"Comics for Everyone" Reed Gunther press release by Shane and Chris Houghton (click to read)
Los Angeles siblings Shane and Chris Houghton get it. If you want to sell comics, use the powerful and appealing language of comics.
The creators of Reed Gunther issued a press release in the form of a 2-page comic that trumpets their book’s strengths as an entertaining and funny read. It also explains how their comic book series is intended for all-ages, a reading category that tends to get interpreted by retailers and readers as dumbed down kiddie stuff. The series is published by Image Comics. The press release smartly ends with a plug for ComicShopLocator.com, so that you can find your nearest shop to ask for Reed Gunther issue #3 (on sale now), issue #4 (on sale Wednesday, September 7) and issue #5 (on sale Wednesday, October 5). The first five issues will be published together in the graphic novel Reed Gunther Vol. 1, on sale November 2.
I really wish people in comics would do this kind of thing more. Use the very language that we work in to communicate about comics. How great would it be to regularly read press releases, articles, interviews, and editorials covering comics in such an engaging format? Sure it’s a bit meta. But it’s also a more effective way to show not tell when discussing the very works and topics that we’re excited about or mad about or however else we feel. It might be more time consuming but I bet the content gets better mileage. Heck, if I could draw, this site would be a blog comic.
Anyway, read Reed Gunther! The creators have been doing signings at local comic shops in and around LA. They were at Galaxy of Comics in Van Nuys yesterday for the release of issue #3. Their next appearance will be at the Wizard World: Los Angeles convention at (appropriately enough) the LA Convention Center in Downtown LA, the weekend of September 24 and 25.
COMICS – Reed Gunther Release Party! Celebrate the debut of the all-ages cowboy comic book from Image Comics with creators Shane and Chris Houghton who will be signing and sketching for free. Plus a giant snake! At Golden Apple Comics in Hollywood, Friday, 7 PM – 9 PM.
ACTIVISM – SlutWalk LA is the latest in a series of demonstrations across North America in response to a Toronto police officer who advised students to not dress like “sluts” as a safety tip to avoid rape. Believing that “those who experience sexual assault are not the ones at fault, without exception,” participants will begin in West Hollywood Park, Saturday, 12:00 noon.
COMMUNITY – The Long Beach Basket Brigade has their 3rd annual fundraiser to help families in and around Long Beach. Silent and live auctions, Texas Hold ’em and Bunco Tournaments, and a fine dinner all help to raise money. At The Grand Event Center in Long Beach, Saturday, 6 PM – 11 PM.
You can get exclusive comic books made just for Free Comic Book Day featuring the Amazing Spider-Man, Avatar the Last Airbender, Star Wars: Clone Wars, Green Lantern, Betty & Veronica, Darkwing Duck, Kung Fu Panda, Richie Rich, the Dark Crystal, the Simpsons, Captain America, Thor, Inspector Gadget, Sonic the Hedgehog, the Tick, Mickey Mouse, Young Justice, Batman: the Brave & the Bold, and so many more. See here for a complete list of free comics available at participating stores.
Locally, comic stores all around Los Angeles County will be celebrating with free comic books, discounted comics and graphic novels, guest appearances by comic book artists and writers, and more! Additional announcements will probably be announced this week, so keep your eye on your favorite store’s website or Facebook page.
Some stores have really pulled out all of the stops:
Golden Apple on Melrose will be open an hour earlier than normal for the big day. Starting right at 10 AM, there will be comics creators giving free autographs and sketches all day, plus 20% off everything, free Lipton Brisk Green Lantern tea & hot dogs, free Priest movie stuff, a bounce house for kids (!) and more! Creators signing: 10 AM – Top Cow Productions president Matt Hawkins, writer Jeff Cahn (Red Spike), writer Owen Weisman (Samurai’s Blood) and cartoonist/animator Scott Shaw! (The Flintstones, Simpsons Comics); 12 noon: actor/writer Walter Koenig (Things to Come); 2 PM – writer Robert Kirkman (The Walking Dead, Super Dinosaur) and artist Jason Howard (Super Dinosaur); 4 PM – writer Marc Andreyko (True Blood: Tainted Love, Let Met In: Crossroads), and writers Brian McCarthy & Michael Lent (Brimstone).
At Earth-2 Comics both store locations will have plenty to do, like free sketches from 10 AM to 12 noon by Todd Brocasso Harris (in Sherman Oaks) and Justin Rodrigues (Northridge). Then from 12 noon to 2 PM, writer and DC Comics Chief Creative Officer Geoff Johns (Green Lantern, The Flash), and writer and Executive Vice President of Marvel Television Jeph Loeb (Batman: Hush, Spider-Man: Blue) will be available for autographs in Sherman Oaks. The two will be at the Northridge location from 3 to 5 PM. The store will also have an Earth-2 exclusive Green Lantern comic.
Free Comic Book Day 2011 (by Darwyn Cooke)
Meltdown Comics will be holding amazing special events all day long! From 11 AM to 3 PM, including a free screening of Jim Henson‘s classic movie The Dark Crystal and life-sized Skeksis statues used in the original 1982 movie! Writer Brian Holguin, who wrote a new Dark Crystal story in the free comic book flip book released for Free Comic Book Day, will be on hand for autographs, as will David Petersen, writer/illustrator of Mouse Guard, which makes up the second half of the flip book. Plus free posters, prizes, giveaways, and gourmet grilled cheese from The Grilled Cheese Truck. At the same time, from 11 AM to 2 PM, Jason JFish Fischer of Studio JFish will be present to sell his new underground comics, the adults only Junqueland #1, art anthology Fine Literature #2, and fantasy/adventure Jaephisch and the Dark Rainbow Chapters 1 & 2. At 1 PM, Shane and Chris Houghton, creators of the all-ages comic Reed Gunther, will hold a comics creating class just for kids. From 2:00 – 3:30 PM, writers Jeff Cahn (Red Spike) and Owen Weisman (Samurai’s Blood) of Benaroya Publishing will be signing. Finally, at 4 PM in the Meltdown Gallery, there will be a Graphic Noir panel with writer Joshua Hale Fialkov (Echoes, Tumor) and writer/artist Kody Chamberlain (Sweets, Punks: The Comic), as they discuss their creative processes and influences, followed by a brief signing.
The Comic Bug in Hermosa Beach has a ton of creators lined up, scheduled for 12 noon to 3 PM giving free sketches and autographs in addition to huge sales and live super-heroes for photo ops. Their line-up will include writer/artist Mike Mignola (Hellboy, Baltimore), writer Steve Niles (30 Days of Night, Criminal Macabre), TV & comics writer Christopher Yost (Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, New X-Men), writer Joshua Williamson (Fractured Fables, Yo Gabba Gabba Comic Book Time), writer/letterer Richard Starkings (Elephantmen), animator/artist Phil Ortiz (The Simpsons), Jeff Stokely (Fraggle Rock) and lots more. Artist Joe Benitez (Lady Mechanika) will be there 3 – 5 PM.
You don’t have to sit at home alone reading to get into comic books and graphic novels. There are always great events going on that celebrate the vitality and creativity of comics. Just here in Los Angeles, there are more events I can ever make. But I try, and so should you. You never know what you’ll discover.
Here are some local Los Angeles events coming up that celebrate the sequential art form.
Wednesday, December 1, 8 PM: Comics podcast Bagged & Boarded: Live! returns with Matt Cohen and Brendan Creecy for a broadcast at SModcastle, 6468 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles 90038. Tickets: $10.
Wednesday, December 1, 8:30 PM: Talking with Gods, a documentary on comics writer Grant Morrison (All-Star Superman), will be screened at Hi De Ho Comics & Books with Pictures, 1431 Lincoln Blvd., Santa Monica 90401. Tickets: $0. (more…)