#397 “Multiplex” puts butts in seats

multiplexTim Across America, part 7! Gordon McAlpin has put in more than a decade on the popular Web comic Multiplex, about kids who work at a movie theater — a concept he had originally thought was stupid! What changed his mind? How has he successfully funded two Kickstarter projects to print books of his comic? He talks with Tim about this in a Minneapolis restaurant, as well as using Patreon for funding, his tools for making the strip, and the good and bad points of letting your characters age.

Plus, a clip from Tim’s appearance on the KFAI Minneapolis radio program True Brit!

DCP In Touch: Read Ian’s full comments about R. Crumb

#396 Dan Jurgens: Superman, Thor, and 30 years of change


Tim Across America, part six! Having worked in mainstream American comics for three decades now, Dan Jurgens has seen a lot of change. The number of publishers, the type and amount of fan interaction (thanks to the Internet), the method of comics distribution, and the way the Big Two search for new talent have all changed greatly in that time. And, the Big Two now actually discourage the creation of new characters. Why? This week, Jurgens reflects on those changes — some good, some bad — in a talk with Tim.

He also discusses his work on Superman and Thor, how technology has helped film steal some of comics’ storytelling edge, and more.

Also, in the Minneapolis edition of Ask a Retailer, Tim talks to Paul Miller at Comic Book College!

AND, our new feature DCP In Touch, and a talk with Kumar and Mulele about their successful Kickstarter project!

#395 Zander Cannon’s journey through “Heck”

zandercannonTim Across America pt 5! In Minneapolis, Tim visits the studio of Zander Cannon, author of Heck (discussed in episode 381) and layout artist for Alan Moore’s Top Ten and Smax. He talks with Tim about developing Heck, working with Alan Moore, whether going to San Diego is all that essential for a newbie to the comics business, and — Hey, Kevin Cannon’s your brother, right?!?

Big Time Attic (Zander and Kevin’s studio)

“Drops of God” to be savored

dropsofgodBy Kory Cerjak

Title: The Drops of God
Author: Tadashi Agi
Art: Shu Okimoto
Publisher: Vertical

It’s often the simple things in life that spurn a person. A single human life can mean so much to one person and sometimes we can only get that view in retrospect, unfortunately. Agi and Okimoto’s Drops of God is trying to remind us of those little things, and those singular lives, that can change our own by so much.

Shizuku Kanzaki is a man who was put through taste and smell training by his wine connoisseur father, Yutaka, since he was young. As a result, Shizuku kind of spurned wine until his father’s death at the beginning of the first volume. Shizuku works at a Continue reading “Drops of God” to be savored

Comic Book Names And Numerology

By Neil Tomblin

pythagoreantableThe reason why comic book character Peter Parker acts the way he acts is in his name.  After studying Numerology, I found that there is Numerology involved in the titles and characters in many comic books.  Numerology is a mathematical science that is related to a person’s abilities, destiny, and challenges.  There are many different ways to calculate a person’s Numerology.  However, in the case of comic book characters names, I will calculate how to find a person’s Numerology by words or names.

Numerology is calculated by converting letters into numbers.  For example, the letter A is the first letter in the alphabet, so letter A is converted to the number 1.  The letter B Continue reading Comic Book Names And Numerology

#394 CLAMP’s “xxxHolic”; how addictive is it?

xxxHolicTim Across America, pt 4! Kimihiro Watanuki, an orphaned high school student whose name represents his birthday, one day finds himself entering a mysterious house. Inside he finds a couple of manic kids and a flirtatious witch named Yuko who grants wishes — for a price.

Tim, meanwhile, finds himself entering Des Moines, Iowa, where he meets up with Kory to discuss CLAMP’s manga xxxHolic — and also talking to James Gray at Mayhem Comics, Cards, and Games.

#393 Chicago Drink and Draw

Brian Crowley, Tim Seeley, and Onrie Kompan

Tim Across America pt 3! Visiting Chicago, Tim links up with some local comics people, including a couple we’ve heard from before, for a wide-ranging discussion. Topics include: Public perception of comics and comics readers in the US; interactions between US comics and manga; reasons not to use comics as a stepping stone to getting your movie made; living with the creative impulse; the relative lack of diverse voices in American comics; and more.

The panel:

Also: Tim talks to Shanna Wallace at the Edgewater location of Chicago’s Graham Crackers Comics!

Photos below the jump…

Continue reading #393 Chicago Drink and Draw

Batman’s Kid

BatmanIn the Batman comics, there might be a symbolic connection between Bruce Wayne’s tragic childhood and the personalities of the main enemies of Batman. There are childlike personalities to the original incarnations of The Joker, The Riddler, and The Penguin. The only partial exception is Catwoman. Even though there have been many other villains that Batman fought in later issues of the comics that do not fit in this category, there have always been certain villains that he has fought the most.

One villain that is the hardest for Batman to defeat is always The Joker.  The Joker is the the ultimate in childish, but dangerous, behavior. The Joker tells immature and tasteless jokes. The Joker also engages in dangerous practical jokes. Batman’s constant battle with The Joker is Batman’s symbolic battle to get past the grief over his parents being killed in front of a theater. As a result of Bruce Wayne’s parents being killed when he was a child, Bruce Wayne has never fully grown up. Bruce keeps having flashbacks about his parents’ murders again and again. Bruce becomes Batman to fight the Joker, who is a symbol of the tragic child that Bruce still is. Also, like the theater Bruce Wayne’s parent’s were murdered in front of, The Joker is very theatrical.

The Riddler is another villain that represents Batman’s fight against the mystery of his childhood tragedy. Like the Joker, The Riddler is also childish and dangerous in his behavior. Once again, we have a villain who is a symbolic mirror for Bruce Wayne/Batman’s childlike tragedy. When Bruce Wayne becomes Batman, he doesn’t know if he is really Batman, Bruce Wayne, or both. The Riddler makes Batman solve riddles that must be solved for safety reasons. If Batman does not solve The Riddler’s puzzles, death can come to Batman or other people. As The Riddler sends out out childish riddles for Batman to solve, Batman is also solving the riddle of his own identity.

The Penguin is another childlike villain, who plays around with umbrellas. The Penguin’s original incarnation has him as a mobster who owns a nightclub as a front. The Penguin loves birds and has a funny portly penguin look to him. He also has many trick umbrellas that gas and shoot people. The Penguin is like The Joker, but with umbrellas. He also acts like a penguin, making him another whimsical but deadly enemy.

The interesting exception is Catwoman. Even though she is a bit silly dressing up in a cat outfit, Catwoman still refers to herself as a woman and not a girl. Catwoman is also not always a villain. Sometimes, she has a loving relationship with Batman. Because of this, Batman finds a little more of an adulthood with the Catwoman.

One would think that by now The Joker would have ran out of tricks. However, there might be something deeper behind Batman’s constant trouble with the Joker, even if the writers of the comics don’t know it on a conscious level.