Trying to put together this week’s column, I made a perilous, very irritating discovery. We’re less than a month out from The Force Awakens premiere and, oh sweet baby Jesus, there is SO MUCH Star Wars coverage in the geek media sphere. How can one movie generate this many headlines??? I feel like Artax in The Neverending Story, only, instead of a horse slowly sinking into the Swamps of Sadness, I’m a weekly columnist drowning in Star Wars clickbait. Loyal readers, if I succumb to the deadly powers of the Star Wars hype machine, be like brave Atreyu and carry on your quest for indie comics without me.
So let’s do something different this week; a bit of a palate cleanser and focus solely on interesting creator interviews. A whole host of interesting conversations with fun comics creators cropped up this week and delve into not only their current work but their creative process as well.
First up is a profile of Spike Trotman, the creator behind Smut Peddler and Poorcraft, founder of Iron Circus Comics publisher, and all-around pretty awesome lady. How cool is it to see a piece from the Guardian all about a WoC creator forging her own path to success in the comics industry? This article doesn’t mention it, but Iron Circus Comics has got a lot of interesting things on the horizon. I’m super pumped to see it bringing webcomics like TJ and Amal and Shadoweyes to print, and I’m always game for the comics anthologies whether they be a new volume of Smut Peddler or genre-focused like The Sleep of Reason. If you’re at all interested in comics as an industry and what it takes to be an indie publisher, you should definitely follow Spike on twitter. Not only is she hilarious but also very astute and educational about what goes on beyond the scenes.
The sixth issue of Pretty Deadly dropped last week, and creators Emma Rios and Kelly Sue DeConnick talked to EW about where this second arc is going. It’s been more than 18 months since Pretty Deadly‘s first storyline wrapped up, so I’m glad to see this book back on the shelves and no doubt its legions of very devoted fans are too. It’ll be interesting to see if the long delay between issues will hurt this book or help it, as new readers may have come to it since the release of the trade or be interested after picking up the creators’ other work. The story on this book doesn’t blow me away, but the combination of Emma Rios’ art with Jordie Bellaire’s colors are so beautiful that it’s worth picking up for that alone.
I’ll admit, I haven’t picked up No Mercy yet, but this interview with the creative team has me way more interested than I was before. The Image series follows American high schoolers going down to South America for a trip that goes Very Badly and launches its second story arc with issue six in December. The premise initially seemed more like a slasher movie than the eerie creepiness I like in my horror, but the interview delves into No Mercy‘s character work which sounds super interesting. I really like writer Alex de Campi’s work that I have read, and while I’m not as familiar with Carla Speed McNeil her work Finder has a ton of fans.
It might be Sex Criminals that gets Chip Zdarsky all the accolades, but for my money, Kaptara is where his glorious weirdness really shines. Kaptara, which is written by Zdarsky and penciled Kagan McLeod, is a totally fun romp through sci-fi, fantasy, and whatever else they can throw into the mix. Check out this interview with Zdarsky here and then this super cute video of the creative team drawing super villains.