Alexander brings his phenomenal painting skills to Joe Harris’s “The Curse”! Plus Bernie Wrightson, the return of “Loathsome Lore,” and more. All this, plus one classic story from Uncle Creepy’s dank dungeon, and you’ve got 48 freakish pages of terror to bring home to mummy!

In 1964, Creepy magazine resurrected the horror genre (huge in the ’50s) using a massively talented collection of artists and writers. Dark Horse is now resurrecting that resurrection. A bit derivative? Maybe. But modern comics have a host of very talented individuals who have injected new life into today’s horror stories in comics. Here’s a preview.

Parker: The Hunter – $24.99
By Darwyn Cooke
144 pages; published by IDW Publishing; available at Amazon.com

The Hunter, the first book in the Parker series, is the story of a man who hits New York head-on like a shotgun blast to the chest. Betrayed by the woman he loved and double-crossed by his partner in crime, Parker makes his way cross-country with only one thought burning in his mind—to coldly exact his revenge and reclaim what was taken from him!

Darwyn Cooke, the Eisner-Award-winning writer/artist of such classics as DC: The New Frontier, Selina’s Big Score, and The Spirit, now sets his artistic sights on bringing to life one of the true classics of crime fiction: Richard Stark’s Parker. Stark was a pseudonym used by the revered and multi-award-winning author, Donald Westlake.

Darwyn Cooke is fantastic. Here’s a preview. Classic hard-boiled crime. I can’t wait to get this.

Franklin Richards: School’s Out – $3.99
By Chris Eliopoulos
32 pages; published by Marvel Comics

Enough of the pencils, enough of the books, enough of teacher’s dirty looks! It’s summertime and school is out of session which gives Franklin more time to get into trouble. Join Franklin, his robot nanny, H.E.R.B.I.E., his teleporting dog, Puppy, in more adventures and laughs. Put on your shorts and come out and play!

This fun all-ages read is like if Calvin & Hobbes took place in the super-hero filled Marvel Universe. Lots of fun yet smart enough for older readers too.

That’s it for this week.

What Lurks Within Lockers

The Magic Meathands present a blood-curdling picto-tale of horror and suspense!

Starring (in order of appearance) Shane Boroomand, Nikki Turner, Corey Blake and Eric Ho.
Pics by Cindy Julia (and Corey’s iPhone).

Epilogue: