Author Archive

CHARLOTTE MINICON :: GUEST SPOTLIGHT :: CLIFF CHIANG

January 17, 2012 By: Heroes Online Category: Charlotte Minicon, DISCUSS, EVENTS, Guest List, HeroesCon, Interviews, Looking Ahead

This Sunday Heroes celebrates the 35th Anniversary of the Charlotte MiniCon!  As part of the celebration we are honored to have artist Cliff Chiang appear as one of our featured guests.  Aside from being universally regarded as one of the nicest guys in the industry, Cliff’s also one of comics’ top illustrators.  Just take a look at DC’s new Wonder Woman series and you’ll see why.  We recently talked with Cliff about his appearance this weekend, and some of his recent work. Make sure to stop by the MiniCon this Sunday and welcome Cliff back to Charlotte!
Heroes (H):  Your collaboration with Brian Azzarello dates back to your time as an editor of 100 Bullets and your work together on DC’s excellent Doctor 13 stories.  What made Wonder Woman seem like the natural next step in your collaboration?

Cliff Chiang (CC): I’d been itching to work with Azz again ever since Doctor 13, but I had some longer projects that delayed those plans. When Azz called me about Wonder Woman, I realized it was a great opportunity to be creative and confuse people at the same time! I was in.

H: Your work with Azzarello on Wonder Woman has received wide acclaim, and of all DC’s 52 relaunched titles it’s probably one of the truest examples of how to start a title over.  Have you and Azzarello talked about how long you plan on working on the book?

CC: As long as they’ll have us. We have some long term plans for the story, and I’d love to be able to see them though.

H: At every convention we see you at you always manage to have some cool new prints available.  Are you planning on debuting or featuring anything new at the Mini Con?

CC: We’ve got the exclusive MiniCon screenprint by me and Dustin Harbin, for a measly $10! Hopefully, I’ll get another image done for HeroesCon later this year. So much to do!

H: We’re glad you mentioned that! We’re happy that you’ll be back in Charlotte for HeroesCon this summer to help us celebrate our 30th anniversary.
CC: HeroesCon was the first show I was ever invited to as a guest, and since then I’ve come back every year. The people are so warm, the energy is great, and it’s clear that the whole thing is done out of love for comics and the community. I’m proud to be a small part of that. Plus, I’ve made so many good friends in Charlotte that I’m more than happy to be able to spend a few days in Charlotte.

Super (Fly) Mario for the What Not Blog

H: Whose idea was the What Not Blog?

CC: I think it was Reverend Dave Johnson’s brainchild. It’s inspiring to see such a diverse group of artists just messing around like that.

H: Where do you guys find the time to do these fully realized illustrations on top of your paying work?!

CC: It can be hard, but it is a lot of fun. I probably should do less-finished stuff and post more often, but sometimes I love an idea and wanna show some more care.

H: Finally, what are some of the comics that you’re most looking forward to seeing in 2012?

CC: Two things I’m looking forward to in 2012 are the conclusion to Loose Ends (I did not pay him to say that. -rico.) and the print version of Robbi Rodriguez’s Frankie Get Your Gun.

Thanks to Cliff for taking time to answer a few questions.  You can meet him and a slew of other great artists this Sunday at the 35th Anniversary of the Charlotte MiniCon!

Check out Cliff’s website and follow him on Twitter @CliffChiang

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Looking Ahead: May 2011

March 11, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Looking Ahead

Flashpoint #1 – Promoted in the first issue of last year’s Flash relaunch, DC’s big summer event has finally come.  From the look of the onslaught of promotion surrounding it, Flashpoint will be an Age of Apocalypse-style alternate timeline story revolving around. . .you guessed it, The Flash.   The mystery of what happened and the fun of seeing what’s different in this new reality is the fun of these kinds of stories and writer Geoff Johns has shown a firm hand of constructing solid summer blockbuster yarns. Pg. 75

Batman: Gates of GothamScott Snyder’s Detective Comics started late last year and has quickly become this writer’s favorite DC superhero book.  I was very excited to hear that he would also be doing this mini-series about the history of Gotham.  Along with him is co-writer Kyle Higgins and the mega-talented Trevor McCarthy.  The subject matter is the history of powerful families and how the architecture of a city influences people and takes on a life of its own.  I love this kind of stuff!  Pg. 83

Rocketeer Adventures – Between the return of Dark Horse Presents and Strange Adventures (also coming out in May) this is proving to be quite a year for anthologies.  IDW puts some skin in the game with this anthology based around the beloved Rocketeer.  Among the talent in the first issue: Kurt Busiek, Mike Allred, John Cassaday, Michael Kaluta, Mike Mignola, and Jim Silke.  Indeed this appears to be a very proper tribute to the late Dave Stevens and his great creation. Pg. 145

Paying For It – Last year brought a string of new work by alt-comics masters Dan Clowes, Chris Ware, and SethChester Brown, a peer among that group, brings up the rear with his newest work, a memoir about his participation in prostitution.  The subject matter is surely controversial but Brown is talented enough to skillfully navigate it. Pg. 284

Moon Knight #1Brian Bendis and Alex Maleev return to street level superhero comics.  My understanding is that the character will be getting a new setting (L.A.) and a twist on his multiple-personality disorder (he takes on the personas of other superheroes.) From the look of it Maleev will be returning to his Daredevil style and there are certainly enough hooks here to make this worth a look.  Marvel Pg. 45

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Looking Ahead: April 2011

February 10, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: DISCUSS, Looking Ahead

Dark Horse Presents #1 – The awesome anthology, a defining if overlooked gem of the 90′s, returns with a creative roster from heaven: Howard Chaykin, Frank Miller, Neal Adams, Richard Corben, and a new Concrete story from Paul Chadwick.  This is the best kind of artist showcase and we should all be glad of its return.  Pg. 20

Hellboy: Buster Oakley Gets His WishKevin Nowlan draws a Hellboy one-shot with arguably the best title of any comic this year.  Don’t forget that Nowlan will be attending HeroesCon this year along with the entire creative teams from Hellboy and B.P.R.D. Pg. 30 (more…)

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HEROESCON :: IN WHICH MORE NAMES ARE ADDED TO THE GUEST LIST!

January 27, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Guest List, HeroesCon, HeroesCon News, NEWS

We promised you several huge HeroesCon 2011 Guest List additions as we transition into 2011 and we are here to deliver! It is hard to believe that HeroesCon is just around the corner. We’ve got even more surprises for you coming up so stay tuned!

Scott Beaderstadt is probably best known for his work on Troll Lords, which he plans on re-launching with the three-issue mini-series Death: My Life and Love. You may also know him from The Mummy or Archie: Superteens. You can become a fan of Troll Lords on Facebook!

Jacob Chabot is the writer/artist on The Mighty Skullboy Army. He also did the art for the adorable comic X-Babies. Recently he has worked on several books for Marvel like Spider-Ham 25th Anniversary Special #1, Deadpool #1000 and I Am an Avenger #2.

SL Gallant is currently the artist on GI Joe: Real American Hero which is written by Larry Hama. Issue #162 was just released this week! It is published through IDW but continues where the classic Marvel run left off. Gallant has also worked on other popular GI Joe titles like GI Joe: Origins and GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra.

Chris Giarrusso burst onto the scene with his highly entertaining and enormously popular Mini-Marvels. When Mini-Marvels TP vol 1 Rock, Paper, Scissors came out we had a hard time keeping it in stock because it was flying off the shelves! Most recently Giarrusso worked on G-Man: Cape Crisis which was a witty and fun-filled all-ages book. He is an incredibly talented writer and artist and you should definitely track him down at the show!

Gregg Schigiel is the writer of the aforementioned adorable comic X-Babies. He is currently working on SpongeBob Comics which will debut in February. He is also working on Pix: Teenage American Fairy which can be viewed here. You can also check out his extremely funny Stick Figure Night Live comics which summarize Saturday Night Live in stick-figure form.

David Williams has recently done interiors and covers for a number of Marvel’s all-ages books such as Wolverine: First Class, Uncanny X-Men First Class and Hulk and Power Pack. You may recognize him from his cover runs on Incredible Hercules or GI Joe.

Thom Zahler is best known for his creator-owned book Love and Capes which just got picked up by IDW. Be on the look out for Love and Capes: Ever After #1 this February! Back in October for 24-Hour Comic Day Zahler set up a studio in the Great Lakes Mall and created a comic live. You can check out Robot 6‘s coverage of his process or read about his experience on his blog!

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HEROESCON :: INDIE ISLAND :: BUSCEMA, DORKIN, DYER, HIGGINS, KINDT, RODRIGUEZ AND WATSON!

January 27, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Guest List, HeroesCon, HeroesCon News, Indie Island, NEWS

We are super excited to be able to announce some great additions to the HeroesCon 2011 Indie Island Guest List

Stephanie Buscema is a fantastic illustrator and cartoonist. Most recently, her painterly style can be seen in Girl Comics and Web of Spider-Man. She is also currently working on picture books for Dial and Disney/Hyperion. This will be Buscema’s first appearance at HeroesCon but hopefully it won’t be her last. Make sure you stop by her table and check out her amazing work!

Evan Dorkin is probably best known as the writer and artist for Milk & Cheese and Dork. He is also the writer on the critically acclaimed Beasts of Burden mini-series. Currently he and Sarah Dyer are working on a Super Martian Robot Girl story for a Yo Gabba Gabba! anthology for Oni Press. Check out his blog for news on his upcoming work!

Sarah Dyer got her start in the underground zine movement of the eighties and nineties and is famous for creating Action Girl Comics an all-female comics anthology. She frequently collaborates with her husband Evan Dorkin and is often his editor and colorist. She is a mulit-talented writer and artist who doesn’t confine herself to comics.  She also bakes, sews and knits! Check out some of the projects she has been working on over at her blog!

Dusty Higgins is most famous for being the artist and creator of Pinnochio Vampire Slayer, which is written by Indie Island guest Van Jensen. The first two volumes have been released and they are working on the third one. He also illustrated Pedestals, Parapets, and Pits and Where You Stand is Where You Sit.

Matt Kindt is the amazing writer/artist behind Pistolwhip, Super Spy and Two Sisters. His most recent work includes 3 Story, Revolver and a Black Widow story in Marvel‘s Strange Tales. He is currently working on The Tooth with Cullen Bunn and Shawn Lee.

Robbi Rodriguez made his comics debut in 2005 with Image Comic‘s Hero Camp. Since then he has been entertaining audiences with his art on such titles as Maintenance and Stephen Colbert’s Tek Jansen. He just completed work on Polly and the Pirates from Oni Press, so look for that soon!

Joel Watson is the creator of the webcomic HijiNKS ENSUE which focuses on geek culture. He recently started updating his webcomic 5 times a week! Watson has begun collecting HijiNKS ENSUE into handy trade paperbacks. Volume one is already out and it collects 2007-2008. Volume 2 is scheduled for early this year. For more information visit the HijiNKS ENSUE website.

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REMINDER :: CHARLOTTE MINICON IS SATURDAY, JANUARY 22!

January 21, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Charlotte Minicon, EVENTS, Heroes Aren't Hard To Find, NEWS

Don’t forget that the Charlotte Minicon will be this Saturday, January 22, 2011 from 11 am to 5 pm. The show will be at the Palmer Building at Fireman’s Hall which is just half a mile from our store. We love having our Minicon at this cozy location and it is well worth the $3 admission price just to come and check out this cool, old building. If you are not familiar with the location, fear not, we will put up signs along 7th St. to help direct you to the event!

Our awesome guest list includes Rich Barrett (Nathan Sorry), Chris Brunner (Boondock Saints, Loose Ends), J. Chris Campbell (Zig Zag), Sanford Greene (1000), Dustin Harbin (Diary Comics #1), Jason Latour (Noche Roja, Scalped, Wolverine), Budd Root (Cavewoman), Bridgit Scheide (Kindle), Andy Smith (X-Men Forever 2) and Chrissie Zullo (Fables #100). We have been spotlighting these guests for the past month now to show off just how incredibly talented these guests are. Check out the blog for those spotlights!

In addition to our special guests there will be a room full of dealers from all over the Southeast selling their comic wares. Come by to dig for comics both new and old as well as other comic related items like toys! As a special bonus treat, the Charlotte Minicon will feature pony rides (weather permitting)! All you have to do is donate at least $3 to the Latta Plantation Equestrian Center. Funds raised will go to erect a covered area at the center. I can’t think of another convention that can boast that they have pony rides!

We hope to see you Saturday, January 22, 2011 at this incredibly fun, family-friendly event!

Charlotte Minicon
January 22, 2011
11 am to 5 pm
Admission is just $3!
Palmer Building at Fireman’s Hall
2601 E 7th St
Charlotte, NC 28204

Update: Unfortunately, Special Guest Chris Stevens will be unable to attend the Charlotte Minicon this Saturday. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes.

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CHARLOTTE MINICON GUEST SPOTLIGHTS :: DUSTIN HARBIN, J. CHRIS CAMPBELL, SANFORD GREENE AND CHRIS BRUNNER!

January 21, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Charlotte Minicon, DISCUSS, EVENTS, Interviews

The Charlotte Minicon is THIS Saturday from 11 am to 5 pm at the Palmer Building! For the past several weeks building up to it we have been spotlighting our awesomely talented guests and here is the last batch for your enjoyment! Come see them live and in-person at the Minicon. In the meantime, for more information about the artists please visit their websites!

First up is Dustin Harbin who is no stranger to Heroes events. Up until recently he was helping to organize them! We welcome him as he sits on the other side of the table. For more images like the one on the right check out Harbin’s Ten Dollar Fourths Flickr set.

Heroes: Creatively, what are you most proud of from 2010?
Dustin Harbin: I guess I’m pretty proud of making a newspaper, which was a fun design challenge, and of getting to work with Anne Koyama, whose Koyama Press published my DIARY COMICS #1 in September. She let me design that book too, so 2010 was a year with a lot of successful design challenges met for me.

H: What can we look for from you in 2011?
DH: In 2011 I’ll have two more (small) volumes of DIARY COMICS, plus at least one full-color collection of the non-diary comics I publish on dharbin.com. I’m shooting for at least 3 different anthology stories this year, and will be pitching a couple of things to publishers, so we’ll see how that shakes out. But I bet those things wouldn’t show up until 2012 anyway, just in time for the Mayans to return and destroy us all.

H: Do you have any interesting or fond memories from a past Charlotte Minicon?
DH: Well, I used to work at these things! So most of the memories are work-related. Weirdly, all my favorite memories are of setting up the room in the morning, and wheedling free Bojangles out of Shelton for everyone. Last year was my first year exhibiting as an artist, so that was pretty great. Especially since I live right around the corner, so I just wheeled my little handtruck right over. It’s always nice to hang out with J. Chris Campbell, that guy’s the best. I am hopefully going to make a memory with him this year, or maybe Rich Barrett. Either one of those guys, pretty sure.

Next on the list is J. Chris Campbell who is simultaneously a super awesome artist and a super awesome guy! His mini comics are humorous, fun and occasionally a bit melancholy, but they are always worth the price! You should definitely stop by his table and take a gander. I heard a little rumor that Duane Ballenger might be appearing along with Campbell. Come to the Minicon to find out for yourself!

Heroes:
Creatively, what are you most proud of from 2010?
J. Chris Campbell: I’m most proud of finally putting together a collection of my comics from a bunch of anthologies. Zig Zag: Mish Mash brings together stories that have been scattered all over the place for years. I released a small number of them at Heroes and it’s available thru the Comixology app for iPhone. I was also pretty proud to be among the few to beta test Comixology’s self authoring software that will help me release more digital comics.

H: What can we look for from you in 2011?
JCC: 2011 is a great year. It’s the 10th anniversary of Wide Awake Press! We aren’t planning anything huge but we’ve got a couple of projects in the works that should prove to be a lot of fun. Including the 2011 Free Comic Book Day download and an anthology edited by Pat Lewis called Our Broadcast Day.

H: Do you have any interesting or fond memories from a past Charlotte Minicon?
JCC: One year we crammed four guys behind our table including Rob Ullman, Duane Ballenger and Justin Gammon. It was a tight fit but a lot of fun and I think that was the same year that it started to snow. Last Charlotte Minicon we closed the place down by chatting it up with the Dollar Bin. I always love doodling robots for all the folks who drop by my table. Minicon is in a really nice venue with great local artists and quality dealers. A great mix for a super one day show!

Also we have Sanford Greene who is a regular guest at HeroesCon and for Free Comic Book Day so we are delighted to have him up for the Charlotte Minicon. Greene’s recent work includes Wonder Girl, Marvel Adventures Spider-Man and Deadpool Team-Up.

Heroes: Creatively, what are you most proud of from 2010?
Sanford Greene: In 2010, I did a lot of design work for games and animation that I am proud of. Some of which I can not mention. However,  one thing I am happy with the work I did for the new DC Comics MMO that just came out. I am also proud of to finally get one of my creator owned projects ( 1000) off the ground!

H: What can we look for from you in 2011?
SG: I am excited to be apart of the new Dark Horse Comics Presents launch! I am also excited about my new OGN 1000, coming soon to MTV.com! There’s several other things lined up with Marvel but really can’t announce yet.

H: Do you have any interesting or fond memories from a past Charlotte Minicon?
SG: This is my first Minicon,  and will not be my last! I am sure from here on , I will have fond memories!

Finally we get to Chris Brunner. All of us here at Heroes are super excited about the work his is putting out and we can’t wait for Loose Ends to hit stores!

Heroes: Creatively, what are you most proud of from 2010?
Chris Brunner: Can’t help but be a tease here, I’m happiest with the pages Rico Renzi, Jason Latour and I have stockpiled for our comic Loose Ends. We’ve been scheming on it for a while now, and I’m dead pleased with how it’s coming together. We have run amok.

H: What can we look for from you in 2011?
CB: A couple more Boondock Saints covers this spring from Rico and I, a heady dose of Loose Ends in 12 Gauge’s Free Comic Book Day release, and the full Loose Ends run for the summertime. There’s regular art shenanigans here too: http://kickstandkids.blogspot.com/

H: Do you have any interesting or fond memories from a past Charlotte Minicon?
CB: At last years Minicon I did a drawing for Brandon Padgett of the Dollar Bin podcast, which is now hanging in his son’s bedroom- can’t beat that. The show seems to grow every year, hopefully twice the guest list means twice the tomfoolery and general comic hijinx.

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HEROESCON :: FIRST GUEST LIST ADDITION OF THE NEW YEAR!

January 20, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Guest List, HeroesCon, HeroesCon News, NEWS

I can’t believe it has been over a month since we made the last addition to the HeroesCon 2011 Guest List. It seems like a week ago to me! We have quite a backlog of confirmed guests to get up on the website, so without further ado, here is the first guest list addition of the New Year!

Cullen Bunn is probably best known for his collaborations with Brian Hurtt, which include The Damned, The Damned: Prodigal Sons and The Sixth Gun. In addition to his comics writing he does a considerable amount of short fiction, typically horror stories. Bunn has a ton of comics coming out this year so be on the lookout for Superman/Batman #81, Captain America #616 and Deadpool Family #1!

Jeremy Dale first broke onto the scene with his six-issue comic series Trust. Since then he has worked on numerous other projects including Popgun vol 1 and GI Joe: A Real American Hero. He is currently working on the creator-owned project Skyward.

We are happy to welcome GW Fisher back for his tenth consecutive HeroesCon! In his 14 years as an artist and inker he has worked on numerous books including ShadowHawk and Intimidators. Currently he is a licensing artist for Marvel.

HeadHunta’ Studios have several more names to add to their corner of Artist Alley. Joining previously announced members will be: Jeff Balke (Grimm Fairy Tales), Ben Fisher (Smuggling Spirits), Kevin Stokes (Guardian Project) and Wilfredo Torres (Salem: Queen of Thorns).

Brian Hurtt, as previously mentioned, frequently collaborates with Cullen Bunn. He has also worked on such popular titles as Queen & Country, Gotham Central and Hard Time. He has a lot of upcoming projects including the Vertigo Crime book Cowboys which is scheduled for a July release.

Sunny Lee has been in the industry for about 15 years now. He has worked on such fan-favorites as Superboy and Wolverine. His most recent work was Wildstorm/DC on Gen13. Check out his deviantART page for some examples of his awesome commissions!

We are thrilled to be able to add Tony Moore to the HeroesCon 2011 Guest List! It was just announced that he will be doing the art for the upcoming Venom ongoing series. Moore is well-known for his work on Battle Pope, The Exterminators and Fear Agent. Most recently he has been doing Punisher and Franken-Castle for Marvel. He is probably best known as the co-creator of The Walking Dead which AMC turned into a television series last year. It is a huge success and it is the most-watched basic cable series of all time!

Chris Samnee is the critically-acclaimed artist on Thor: The Mighty Avenger, Area 10 and Serenity: The Shepherd’s Tale. It was recently announced that Samnee and Roger Langridge would team up once again for a Thor and Captain America story in one of Marvel‘s FCBD books. Also, Samnee will be doing the art for Ultimate Spider-Man #155!

Matt Wilson is the super-talented colorist on such popular titles as Wolverine, Invincible Iron Man, Ultimate Spider-Man and Thor: The Mighty Avenger. He is working on a ton of upcoming books  including Captain America and Crossbones #1, Arcade: Death Game and Ultimate Comics Doom. He reportedly has colored over 1,000 pages this year! It boggles the mind!

Stay tuned to our blog and keep reading the newsletter because this is just the first of many announcements for HeroesCon 2011!

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CHARLOTTE MINICON :: CHRIS STEVENS UNABLE TO ATTEND

January 20, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: Charlotte Minicon, EVENTS

Unfortunately, Special Guest Chris Stevens will be unable to attend the Charlotte Minicon this Saturday. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes.

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REVIEW :: B.P.R.D. Hell on Earth-New World #1 – 5

January 17, 2011 By: Heroes Online Category: DISCUSS, Opinion, Reviews

What does Hell on Earth mean?  In terms of publishing, it’s Mike Mignola giving an official name to the series’ next uber-arc.  All the B.P.R.D. material to this point has been retroactively dubbed Plague of Frogs and will be re-collected under that title, in snazzy, reasonably priced hardcovers forthcoming.  Hell on Earth is the landscape of the series now.  Hell IS on Earth now.  Crazy Guy Davis-drawn monsters are running amok cutting swaths of destruction across the world.  The B.P.R.D., now a U.N. sanctioned organization, finds their jobs harder than ever and not just because of the monsters.  Because they are U.N. sanctioned, they have more to answer for and are constantly hamstrung in getting the job done.

The neat thing about all of it is that information I just splayed out for you is delivered subtly in the book.  It’s all background or hinted upon or briefly mentioned at the most.  John Arcudi and Mignola world building through atmosphere but different than how they usually do.  This is an emotional landscape more so than the Gothic/Horror/Strange landscapes that they usually build for us.  A landscape of frustration as the world is ripped asunder.  The frustration of being able to do more and accomplishing nothing.  The B.P.R.D., when they most need to stick together, is falling apart.

The main plot is more concerned with Abe Sapien and a former B.P.R.D. regular cast member hunting down the source of a plague that is turning a small town into possessed monsters.  When the source is discovered it is devastating in its human element and twisted because of it.  I won’t give it away.

I haven’t forgotten though, and it would be stupid of me to ignore, that this is a comic book about killing monsters and when it comes time to do that between the in-fighting and campfire conversations about survival, it delivers.  The action centerpiece in issue #3 is the most scrumptious of chase-fights.  Abe is at the wheel of a pick-up truck and Ben Daimio is in the back with box full of guns and grenades fighting/being chased by a big black mega-demon thing. The art of the action sequence sometimes seems lost in this modern day of freely used double splashes.  A proper action scene takes into account setting and geography, the physical proximity between characters and their surroundings.  The progression of panels must flow in such a way that those things interact with each while showing the passage of time properly freezing momentum at its most dynamic but also most information conveying.  It is such a delicate balance.  Guy Davis with his deceptively scratch style accomplishes it and makes it look easy.

You’ve heard the buzz now is the best time to get in on one of the finest of monthly comics.

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