Smash Pages Q&A: Liz Suburbia

The creator of ‘Sacred Heart’ discusses her latest project, ‘Egg Cream,’ as well as her first exposure to comics, the way she works and serialization.

Liz Suburbia has been making comics for years in her zine series Cyanide Milkshake, and Sacred Heart, which was collected into a single volume and published by Fantagraphics in 2015. Suburbia’s new project is Egg Cream. An annual comic published by Czap Books and Silver Sprocket, it will feature not just the sequel to Sacred Heart but new comics and illustrations from Suburbia as well.

Egg Cream is completely accessible for those who have never read Scared Heart, set 10 years after the events of that book and told in a different manner than that book. This first chapter explains some of the questions that were never answered in the first volume, and add a few more than we’ll no doubt learn more about in future issues. Suburbia talked about this larger story she’s telling, the way she works and serialization.

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Smash Pages Q&A: David Pepose on the influences behind ‘Spencer & Locke’

With a sequel set to debut in April, the writer of the surprise hit series breaks down the comics DNA of the book.

It’s been called “What if Calvin and Hobbes grew up in Sin City?” but David Pepose and Jorge Santiago Jr.’s Spencer & Locke proved to be more than that. While it does wear those two inspirations on its sleeve, the DNA of this particular project goes deeper than its tagline.

With the followup to the surprise hit set to debut in April (and a movie in the works), I spoke with David about some of the influences on the series that go beyond the surface, including Moon Knight, Criminal, Batgirl and more. Admittedly this was a really fun interview to conduct, as it gave me an excuse to re-read several great comics and discover one that I need to add to my own “to read” list.

You can find out more about Spencer & Locke 2 on Twitter or Facebook. And you can buy the first volume at your local comic shop or ComiXology.

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Clowes, Piskor get Studio Editions in October

You’ll find original art scans, process pieces and more in two new Studio Editions coming in October.

Fantagraphics has announced Studio Editions for two popular comic artists — Daniel Clowes and Ed Piskor.

Much like IDW’s popular Artist’s Editions line, Studio Editions contain un-retouched original art scans — letting you see the artist’s originals in a way that you’d otherwise only see if you had direct access to them. “These full-size reproductions retain original pencil marks, corrections, and marginalia—fascinating imperfections that provide insights into the creative process of these master cartoonists,” the press release reads.

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Smash Pages Q&A: Kel McDonald

The cartoonist discusses her latest project, now up on Kickstarter, as well as the urban fantasy genre, ‘The Stone King’ and more.

Kel McDonald has been making comics for years. I read her webcomic Sorcery 101 years ago, but she’s also made comics series like Misfits of Avalon, written Buffy the Vampire Slayer comics and contributed to Dark Horse Presents. Late last year Comixology Originals released The Stone King, a comics series that McDonald made with artist Tyler Crook. Her work is always interesting because she clearly loves fantasy, but she wants to do interesting things with the genre, telling different kinds of stories in really exciting ways.

In recent years she’s been making the series The City Between, composed of different books with different characters and genres set in the same world. Right now she’s kickstarting the third book in the series, The Dead Deception. I’ve been reading McDonald’s work for years and she was kind enough to answer a few questions about urban fantasy, werewolves, her future plans for the series, and how Kickstarter has changed over the years for the better.

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‘Wonderfully weird’ series ‘Gogor’ debuts in May

‘Planetoid’ creator Ken Garing returns for a new series in May.

Planetoid creator Ken Garing will return to comics in May with Gogor, a “high fantasy” series aimed at teens.

Here’s how his publisher, Image Comics, describes the series: “The debut issues of Gogor will feature 28 pages of a wonderfully weird and fantastical story. Deep underground, among the floating islands of Altara, the mystical Gogor sleeps. But trouble brews above ground as soldiers of the Domus impose their will across the land. Now, a young student named Armano must awaken Gogor and begin his quest to protect the culture of Altara.”

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Gillen + Mora team for ‘Once and Future’ from BOOM! Studios

Family secrets and Arthurian legends collide in a new miniseries coming in August.

Writer Kieron Gillen has been on a roll lately, with the popular The Wicked + The Divine continuing to turn heads, and the newly minted Die and Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt garnering attention and good reviews. Now he’s teaming up with Dan Mora (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) for a new miniseries from BOOM! Studios that sounds like it’s right in his wheelhouse: Once and Future, which will involve Arthurian legends, monster hunting and a kick-ass grandma.

“I’ve been chewing over how the classic explorer adventure serial could operate in the twenty-first century for a while. Doctor Aphra transplanting the genre to space was one conclusion. Once and Future is another, taking a genre whose core has barely changed since the 19th century, and updating it for the now,” Gillen said. “Adventure, romance, supernatural horror and too much bloody research, as always. When BOOM! Studios told me one of the most talented action artists of his generation was interested in collaborating, I knew that we had all the ingredients we needed to create gold. Gold which, inevitably, our heroes will steal.”

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Comics Lowdown: Awards round-up

See recently announced nominees and winners for several different awards.

Today seems like a good day for an awards rundown …

The nominees for the L.A. Times Book prize have been announced, including the five books chosen in the “Graphic Novel/Comics” category. They include:

  • Michelle Perez and Remy Boydell, The Pervert
  • Eleanor Davis, Why Art?
  • Aisha Franz, … Is Real
  • Jérôme Ruillier, The Strange
  • Tillie Walden, On a Sunbeam

Winners will be announced at a ceremony at the University of Southern California’s Bovard Auditorium on April 12, in conjunction with the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.

The L.A. Times has given an award in the graphic novel category since 2009, when Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli won the award. Other previous winners include The Love Bunglers by Jaime Hernandez, Duncan the Wonder Dog by Adam Hines and Beverly by Nick Drnaso.

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‘Usagi Yojimbo’ moves to IDW

Stan Sakai’s most famous creation leaves Dark Horse Comics for a full-color series that starts in June.

After more than 20 years at Dark Horse Comics, Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo will migrate to a new publisher in June. The New York Times revealed today that everyone’s favorite samurai rabbit is making the jump to IDW Publishing.

And while Usagi has been published in black and white for most of its life, the IDW series will be in full color. Sakai will work with colorist and frequent collaborator Tom Luth on the new series. In addition, IDW will release color editions of previous Usagi volumes.

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‘Copra’ finds a new home at Image Comics

Formerly published by Bergen Street Press, the indie superhero comic’s first five collections arrive from Image in May.

Michel’s Fiffe’s excellent superhero series Copra has found a new home at Image Comics, the creator announced on Twitter. New printings of all five Copra collections can be found in the just-released Image Comics solicitations for May.

Fiffe has self-published the single issues of Copra, while collections have come out from Bergen Street Press, the comics publishing arm of the now-closed Brooklyn comics shop of the same name. Bergen Street Press announced last month that both Copra and Chuck Forsman’s Revenger would move to new publishers this year; the latter has landed at Floating World Comics.

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