Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Indies June Part 1

Lee: Wow! This is a really light month. Normally, I’m finding tons and tons of good stuff to look at. But not this month! I’m still hopeful there will be cool stuff, but it’s not as much as usual.
Jim: I wonder if this is just a reflection of the way Diamond has changed their business model and therefore causing many small press people to re-think/ reformat what they are doing.

Aardvark Vanaheim
Cerebus Archive #2 (Zombie & Obama variant) by Dave Sim
A parody of the cover of the second issue of Cerebus, featuring both a Zombie Cerebus-in-Chains and a tribute from Canadas oldest (and most conservative!) comics publisher to Americas history-making President Obama (in Sims glamourpuss photo-realism style) marking the occasion of President Obamas first international trip -- to Canada -- on February 19, 2009. $15.00
Lee: Oh come on! It’s bad enough to have zombie covers but a zombie-Obama cover???? That’s just ridiculous.
Jim: I agree and what the hell is Cerebus Archives? Is Sim reprinting Cerebus as a regular comic or what. I used to enjoy Cerebus but lost track of it over the years. I would not mind seeing a definitive edition of the series, but this smacks of just being crap.

Adhouse Books
Johnny Hiro Vol. 01 SC by (W/A) Fred Chao
Part Action/Adventure, part Sci-Fi, part Romance, Johnny Hiro tells the story of the everyman and the challenges he faces. Challenges like the revenge of a big lizard, or the quest for a lobster, or what can happen when 47 ronin go to the opera. See why the comic was nominated for 4 Eisner Awards and a Russ Manning Award! $14.95 Visit Fred and see some art here there’s also a link to his blog.
Lee: I’m not sure what drew me to this book because it doesn’t sound all that interesting. But, as usual, I did some searches and now I’m totally hooked. This looks like a lot of fun.
Jim: I give Lee credit because by doing these searches and giving us these links you can really make a more informed decision as to whether to buy a book or not and it has certainly cost me a lot of money over the time Lee and I have been doing this.

Arcana Studio
Land of the Lost #1 by (W) Sean OReilly, Tony Lee (A) Various
Rick Marshall, his son Will, and younger daughter Holly are trapped in an alien world inhabited by dinosaurs, monkey-people called Pakuni, and aggressive, humanoid/lizard creatures called Sleestak. The familys struggle to survive and find a way back to their own world continues in this comic book series. Land of the Lost is also a 100 million budget film starring Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel coming from Universal Studios. $3.95
Lee: I’m surprised that Arcana has this title. With a big budget movie coming out, you would think Boom! or IDW would have the license. I am curious because this is a tv show from my childhood but I wonder if kids today will care.
Jim: I don't care at all. It was after my time, so I never even knew the show, the movie stars Will Ferrell who stopped being funny five seconds after his career started and this movie smells of lamness. Arcana maybe had the comic rights long before the movie ever got made. Arcana is the type of publisher who I worry about surviving in these economocially challenging times.

Archaia Studios Press
Robotika HC by (W/A) Alex Sheikman
Niko, the Steampunk Samurai, is in Her Majestys service. But is he a faithful royal bodyguard, or a for-hire yojimbo? A perfect warrior, or a soulless weapon? Follow Niko on his journey of self-discovery with Uri Bronski and Cherokee Geisha, as the Three Yojimbo discover a world populated by silent samurai, fast talking geisha, deadly mecha-betsushikime, digital djihits, and morphing butterflies. $19.95
Lee: I already have this book. I own some of the original art to this book. I love it! You will too. I just mention it in case you missed it the first time around.
Jim: It really is a great book and Lee introduced me to this book. Alex is a heck of an artist and his story telling ability is getting better and better. Well worth the price of entry.

Robotika: For a Few Rubles More Double-Sized #1 & #2 by (W/A) Alex Sheikman
This special double-size issue relaunches the new Robotika series, combining the previously published #1 with the all-new #2! When all youre after is A Few Rubles More, nothing but trouble awaits. Hallucinogenic tadpoles, Black Legion mercenaries, Beppe the Gangster, the Queen, Digital Djhitis, and the Three Yojimbos caught in the middle of two rival gangs and a drug deal gone very bad. Now, just when his fighting skills are needed the most, Niko is confronted with his equal and maybe his even better - the enigmatic Mister Saint Just! $4.99
Jim: At long last the return of Robotika. We will have a review of this issue up on the blog soon. I have really missed this book and I’m looking forward to this saga’s continuation.
Lee: I picked the first HC, Jim picked the on going series. There’s something for everyone. But, this is a great deal, 2 full length comics for $5. You can’t go wrong!

Aspen MLT Inc
Executive Assistant Iris #1 by (W) David Wohl (A) Eduardo Francisco
Aspens blockbuster new series arrives! Secretary. Bodyguard. Assassin. The Executive Assistant is all of the above rolled into one. Shes meticulous, ruthlessly efficient, and completely loyal to her employer. But in the high-stakes web of corporate wealth and power, one young woman, Iris, must decide between her duty-and her own morality. When she soon discovers that the man she serves is even more vicious and depraved than the criminals shes supposed to be protecting him from, her life begins to crumble. Torn between her loyalty and a heavy conscience, she must journey back to the school that created her in an attempt to rediscover her humanity. But is she already too late? With three incredible covers to choose from, get in on the ground floor of this exciting new Aspen series! $2.99
Lee: I need a secretary like this! I’m sorry but of all the ridiculous ideas out there, this has got to be one of the most ridiculous. With all the books that Diamond culled from previews, somehow this survived. What a waste of paper.
Jim: Ha, ha, ha. I don't know this book is so crazy it could be funny in an unintentional way. I sometimes wonder if these type of projects sound better as the people who put them are stoned and then years later they look at it and wonder what they were thinking.

Atomic Book Company
Fart Party Vol. 02 GN by (W/A) Julia Wertz
Julia quits her job and travels from coast to coast, meeting many strangers who will soon become a huge part of her world. When she returns to San Francisco, she wisecracks her way through a mundane minimum wage job and learns to love being single. But when her neighborhood gets increasingly violent, she comes down with a serious case of wanderlust; where should the intrepid indie comic artist head next? $13.95 Who knew! The Fart Party has its own web page here
Lee: There’s so much junk listed in previews that I try to set the bar pretty high to pick books. I try to stay away from the really trashy books. But this book had fart in the title. How can you resist a book with fart in the title. Farts are funny. Just ask my kids. Anyway, I picked it, did some research and what do ya know? It’s pretty good. Follow the link, and you can read lots of samples. Besides the silly title, this is fun slice of life stuff.
Jim: The silly title would actually maybe put off a large part of the potential audience, but Lee LOVES the slice of life stuff, so this was an easy sell to him.

Boom! Studios
Dead Run #1 by (W) Andrew Cosby, Michael Alan Nelson (A) Francesco Biagini
All Speed. No Limits. The end isnt near, its here. America has become a wasteland, leaving the few cities that remain transformed into impenetrable fortresses. Beyond these walls lies The Zone, a brutal, plague-ravaged landscape stretching from one city to the next, populated by mutants, monsters, and warring factions of survivors driven insane by disease and starvation. Only the very brave or the very foolish voluntarily step foot outside the protective confines of the mega-cities. Nick Masters happens to be a little bit of both. Nicks a driver; if you need something picked-up, delivered, or disposed of, Nicks your man - and hes all business. But when he fails to deliver an important package to a local crime lord, Nicks business suddenly becomes very personal! Covers by Eric Canete and Jason Shawn Alexander. $3.99 Visit Biagini’s art blog here
Lee: This is an very old science fiction storyline that’s been done many, many times before. Heck, even Judge Dredd did the “gotta get across the wasteland” schtick. But, I really like Cosby and Nelson’s writing, Biagini’s art looks solid, and Boom has a solid history of providing quality comics. I’m in for the first issue at least.
Jim: I agree, plus BOOM has a lot of trust with me. Many stories have been done before, but if told right they can be entertaining and often that is enough.

Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep #1 by (W) Phillip K. Dick (A) Steven Dupre
The book that inspired the film Blade Runner comes to BOOM! with backmatter by Warren Ellis! Visionary sci-fi author Philip K. Dicks Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? has been called a masterpiece ahead of its time, even today and served as the basis for the Ridley Scott film Blade Runner. San Francisco lies under a cloud of radioactive dust. The World War killed millions, driving entire species to extinction, and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remained coveted any living creature, and for people who couldnt 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 - theyre 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 BOOM! Studios as 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, groundbreaking 24-issue maxi-series experiment illustrated by acclaimed Wolf artist Steven Dupre for the science-fiction publishing event of the year! Covers by Bill Sienkiewicz, Dennis Calero, Moritat, and Scott Keating. $3.99. #1 of 24
Jim: Phillip K. Dick has been so influential on so many stories and movies that have been made that I’m ashamed to say I have read very little of his work, but understand that he often examines what is real and not real. Looking forward to this experiment and hope they have the financial wherewithal to publish all 24 issues.
Lee: I’ve read many of Dick’s novels and they are incredibly hard to adapt into any visual medium. They are very good but Dick plays with perceptions and reality all the time. This sounds very, very interesting. I’m curious to see how they will mix text and panels.

Box Brown Comics
Love Is a Peculiar Type of Thing GN by (W/A) Box Brown
The recipient of a Winter 2009 Xeric Grant, Love Is A Peculiar Type of Thing is a collection of short comics, ranging from 3 to 12 pages in length, focusing on the plight of an average twentysomething named Ben and his girlfriend Ellen. Themes of love, fear, questioning religion, depression, anxiety, and sex are all explored with humor, insight, and understanding. $10.00 Visit Box Brown and see samples here
Lee: I’m always ready to read another award winning comic. I know Jim doesn’t take stock in the awards but I do. And, this looks to be great. It definitely has the themes/feel of artists like Peter Bagge and Ivan Brunetti.
Jim: Awards are meaningless for the most part, so I judge things on their own merit not what some bozo says on a blog - errr never mind. What I do like about awards is that once you read something that a critic or group loved and you like it, then you can at least trust that source to give you an idea if you will like it or not. I used to read Stephen Hunter's reviews of movies in the Baltimore Sunpapers years ago and I could tell from his reviews whether or not it was worth seeing a movie or not. Not that we had the same opinion, but his reviews were so well constructed and consistent that I could decide based on his review of the movie.

D. D. P./Devil's Due Publishing
Olympus #1 by (W) Geoff Johns, Kris Grimminger (A/C) Butch Guice
Chaos ensues as a group of brash archaeology students and a team of ruthless mercenaries are trapped together on the legendary Mount Olympus - a mountain populated by the deadliest monsters known to Greek legend! Managing a tenuous pact with the mercenaries, the students must combine their knowledge of mythology with the mercenaries combat skills as they fight for their lives against the monsters of Olympus! $3.50
Jim: Geoff Johns is involved in this book and I have heard very little about it. I’m curious as to the back story on this series and if Johns wanted it published why wouldn’t DC do it for him.
Lee: This seems old to me. I know I’ve seen art samples all over the web. Guice does a great job on art as always. And, Johns bloodlust is perfect for this kind of story. It should be good.

PART 2 Tomorrow

1 comment:

  1. Oh, come on... what's wrong with Zombie Obama?