FCBD 2011

Written and Drawn by Various

Reviewed by Marc Mason

May 7, 2011 is this year’s Free Comic Book Day, and as always, almost every publisher in the game will have something to offer. Some of the free books will be pretty good, some of them will be total crap- and don’t let the name of the publisher fool you on that one. DC, in particular, has put out more than their share of awful FCBD books, while some of the indy publishers have struck gold year after year. Here are a couple of the better indy efforts you’ll have the opportunity to grab this year.

JAKE THE DREAMING from Radical Comics is something different for both the publisher and the usual FCBD offerings. JAKE is actually an illustrated prose novel from writers Marc Bernardin and Adam Freeman and artist Andrew Jones. The story is a classic “hero’s journey”- the young boy at the heart of the story discovers that his daydreaming is more than just idle wandering; instead it turns out to be a genuine super-power that allows him to enter the dreams of others and protect them from evil. Jake is a good protagonist and the writers make him easily relatable and likeable. The prose is crisp and clear, and Jones’ illustrations are quite lovely. Having this book as an FCBD is an excellent decision- it will appeal to readers of all ages, and this comic book “holiday” is important is reaching out to the younger demographic that comics needs in order to survive and thrive. Pick it up.

The folks at Archaia know this very well, and their FCBD book reflects that knowledge. Their MOUSE GUARD/DARK CRYSTAL FLIP BOOK is an excellent introduction to two of their strongest franchises… and more. David Petersen’s MOUSE GUARD gets a nifty short story that introduces the world, shows off his incredible art, and gives ample reason as to why you’d want to read more. THE DARK CRYSTAL gives the reader a taste of how the publisher has been handling their Jim Henson franchise of books, as they prepare to publish prequels to the beloved classic film. But that isn’t all- the company is adapting an unproduced Henson screenplay into an original graphic novel this fall, and this FCBD book has behind-the-scenes material on its origins and the production of it. Think that’s enough? You also get a new DAPPER MEN short story from Jim McCann and Janet Lee that takes off from the ending of the best-selling graphic novel. If you walk out of your store on FCBD without this book, you’re crazy.


Rogue Element #77: Live Action Literature

By Avril Brown

“It’s not TV, it’s HBO.” The Home Box Office channel coined their trademark phrase several years ago, and it rung as true then as it does now. Television shows on premium channels such as HBO and Showtime are in a different class than network television thanks to their non-existent boundaries concerning sex, swearing and violence, and when it comes to translating certain novels into television, the fewer limits the better.

Several of my favorite on-going series are based off of books, though in most cases it may be more accurate to say the books served as an inspiration for the show rather than a foundation. Many popular series are based mostly on the structure of the written story, taking the characters and story lines in their own unique direction, but the recent debut of a new HBO series entitled ‘Game of Thrones’ has me curious if this television program will follow the novels more faithfully. ‘The Song of Ice and Fire’ is a sword and sorcery series first published fifteen years ago and is well-known within the fantasy community, which means the nitpicky nerds will be watching for, and possible despise, any alterations from the story. Here is a brief account of personally beloved and quite popular HBO and Showtime shows brought about by books:

Secret Diary of a Call Girl Showtime series – 2007-2011, The Intimate Adventures of a London Call Girl series written by Brooke Magnanti – 2005-present

This insanely sexy and often touching show starring a high class call girl originally aired on a London channel before being picked up Showtime and is based on several books by Brooke Magnanti, a British child health scientist. She wrote a series of stories under the pseudonym Belle de Jour and released them as memoirs after the success her blog was generating. Once considered one of the best kept secrets in the literary world, Brooke kept fans guessing whether they were reading fact or fiction up until two years ago. Billie Piper stars as Belle and narrates the viewer through her adventures with her impressive array of clients and eclectic friends. I first fell for Ms. Piper as the Doctor’s companion in the first season of new Who and she is fantastic as the sexy and confident Belle. ‘Secret Diary’ has so much humor and heart in every episode (and sex too, of course) it is easy to get caught up in series. Unfortunately I have yet to learn for myself whether the curtains match the drapes as far as plot points and relationships between show and story, but the London Call Girl books are high up on my list of things to read.

Dexter Showtime series – 2006-present, Dexter series written by Jeff Lindsay – 2004-present

My relationship with ‘Dexter’ began with the television program first, followed by the first three novels a couple of years later. Though not an unpleasant series and entertaining enough in its own right, I have found the Showtime program ‘Dexter’ to be far more complex and engaging than author Jeff Lindsay’s ‘Dexter’ series and have no plans to read the next two novels. The written series leans more towards the macabre, campy and slightly supernatural while Showtime’s ‘Dexter’ is somewhat serious, disturbing and at times, totally hot. The books are relatively short and do not focus on the development of supporting characters, while the show is a well-rounded drama, sampling several of my favorite genres including romance, comedy and violence. I have picked my poison, and I will doggedly follow Michael C. Hall’s pinch-able and homicidal ass wherever it may go.

True Blood HBO series – 2008-present, Sookie Stackhouse series written by Charlaine Harris – 2001-present

Starring the first woman I ever had a crush on (Anna Paquin and I were only girls when she climbed the stage to adorably accept her Oscar for her supporting role in ‘The Piano,’ but still, a crush is a crush), ‘True Blood’ is based off of the Sookie Stackhouse novels, borrowing significantly from the series yet boasting enough major plot alterations to set it apart. As the author Charlaine Harris herself put it in her deep, Southern drawl during a SDCC 2009 panel: “I don’t tell Mr. Bell how to write his show, and he doesn’t tell me how to write my books.” The character Lafayette was killed early on in the written series but he is alive and kicking on HBO, hooking up with hot male nurses and tripping voodoo balls. Though admittedly I have only read two of the (soon to be) eleven Sookie Stackhouse novels available, the books seem to have a different tone than the show, which is a ridiculous, over-the-top, supernatural soap opera. Harris’s novels just did not do it for me, and I am not sure I will ever forgive her for writing Elvis as a mentally challenged vampire with a taste for furry felines. There is creative, and then there’s just plain wrong. ‘True Blood’ can push the line between silly and stupid, but as long as it does not stray too far down the rabbit hole, and Anna keeps taking her shirt off, I will remain a loyal ‘True Blood’ fang-banger.

Game of Thrones HBO series – 2011-?, The Song of Ice and Fire series written by George R.R. Martin – 1996-present

‘Game of Thrones’ is the first installment in the popular fantasy series by George R.R. Martin entitled ‘The Song of Ice and Fire,’ and it is now a HBO new original series which debuted last Sunday. First released in 1996, there are currently five books published and two more to follow provided, as some people put it, Martin does not ‘pull a Robert Jordan and die before he finishes the series.’ I have almost finished reading ‘Game of Thrones’ myself for the first time and find it a dark, captivating, and addictive epic sword and sorcery tale, rife with sex, violence and royal politics. Thus far, the HBO program has delivered the same, remaining largely faithful to the first several chapters and including several lines directly from the dialogue in the book. Though the pacing and some of the acting in this introductory episode felt somewhat stiff, I try not to judge a show by its pilot, particularly when I am bound and determined to like the show. The fact it boasts plenty of T&A to satisfy the eyeballs works in its favor as well. I am slightly miffed at a few simple aesthetic differences between the book and show (nitpicky, remember?), such as the Targaeyan brother and sister have bright violet eyes in the book which were not transferred to the show, something I was looking forward to seeing in HD, and it leads me to wonder what else is going to stray off canon from Martin’s works. I have yet to read the rest of the on-going series but I have heard from several sources the stories are worth following, and given the budget ‘Game of Thrones’ will receive if wildly successful (HBO already ordered a second season based on the numbers the pilot received) it will have the dosh to do it…but how faithful the series will be to the books is undetermined.

One of the best things about converting written stories into visual media is it often presents a choice of different versions of the same world, offering more than one opportunity to become invested in a new series. Kick up your feet and turn the lights down for a show, or snuggle in with a good book and see if at least one series ends up sticking.


Written and Drawn by Various
Published by Image Comics

Reviewed by Marc Mason

Two new monster-sized collections…

When I’m looking for a good superhero story, I no longer go searching in the direction of Marvel or DC. Instead, I turn to the book that rightly bills itself as “probably the best superhero comic book in the universe.” It isn’t humble, but it’s fair, which is why INVINCIBLE: ULTIMATE COLLECTION VOL.6 is such an easy recommend. Writer Robert Kirkman and artists Ryan Ottley and Cory Walker continue to deliver the most fun, most action-packed book of its kind on the shelves. This hardcover gives you twelve issues worth of the series, and with that year’s work you get: an army of evil Invincibles invading from other dimensions and nearly destroying the world; a brutal battle with an alien even stronger than our hero that puts his family and girlfriend in mortal peril; the return of the body snatching Sequids; a catching-up story of Invincible’s father and his plans to destroy the world he came from; and the return of the character’s original costume. This book is dense, but it rewards you by giving you your money’s worth every single issue. This terrific collection also contains around 40 pages of sketchbook material that contains commentary from the creative team. Always a must-buy.

SPAWN: ENDGAME was a difficult book for me, because there are aspects of what writer (and creator of the character) Todd McFarlane does here that I think are well-thought out and executed, as well as courageous. After nearly two decades of publishing the character, a massive change in the status quo comes here: the original Spawn, Al Simmons, blows his head off. Dead. Kaputsky. As a result, a new Spawn rises, a gent named Jim Downing who has been in a coma for so long that no one in his hospital knows how long he’s been in a coma. As you might guess, Jim has a bit of a learning curve in trying to figure out what the hell is happening to him. This is a ballsy move on McFarlane’s part; he’s introducing a new lead and a new supporting cast, then trying to blend them together with important remnants from the previous “regime” if you will. This is even mostly successful. The problem I have with this collection (which gathers twelve issues) is that it doesn’t do much beyond raise questions. By the time you get to the end of the twelfth piece of the story, you really haven’t gone very far. There’s a sense of resolution, but by the time you get to the end of a year-long storyline that’s collected under one cover, there’s an expectation of… more. A decent book with some strong work, but with some caveats.


Omnium Gatherum #72: Geek Girls, Regular Girls, And The Hidden Chivalry Of Feminism

By Vincent S. Moore

Howdy there, folks, and welcome once again to the Omnium Gatherum.

Just a quick one this time around.

I followed a link to Newsarama to an essay by Alan Klstler (I assume it’s actually Kistler but this is how the byline was spelled at the time of this writing, so I’ll have to use that spelling throughout the rest of this column, just in case my guess is wrong) taking NY Times reviewer Ginia Bellafonte to task for her review of HBO’s Game Of Thrones. If any of you folks haven’t read the piece, here it is. Check it out. I’ll wait.

Back already?

So what struck me was how powerfully and vociferously Mr. Klstler felt he had to respond to Ms. Bellafonte’s review by pointing out that there are geek girls in the world who might find such faire as this show to their liking. Almost as if by her distaste for Game Of Thrones, Ms. Bellafonte had sinned against the cause and struggle of geek girls and feminists of both genders to get it accepted as the new normal that some girls might actually like superheroes, science fiction, fantasy, video games, and other cool geek accoutrements. That somehow there are no longer women in the world that might like TV shows more like Sex And The City, All My Children, and many others.

But, isn’t that what feminism was about in the first place?

That women could have a choice and a voice?

So what if Ginia Bellafonte didn’t like Game Of Thrones? I’ve read some of her reviews before and I can tell she doesn’t like anything that would appeal more to a male audience than a female one. That’s her right. Free speech and all that.

So what does it matter?


Unless, hidden within the many examples Mr. Klstler gives of geek girls and their reach and impact on modern geek culture, is fear. Fear that there are geeks out there who still think girls have cooties. Fear that girls aren’t cool. Fear that the progress that’s been made in geekdom towards acceptance of a feminine presence, if not voice, could be reversed if the idea leaked out into the group mind of geekdom that there may not be all that many girls who are geeks.

Could that be the case?

I don’t know but it may be food for thought.

For myself, I love geek girls. CWR’s own Avril Brown took me to school once on the pool table at San Diego. I’ve waited most of my life for there to be enough geek girls so that it wouldn’t feel so strange to at conventions surrounded by geeky guys.

But I do have to wonder what motivated this response from Mr. Klstler.

Could it have been what I call the hidden chivalry in feminism? The idea that some but not all of the men who are feminists are acting more out of classic chivalry (defending the honor of women by fighting for their rights) than from a belief in the feminist philosophy. Even though there have been many women who could more than take care of themselves, if need be. Despite the cult of Oprah and its preaching of the woman-as-perpetual-victim-in-need-of-saving over the last 25 years or so.

I don’t know. At this stage in the game the idea is only one of many, many thoughts in my head and on my computer and I only have so many hours in the day.

Speaking of which, I have to get back to it.

Many things are a’brewing here at the Omnium Gatherum Ashram. Total Recall is a month away or so. And there are many other things in the works that I can’t speak about just yet. I guess you’ll folks will have to stay tuned.

Until next time, y’all. Namaste.


CHEW #18
Written by John Layman and Illustrated by Rob Guillory
Published by Image Comics

Reviewed by Avril Brown

Recently optioned for a Showtime program, CHEW is back with its eighteenth issue containing ample evidence of why this cult comic hit has garnered attention from a major television network. A little flashback, a lot of action and oodles of hot chicks carry the latest issue of this hilarious series.

Director Applebee seems to have overcome his feelings for Colby, Chu’s partner, and is now entertaining himself by sending Chu and Colby into the most dangerous scenarios that cross his path, including a suicide mission with some seriously badass USDA agents…and their pets. One General Jontongjoo has gone off the deep end ever since the flaming alien letters appeared in the sky, and it’s up to the hard-hitting women of the USDA to take him out. This mission is far from bloodless, but when it goes utterly FUBAR it falls to Chu and Colby to push the magic button and “…unleash a holy shitstorm of cataclysm from which nobody will survive.” The ending of this issue had me laughing out loud and proves without a shadow of a doubt that this creative team has lost none of its steam.

Although not as chock full of background jokes as seen in previous issues, there are still several good eggs to be found, my favorite being the toe tag on the first corpse of the issue, declaring the stiff to be one J. Storm. There is a firefight and some serious blood and guts, and not every familiar face in this issue will live to see the next. Guillory truly nails the last showdown, giving readers beautiful and dramatic gore to gaze upon, and the violent battle also brings to mind the question of which road of crazy awesome is Layman going to take readers down next? Unsurprisingly, CHEW remains one of my favorite monthly titles.


Written by Mark Rahner and Mike Horton, Illustrated by Dan Dougherty
Published by Moonstone Comics

Reviewed by Avril Brown

ROTTEN’s latest arc ‘Revival of the Fittest’ comes to its conclusion with the much-anticipated ninth issue of the book, neatly closing out this section of story. Rahner and Horton deliver an action-packed issue which will certainly satisfy ROTTEN’s patient fans.

Last we saw, William Wade was exhausted and stuck up a tree after attempting to outrun a pack of sprinting zombies, and John Flynn was elsewhere seeking knowledge and struggling to spread reason in a town rife with ignorance. Clearly, they both have their work cut out for them. Wade’s eternal flee from the maddeningly fit undead is amusing and impressive to behold, our hero becoming quite creative in how he dispatches of these excessively animated corpses. While Wade wages a physical war, Flynn is fighting the closed minds of the uneducated and though he makes little progress there, he also forges a valuable new friendship.

The writers continue producing scripts filled with a balance of slapstick and wry political humor, and Dougherty’s pencils keep up with the fast-paced portions of the book, making Wade look more badass than ever. The beehive scene is especially memorable and well-planned. This arc of ROTTEN has definitely rounded out nicely, leaving fans desperate for more and praying for a shorter wait between stories.


BOB HOWARD: Plumber of the Unknown #2
Written by Rafael Nieves and Illustrated by Dan Dougherty
Published by Nieves/Dougherty

Reviewed by Avril Brown

Bob Howard is back in this limited edition second issue, recently debuted at the recent C2E2 event in Chicago. Last year Rafael Nieves and Dan Dougherty introduced the comic world to Bob Howard, a silent plumber who has the odd habit of discovering the most horrid and bizarre beasts lurking in the household pipes of suburbia, and the thankless job of destroying these violent creatures.

In the beginning of this issue, Bob has quit his former profession as a plumber, and in effort to find a demon-free workplace has taken a job as a babysitter. The reluctant parents leave big Bob alone with their young one, and while the pensive plumber reads a book a cry erupts over the monitor. The dutiful caretaker brings a bottle to the baby and makes an unpleasant discovery: things that go ‘bump’ can be found outside the plumbing system. After he deals with the baby who craved something a bit thicker and more crimson than milk, Bob moves onto the club scene and quickly wins friends as the solid and stoic bouncer. This poor man cannot catch a break, however, and is once again forced to take up his might wrench of monster-killing steel in defense of the innocent. Eventually the excessive amount of fighting takes its toll and we finally see Bob trying to catch up on some sleep, but even his dreams plague him endlessly. The issue ends with a Twilight Zone feel to the story, and it gives fans insight into the mind and history of our beloved plumber.

Nieves and Dougherty have created a gem of a character in Bob, a strong, fearless and lovable slayer of odd and vicious creatures. BOB HOWARD is clever, comical and universally entertaining given its blend of muted gory violence and humorous monstrosities. Definitely a concept worthy of monthly attention and your money, BOB HOWARD: Plumber of the Unknown, Volume 2 has lived up to its premiere issue and even managed to do it one better. Nieves and Dougherty are on a roll.


Written and Drawn by Various
Published by Image Comics

Reviewed by Marc Mason

New stuff from NorCal…

One of the most unnoticed and underappreciated comics stories of the last few years has been the resurrection and repair of the Top Cow universe of books and characters. Once Rom Marz took over WITCHBLADE, and Phil Hester did the same for DARKNESS, suddenly the entire line got a lot more focused on story and character, and a lot less focused on T&A. Without Marz, there’s certainly no way a title like this one could be readable. But ANGELUS VOL.1 is more than just readable; it’s a solid piece of action storytelling alongside an interesting character arc for the main character. Danielle Baptiste, who once shared the Witchblade’s powers, is now the Angelus, holder of a primal force for good. She’s also in the middle of a sexual identity crisis. She and her friend Finch have become very close and are attempting to develop a relationship. But coming out as a hero, and coming out as a bisexual, aren’t easy. There are forces aligned against her on both sides. But Danielle Baptiste is ready and willing to risk it all; for love, for power, and for the right to determine how to live her life. Aided by regular Witchblade artist Stjepan Stejic’s gorgeous pages, ANGELUS is solidly packed with good moments from start to finish. Good action, a frank and open look at Danielle and Finch’s relationship… and none of it feels cheap and exploitive. Believe me, it could have been very easily. Recommended.

OUTLAW TERRITORY VOL.2 is Image’s latest entry in the anthology section, and this second effort focusing on the American West is a couple of steps above the first. First, the percentage of super-strong work is much higher here- there are very few duds. Second, the creative talent is extraordinary. Two things stuck out to me and excited me as a reader. First, we get some classic comics pros in the credits box. Len Wein, Mike Baron, Joe Staton, Val Mayerik… always nice to see those folks showing that they still have the touch for making good comics. Second, some names you don’t normally associate with westerns are here: Robert Kirkman, Sean Chen, Kathryn & Stuart Immonen… the list goes on. There are thirty stories here, and they’re worth your time. Excellently produced, and cheap at $20, it’s an easy recommendation.

I wish I could say the same about THE LIGHT. Certainly, it has a solid pedigree- writer Nathan Edmondson’s previous work was pretty good, and I have loved artist Brett Weldele’s art from the first time I saw it in THE SURROGATES. The story idea is even a winner: a strange “contagion” begins spreading through light generated from the main power grids, and it causes people to burn from the inside. Considering how dependent we are on the grids, it’s a timely tale to say the least. Indeed, it isn’t difficult to see the entire thing as a metaphor for our reliance on the internet. So why doesn’t it work? Simple: Edmondson doesn’t give us a single character to care about or root for. The main duo are an alcoholic father who beat his wife and drove her away, and his daughter, a whiny brat who gets blindfolded early on and spends the rest of the time nagging and whining about traveling into the heart of the incident and finding her mother. Half of their dialogue seems to consist of him screaming at her to keep the blindfold on and her yelling at him about finding her mother and the fact that he’s an asshole. The book looks pretty, but the characters are completely grating and it kept me from ever investing in the story. Pass.


Written and Drawn by Various
Published by Graphic Classics

Reviewed by Marc Mason

The GRAPHIC CLASSICS series continues on, this time around with an interesting twist. Publisher/writer Tom Pomplun and his merry creative crew have tackled some beloved works that are set in, and that celebrate, the old American west.

What that means is that this anthology contains work adapted by writers such as Bret Harte, Zane Grey, and Willa Cather. That alone sets this volume apart from the previous nineteen; names like Grey are more noted for sales success than critical success. Yet what this book does is present the stories in such a light that you understand why they were chosen. Plenty of what you get here is very, very strong work.

In any anthology, there is always a mix of hits and duds, but thankfully, this effort keeps the duds to a minimum. That’s partly due to a solid selection process, but also because of the talent that produced the pages. Longtime comics fans will be thrilled, in particular, by art from creators like Cynthia Martin, Dan Spiegle, and Al Feldstein.

I’ve seen and reviewed four or five of the books in this series, and WESTERN CLASSICS is as good as I’ve seen. If you’re a fan of the genre, it’s a must-own.


Rogue Element #76: May I Quote You On That?

By Avril Brown

Ask anyone who knows me, or individuals who have spent more than a few minutes within hearing distance of my flapping gums, and they will speak of my penchant for quotes. My go-to quotes of choice are typically memorable lines from movies, but I have been known to parrot dialogue from television, books, comics, friends and family, and any other source worth citing. My co-workers once challenged me to go an entire day without quoting any movie or television program: My work day begins at ten in the morning; I cracked at two seventeen in the afternoon. My Facebook status updates consist solely of alerts for when I post new columns, reviews or podcasts…and movie quotes. During my college years when AOL Instant Messenger was a significant part of my social life I had a different movie quote posted as my ‘away’ message for nearly every single day of my four year career. Essentially, I heart quoting.

Therefore it is not surprising I wish to extend my coverage of this year’s C2E2 by dedicating an entire column to memorable quotes from the second annual Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo. Without further ado, here are a few words of wisdom, folly and general randomness from some of comics’ finest creators, television’s hottest talents, and the folk in between.

Podcast Panel

“…and I’m the gay one.” – A gentleman on the panel who was NOT the individual that began singing ‘The Circle of Life’ from ‘The Lion King.’

Dynamite Panel

“Welcome to Dynamite, The Pantless Comic Company.” – Joe Rybandt, editor at Dynamite, following a thread of comments which I believe began with the panel members mentioning how you could tell they were sober due to the fact they were wearing pants.

“The reason we gave her the pants is because she became a total T&A character.” – A Dynamite panel member with regards to Vampirella and her new costume.

“I’m Puerto Rican; I hate Mexicans.” – Writer Elliott Serrano in the midst of a joking volley between him and writer Jai Nitz, who haphazardly brought up the fact of their shared non-white ethnic backgrounds. (Be sure and take special note where I mentioned this was a joke; I do not want to be responsible for spreading false rumors that Elliott is a racist.)

“…and that’s the question I have had to deal with my entire career: what can I get away with?” – Writer Garth Ennis with regards to his ultra-violent and rather twisted works.

“With three kids I’m always up to my elbows in nappies; Jesus Christ.” – Artist John McCrea on why he cannot take on other illustration jobs in comics besides ‘The Boys’ at the moment.

The Vampire Diaries Panel

“You gotta deliver the goods you got.” – Executive Producer Julie Plec on the shows penchant for major plot revelations and character deaths/transformations.

“Everyone always makes fun of me; they say it looks like a hair commercial. Like, ‘Hey, Pantene, he’s down!’” – Actress Candice Accola (who plays vampire Caroline Forbes) on her ‘signature’ vamp move where she enthusiastically throws her head of luscious blond curls back before diving into her victim’s neck.

“It was a real dark place; I don’t want to talk about it right now.” – Actor Michael Trevino (who plays werewolf Tyler Lockwood) joking on where he had to go as an actor during his character’s transformation into a werewolf.

“Really?! Really. You first!” – Candice to Kurt, the panel’s mediator, after he revealed her history as a back-up singer for Miley Cyrus and asked her to sing for the audience.

“This is a CW show; this isn’t HBO.” – Michael responding to Kurt’s vaguely suggestive comment on how Caroline may require Tyler to ‘do stuff’ for her as an apology for his werewolf buddies kidnapping and torturing her in a previous episode.

“I think that would suck for the human population.” – Julie Plec on if the fabled ‘the sun and the moon’ curse in the show would be broken for both vampires and werewolves, giving the former the ability to walk in the sun and the later the choice to transform whenever they please.

Garth Ennis Panel

“I like Frank Castle better; you know where you are with Frank.” – In comparison to John Constantine from ‘Hellblazer,’ both characters Garth has written in the past.

“He’s a sick puppy.” – In regards to Avatar’s editor-in-chief William Christensen, the company which publishes Ennis’s zombie-esque apocalypse book ‘Crossed,’ among several of his other titles.

“I don’t like religion; I think it’s a negative force in this world, but at the same time I find it fascinating…I don’t like superheroes; I think they’re a negative force in this world, but at the same time I find them fascinating.” – On why he writes stories which lampoon organized religion and super-powered folk.

“You know the trouble with writers talking about their process: it’s so fucking boring. ‘It’s time to write, so now I am going to write.’” – On how he gets into ‘writing mode.’

“Go to a pub, sip on a pint, and listen to people. You hear great stories and get a feel for speech, rhythm and cadence.” – General advice on how to receive inspiration for story ideas.

“If you want to revamp a character like Spider-Man you can do whatever the fuck you want; the man shoots webs out of his hands for Christ’s sake. If you mess with The Punisher it stands out more; he’s just a man with a gun.” – In reference to the recent changes made to the character Frank Castle aka The Punisher.

“He never puts his gun away until he’s killed about a dozen people; that’s The Punisher.”

“I’d like to do more ‘Section 8.’ I did wipe them all out at one point, but what the hell, it’s comics.”


“Wow…that’s a fan.” – A slightly zoned out artist Clay Mann after I gushed about his print of Rogue and Gambit before buying a copy and revealing the fact I have a tattoo of those particular characters.

Many mock me for my oddly adhesive brain when it comes to arbitrary extracts, and I know for a cold, hard fact these same folk find me and my quote-laden conversation excessively irritating. There are also some who find my ability fascinating and my often aptly timed recitations entertaining, though regardless of outside attitudes, both positive and otherwise, this…quirk has become a part of my personality and shall not be altered, only censored in the appropriate situations. Yet judging by these few glorious nuggets of citations how could one not become addicted to scribbling down the stray sayings of brilliant, creative minds? Not everything heard is worth repeating, but recollection of laudable, comical and ingenious phrases will aid us in remembering ideas, opinions and inspirations that ought never to be forgotten.