Reviews & Previews - Illustrated Fiction 30

 

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Reviews & previews on this page:

Boot Hill #2

Buzzpop #4

Candy or Medicine #13

Get the Message! #1

Main Enterprises Presents #3

Obleo #1 & 2

Pork Belly #3-6

Sigh Fi Tales #1

Unleashed! #1

The Wrong House

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Unleashed! #1Unleashed! #1
by Dan W. Taylor

Aug. 2010, Weird Muse Productions
8 pages with self-cover
Classic mini comix size: 4.25" x 5.5" Saddle stitch binding, no trim
$1.75 (postage paid) from
Weird Muse

An (unnamed) exhibitionist at SPACE 2010 informed Taylor that compared to his 21st Century comix, his 90s work was more raw and unrestrained. The unrestrained taunt evoked Taylor's naked muse and he responded in August with Unleashed. The gloves come off (along with most everything else) in this series of comic strips that arouse naughty language, bawdy gags, and explicit pornamentation.

Unleashed is Taylor's most adults-only comix in years, but it's all done for laughs. If you're too sensitive for dirty jokes stay away, but if enjoy an occassional randy ROTFL, this one's for you—and that man from SPACE!

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The Wrong HouseThe Wrong House
by Curtis Lawson

Curtis Lawson wrote to share a preview of his comic, The Wrong House. Broken Soul Press announced the digital release of the new one shot horror comic earlier in 2011. Described as a mind-bending slasher story, it's available through Graphic.ly in a reader-friendly format that can be viewed on computers, iPhones and iPads. For the low price of 99 cents, readers have access to the 25 page comic as well as bonus material (art, full script and audio commentary). A prestige format print run, featuring additional stories is planned for this summer.

Curtis Lawson (owner of BSP and writer of The Wrong House) says “I couldn’t be more excited about having our material distributed through Graphic.ly. Digital distribution offers a convenient and affordable means for readers to get their hands on comics. The world of digital comics opens the door for a whole new fan base. Between an aging reader base and $3.99 price tags on print books, I truly feel that digital distribution is going to be the salvation of the comic industry. Graphic.ly is at the forefront of that industry and has a wonderful platform. They also give equal shelf space to the big folks and the small guys alike.”

Below are the opening pages of The Wrong House.

Page 1 The Wrong House

Page 2 The Wrong House

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Candy or Medicine #13Candy or Medicine #13
edited by Josh Blair

Completed ahead of its regular quarterly schedule for the SPACE convention (2011 edition), Josh Blair published the lucky thirteenth issue of Candy of Medicine. The 16-page issue is the size of a classic mini comix (4.25" x 5.5") and is available for $1 (plus 60¢ postage) from Blair's
Etsy Shop
, where you can also
pick up most of the title's back
issues and several of his other projects. Other sites to click include the Candy or Medicine website with links to past contributors and the Candy or Medicine Blog, where you can keep up with the comings and goings of Blair and Candy or Medicine. Below is a preview of Candy of Medicine #13, which features a front cover by Ray N.:

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13The Story of Nub (1 page) by Willard Herman.

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13The Cloud Catcher (4 pages) by Chris Tupa.

Not Unhappy (1 page) full page cartoon by Brad W. Foster.

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13Untitled (2 pages) by Katie Omberg.

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13Untitled (4 pages) by William Cardini.

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13Scrambled Circuits (1 page) by Cameron Callahan.

Panels from Candy or Medicine #13Walk to Dagron (back cover) by Carl Alessi.

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Sigh Fi Tales #1Front and back covers of Sigh Fi Tales #1

Sigh Fi Tales #1 by Macedonio Garcia

The latest (as of late March 2011) comix from Macedonio is the start of a new series called Sigh Fi Tales. This black-and-white, digest-size book is 24 pages, plus a cover printed on heavier-weight white paper. Inside are several comix stories and a series of full page artworks. The comix are humorous, sometimes gritty gags, with frequent Twilight Zone-style twist endings. He says he already has enough material for three more issues. In addition to the sample page below, search on "Sigh Fi" at Macedonio's Flickr. For pricing and availability contact him through the Macedonio Blog.

Page from Sigh Fi Tales #1

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Main Enterprises Presents #3Main Enterprises Presents #3 edited by Jim Main

The latest issue of Main Enterprises' pivotal comic anthology is out and it's already going fast. Main Enterprises Presents (MEP) is Editor/Publisher Jim Main's recently launched title that's helping to consolidate a lot of material originally slated for titles he's discontinued or put on hiatus. For example, the Cosmic Man story in this issue was originally planned for the third issue of its own title.

In fact, MEP is even providing a spot for comics once published by other small press outfits. Case in point, Sam Gafford's mini comic series Monster World. After an impressive start in 2008, Monster World disappeared after a six week run (at least that's the last issue I'm aware of). Well, the series returns in this issue of MEP with a new installment that's expanded from classic mini comic size to a full comic book page.

Main's introduction to the issue reveals what's on tap for issue #4 as well: the continuation of both the Cosmic Man story and the Monster World story that begins this time and a brand new Besty the Bookwriter adventure; I assume by the talents of Rock Baker and Jeff Austin.

MEP #3 is a 36-page b&w comic book printed by Ka-Blam. It's available for $5.00 postage paid from Main Enterprises. Below is a preview of the stories behind it's cover (which I assume was colored by Production Manager Marc Haines).

Page from Main Enterprises Presents #3

Cosmic Man in War Part One (13 pages) by Steve Keeter, Tony Lorenz & Jeff Austin. The story features a cast of super heroes first introduced in fanzines of the 1970s, as Cosmic Man, Phoenix, The Spy, Raven, Night Man, Acrobat, The Simian, Sunwing and The Titan brace for an alien invasion to come.

Page from Main Enterprises Presents #3

Monster World Part One (8 pages) by Sam Gafford.

Page from Main Enterprises Presents #3

The second chapter of the dark and gritty series Revelations (13 pages) by Louise Cochran-Mason, Barry Southworth, Scott Shriver, Linda Southworth and Marc Haines.

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Pork Belly #3Pork Belly #3-6
edited by Dan W. Taylor

2010, Weird Muse Productions
8 pages each, including self-covers
Black ink on colored paper
Saddle stitch binding, no trim
$1.50 each (postage paid)
from Weird Muse

Pork Belly #3
Cover: Dan W. Taylor
Page 2: Kel Crum
Page 3: Dan W. Taylor
Page 4 & 5: Macedonio
Page 6: Dan W. Taylor
Page 7: Macedonio
Page 8: Dan W. Taylor

With the success of his Time Warp Comix, Taylor launched a second title, Pork Belly, loosely modeled after Clay Geerdes' long running Baby Fat mini comix of the Newave era. Pork Belly is catch-all title with some of the content inspired by weird news items. The series is intended for immature readers of 18 or older.

Pork Belly #4Pork Belly #4
An all Tom Brinkmann issue, featuring full page mesmerizing cartoons and amorphous illustrations by Brinkmann.

Pork Belly #5
Cover: Dan W. Taylor
Page 2: Brad W. Foster
Page 3: Jim Siergey
Page 4: Andy Nukes
Page 5: Dan W. Taylor
Page 6: Vincent Wright
Page 7: Jim Siergey
Page 8: Andy Nukes

Pork Belly #6
Cover: Dan W. Taylor
Pages 2-6 Sigh-Fi Tales comix by Macedonio Garcia
Page 7: Vincent Wright
Page 8: Andy Nukes

Pork Belly #5 & #6

Pork Belly #7 and Pork Belly #8 are also available now at the same rates as the earlier issues. Get all eight issues for a great reading experience not at all unlike that of the 1980s when Clay Geerdes was cranking out issues of the Baby Fat mini comix!

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Obleo #1 & #2

Obleo #1 & 2 by Macedonio Garcia

2010, Other-Ground Publications
#1 8 color pages, including self-cover
#2 12 color pages, including self-cover
Both issues are 5.5" x 8.5", saddle stitch binding, no trim.
$3 each from
Macedonio Garcia
11722 Dorrance Lane
Meadows Place, TX 77477

Macedonio's Sketch Blog
Flickr

Obleo is a continuing series chronicling the emerging world of its title. Each page of the comix features a full size, full color image created in various mediums with narrative captions. Issue one looks like colored or pastel pencils with the shading strokes visible. Issue two switches to a more of a painted look with smoother color transitions. The colors in both are vibrant and vivid.

Obleo are the new inhabitants of the forming world. Two of them are featured on the cover of issue two. The story unfolds slowly so it's really only just getting started as issue two concludes. Obleo is a cosmic adventure and the artwork is at least as important as the story. Think of this as a portfolio of full color images that also happen to tell a story.

Check out "Obleo" on Macedonio's Flickr for more pages from these comix. It looks like he's posted issue #3 there as well.

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Get the Message #1Get the Message! #1
edited by Jim Main

Summer 2010, Main Enterprises
Jim Main, Publisher
Dan W. Taylor, Production Manager
20 pages with self-cover
4.25" x 5.5", saddle stitching binding, no trim
$3 (postage paid) from
Main Enterprises

Editor Main enlisted the aid of seven indie cartoonists to create their own vision of the word Peace for this new mini comic. In today's polarized environment I can't help but think of what a hippy dippy request that was.

Simon Mackie must have had the same initial reaction. His contribution is an educational comic on how to make the world's most delicious Hippy Hippy Milk Shake.

The rest of this mini comix is filled with full page renderings of the word or symbol or emissaries of Peace—some realistic, some fanciful, some mind-blowing—all beautiful.

Art from Get the Message #1

Contributors include Huseyin Aluc, Tom Brinkmann, Brad W. Foster, Simon Mackie, Andy Nukes, Carrie Taylor and Dan W. Taylor. Get the Message yourself. And don't miss Dan Taylor's special message on the inside back cover.

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Buzzpop #4Buzzpop #4 by Matt Chicorel

June 2010, Night Light Comics
36 b&w pages, plus cover
5.5" x 8.5", saddle stitch binding
with trim
$4 (postage paid) from
Night Light Comics

As in the prior three issues of Buzzpop, this one is filled with a nice collection of short stories interspersed with full page illustrations and/or repros of event posters, mostly for music events—aka rock and roll.

In fact, Buzzpop could be described as a fusion of indie rock and comix. Most of the short episodes involve entertaining encounters between a portion of the cast from the team that's been incrementally forming over the past three issues. The main event of course, are the final three installments of the Origins story. By part nine the quirky crime fighting team is finally complete with the addition of its last member, Cat-Man-Do. They're an interesting bunch, but I wonder how Chicorel is going to find roles for all of them in their first adventure as a fully-formed team.

Panels from Buzzpop #4

On the other hand if Chicorel is anything, he's clever and inventive. His stories are more about characterization and dialogue than plot, so I'm sure he'll either figure it out or figure something else out that'll be fun to read.

Panel from Buzzpop #4

This issue includes a four page adventure with Trenchcoat from 2004. It's a treat to see how far Chicorel has come since then. Buzzpop #4 is packed with quirky humor delivered with an indie, rock-on attitude. It's beautifully produced and rendered. Back issues are still available too.

Panels from Buzzpop #4

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Boot Hill #2Boot Hill #2 by Sam Gafford

Summer 2010, Main Enterprises
Jim Main, Publisher/Managing Editor
Sam Gafford, Editor/Writer
Marc Haines, Production Manager
28 b&w pages, plus color cover
6.5" x 10.25" with saddle stitch binding, POD
Front cover by Scott McClung
Back Cover by John Lambert
$4.50 (postage paid) from
Main Enterprises

Boot Hill is a horror anthology comic with a western spin. The book's host, shown on this issue's cover, is the Gunslinger, an undead cowboy who introduces each story.

With Sam Gafford handling both editorial and scripting functions, Boot Hill provides a more consistent, cohesive package than many small press anthologies. Gafford is a long-time contributor to Main Enterprises comics and his experience writing macabre stories and comics shows.

Gafford introduces the issue with a short editorial and promises the popular series will continue. Here's a preview of what's inside issue #2:

Panels from Boot Hill #2Prospector Bill (6 pages) by Gafford (script), Hal Jones (art), Linda & Barry Southworth (lettering), uncovers the secret of a miner's wealth.

Panels from Boot Hill #2The Gunslinger's Lament (8 pages) tells the origin of the Gunslinger and lays the groundwork for future stories outside of his host role. It's by Gafford (script), Dave Farley (art) and Jack Bertram (inks and lettering).

Panels from Boot Hill #2The Choice (6 pages) by Gafford (script) and John Lambert (art), tells the story of a buxom blonde who moseys into town and immediately finds herself as the prize in her competing suitors' plans.

Panels from Boot Hill #2Town Swap (6 pages) by Gafford (script) and Kevin D. Duncan (art), finds a new town waiting to embrace a pair of outlaw brothers.

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Original content Copyright © 2011 Richard Krauss.
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