Tagged: King City

TRY SOMETHING NEW Chapter 15: Princess Leia Races Home Aboard Her Starship.

Ok, big week here at TRY SOMETHING NEW. It seems a ton of you have been reading my column and taking my advice. Obama released the sales charts for comics last week and it turns out REPTILE MUSEUM by Cody Pickrodt was the best selling comic in the country, selling a whopping 1,288,000 copies in one week. That’s a lot of folding and stapling. Thanks loyal readers. I hope you all enjoyed reading the book as much as I did. I am sure Cody would thank you too if he wasn’t busy orbiting the earth in a newly purchased Soviet space shuttle. Hopefully there is stuff in this weeks column that you can be equally as excited about.

Of course every silver lining comes with a sad old cloud inside it. I am putting this issue of the Weekly Planet together myself for the first time. Turns out it’s not so hard. This is shaved ape territory. That’s not the sad part though. No living person has seen dear sweet Tech Wizard/Milk Carton Model Tyler in over a week. This is hard to talk about but Tyler was getting into weird stuff recently. Stuff you wouldn’t want your parents to see, stuff you would deny to your friends. Comics with no narrative, comics that were just made up of shapes, comics that took place inside large animals, comics about comics even. MoCCA stuff. Real sicko $#!%. Sadly no one at Forbidden Planet heard his cry for help enough to just hand him a copy of Hawkman and slap him in the face once. We have all seen it before. Kid moves to the big city from… I don’t, Canada? Texas? Where the hell was Tyler from? And the big city shows him things he has never imagined. Blexbolex things. Deforge things. Marra things. The first time he saw Pillow Fight it was like watching a puppy come to understand string theory. Soon he is shaving his head, hanging out in offices with british dudes, and … Sorry again. I don’t really know what Tyler does other than edit this steaming pile of journalism. Either way, if you see Tyler out there tell him someone at Forbidden Planet loves him. Tell him to come home before this world ruins him. He had so much to give. I can already feel this is too little too late. Oh well.

Image came out swinging pretty hard in 2012, firmly staking their claim as the innovative mainstream publisher. Books like Saga, Manhattan Projects, Fatale, Mind The Gap, Prophet, and King City were among the best books to come out last year. Well Image is feeling the pressure to top all that clearly. Books like End Times, Nowhere Men, Sex, and Great Pacific are all causing a lot of buzz and are well worth your time. But no book has generated the buzz or the praise of FIVE GHOSTS #1. The Five Ghosts team (Team 5G is what no one is calling them) is signing/signed at Forbidden Planet this Wednesday, (and what a fine looking and charming group of young men) depending on when you read this. A great classic pulp adventure with big ideas and breathtaking art, FIVE GHOSTS feels just like what you imagined all comics should be like when you were 10. An Indiana Jones type meets the great literary characters of the past 200 years in a supernatural thriller as drawn by a cross between Milo Manara and Wally Wood. That was probably too nice, but still, really fun book. Make sure to grab a copy so you can see what everyone else is already talking about.

While we are on the subject of Image and the signing on Wednesday, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that MAXIMUM MINIMUM WAGE comes out this week and Bob Fingerman will/was also signing on Wednesday. If you aren’t familiar with Minimum Wage then you should probably stop reading this and just buy the book right now, which is a fully remastered collection of the old stuff with new bonus material. Bob Fingerman is a true classic cartoonist in every sense of the word. He has had work in everything from Cracked to Screw, High Times to Heavy Metal. He has done children’s comics (the excellent Recess Pieces), and porno comics (the also excellent Skinheads In Love), and turtle comics (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles). But for many of his fans and admirers his pseudo autobiographical comic Minimum Wage is his true crowning achievement. Underemployed twenty-something characters try to find their places, get by, and fill their days in this book that in many ways feels like the sibling to books like Love & Rockets and American Splendor. Slice of life storytelling that is character driven and vital, while never losing sight of what makes indie comics fun.

Another of my favorite books of the last year finally lands in collected format this week, Brian Wood‘s brilliant environmentalist post apocalyptic drama, THE MASSIVE. Part insane naval action thriller, part end of the world disaster story, all framed around a disappeared freighter. Wood does his usual great job of making simple ideas seem thrilling and fresh, and then populating them with great characters. In many ways The Massive is the spiritual successor if not actual sequel to his amazing NYC modern civil war series DMZ. With a story that jumps smartly and easily from one mind blowing locale to another, The Massive doesn’t read like anything else on shelves. I don’t know if Wood is great at research or the best bull$#!% artist in comics but it doesn’t matter. His work feels authentic and topical, while never getting bogged down in stupid stuff like “science” and “facts.” While never quite overt, it is nice to see a major comic address climate change and environmentalism in a serious and smart way. This and Joe Harris’ Great Pacific are working hard to bring important issues back to mainstream comics and that is a very good thing. Mr. Wood’s whole career is filled with work from some of the most exciting artists working. From his old books with amazing talents like Becky Cloonan, Ryan Kelly, and Toby Cypress, to more recent fair where he has introduced the masses to artistic geniuses like Riccardo Burchielli, Fiona Staples, Shawn Martinbrough, and Nathan Fox, Wood may have the best taste of any writer in comics. He hasn’t slowed down at all in recent years, doing books with folks like James Harren and Ming Doyle, and now Garry Brown on The Massive. Garry Brown’s art makes The Massive a book that should be in every single smart person’s read list. I have known Garry’s work for a while and been counting the days until he became a superstar. I have a feeling that this time is now. There aren’t a lot of people in comics who can make 2 page spreads of the ocean seem beautiful, scary, or even worth looking at, but Garry does it effortlessly issue after issue. In short, a smart, exciting, and refreshing book that is also beautiful. Stop spending money on the stupid stuff you spend money on and give this book a chance.

Thanks for reading and good night. And sleep well sweet Tyler. Wherever you find yourself tonight.

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Rosie Psalm

Did you get some really cool comic books for free on Free Comic Books Day? Good! BECAUSE I GOT ARRESTED FOR PUBLIC NUDITY IN A CHURCH!

It’s all a big, stupid misunderstanding. There were these guys who were saying that Brandon Graham’s King City wasn’t one of the best graphic novels in the past five years, and I took great umbrage with that statement as I believe the antithesis. Go read that sentence back if you don’t believe me. NOW believe this: Brandon Graham’s King City is NOT ONLY one of the best graphic novels of the past five years, it’s also ONLY $19.99 for over 400 pages of pure comics dynamite!

KING CITY


There’s this guy with a magic cat trying to either win back his ex-girlfriend or stop the hell-beast of the Apocalypse from destroying the eponymous, sprawling, insane city he calls home. He’s on the fence because he can’t really figure out if he still loves this girl, or if it’s just his love of nostalgia, OR if this hell-beast thing could blow over without him getting involved because, really, he should probably be helping his luchador roommate rescue a water alien before she’s thrown into intergalactic sex-slavery by mobsters.

THAT is essentially the plot to King City as I loudly explained it to the two gentlemen in question right after they said that King City could “Eat it.” Now that I think about it, they may have been saying “Take this, all of you, and eat it, this is the blood of my body.” I did so many whip-its that day, it’s hard to remember. As I walked up the aisle of the bar to explain further, I rolled up my sleeves anticipating trouble, as well as taking off my shoes so I had a place to keep my glasses safe. I took my sock off so I had something to protect my other sock in, and I took my pants off to keep my socks company. It was only once I was PARTIALLY naked that I realized I wasn’t in a bar, but a church.

“Didn’t I hear you two guys about five minutes ago reading the new Image comic, Prophet?” I slurred. “EVERYBODY knows that this new Prophet reboot is amazing, and it’s drawn by Brandon Graham, too! LOOK at the difference in art styles! Graham has such a versatile pen that Prophet is the best looking sci-fi comic since Moebius, but King City is all in a fluid, funky cartoon/graphiti style…almost like Crumb drawing the Muppets!”

Now this smarmy SOB tried to take it all back, saying he was talking about “The Lord, our Prophet,” and not Image’s Prophet at all. Pfff. Like THAT’S a comic book at all.

By this time these two yutzes up at the roster where getting really pushy, and I noticed a crowd had gathered in the pews to watch the fight. First they just chased me, grabbing my shirt to try and pin me to the floor, but I escaped by wriggling out of what clothes I had left. HA! Grab THAT, Mr. Funny-Hat. Continue reading

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The Weekly Pulse – Omnibluster

Get $25 off of one of the books mentioned in this review! Which one? Well, you’ll have to watch and find out! Dan soldiers through a massive stack of comics for you guys, and somewhere in this stack is a pretty great deal for our loyal Weekly Pulse viewers!

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Shoot First, Apologize Later

NOBODY is omniscient, and we all make mistakes. Think I’m joking? WHO YA’ GOT? “God?” Is God a perfect, omniscient being that never makes mistakes? Really?

You think God would’ve created life on Earth if IT was omniscient enough to foresee “Bronies,” or the Star Wars prequels? IT doesn’t make mistakes? Have you ever SEEN a tongue louse, or Ceratothoa imbricata? The Coconut crab? ” You gonna’ tell me GOD wasn’t stupid crunk on ambrosia when IT created the naked mole rat?

The key to forgiveness is admitting to the mistakes. I, Unkiedev, would like to print some apologies.

I apologize to BOOM! Studio’s groovy comic book Adventure Time for not buying it earlier…I was not an early adopter to the TV show and have to come back, tail between legs to beg for a pardon. Luckily, BOOM! Has forgiven me with a 2nd edition reprint of Adventure Time #1 this week.

I’m sorry to everybody that I didn’t recommend the ground-breaking and headline grabbing Life With Archie #16 last week. I can’t say I’m a regular Archie reader, and I rarely recommend comic books for speculation purposes, but no matter how you want to view the politics of the dang thing, a same sex marriage in such a mainstream comics is a positive sign for changing times…not to mention that copies are selling on ebay right now for $15 bucks and more.

That wasn’t so hard, was it? I feel much better. Continue reading

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