I'm looking forward to this: the hundreds of small press tables, the panels specifically focusing on creators outside of superhero comics, and the novice comic book creator's smell of desperation--I mean, I mean-- swell of discovery. Yeah, that sounds more reaffirming.

Yes, the Alternative Press Expo in San Francisco, CA is a sight to behold. And this year is of particular interest because all three Hernandez brothers will be in attendance, as well as one of my favorite artists in the dealings of bizarre oddities and strange arrangements, Jim Woodring. Check out the official website here for more information and check back to Go Suck a Comic next week for more APE 2012 coverage.

If you have followed my site since it's earliest inception, you will notice the reoccurring topics of "horror" and "comics." These interests are my bread and butter in the entertainment industry. I am allured by sequential storytelling and if elements of the macabre are added to a story, I am nearly a fan for life. So when I heard that the Scottish Rite Center in Sacramento was hosting a two day horror convention called "Days of Terror" followed by a single day comic convention known as "Sac-Con," I did what any normal fanatic would do. I took the days off from work.

Here is an account of the two events, back to back: the guests, the artists, and the awesome finds.

Days of Terror

Miss Misery's Days of Terror to be specific. Honestly, I didn't know what to expect from this show. In the past Sacramento has hosted the "Sac Sci-Fi Horror Show" and it appears Miss Misery's Days of Terror has taken it's place. Of course there is no problem with that as long as the show offers some amazing guests and key vendors. Certainly the website offered a great line-up of c-list celebrities, but unfortunately there was no big name guests to really draw in the crowds.

Upon entering the building and gazing at the convention floor, most guests could tell things were looking like a ghost town. And not in the way that would cater to most horror enthusiasts. There was simply no one there. The main showroom for vendors featured too many empty tables, many of which were pulled back from the main stage. If I wasn't granted a press pass (which I am very grateful for), I would have felt very cheated for the entrance fee of $20. The average attendee could see what Days of Terror had to offer within 30 minutes.

However Days of Terror offered it's own share of excitement and discoveries. While walking around the floor I came across some extraordinary comic talent and shared a good amount of face time with the lot: Tone Rodriguez, Paul Allen, Gary "Gaz" Gretsky, and Jason Dube. The ever vocal Mel Smith chatted with me about the latest on Dead Ahead 2, his new Creepy KOFY Movie Time comic, and asked me about my plans on a Big Trouble in Little China comic (all currently under wraps). I love Mel. He's one of the most down to earth guys in the comic industry and always speaks from the heart. If you ever get the chance to meet him, do yourself the favor and strike up a conversation.

While running around the vendor room, my cohort Justin Hopper and I found a vendor with an amazing selection of graphic novels for unbelievable prices. All of his paperbacks were $5 and his hardcovers were $10. I wish I brought more cash to throw down but luckily he was there the next day at Sac-Con (let's not get ahead of ourselves). Anyway, I walked away with four League of Extraordinary Gentlemen books, which completes my collection--now I can finally finish up the series before Alan Moore squirts out another. We also found some great graphic t-shirts from the guys over at (their selection is vast and the price is cheap--I implore you to check them out). I found the perfect Return of the Living Dead shirt to wear around this Halloween. I was also pleased to meet one of this year's Face Off contestants Nicole Chilleli who *SPOILER ALERT* recently returned after being eliminated earlier this season. She spoke of working at Safeway in the past but due to her success on Face Off she is currently working full-time in special makeup FX. Good for her!

The remainder of Days of Terror felt insignificant. I wish there was more that stood out, more of a wow factor--God, I sound like one of those crackhead judges on American Idol. But seriously, this Horror show had some good potential. I feel like the show is off to a good start if the show runners decide to return next year. I have three offerings for any future shows: 1.) Add at least two big name guests to the roster (why was Jeffrey Combs at Sac-Con but not Days of Terror?), 2.) Add some panels (were there any this year?), 3.) Get some vendors! If there's empty space, please offer it for a low dollar amount to any creative talent willing to sign aboard last minute (the amount of empty space in the vendor room was pathetic to say the least). Also, did Rebekah McKendry attend the event? I looked high and I looked low but Alas! no Miss McKendry was found.


As weird as Days of Terror turned out, Sac-Con turned out even weirder. But in the best possible way.

According to the Sac-Con home page there were over 1900 attendees at this September's event. And holy crap did it feel like it. I've never in my life walked into a Sac-Con feeling like I was transported to WonderCon. Man oh man, did it feel good! Energy was flowing from the guests, from the vendors, and especially from the attendees. People were not just there, people were happy to be there.

My first surprise of the day was to find the extremely talented independent artist Z. E Pangborn. While on the ride to Sac-Con, I related to my friend Thomas how gorgeous this artist's work was and how happy my girlfriend was with his creations. So happy that she desires to decorate an entire room with his art. How surprised I was to see his work once more at this year's Sac-Con. It turns out that Pangborn is a local to Northern California. If you take a look at how intricate his penciling is you'll immediately know how worthy he is of the comic book medium. If any editors of Heavy Metal are reading this, scout this man's talent now!


The vendor floor at this quarter's Sac-Con was filled with surprises. Comic books, video games, toys--pick your poison, because everything was there. It seriously felt like a mini-ComicCon. I staggered around through the crowds big-eyed wondering where to go first. As luck would have it, I found an amazing Creature from the Black Lagoon toy I had never imagined finding there and then. Maybe at Days of Terror, but not so much Sac-Con. This Creature toy stands more than 12" tall and is a perfect addition to my collection. The most special part about it is that I've seen it being auctioned on ebay before but never realized the superior, gargantuan size. The asking price for this beast was $25. My offer of $20 was gladly accepted.


One of the many talents featured at this Sac-Con was Mick Gray (inker on Promethea and the current Batman and Robin) whom I tend to find in attendance at most conventions in California. Slowly but surely Mick has been kind enough to sign most of my Promethea issues. I promised his wife I would help spread the word about their latest endeavor--to build an eco-friendly solar powered roof. Donations start at $5 and work their way up to $200. Of course there are some pretty sweet rewards if you choose to donate. Check it out here.


While walking around the convention floor I saw many cosplayers dressed as Adventure Time characters who were definitely excited to meet voice actress Hynden Walch (Princess Bubblegum in Adventuretime and Starfire in New Teen Titans). I also overheard one attendee just ecstatic to have met actor Jeffrey Combs (Re-Animator, Frighteners, Star Trek Enterprise). The attendee couldn't stop glowing over his signed Re-Animator poster. I went back into the depths of the vendor room and came out with two more affordable finds. I've longed to read The Upturned Stone by Scott Hampton and bargained the hardcover copy for $5. I also found a copy of Paul Chadwick's Concrete for $4 that I haven't read just yet. Both are well worth the price paid.

All in all, this has been the best Sac-Con I've ever attended. Although Days of Terror was a bit of a bust, the amount of face time with the guests and artists, was well worth making an appearance. To see Sac-Con grow in attendance like this only gives me hope that one day Days of Terror will be a thriving attraction for horror fans in the Northern California area. And hopefully by then, Sac-Con will have grown to a much more appropriate size. You never know. There's no word of WonderCon returning to San Francisco. Someone has to fill it's shoes. 

Here we are on the hind leg of summer in California. One shake away from an unexpected migration into an autumnal world where all comic conventions retreat and go dormant before a barren winter. The beast that is San Diego ComicCon hibernates until roused next year. Relative newcomer Big Wow! recoups for 2013's battle in San Jose. And WonderCon appears to have gone AWOL... Is it North? Is it South? Only time can tell.

But one thing is for sure. This Sunday, September 30th, in Sacramento is the quarterly continuation of Northern California's most reliable and fan friendly convention, Sac-Con. Built with all the amenities as a large convention, Sac-Con offers panels and workshops, card game tournaments, cosplay competitions, vendors, and a distinct group of guests: Jeffrey Combs (Re-Animator, The Frighteners), Hynden Walch (Adventure Time, Teen Titans), Liam Sharp (Gears of War, Judge Dredd), Joshua Ortega (Gears of War 2, Gears of War), Morrie Turner (Wee Pals), Ron Lim (Silver Surfer, The Infinity Gauntlet), Mick Gray (Promethea, Batman and Robin), Skinner (Blood Wizard) and Rafael Navarro (Sonambulo).

If you miss the small, quaint atmosphere of an independent and local comic convention, I highly encourage you scout the talent and pleasantries at this hidden gem. For more Sac-Con brain food, click this.

Looks like this year's Sacramento Horror Convention has undergone a major face lift. Cousin to the quarterly Sac-Con in Sacramento, CA, Miss Misery's Days of Terror is a budding horror convention sure to douse all horror fans with buckets of blood and grotesque goodies. Besides a massive guest list (check out the list below), the convention will offer a costume contest, scream contest, and Friday night musical performances by First Jason and Dammit! This is one horror convention fans of the macabre will not want to miss!

Guests currently include Ari Lehmen (Friday the 13th), Amy Steel (Friday the 13th Part 2, April Fools Day), C. J Graham (Friday the 13th Part VI), Tom Fridley (Friday the 13th Part VI, The Karate Kid), Suze Lanier-Bramlett (The Hills Have Eyes, The Hills Have Eyes 2), Dominick Brascia (Friday the 13th V, Once Bitten), Eileen Dietz (The Excorcist, Helter Skelter), Lyn Lowry (The Crazies, Cat People, and Welcome to the Darkside) and more! To preorder your tickets now, visit the official website here.

Looks like Toyfusion (a wonderful hodge-podge toy consignment shop) is trying to start an annual tradition in Sacramento, CA. This September 23rd will mark the first Action Figure, Toy, and Collectible show at the Scottish Rite Center. Check out their web page for more information here.

If you find yourself bored with the Olympics and jonesing for some pop culture mayhem, make the trip to Stockton, CA tomorrow and check out the first ever Stockton-Con. Special guests include Morrie Turner, JD Arnold, Mark Dos Santos, Tony Fleecs, Kathy Garver, Timothy Green, Rich Koslowski, Tone Rodriguez, Mel Smith, Stan 152, Ken Thomas, Tim Vigil, Nathan Watson, and more! Doors open at 10am at the Alex G. Spanos Center at the College of the Arts. For more info, check the posters below or go to the official website here.

Coming this Saturday August 4th from 12pm-3pm at Heroes and Villains Comics in Pleasanton, CA, late night TV personalities Balrok del Cavo and No Name will attend a premier release of the first ever Creepy KOFY Movie Time comic book. Beloved by many Bay Area horror buffs, the duo screens horror films on Saturday nights on KOFY (TV 20, Cable 13) and provides hilarious, insightful, and some times asinine commentary, much in the vein of Elvira's Movie Macabre and Mystery Science Theater 3000. What's the difference? CKMT features plenty of fresh talent from the bay: comedians, artists, strippers, musicians, scientists, you name it. This makes CKMT one of the most culturally significant variety shows in the area. Suck on that, America's Got Talent.

Appearing alongside the celebrated hosts will be the comic creators Manuel MartinezJohn HagemanLazy BonesSLOBStephon TaylorMel Smith and more show personalities like Webberly Rattenfink. Don't miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity to meet this bunch of creative creatures. And with a cover illustration by The Boys' artist Darick Robertson, the comic appears to be an impressive creation all on it's own. For more information on the signing, look down below! For more info on CKMTclick here!

The name "Alamo Drafthouse" holds a special place in the hearts of many movie goers and film enthusiasts. Unfortunately this paramount theater company, whose spectacular offerings in service, swag, and cinema, are limited to their home state of Texas. Only four other states in the country offer an Alamo Drafthouse theater. That is, until next year.

Announced last week, CEO and Founder Tim League confirmed intentions of opening an Alamo Drafthouse in the New Mission theater in San Francisco, CA late next year.

"With the possible exception of Austin, San Francisco is my favorite city in the world. My parents met there, I was born in Berkeley, and my wife was working in the city before I begged her to come help me start my first theater venture in Bakersfield, CA," said Alamo CEO and Founder Tim League. "There is no accident that the first theater outside of Austin that my wife and I pursued is in San Francisco."

Earning the title of "Best Theater Ever" from Time and called "the coolest theater in the world" by Wired, San Franciscans and bay area residents are a lucky few to receive such an honor. 

Congratulations San Francisco, you just leveled up!

In my own personal interest, with an Alamo Drafthouse nearby to my current residence, this should make the procurement of Mondo posters that much easier. For those that don't know, Mondo posters are the artistic and creative brethren to Alamo Drafthouse theaters. Just check out some of their spectacular creations below: 



My Friend Went to Comic-Con and All I Got Was... by Ryan King


I want to take this moment to thank my good friend Jarrett for taking the time out of his first Comic-Con to pick me up this stunning treasure. Gee, what a pal! Any other SDCC absentees have an extraordinary friend bring home a gift or two? Do share.

It Came from Comic-Con 2012! by Ryan King

As I write this, the festivities of Comic-Con 2012 are coming to a close. I'm sure there are many unfortunate souls who could not attend this comic book/entertainment mecca in San Diego (count me in the majority) and most have looked forward to every minutia of news coverage--I would love to see the last five day site-traffic record for Bleeding Cool, Comic Book Resources, IGN, Comics Alliance, and Coming Soon right about now ( I bet I visited each more than 50 times a day).  Now that the road of reportage seems to have come to a close, I would like to recap some of the most significant news I've read in the last several days and give my thoughts on the matter. (*SPOILERS* Some spoilers from the film Prometheus will be found below. This is your first warning. *NOTE* This is a list based on MY interests and opinions. If you saw something at SDCC that made your eyeballs melt out of their sockets, please comment down below.)

1.) Neil Gaiman and JH Williams III Bring New Sandman

What do you get when you mix two of comics most genius and inventive creators to ever touch the medium? Hopefully the answer is this next installment (or possible prequel) to the DC Sandman comics. In my opinion, anything JH Williams III touches is beautifully stylized. I would personally like to challenge the man to draw a crappy picture of something. Maybe an onion...or a dead seagull...or how about George W. Bush taking a shit in a port-a-potty... Anyway, my point is he can't do a bad job and I suspect this new project will be a masterpiece. 
2.) Creepy Movie Announced, Christopher Columbus Directs

Horror anthology films have a manner of failing miserably at the box-office: CreepshowTales from the DarksideTrick R' Treat, and Grind House. Although each one holds a special place in my heart, for some stupid reason many people refuse to see them. Good thing director Christopher Columbus doesn't give a crap about the statistics and has decided to move ahead with turning the classic horror comics into a 4-part anthology film. Now, the question we must all ask, which stories should they adapt for the screen?

3.) Trailer for Sam Raimi's Oz the Great and Powerful

It's been three years since Raimi's 2009 film Drag Me to Hell and that's too damn long a absence. Thankfully we have this magnificent little trailer for Oz the Great and Powerful to fill the void Raimi's set upon us. My current fear for Oz is how much influence Disney has on the production of the film. I can already tell from the trailer alone that they're catering to a 3D (yaaaaaaaawwwwnn) audience and are making the film similar to Tim Burton's love-it-or-hate-it version of Alice in Wonderland. Only time will tell.

4.) Quentin Tarantino Makes Django Unchained Comic Mini-Series

Tarantino announced that a 5-issue comic book mini-series of Django Unchained would premiere in time for his movie, set to release on Christmas Day. On one part, I'm completely ecstatic to see one of Tarantino's creations put in the comic medium. My only disappointment comes from the decision for DC Comics to publish the mini-series. Which only means you can bet your sweet, little ass this comic will be loaded with more advertisements than you could possibly imagine.


One of the biggest Comic-Con mysteries to date is finally answered. The rumor of a new American Godzilla movie has finally been confirmed and after years of waiting for some news we can definitely confirm Monsters director Gareth Edwards is leading this production with Legendary Pictures. My only wish is for the trailer to go public and appear sometime this week, or preferably alongside this week's The Dark Knight Rises premier.

6.) Prometheus Toys ***SPOILERS***

NECA toys unveiled a second wave of Prometheus toys to be released some time within the year. I personally LoVeD the film and would be more than happier to own one of the pre-xenomorphs shown down below. The first series is slated for a September release, with the second to follow in December.


7.) Comic Book Men Season 2

Maybe this wasn't announced at this year's Comic-Con but it was certainly confirmed; a second season of AMC's Comic Book Men will appear in October alongside The Walking Dead. And thank goodness! For all the bad publicity this show got thanks to Comics Alliance, I believe this show continues to spark interest in the comic and collector culture. This is just the kind of crazy antic show that comics need to survive in this unemployed-eat-unemployed world. For all the naysayers who believe the show paints a bad picture of comic book shops, how about redirecting some of that rage on the 20 plus seasons of Simpsons who features one of the most damning stereotypes--the Comic Book Guy.

8.) Eric Powell Kickstarts The Goon Film

After finally succumbing to the demand of his fans, The Goon creator Eric Powell announced he will create a Kickstarter page to help finance The Goon film. What sounds like a dubious battle could certainly be the ultimate way to finalize the film. Email to receive a notification when The Goon kickstarter goes live.

9.) Hellboy 3 on the way?

From what I understand, Ron Perlman wants to do it and Guillermo Del Toro wants to do it. But considering Guillermo Del Toro has umpteen projects in the works, the chances of seeing Hellboy 3 a reality sometime soon is too far away. From the way Perlman talks about the story for the third movie it will definitely be worth the wait.

10.) Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy

In all honesty, I'm never balls-to-the-wall crazy for superhero movies. Captain America--good movie. Thor--too slow for my liking. The Avengers--fun to watch but could use some editing. The Amazing Spiderman--didn't I see this movie already? One of the recent movie announcements Marvel added to their roster is Guardians of the Galaxy. What exactly do I know about the film? Well, there's Rocket Raccoon and Groot, and some characters you see below. Yup, that's all I really know. From the looks of the concept art alone, this film could mark a resurgence in sci-fi adventure films, which is just what I'm hoping for. Maybe, just maybe, Marvel will trim down on the expected quota of superhero tropes but hopefully this film dives into the territory John Carter and Prometheus began to explore.

That's right folks. This beauty of a poster says it all (and there's a second poster down below). If you're looking for more specifics, you can find the official website here which includes the entire guest list and schedule of events. Check it out now!

First Saturday in May is Free Comic Book Day! by Ryan King

Which happens to be only a day away! Free Comic Book Day is a wonderful free family event that happens at all fine comic book retailers. Tomorrow marks the 10th anniversary of the event with a large crop of comics to choose from--over 40 total. What titles are you looking toward? Here are several comic titles I definitely cannot wait to read:

Mouse Guard, Labyrinth, Cursed Pirate Girl, etc., 
published by Archaia Entertainment

Mega Man
published by Archie Comics

Drawn & Quarterly

published by Rebellion

published by Valiant Entertainment

JH Williams and W. Haden Blackman Talk 'Batwoman' at Blue Moon Comics by Ryan T. King

W. Haden Blackman (left) and J.H. Williams III (right)
hold a signed copy of Batwoman #1

Last Saturday marked a signing event at Blue Moon Comics in the bay side city of San Rafael, CA, where the writers of the current Batwoman series signed fans beloved comics. Although the dreary rain may have turned some fans away from getting artist/writer JH William III and writer W. Haden Blackman's autograph, nothing could stop me from making an hour's drive to meet this talented duo. After getting a number of my comics signed and viewing JH's phenomenal artistry (plus sneak peeks at issue twelve's artwork--fans will flip when they find out which DCU star Batwoman is teaming up with), I sat down with these award winning creators to discuss their current and forthcoming work on Batwoman. Find out more about J.H. William III's career jump to writing, the use of supernatural urban legends in BatwomanAmy Reeder's recent exit from the project, and reactions to newly appointed Batwoman artist Trevor McCarthy in the interview below: 

Ryan King: I’m here with JH Williams III and W. Haden Blackman, the creative writers behind DC’s Batwoman series. To begin, I would like to thank the both of you for taking the irreplaceable time out of your day to speak with the readers at Go Suck A Comic. Thank you!

JH Williams III: Sure, you bet.

RK: Many fans of the new Batwoman series were introduced to Kate Kane and her alter ego through the Batwoman: Elegy story arc written by Greg Rucca. JH, you provided the pencils for Rucca’s run on Batwoman, but now you are back with the title of artist and co-writer. How do you feel breaking the reigns as an artist and co-scripting the series with Haden?

J3: Oh, it’s fantastic. I mean, you know, writing is something I’ve always wanted to explore and I did a little bit of it earlier in my career but this is really, I feel like, my full real opportunity to have a real say about how a series moves and stuff. And being able to work with Haden as a partner I’m learning a lot too. Something I was talking about earlier with somebody else is that as an artist it takes longer to produce a piece of art so I kind of get to sit with an idea longer so my thought process works a little differently that way. But with writing, I am having to learn a lot about being able to think of more ideas more rapidly. So yeah, it’s been fantastic. 

RK: Haden, you’re certainly not an amateur in this industry. Your career has spanned 13 years working for Lucas Arts on many Star Wars comic titles and now you write for DC Comics. Did you have any hesitations prior to making the jump to DC and following in Rucca’s footsteps?

W. Haden Blackman: No, I mean…well, there are kind of two separate things in terms of  moving over to DC. All along I wanted to always do superhero comics (for lack of a better term), so for me it was just really exciting to get that opportunity. More importantly I always wanted to work with Jim. We’ve known each other for well over a decade now and have always wanted to do something together and when this opportunity came together it was kind of a perfect fit. In terms of following after Rucca, honestly had I thought about it more and had we had more time, it was kind of a whirlwind thing when they asked us to take over the series when it got announced—

J3: We had to decide within 24 hours.

HB: Yeah, so the issues we had done, we had pitched them a limited series with Batwoman as one of the characters and they green lit that and we were moving ahead with that because no one knew exactly what was going to happen with the ongoing yet. And then it became clear that Greg wasn’t going to sign on to do the ongoing so they came in and asked us to do the ongoing and then take our limited series and fold it into the ongoing which will actually be arc three. Which as Jim said, I believe we only had 24 hours to make that decision, so had I any more time to think about it, I would have gotten more nervous. But really we’re just trying to do our own thing and respect what came before and not compete with it.

RK: So you mentioned previously that you guys new each other for about what, ten years before this?

HB: Yeah.

RK: My next question is how did the two of you come together to write Batwoman? Were you both friends before the experience and did DC simply pair you together or did you come together to pitch this idea?

J3: No, we’ve known each other for a long time and we came at them with it. Basically Haden and I, the first thing we did together was shortly after this time where we met in San Diego—a bunch of Star Wars guys got together with a bunch of comics guys and had dinner and stuff and geeked out on each other and it was fun and cool, you know—and I hit it off and exchanged phone numbers and stuff, and I somehow—I don’t remember how it came up—but this Hellboy: Weird Tales thing was happening, like mini-series stuff, and they asked Haden and I if we wanted to do anything.

HB: I was doing a lot of work for Dark Horse at the time on Star Wars so Scott Allie, who is the editor of the Hellboy stuff asked me if I wanted to write a Hellboy story and he knew that I knew Jim, so I think it was really kind of a ploy to try and get Jim to do a Hellboy story. So he said, ‘Hey, would you like to do a Hellboy story with Jim doing the art.’ And I was like, ‘Sure!’ So then we got on the phone and talked a little—

J3: Yeah, we kind of worked on the story together on that a little bit so it was kind of like we seemed like we seemed like we had this cool easy report of each other and after that was done—this short, little 8 page, 10 page tale or whatever— and surely after that I called him up and said, ‘You know, I really had a great time of doing that. Let’s do some more stuff.’ I said, ‘I have ideas for creator owned stuff if you have ideas for creator owned stuff. Let’s kind of marry some things together.’ And so ever since then we’ve actually been developing our own stuff in the backgrounds. We have numerous different concepts that hopefully will see the light of day someday. We were always kind of working on those ideas when Greg decided to leave Batwoman and DC said, ‘Hey.’ At the time I was telling DC I wanted to do more writing, get back into that, and they were like, ‘Well, how about this? Greg is leaving, you want to take over? Let’s bring Haden along.’ I literally like called him up and was like, ‘You want to do this or what?’ And he was like, ‘What we have to decide right now?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah!’

HB: And the next day we were doing the press release, right? It was crazy. It was good though.

J3: Actually, it was kind of nightmarish because DC wanted the jump on the press release and I’m like, ‘What!? Hold up! I mean, we don’t even have a story yet!’

HB: Well the good news though is that we did have that limited series which I think—you know, it’s so much annoying the way the industry works. We pitched this twelve issue limited series that was set in the DCU but with a lot of new characters that got a lot of attraction at DC. And then meanwhile we started working on this 5 issue series of Batwoman just because Jim in particular really wanted to make sure Batwoman was kept in the public consciousness and was kept alive and people were going to do stuff with it. So that got green lit and we were working on that. But the fact that we were kind of already working on Batwoman in a way made it easier but no one’s going to see that story until arc 3 and we actually changed it quite a bit because it’s no longer an isolated little thing.

RK: So arc 3 will actually be the original?

HB: It will be based on that original series, yeah.

J3: The core elements of it are based on the original but we kind of picked at its bones as the genesis for everything that we set up and do at the beginning so we can feed into this bigger picture and that will turn over into arc 4 and 5 and so forth.

RK: JH, you certainly have one of the strongest visual prowesses in the comic book industry when it comes to panel design and page layout. Your work with Alan Moore on Promethea showcased the bulk (but certainly not all) of your artistic abilities. What is it like to step back in the creative role as a writer?

J3: It’s very daunting in a lot of ways. As he knows I fret a lot [laughs]. It’s kind of a tricky balance for me because I know I have a lot to learn and at the same time I have something to say. It’s one of those things I kind of want to stay at, now that I’ve gotten a big taste of it, I don’t ever want to let that go. I’m sure there will be projects in the future where I’m just going to be stepping back and being just the artist on. But hopefully I’ll be writing something else that I am not the artist on while that’s taking place or whatever. Just the whole thing is pretty cool. It will be interesting to see what people think of the writing over time as all the pieces come start to come out.

RK: Would you say that working on those 32 issues of Promethea and seeing Alan Moore’s scripts has helped you at all?

J3: Yes and no [laughs].

HB: [Sarcastically] Have you ever seen one of Alan Moore’s scripts?

J3: It’s a double-edged sword question. It certainly has taught me what a professional script should be like. But at the same time, we’re already getting the reputation of having really dense scripts like Alan is known for. But we are nowhere near Alan’s density. The scripts for Promethea were like reading novellas every month. I feel like our scripts, what they developed into over the course of working with Batwoman is we’re somewhere more dense than Rucca, but not as dense as Alan. And what’s interesting to me is people, just more than us have seen these scripts, higher ups at DC have seen these scripts and other professionals have seen these scripts and stuff and they’re actually quite surprised how dense they are and how thought out they are. What fascinates me about that is that I don’t think people have seen scripts quite like this in quite a while.

HB: Well I think some of too might come from the fact that Jim does the art for arc 1 and arc 3 right? So I think that maybe there was an expectation that we would be really light on the panel description because Jim already has it in his head or something like that but it was actually kind of the opposite where—and Jim really drove this—we wanted to make the panel descriptions be 1.) something that would be kind of fun to read, in case these ever show up in print but 2.) start practicing for when there was an artist other than Jim and we were communicating clearly. And I think the thing we probably wrestle with the most is that there is that fine line communicating clearly and over communicating and stuff so I think that’s where we try not to be too dense but—

J3: It still happens.

HB: It still happens, yeah.

J3: Particularly whenever we change a scene or are out for something very particular, we’re going to have something to say about it. I guess that’s where working with Alan for six plus years kind of spoiled me on what I think comic strips should have. But in a good way. I look at [the Batwoman scripts] and I’m proud of what they look like as actual entities unto themselves and I also think for us we wanted to set up that we needed to know all this works on paper because we have so many different pieces and layers of Batwoman stuff that doesn’t see fruition up until through the 3rd arc or beyond, some things. We needed to know all those pieces fit properly and so that probably had a lot to do with it.

HB: So at that point the script is only one component of the writing process, right? We do a lot of brain storming and then we write up a kind of story synopsis that DC has to approve for an arc and then I actually take that an put that into an Excel spreadsheet [laughs] and kind of break it down scene by scene to make sure we’re hitting all the big beats of the story and that no scene is wasted and that—we’re absolutely paranoid about page count—we want to make sure we have enough room to tell the story and enough room to let the scenes breath. Sometimes we’re more successful with that than at other times so for me I get really, you know, ‘I want to make sure this fits in [20 pages].’ That was a big change for us actually. When we first began working on the series, we had outlines done for all three arcs and we had page breakdowns done for at least the first four or five issues of the first arc and the first couple issues of the second arc. And then the page counts went from 22 to 20 pages, and it doesn’t seem like it’s a big deal but it’s like losing two pages—

J3: Over time.

HB: So actually, I’m almost embarrassed to tell the story that I put these things in the Excel spreadsheet but I’m really glad I did do that because then we could go back and it becomes like this puzzle how you move stuff around and rather than it being buried in all these documents it’s all right there in one column. And I can say, ‘Well if we take a page from this scene, we get an extra page back from another scene.’

J3: Yeah and a lot of that process, the decision process on like, how many pages we think we might need for such and such scene is kind of decided over the phone. We have phone conversations about that part. When we actually get to the actual script writing either of us will take different scenes and do a first draft of and then we swap.

HB: Then we go back and forth.

J3: And usually it’s we’ve got it down to maybe three and four drafts now before we finalize which is pretty good. Finalization is usually over the phone where we kind of like either have certain points that we are disgruntled about or we need to solve questions or certain dialogue needs tweaking. We’ll be able to solve those issues over the phone.

HB: And normally what happens is that it will be like—what I find really nice—is that there will be something that bothers both of us in some way and maybe we can’t figure out why or whatever. So rather than roll over and live with whatever is there we just brain storm on how to make it better. And for me that’s the best part about the collaboration. We’ve gotten to the point where I feel eighty percent of the script regardless of who has written the first pass of the scene is pretty solid and then there’s that twenty percent that we’re kind of uncomfortable with but that’s where we focus all our energy. I went back and I looked, I think we wrote ten drafts of issue one?

J3: Right.

HB: And now we’re down to three or four drafts. And it’s just because we’re getting more comfortable working together and we’re figuring it out. There will be times where I just leave something misplaced only because I know Jim is going to come up with something better than whatever. Or vice versa. Whereas a lot of times Jim will put in stub dialogue and I go through and write a passive dialogue that is more real and we do another turn on it. We do a lot of dialogue work over the phone.

J3: The other cool thing, and very interesting from a creative point of view, is a lot of times most comics are written by one writer so that person has to make all of the decisions and live with those decisions. Where with us, one of us will have an annoyance but the other person might have a counter perspective that the other one wasn’t thinking about and what’s always fascinating to me about that is that we’ll have disagreements in a way about certain scenes and what’s fascinating is how we talk them out or talk them through we end up with something stronger than either individual points cause you’ll end up with it’s sort of marriage of the two things. It’s really cool.

RK: Within the first seven issues of Batwoman, the series offers an eclectic rogues gallery that includes the likes of La Llarona, Bloody Mary, and Killer Croc. These are horrifying villains, built from fear and nightmares found in urban legends. Whose idea was it to incorporate these modern myths into the series?

J3: Oh, I don’t know.

HB: Yeah, I can’t remember.

J3: It came from both of us in a way.

HB: Yeah, I’m a huge horror buff. I mean I worked on Star Wars for a really long time but my first love has always been horror, ever since I was a kid the movies I gravitated forward and the books I read. I wrote a book on monsters fresh out of college and they focus a lot on urban legends. Weeping Woman for me was always a very powerful figure. There was this whole chapter in [The Field Guide to North American Monsters]. So I always knew I wanted to bring that into some comic book work somewhere. I’m not sure where we came up with the idea that Gotham would be a really great boiling pot for all this stuff. But the idea basically was that there’s all these urban legends that we all know and they would run rampant in Gotham and Gotham is a place where these things seem to come alive. And then once we had the idea of the Weeping Woman then it became a natural. We’re like, ‘Let’s build  a whole rogue’s gallery around the other urban legends. Like the Hook and Bloody Mary, and Killer Croc is really—

RK: The giant alligators in the sewer.

HB: Yeah.

J3: Yeah, and the fun part is you have the basics of the urban legends or folklore myth or whatever, and find new ways to say, ‘Okay, that’s the basis of the myth.’ What do we add to it that wasn’t there?

HB: Yeah, to make it cool.

J3: Yeah, so like with the Hook, as the story develops some of the things you find out about the Hook and learn what the Hook actually is, you’re like, ‘That has nothing to do with the original urban legend.’ But it gives it a little bit more meat in subtext so it can have longevity beyond the superficial urban legend, you know what I mean? But I think a lot of that stuff we both have this real interest in stuff that spooks you. Cause particularly superhero comics you don’t see a lot of that in superhero comics.

HB: There were a couple things when we first started working on Batwoman where we said we wanted it to feel different from Batman and all the other Batman books, right? So one of the hallmarks was we wanted her to deal with more of the supernatural side of Gotham than Batman does and so that became a natural fit to get on the urban legend up.

J3: And on a metaphorical level when you think about that Batwoman’s villains are myth, we’re building all this stuff around the idea of mythology. What is mythology? And what I like about that metaphorically in terms of who Batwoman is we’re wanting Batwoman to be this legacy character, to have this mythology of herself. So the fact that—I don’t think there is any coincidence that we came upon the idea of pitting her up against mythical beings. So it’s like you know how Batman, over twenty years, forty years, has become this very mythical, iconic character culturally? And so in some ways Batwoman needs to have that too but through a different perspective.

RK: Issue six marked the beginning to a new story arc titled “To Drown the World.” One of the most distinct differences between this story arc and the former “Hydrology” relies in its storytelling technique. Whose decision was it to deviate from a linear progression and attempt this Tarantino-esque narrative?

J3: I don’t know.

HB: This is my recollection of it: when we mapped it out it was linear, like all of our synopsis and I think Jim first raised the issue that it might, because some of the stories first start off a little slow, that it might not grab readers the way we want it to. So at first we talked about let’s just “bookend” it; so the beginning and end of each issue will just be the last sequence of Batwoman fighting Falcione and his forces. And then we started talking about that we want to experiment with this book every turn and always be challenging ourselves. So rather than just have bookends let’s have all the stories take place in kind of different points in time. The key though, and the reason why I think that it will work, and we’ll be completely honest with you, we’ve got mixed feedback on it—some people really love it and some people don’t love it so much—but I think that the reason why it ultimately will work when people read all of the issues together is that we made the conscience decision that no matter where each of the stories take place in time, they all move forward linearly. So it’s not like Jacob’s story in the first issue of the arc takes place here and then on a Wednesday and then the next part of the story takes place the previous Tuesday. It’s like everything moves forward in a linear way. So you can ignore even the jumping around in time and still get the story.

J3: The only thing that’s out of time sequence honestly is the end caps. That’s the only thing when you really break it down. The other thing I find interesting is the format is it allows different reveals to happen in a different sort of way. If it had been told in a more traditional manner it would be kind of dry. And honestly a lot of it has to do with because we are dealing with a James Bondian type of plot in the context of a superhero comic and I’ve read plenty of those kind of stories in comics and a lot of times what happens when you’re reading that type of story that’s broken up into months rather than broken up into a graphic novel, let’s say, they read very dryly because all the juiciest bits, all the big bang stuff doesn’t happen till like the second to last chapter. So we were like, ‘Well, how do we get each to see this bang to kind of spice it up?’ One of the things I’ve always been intrigued by is—I’m a huge Tarantino fan, I love the way he’s able to take a story a part and reconfigure it and then in turn what happens is that story becomes much more compelling because of its organization. And we knew it was going to be challenging. We were super nervous all the way to writing the last script, we were like so nervous to people’s reactions to it. So the mix feelings that we’re getting from it isn’t surprising to me at all but that’s like in my blog stuff I’ve been trying to tell people to just be patient. Ultimately besides the end caps it is in linear fashion where it’s like little mini-sodes of each character and it will build into a whole piece.

HB: And I think what it allows—there’s kind of two things I like about it—1.) that it allows us to really focus on these kind of shorter scenes, quieter moments, like the Jacobs scenes for example. For me the reasons those work is because there are these little bite size interstitials that go on throughout the rest of the story but you almost kind of let go at trying to figure out how everything pieces together and you just enjoy each scene for what it is. Each scene, almost every scene, has some kind of dramatic little arc, some little bit of growth for the characters, or little bit of change for the characters once you pack them all together will show a more dramatic character arc. So there’s that and then there’s just those nice moments which Jim kind of touched upon where something might get referenced and then you’re seeing these kind of puzzle pieces coming together. My favorite is Killer Croc in issue 7 he’s with Marrow and he’s talking, ‘Hey, you promised you’re going to make me big time.’ And we don’t really know what that means and then later in that issue we see Killer Croc again but he’s like—it’s clearly later in time—and he’s like this crazy mutant monster and you’re like how’d he get that way? Well, [readers] don’t know yet because we haven’t revealed yet and maybe we will as this arc goes on. But you get to see those moments in the first one when Kate gets gutted by the Hook from the very beginning of the issue and you’re like, what’s going to happen to her, then you see she gets this suit that is kind of bullet proof from the D.E.O. and then you come back to her and you’re like she’s clearly not going to be gutted because she has the suit. So being able to do that stuff feels very Tarantino in a way.

J3: The other fun part for me is its allowed us to do something that you don’t normally get to see. The first arc introduced the Weeping Woman. First you think it’s just a basic ghost story intermixed with all this other personal life stuff and Batwoman’s life stuff spliced in. But then at the end of that story you find out, ‘No, wait there’s something bigger happening here.’ So issue six we have that first scene in the barrios where we introduce him and the fact that that scene takes place before the events of issue one is very fascinating. You don’t normally get to see that sort of thing but what that does when people take the time and think about it that shows that this thing is far reaching.

WB: There is another scene coming up in one of the issue that basically—there is a scene in one of the first arc—it is the aftermath of an event that we’re actually going to show in this arc. So it’s stuff like that that’s really fun to get to do.

J3: Yeah, yeah. And I like the idea of—not only is it challenging for us to see if we can make it all work. When all six chapters are done, does it actually all work? It’s challenging for us and also challenging for the reader too and I’m not interested in comics or doing any comics that don’t try to push something. If it doesn’t work, it didn’t work. It doesn’t mean it wasn’t worth trying.

RK: A couple months ago, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) nominated Batwoman for a GLAAD Award in the category of Outstanding Comic Book. Batwoman previously won two years ago in the 21st annual GLAAD awards. How does it feel to receive a second nomination from the gay and lesbian community?

J3: I think it’s just tremendous. It really shows that people see we’re very seriously committed to trying to show this character in a very positive light. Not just as a superhero role model but as a human role model. I think that’s really what it says to me.

HB: For me it’s gratifying because I came out approaching it saying I don’t want her to become an icon in the sense that she becomes untouchable. In some ways you have these characters that are iconic like Superman and Wonder Woman and I think that writers have a hard time with them sometimes because they are so iconic it’s hard to show them change or evolve or make mistakes. The best way to learn is by making mistakes. We all make that decision. When I came at it and we started working on this I really kind of made a commitment to myself that I didn’t want to be afraid to show her making mistakes and being a real person just because she has become this icon. And I think that that has allowed her to feel more human as a result of all the positive response we’ve got or awards like this. And it’s not going to change. She makes bad decisions just like the rest of us do and hopefully she learns from them and that’s pretty much the key. She’s not going to be perfect and we’re not going to put her on a pedestal ever.

J3: She’s multifaceted, you know? Just the fact that [GLAAD] recognized what Haden and I are trying to show this strong, positive relationship between her and Maggie Sawyer is so, so key. I mean, we have long term plans for this and it’s something I honestly think is missing out of a lot of other comics, whether they’re gay or straight comics characters or not.

HB: It’s so easy to fall into that trap of how it’s so difficult to balance the life of a superhero and a romantic.

J3: That’s why you should explore it.

HB: Exactly. We didn’t want to fall into that trap at all. We said, ‘Kate’s got a chaotic like. Maggie’s got a chaotic life. There are people in this world that are like that that have managed to forge strong lasting, honest relationships and so that for us was the biggest thing. I don’t want it to be like them breaking up every other issue or, ‘Oh, god! You never have any time for me.’ Or whatever. It’s like they’re both busy professionals involved in really crazy stuff but yet they can still find a way to have an honest relationship. And that to me is super critical. And it’s not that they won’t have their challenges, you know? That’s a part of it too.

J3: I’m hoping that the people who are responsible for the GLAAD awards can see that as the stage progresses we’re definitely not after trying to show this lesbian couple in a superficial way. The idea of a gay character in a superficial way not at all. We wanted people to see this as any other character you’re trying to write dramatic stories about. I think it is so important instead of just over sex it up or anything along that line—

HB: Or again, make them too perfect.

J3: They need to be three dimensional beings, multifaceted beings.

RK:  Currently one of the most desirable details Batwoman fans wish to understand is the specifics regarding artist Amy Reeder’s sudden exit from the series. As most fans understand from the explicit details regarding John Rozum’s resignation from Static Shock, chances of hearing the reasons behind Reeder’s leave are slim to none and will remain vaguely abstract. Do you believe the public will ever learn the nature behind Reeder’s creative differences with the Batwoman team?

J3: Well there’s nothing I really want to say about it that should be said to the public. I mean, I know some parts of the public think they deserve to know because they spend their dollars on this stuff or whatever but ultimately, you know—

HB: Ultimately for me it’s a distraction from the work and Amy did some incredible work on the book and I don’t want anything to distract again from the work that she’s done. And I don’t want anything to distract from the work that Jim and I have done. And more importantly to distract from the character in the story we’re trying to tell. At the end of the day I don’t care if people remember the names of the folks that worked on the book. I care that they remember what Batwoman went through and that she was a compelling character that touched them in some way or was meaningful to them in some way. And all this other stuff is just distraction.

RK: Along with Reeder’s announcement of a detachment from Batwoman, DC announced artist Trevor McCarthy will replace her on the project. How do you expect readers will react to McCarthy’s artwork on Batwoman?

J3: I hope they love it! I mean, I’ve seen the first few pages and they’re pretty phenomenal. Granted he’s a lot different than Amy but he’s a lot different from me too, and Amy is different than me. I just hope people see quality work when they see it and they can recognize it. Hopefully they will like it, I don’t really know what else to say about it [laughs].

HB: For me, just as a comic books fan, I’ve seen the first couple pages come through and I’m just floored and I think its fantastic stuff. And I think that as Jim said it’s different than either of Amy or Jim’s work but it compliments it well so I don’t think that there’s going to be—when we see these things collected in trade paperback—a huge jarring like, ‘Oh, my God! We’ve gone from Amy to some—

J3: From Amy to some low grade—

HB: Yeah, right. That’s definitely what we don’t have, like the quality part. The quality is really high. It still feels within the Batwoman family.

RK: Speaking of the future issues of Batwoman, the series to date has included previous DC characters like Chase, Mr. Bones, Batman, Flamebird, and Col. Jacob Kane. What other entities from the DC Universe can fans expect to appear in the arcs to come?

J3: Well, we got Killer Croc that’s happening right now.

HB: It’s actually interesting, and I don’t think we actually consciously did this but the way you look at how the three arc unfold it’s really interesting. The first arc is really about reestablishing Batwoman and it’s about her very personal relationship and it’s about her and one villain and that kind of one on one dynamic and her relationship with her father. But it’s a very personal thing. And then with two, we kind of start to expand her role within Gotham. So we don’t see a ton of Gotham in the first one and really the only areas we reference are the barrios and that’s where a lot of action takes place. So with two we start to open up her role in Gotham, we start to introduce more villains and more characters within Gotham and show how she is impacted by Gotham and it fits into that kind of larger context by bringing in Killer Croc. And then in three, well she is a part of the greater DCU, right? So, [Jim is] going to kick me for using this term, but she’s teaming up with somebody in the 3rd arc. There’s another character, a big DC character, that’s involved in the storyline of the 3rd arc. It’s still very by determination [Batwoman’s] story and it’s something we’ve been planning from arc one and two, continuing over to arc three but now it’s more about how does she fit in the greater DCU.

J3: We didn’t do that intentionally. It just naturally evolved. The cool thing about the third arc, without saying who she’s going to be teamed up with—it’ll come out soon enough—that her story, Batwoman’s story, people will say, ‘Oh, things that Batwoman can do can impact things outside of Gotham.’ And the events that take place in this story, when you think about what’s happening, are world reaching and we’re making her a world character. And I think that’s going to be pretty darn cool.

HB: And the DEO is kind of the first step in that too.

J3: Yeah, and what I love so much about that is it’s a character like Batman himself who has become this world character has no superpowers. Yet the things that she does, the decisions that she can make can save nations.

RK: Do you guys expect any crossovers with Batwoman?

J3: No, there’s none planned.

HB: No. Again, in arc three there is a major DC figure in the comic with her but it’s not a direct crossover.

RK: Batwoman won’t appear in any other DC series at the moment?

J3: Not that I know of. Bones is appearing in an issue of Blue Beetle for an issue. And who knows, it’s very possible you might see Batwoman pop up as a guest star in other issues, who knows. But as far as any major event crossovers there are certainly nothing planned. But a part of that might be because we have to work on these stories so far in advance, it’s kind of hard to shoe in a crossover issue in the middle of a six issue story arc or whatever.

HB: I think we’re pretty protective of the character. I won’t say overprotective but I think we feel a lot of—ownership is too strong of a word because obviously it’s DC’s character—but we have a lot of pride in the work that we’ve done and I feel like we know her voice and understand who she is and we know what she would do, so we are very protective. I don’t know, maybe some people sense that [laughs].

RK: All right, gentlemen. Thank you so much!

J3: Sure thing.

HB: No problem.

Once again the quarterly San Jose Super Toy, Comic, & Collectible Show is happening for California bay area residents this Saturday. This smorgasbord of a collectible show is likely to fill the needs of anyone suffering from WonderCon deprivation. Special guests include Billy Dee Williams (Empire Strikes Back, Undercover Brother, Batman) ad Yvonne Craig (Batman; the TV series, Mars Needs Women). Tune in to Time Tunnel Toys website for more information.

'Horror Hound' Wants You To Vote For Best of 2011 by Ryan T. King

In the latest issue of HorrorHound magazine (issue #33), the boils and ghouls that staff the horror themed periodical want to know what your favorite highlights in the horror industry were for the year 2011. The nominations have been separated in eight different categories: Best Original/Theatrical Movie, Best Sequel/Remake Movie, Best Limited Release/Direct-to-DVD Movie, Best DVD/Blue-Ray Release, Best Collectible, Best TV Series, Best Gore Scene, Best Actress, Best Actor, and Best Director. A list of the nominations is provided below. You can email your pick (one vote per person) for each category to and when you're finished voting, make sure to vote for the Rondos too!

The nominees are:

The nominees are:

The nominees are:





The nominees are:

-Evil Dead 2: Special Edition (Lionsgate)
- Intruder (Synapse)
-Island of Lost Souls (Criterion)
-Mystery Science Theatre 2000 vs. Gamera
-Zombie: Ultimate Collection (Blue Underground)

The nominees are:

-Ghostbusters Ghost Trap (Mattel)
-Jason Voorhees (Sideshow Premium Format)
-The Munsters Action Figures (DST)
-A Nightmare on Elm Street Action Figures (NECA)
-Predator 1/4 Scale Figure (NECA)

The nominees are:

-American Horror Story
-Death Valley
-The Walking Dead

The nominees are:

-Drive-In Massacre (Chillerama)
-Party Attack (Dream Home)
-Human Pinata (Hobo With a Shotgun)
-Centipede Removal (Human Centipede 2)

The nominees are:

-Amanda Heard (The Ward)
-Bailee Madison (Don't Be Afraid of the Dark)
-Lin Shaye (Insidious)
-Mary Elizabeth Winstead (The Thing)
-Pollyanna McIntosh (The Woman)

The nominees are:

-Joel Courtney (Super 8)
-Nick Damici (Stake Land)
-Micahel Perkins (Red State)
-Min-sik Choi (I Saw the Devil)
-Rutger Hauer (Hobo with a Shotgun)

The nominees are:

-J.J. Abrams (Super 8)
-Jason Eisner (Hobo with a Shotgun)
-James Wan (Insidious)
-Joe Cornish (Attack the Block)
-Kevin Smith (Red State)

'Pete and Pete' Musician Collaborates With Cartoonist for a Multimedia Pop Opera, 'Up From the Stacks' by Ryan T. King
Premiers Thursday February 23rd in San Francisco, CA

For those of you unfamiliar with the name Mark Mulcahy, I am about to do you a big favor. Most fans instantly recognize him as singer/musician from the band Polaris--a small lived group that created musical tracks for the Nickelodeon cult classic, "The Adventures of Pete and Pete" (anyone who remembers the theme song, "Hey Sandy," will remember Mulcahy's iconic vocals). As former lead singer of the eighties band Miracle Legion, Mulcahy and his group were often compared and criticized as a copy of R.E.M. and were sadly ignored for any chance of real success. Now, over thirty years in the musical industry, more music lovers are rediscovering Miracle Legion, Polaris, and Mulcahy's solo albums and recognizing his lyrical creativity and innovation in the musical arts. But his art does not stop there.

Premiering February 23rd on the West Coast bay area, Mark Mulcahy and cartoonist Ben Katchor premier their multimedia pop opera Up From the Stacks at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco. Set in the 1970's Up From the Stacks is described as a story of "Lincoln Cabinee, a part-time page who retrieves books from the New York Public Library's vast collection. This mundane job unwittingly embroils him in the treacherous business of amusement and vice flourishing in Times Square." As a current employee of a public library, the description had me at "part-time page."

Mark Maculhy (left), Ben Katchor (right)

This is not Katchor's first time collaborating with Mulcahy. The two have worked together on past performances: A Checkroom RomanceNature's WeaknessThe Rosenbach CompanyThe Slugbearers of Kayrol Island, or, The Friends of Dr. Rushower, and Memorial City. Katchor is most known for his comic strips, which have appeared in The New YorkerMetropolis Magazine, and McSweeny's. Word on the street is the performance will consist of Mulcahy, accompanied by Ken MaiuriDavid Trenholm, and JJ O'Connell will sing in front of projected cartoons. Since Mulcahy rarely plays concerts now days, I highly recommend anyone fond of his music make sure to check this out. Tickets are still available and may be purchased here.

P.S. I've also heard a rumor there will be some kind of signing after the show. But you didn't hear that from me...

Voting Time - Who Deserves This Year's Rondo Awards? by Ryan T. King

The 10th annual Rondo Awards are upon us! Announced yesterday is the official ballot for this year's Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Awards--a horror, fantasy, science-fiction fan-based award ceremony. Created at the Classic Horror Film Boards (CHFB) in 2002 by David Colton and Kerry Gammill, this underground award ceremony has officially hit a decade run. The nominations are finalized after selecting suggestions from the likes of horror fans, pros, and enthusiasts offered year round at the CHFB. The nominees are finalized by founder David Colton (a classic horror fan) along with the help of 20 other classic horror fans from all over the world. Now that the list is available it it up to YOU to decide who should win this year's Rondos. To see this year's nominations and begin voting, look here.

The Rondo award is a miniature version of a Rondo Hatton
bust seen in the Universal film, House of Horrors.

Image Expo 2012 Program Announced by Ryan T. King

News arrived today that the official program for Image Expo is available for fans and lucky attendees' perusal. By the look of things, this will be one of the west coast comic conventions you won't want to miss. Hear that, WonderCon and ComicCon? Looks like you have some competition headed your way.

Occurring at the end of this month on February 24-26, Image Expo is Image Comic's official celebration of twenty years in the comic industry. The weekend event is sure to gain news coverage in the comic world with such heavy-hitter creators attending, such as Robert Kirkman, Brian K. Vaughan, Todd McFarlane, Eric Larsen, Jonathan Hickman, Ed Brubaker, Rob Liefeld, John Layman, Mel Smith, and a plethora of other talented names in the industry. 

I personally plan on attending this special weekend on behalf of Go Suck a Comic and Bleeding Cool. My coverage will vary depending on what panels and creators I find most interesting. However, I am not opposed to any suggestions or fan requests. I plan on taking many pictures, recording videos, and digesting as much comic-script writing advice I can take. Shoot me an e-mail ( or comment if you have anything you would like to ask the creators and publishers attending Image Expo. The official program is available for viewing here.

Meltdown in Berkeley--Nuclear Rabbit at Berkeley, CA by Ryan T. King

Hello everyone. Apologies for my lack of communications this past week or two. I'm in the midst of writing a comic/graphic-novel/picutre-book thing (whatever you want to call it) and unfortunately I'm trying to channel all my focus in that direction. So, sadly, I had to neglect you for a brief moment. 

Not to worry, not to worry.

I have news that will excite the most mundane person in the world: Steve Jobs is dead.

Okay, now that that's said and done, I can move on to the REAL news:

Come celebrate the death of Steve Jobs at the Gilman in Berkeley, CA this Saturday night! The headline act is an amazing group of musicians/noise-makers definitely worthy of the name Nuclear Rabbit. These guys play shows maybe once or twice a year, if that, so hop on this opportunity like you'd hop on a rocket to the moon, or whatever that means. Here's a quick 14 second clip from one of their gigs. And honestly, if you can't squeeze 14-measly seconds out of your life to watch it, then what in the God's name are you doing reading this blog?

For more information on the show, 924 Gilman, ticket purchases, and Steve Jobs dead, rotting carcass, click here. Cheers!

San Francisco's APE (Alternative Press Expo) Returns this October 1st and 2nd by Ryan T. King

With all my heart-pulsing eagerness and excitement for Sac-Con and the 47th Annual Big Book Sale happening this week, I nearly forgot to announce another indie/ convention. Good thing I remembered because this event is coming up fast and you don't want to miss it! On October 1st and 2nd, APE (Alternative Press Expo--a treasure trove of unique wonders and hom-made gewgaws made for all fans of indie comics and art) returns to the Concourse Exhibition Center in San Francisco, CA.

Special guests include: 

Kate Beaton (Hark! A Vagrant!)
Daniel Clowes (Ghost World, David Boring, Art Schol Confidential)

Craig Thompson (Blankets, Good-bye Chunky Rice, Habibi)

Matthew Thurber (1-800 Mice)
Adrian Tomine (Optic Nerve, Scenes from an Impending Marriage)
Shannon Wheeler (Too Much Coffee Man, The New Yorker)

If you claim to be a fan of independent comic book writers/artists/publishers and have NEVER attended APE, I strongly urge you to check it out. You will not leave the show unhappy. If anything you will gain humility for giving these starving artists the desired attention they need. For more information on programming and how to order tickets check out APE's official website here.

Dude, we're friends right? Like friend friends? Like a couple of young white boys from the early nineties, calling each other "Brothers from another mother" for the first time? Yeah. We're friends. At least that's how I see it.

And since we're friends, and seeing how we've known each other for such a long time, I thought I'd share a little secret. Of course, I don't know how secret this is anymore, seeing how the wind knows how to carry a tune--dee dat dat dee dat dat doo...


Oh, you still want to know that little secret of mine. Well, sure friend. Pull up a chair and sit a spell. Everyone loves a story. Especially you my friend. My friend...

This is a story about the Friends of the Library and a little book sale they've put together in San Francisco, CA. Alright, alright... Maybe the word "little" is a bit of an understatement, seeing how it is the largest book sale organized on the West Coast. Well, this "little: group of friends managed to round up a clever amount of unwanted, donated, and perfectly reusable books and media items to appease its general public at bargain rates. So little as $1, $2, or $3. Yes? That's right. The are a mighty group of friends. 

And for what reason have these friends come together? For what purpose do they share? Isn't there some feathered, maniacal shadow at work--for this must be a joke and some boogeyman waits to pounce. Or perhaps not? Perhaps things are as good as they sound? Because not all stories need a villian. And because all proceeds raised from this sale go to funding the San Francisco Public Library, where they are used to open new libraries, expand new and existing collections, benefit literacy programs and much more. But whomever--whomever in the world could this all be arranged for? Why non-other than you, my fiend. My friend...

Finally, something Cool is coming to Sacramento, CA> Yeah, that's right. Cool with a capital "C." Because where else in Northern California can you find a Sci-fi/Horror convention and a Comic/Toy/Anime show lumped into one amazing weekend? That's right, bitches. The answer is right here. 

This September 24th and 25th at the Scottish Rite Center will offer plenty of entertainment, amazing guests, and a glorious safe haven for all Northern Californian nerds for the low admission cost of $6 (childre ages 6 and younger are free).

Guests include:

Mike Mignola---creator/writer/artist of Hellboy, Abe Sapien, B.P.R.D., Baltimore, etc.

Marina Sirtis---actress from Star Trek: The Next Generation and voice of Desmona from Gargoyles

Sean Schemell---voice actor of Goku from Dragonball Z

Timothy Green II---artist of Annihilators, Skarr: Son of Hulk, Swamp Thing, etc.

Tad Williams---New York Times and London Sunday Times bestselling author

Mick Gray---Comic inker on Batman, Superman, Brightest Day, Promethea, The Flash, Green Lantern

Jim Sinclair---inker/illustrator for The Maxxx

and one of my personal favorites

Richard Moore---creator/writer/artist of Boneyard, Chip, Gobs, Fire and Brimstone, etc.

If you're still uninterested then I'm afraid nothing will persude your neanderthal-like mind. For more information on the events, directions, cost, hours, and all that technical mumbo jumbo, head over to and See you there!

Normally my Thursday nights involve lazily watching the NBC comedy lineup (The Office, Community, Parks and Rec) but if you haven't been on this planet in awhile it's still summer, and that means crappy repeats or boring reality television. So if you live in the Sacramento area of California, do yourself a favor this Thursday night and drive down to the Cabin in Elmira. Why? Because Jamie Havok presents Acoustic Night, where a grand concert of hollow stringed instruments ahll be held for the lowly cost of $5. The line-up includes Zombie Gaucho, Sean Ryan, Jamie Havok, and Lauren Lavine. BEWARE these artists know how to kill! They also know how to play acoustic guitar. Which one will be featured at the show, you ask? Well, you'll just have to go and find out for yourself.

Just thought I'd share a fun outing experience for anyone piss-stinking-bored this weekend. Time Tunnel Toys in San Jose, CA puts on a great toy and comic book show and it happens to be tomoorw--August 13th, 2011. The cost is cheap--*only $5 bucks*--and gives complete access to the Santa Clara County Fairgrounds where vendor upon vendor will sell you old and new oddities, because we all need more crap, right? Plus cool artists like Emonic are in attendance.

More info can be found at Time Tunnel Toy's website or their blog. And don't forget to check out Emonic's blog.