Dave McKean on Celluloid

Dave McKean has been one of my favorite artists for many years. His book Cages is one of my favorite graphic novels. He's best known for his many collaborations with Neil Gaiman in comics (Sandman, Violent Cases, Mr. Punch), picture books (The Day I Sold My Dad for Two Goldfish), children's novels (Coraline, The Graveyard Book) and film (Mirrormask). McKean also illustrated Batman: Arkham Asylum, written by Grant Morrison.

We spoke about his new book Celluloid (just out from Fantagraphics books here in North America), the collection of short comics he's assembling, the two films he's working on right now, and his ambitions.

Anderson and Yu Kill Zombies with "Rex"

I spoke with two independent creators, writer Rob Anderson and artist DaFu Yu, about their new book which debuted at Heroes Con with a zero issue - Rex, Zombie Killer. How's this for a high concept: The Walking Dead meets The Incredible Journey? Yes, that's right, animals surviving a zombie-infested globe. And one of the animals....a baseball bat-wielding gorilla. Check it out.

McLeod shows a Mastery of "Infinite Kung Fu"

Kagan McLeod is primarily an illustrator. Odds are that you've come across his work in one of the many magazines and newspapers that he's appeared in, from the New York Times and the Washington Post to Entertainment and Field and Stream. I spoke with him about Infinite Kung Fu, a comic series that he began a decade ago and then after many years, returned to finish it. The complete story is now out in a book from Top Shelf and it is a awesome. Plus it has an introduction by Gordon Liu. How's that for a pedigree?


Howard Cruse Returns with "The Complete Wendel"

Howard Cruse is one of the great artists of his generation and one of the most important. And unfortunately he rarely draws much anymore. I spoke with him last year when his graphic novel Stuck Rubber Baby was republished and last month we spoke about his new book which collects his comic strip from the eighties, Wendel in addition to talking about the gay community and how life in America has changed, how he got Sir Ian McKellan to blurb his book and a look back at his lengthy, ground-breaking career.


The Man, The Myth, The Legend....Mr. Neil Gaiman

What more can I say? If you've never met Neil, he is as nice a guy as you'd hope. We didn't have a lot of time to talk - he was running late and then literally running off afterwards - but we had a chance to talk about the new edition of American Gods that's out this week, the announced HBO television adaptation of the book, the book's sequel, Doctor Who, Monkey and Me, the film trilogy he's writing, and The Simpsons.

People like Gary Groth (and even me)

I spoke with Gary Groth as I blogged before, and whether it's because it was a good interview or maybe it was just a slow news day, but people seem to really like it.

(Insert Sally Field joke here)

Anyway thanks to Heidi MacDonald at The Beat, Sean T. Collins at Robot 6, Joanna Draper Carlson at Comics Worth ReadingDan Nadel at the TCJ blog, and Tom Spurgeon of The Comics Reporter and everyone else who have said nice things about the piece.

I so rarely get feedback or hear from people about articles, so it's nice to hear that the interview has found its audience - and that the audience actually liked it.

Gary Groth on the State of Comics

Gary Groth is one of the most influential people in comics today. He's also someone who's as hated as he is loved, and the man wouldn't have it any other way. (Which admittedly, is part of why some of us love him so). He's been at the helm of Fantagraphics and The Comics Journal for decades and as part of the redesign/relaunch of the Comicbook Resources homepage, I spoke with him about Fantagraphics and the comics industry more generally, so we talk about the death of the pamphlet, reprinting old comic strips, handing off the Comics Journal to Dan Nadel and Tim Hodler, the DC relaunch and other topics. It was a lot of fun and I made him laugh a few times. Also he confirmed that Pogo will be coming out this fall.

Dave Roman Blasts Off with "Astronaut Academy

I interviewed Dave Roman - one of the editors of the late Nickelodeon magazine and a writer and cartoonist behind books like Jax Epoch and the Quicken Forbidden, Agnes Quill, Teen Boat! and more. I've interviewed him before and he's a great person to talk to with a great perspective. We spoke about his new graphic novel just out from First Second Books, who was kind enough to provide an exclusive look at Roman's short comic contribution to this fall's release Nursery Rhyme Comics.


American McGee's Alice: Madness Returns

I spoke with American McGee, the designer behind "American McGee's Alice" and the brand new video game release out this week, "Alice: Madness Returns." We spoke about the design of the new game, how living and working in China has affected his work, and where he sees the future of gaming headed.

Trina Robbins: Miss Fury

Trina Robbins is something of a legend among comics people. Few people have a body of work both as a creator and a historian. We talked at length about her careers, the new archival project "Miss Fury," the series "Honey West" that she's writing in addition to Lily Renee, "Chicks in Capes," Bill Blackbeard and more.

Jess Fink Programs Chester 5000

Jess Fink is the woman behind the webcomic "Chester 5000 XYV," the print version of which comes out this month from Top Shelf. If you've never read the erotic Victorian steampunk webcomic then you're missing out. We talked about that comic and her next book, a time travel memoir.

Leslie Stein's Majestic Eye

I met Leslie Stein at the MoCCA convention where her first graphic novel "Eye of the Majestic Creature" was released. It's a great comic filled with moments that range from the psychedelic to the sublime and possesses a tone that's all its own. The book collects four issues of her self-published series and I can't wait for the fifth issue.

Memorial Day Spotlight on Joe Kubert

There are few names in comics as iconic as that of Joe Kubert but the eighty-four year old isn't resting on his laurels. The Army veteran is perhaps best known as the co-creator, the definitive artist, the longtime editor and sometimes writer of Sgt. Rock. Last year in a story written by Len Wein, Mr. Kubert depicted the death of the character. This month, three of his earlier books are being released by DC in paperback including what I think is his finest work "Yossel," about the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.


Brecht Evens on "The Wrong Place" and "Night Animals"

Brecht Evens is one of the most talented young cartoonists to emerge from the European comic scene recently. His North American debut was "The Wrong Place"which was released by Drawn and Quarterly last fall and now an earlier book "Night Animals" is being released by Top Shelf.

Stephan Pastis throws "Pearls Before Swine"

Stephan Pastis is one of those cartoonists that some people love with a passion that borders on madness and others just don't get. I love his comic. I own books. I have a page a day calendar. Maybe it's because in a typical week I am at different points Pig, Rat and Goat. Who knows. I got a chance to talk with him about the comic and his other projects.

Bruce Canwell Talks "Genius, Isolated"

I got to talk with Bruce Canwell. Being a guy who works at home, I so rarely get to meet or talk with other comics people except for the occasional convention, so getting to talk with someone like Bruce Canwell is a treat. Bruce is the writer behind "Scorchy Smith and the Art of Noel Sickles" which is one of the great books about comics. His new book which he wrote with Dean Mullaney is about Alex Toth, the first of three volumes designed to place the artist in a context for contemporary readers to understand and appreciate his work and its influence.

Peter Bagge Talks "Hate," "Yeah!" and "Bat Boy"

Peter Bagge has been one of the funniest cartoonists in America for many years. I've interviewed him before and he's always fascinating, a great guy and a lot of fun to talk with. We talked about the new "Hate" Annual, the collection of his short-lived comic "Yeah!" and "Bat Boy."

Joe Harris on Scarlet, Spontaneous and more

Joe Harris is a great guy and a great writer as people who read "Ghost Projekt" from Oni Press can attest. His two new projects are "Spontaneous" from Oni and "Vampirella and the Scarlet Legion" from Dynamite.

Personally, spontaneous human combustion is one of those concepts that fascinates me and a story aiming for a Hitchcockian vibe on the subject...I'm there.

Michael William Kaluta Remains "Starstruck"

In a companion piece to my interview with Elaine Lee for Suicidegirls, I spoke with Michael William Kaluta - one of the great fantasy artists and comic creators of his generation - about "Starstruck" which just came out in a gorgeous hardcover edition from IDW Publishing. One of the great artists and "Starstruck" is arguably his finest work.

Spotlight on Alejandro Jodorowsky

There are few people in the world who have worked in as many fields, creative and otherwise, and have amassed a body of work as broad, deep, thoughtful, eclectic as Alejandro Jodorowsky. Speaking with the man was a great pleasure and his biography is such that even reposting part of my introduction below will give only the slightest hint of what he's accomplished. 

Alejandro Jodorowsky is not a typical comics creator. He has been a puppeteer, a playwright, a theater director, a filmmaker and a tarot expert. He studied pantomime with Etienne Decroux and wrote several routines for Marcel Marceau’s mime troupe including two of its most well known works, "The Cage" and "The Mask Maker." In 1962, Jodorowsky was one of the founders of the Panic Movement, a post-surrealistic collective with Fernando Arrabel and Roland Topor. His films, particularly "Fando y Lis," "El Topo," "The Holy Mountain" and "Santa Sangre" are some of the most acclaimed avant garde films of recent decades.
Jodorowsky collaborated with the artist Moebius on "The Incal," a book often cited as one of the best comics of all time. His other comics include "The Madwoman of the Sacred Heart," "Technopriests," "Metabarons" and others. His work has been released sporadically in the United States. Heavy Metal published "Borgia," illustrated by Milo Manara, but much of Jodorowsky’s work has been released through Humanoids.

Talking About the Middle East Film and Comic Con

I was excited and intrigued when it was announced that Abu Dhabi would be hosting the first Middle East Film and Comic Con. Given everything that's going on in the region, it's more than understandable that they would chose to postpone it, and though that news hasn't gotten much attention, we sought out Arafaat Ali Khan, the Director of Public Relations at ExtraCake P.R.A., to talk about what's happening going forward.

The Many Worlds of Molly Crabapple

Molly Crabapple is one of those amazingly creative people who constantly has so many hats in the air and pulls them off with such aplomb that it would be easy to hate her if she weren't just so good and just so darn nice. We talk about the online comic "The Puppet Makers," "I Have Your Heart," Paris, SXSW and her book in progress.