The writer and owner of the publishing house Hex Publishers discusses his new comic with co-writer Stephen Graham Jones and artist Ben Matsuya about cosplay gone very wrong.
This weekend the Colorado Festival of Horror returns to Denver, giving fans the chance to interact with creators, actors and more, and even dress up like their favorite slashers, from Jason to Freddie to … Killr™?
If you aren’t familiar with Killr™, don’t fret — this serial killer is a new creation debuting in the pages of True Believers by Joshua Viola, Stephen Graham Jones and Ben Matsuya. The trio has teamed up to tell the fictional story of cosplay gone wrong at the very real festival.
Viola, who in addition to being a writer is also the publisher and owner of Denver-based Hex Publishers, was kind enough to answer some questions about True Believers, which is currently on Kickstarter.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Joshua Viola on ‘True Believers’”
The writer returns to the Massive-Verse for the second volume of the graphic novel series, which is currently up on Kickstarter.
Following a very successful campaign on Kickstarter for the first book back in 2021, Mat Groom, Erica D’Urso and the rest of the team have returned to crowdfund Inferno Girl Red Book Two. The new campaign is currently live.
If you aren’t familiar with Inferno Girl Red, it’s one of the many titles that make up the Massive-Verse, the collection of titles overseen by Kyle Higgins that include Radiant Black, The Dead Lucky and Rogue Sun, among others. It combines Groom’s love of tokusatsu superheroes and boarding school dramas, and it looks great thanks to D’Urso, colorist Igor Monti, letterer Becca Carey and design group For The People.
At press time, the campaign has brought in just over $45,000, which is more than halfway to its $85,000 goal. I spoke with groom about the new campaign, what he learned from the first one, how Inferno Girl Red fits into the Massive-Verse and more. He also shares a few details on his involvement with the upcoming Bad Blood playing cards/murder mystery game.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Mat Groom returns to discuss the second ‘Inferno Girl Red’”
The two creators discuss their love for malls, their approach to ‘mall horror,’ the potential for a sequel and more.
Horror novelist Adam Cesare‘s signature novel has a title that contains the two scariest words in the English language, Clown in a Cornfield, so right from the get-go you know that he gets horror. He’s also been adding comics to his resume over the last few years, having worked on Power Rangers comics, Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance and more.
David Stoll, meanwhile, was the artist for Pantomime, a Mad Cave title with writer Christopher Sebela from a few years back. The story featured students at a school for the deaf who become thieves, and I still remember how clever the visuals were in communicating what was being said and heard by the deaf characters.
The two of them more recently united on Dead Mall, a four-issue miniseries from Dark Horse Comics. Along with letterer Justin Birch, they told a complete story that combined horror and mall culture. The story takes place in — and is narrated by — the Penn Mills Galleria, a former mall that’s about to be demolished when a group of kids decide to visit it one last time. Only they find it isn’t quite so empty.
The miniseries was recently collected into a trade paperback by Dark Horse Comics, and it’s available now in comic shops and bookstores everywhere. I spoke with Both Cesare and Stoll about the story, abandoned malls and more.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Adam Cesare and David Stoll on ‘Dead Mall’”
The writer of Ahoy’s newest title talks about comic conventions, working with Marika Cresta and more.
Most people reading this are probably familiar with the San Diego Comic-Con, the annual gathering of Hollywood, the comics community, media of all shapes and sizes, and fans from around the world. But are you familiar with the Vista Al Mar Comics Festival, which also has taken place on the California coast for the past five decades?
If not, don’t worry — the Vista Al Mar Comics Festival is fictional, a construct of writer Paul Cornell and artist Marika Cresta for their new miniseries from Ahoy Comics, Con & On. The first issue arrives in stores this week.
The comic is set in five different years in the life of the Festival—one year per issue, spanning three decades—from the points of view of “a diverse bunch of desperate people whose lives revolve around this greatest show on Earth.” The comic will track the lives of two young comics talents trying to break into the business; three “brilliant, boozy and bombastic” British creators; as well as crusty editors, forgotten TV stars and fans who “make the convention experience something to revisit year after year.”
Cornell was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about his work on the title, as well as share some convention memories. My thanks for his time.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Paul Cornell on ‘Con & On’”
The creators of the horror/Western ‘yarn’ talk about returning to their signature creation with a new Kickstarter project.
The 50-issue The Sixth Gun series — along with its several spin-off series — was a hallmark of independent comics publishing from 2010 to 2016. Co-creators Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt not only created a compelling “yarn” of a story that combined horror with the Western genre, but they also did a phenomenal job of creating a world that always seemed ripe for more exploration.
They wrapped up the initial story of Becky Montcrief, Arnold Drake and the battle for control of six mystical guns, and now Oni Press has announced The Sixth Gun Deluxe Omnibus Library, which is currently up on Kickstarter. Not only are they releasing all the issues of The Sixth Gun, plus all the spinoff miniseries, plus the spinoff series Shadow Roads, in this deluxe format, but Bunn and Hurtt are also creating new material for it — three new prelude stories will unlock as the campaign reaches new milestones over the course of its 30-day run. It’s also a precursor to a new The Sixth Gun project coming in 2025 for the comic’s 15th anniversary.
I spoke with both creators about what it’s like to return to The Sixth Gun after all this time, their collaborative process and what to expect from the new material they’re creating.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Cullen Bunn + Brian Hurtt on the return of ‘The Sixth Gun’”
The creator of ‘Pink Lemonade’ talks about his story in the first issue of the science fiction anthology ‘Xino.’
Oni Press will debut Xino this week, an anthology of “subversive, psych-surrealist science fiction to cure your awful awareness of our meager reality.” Over the course of three issues, they’ve assembled a talented roster of creators, with the first issue featuring stories by Phil Hester, Jordan Thomas and Shaky Kane, Melissa Flores and Daniel Irizarri, and Christopher Condon and Nick Cagnetti.
Cagnetti, best known for his work on Pink Lemonade, worked with Condon on a story titled “the Chip,” which is about the world’s first intravenous video game system and the impact it has on one of its users. Cagnetti was kind enough to answer a few questions about the story, as well as the upcoming collection of the entire Pink Lemonade series.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Nick Cagnetti on ‘The Chip’”
The creator of the science fiction graphic novel series discusses the changing dynamics of the team, maintaining a sense of fun and why she launched it as a webcomic first.
Known for her work on G.L.O.W., Flung Out of Space, The Vampire Slayer and many other titles, Hannah Templer‘s most ambitious work has been the critically acclaimed Cosmoknights, an original graphic novel series that first debuted as a webcomic back in 2019.
The first volume introduced a universe where “mech-suited warriors duel over the daughters of the aristocracy, and a fledgling resistance of lady knights aim to bring down the system from within.” While the first volume brought the crew together, the second volume focuses on how they come together as a team, exploring their relationships and the drama that entails, while still bringing the same sense of adventure that made the first volume so much fun.
Top Shelf will publish Cosmoknights Volume Two in June, and Templer was kind enough to answer my questions about it.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Hannah Templer on ‘Cosmoknights, Book Two’”
Zane Barrow, Michael Conrad, Craig Hurd-McKenney and Jok discuss their work on the first title from the revived Gold Key Comics.
Gold Key Comics first began publishing comics in the 1960s, focusing heavily on licensed material from Disney, Warner Bros., King Features and Star Trek, among others. They also published some original material, including Solar, Turok and Magnus Robot Fighter. Their titles showcased a broad range of genres, from children’s titles to science fiction to superheroes to horror, through the 1970s and early 1980s.
It’s been almost 40 years since Gold Key was active, but one of 2023’s pleasant surprises has been the revival of the company. Entrepreneurs and comics fans Lance Linderman, Adam Brooks, Mike Dynes and Arnold Guerrero have not only relaunched the company, but also have revived one of its biggest titles from back in the day featuring iconic horror actor Boris Karloff.
The Kickstarter campaign for Boris Karloff Gold Key Mysteries, a new anthology title featuring new stories by Michael Conrad, Craig Hurd-McKenney, Jok, Steve Orlando, Kelly Williams and more, surpassed its funding goal very quickly. With three days to go, it’s just south of $40,000, so you still have time to get in on the ground floor.
I caught up with Hurd-McKenney, Jok, Conrad and editor Zane Barrow about the project, the draw of working on a Boris Karloff comic in 2023, their contributions to the anthology and more.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | ‘Boris Karloff’s Gold Key Mysteries’”
The Britpop washouts known as Geezer return to Kickstarter for a second issue.
As grunge took over the American rock music scene in the 1990s, the United Kingdom had its own musical movement — Britpop, a style of alternative rock made famous by bands like Oasis, Pulp, Blur, Elastica and CUD.
William Potter, the bassist for CUD, would go on to become a writer and editor, writing puzzle books, non-fiction, magazines and comics. While Potter was living the life of a musician in the 1990s, artist Philip Bond was drawing comics like Tank Girl, Kill Your Boyfriend, Shade the Changing Man and more.
And now the two of them have teamed up on a new comic series, Geezer, which tells the story of a fictional band during Britpop’s heyday. Published by Off Register Press and edited by Vertigo alumni Shelly Bond, the first issue was published following a successful Kickstarter campaign.
And now Potter and Bond are back for an encore. Geezer #2 is currently up on Kickstarter, having already doubled its initial goal. Potter and Bond were kind enough to answer some questions I had about their plans for the series, revisiting the 1990s music scene and more.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | William Potter + Philip Bond on ‘Geezer’”
The award-winning creator discusses several of his recent projects, the success of his collaboration with Keanu Reeves, working with Jean-Denis Pendanx and more.
Over the years he’s been working in comics, Matt Kindt has proven not only to be highly prolific, but also one of comic’s most creative minds, particularly when it comes to things like story structure and design. From his early work on Pistolwhip and Super Spy to more recent projects like MIND MGMT, Kindt has always been one to push the boundaries on comics, their format and how to make them more interesting.
Over the last year or so, Kindt has been involved in two high-profile projects — BRZRKR, a best-selling project at BOOM! Studios spearheaded by actor Keanu Reeves, and the launch of Flux House, Kindt’s own imprint at Dark Horse Comics. While the former has brought him possibility more attention than just about anything else he’s worked on, the latter has given him the opportunity to be even more creative in areas outside his typical domain.
I caught up with Kindt to discuss his recent projects, including Hairball, which kicks off this week, as well as his approach to running his own imprint and how the design of a book or comic impacts the experience of reading it.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Matt Kindt on ‘Hairball,’ Flux House, ‘BRZRKR’ and more”
The co-creators of the new title from Scott Snyder’s new imprint at IDW discuss how they came to comics, their approach to the story and more.
Last summer, after the release of Dark Spaces: Wildfire, IDW announced that writer Scott Snyder would curate a series of comics under the “Dark Spaces” label, written and drawn by different creators. They also announced the second title from the imprint, Dark Spaces: Good Deeds by writer Che Grayson and artist Kelsey Ramsay.
When the announcement was made, Snyder said his intent with the line was to “champion up-and-coming talent,” but “up-and-coming” may not apply to Grayson and Ramsay for long, based on what I’ve seen in the first issue. Together they’ve created a compelling “Southern Gothic” horror tale that draws as much from real-world fears as it does from the supernatural. I caught up with the writer and artist to talk about how it all came together, their approach to the story and more.
The first issue will arrive in stores on May 17.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Che Grayson + Kelsey Ramsay on ‘Dark Spaces: Good Deeds’”
The co-creators of the new title from Dark Horse Comics discuss how they came to comics, their inspiration for the story and their approach to humor in the comic.
Any fan of Western pop culture over the last 100 years or so is probably familiar with the “white savior” trope — that’s when Tom Cruise or Matt Damon, for example, show up in Japan or China or anywhere else in the world to rescue non-white people.
The solicitation text for the new comic, White Savior, describes it pretty well: An ancient prophecy foretold of an outsider that would save the peaceful village of Inoki from an unstoppable army–a man who would confuse the people at first with his unconventional ways, but lead them to the light.
But what happens when the savior doesn’t live up to the hype, and is, instead, a drunken idiot? That’s the premise of the new comic by Eric Nguyen and Scott Burman. The duo co-wrote it, while Nguyen and colorist Iwan Joko Triyono provided the art. While Burman is new to comics, Nguyen is a veteran, having drawn everything from Batman to Old Man Logan to Halo. He’s also the co-creator of both Strange Girl and Gigantic, in addition to White Savior.
Both Nguyen and Burman were kind enough to answer a few questions about White Savior, their approach to the humor in it and why it is also a time travel story. The first issue is available now from Dark Horse Comics.
Continue reading “Smash Pages Q&A | Eric Nguyen + Scott Burman on ‘White Savior’”