Comic News Insider Episode 744 – CNI’s Best of 2016!

Comic News Insider: Episode 744 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

It’s our Best of 2016! And just like last year, Jimmy sits down with The Beat’s Heidi MacDonald and good pal Jon Hoche to go over their 2016 favorites in comic books, TV and film. They didn’t read or watch everything released that year, so it’s just the Best of what they did read/watch. Fun discussions on great comics, their creators, TV shows, films, actors and more. What were your favorites last year? Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comic News Insider Episode 725 – NYCC: First Second Special w/ Box Brown/Falynn Koch/Dave Roman!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 725 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

At New York Comic Con, Jimmy chatted at the First Second booth with Box Brown (Tetris: The Games People Play), Falynn Koch (Science Comics: Bats: Learning to Fly) and Dave Roman (Astronaut Academy: Re-Entry). Coincidentally, all of those comics are published by the awesome First Second Books! Box talks about the history of Tetris, Nintendo and the legal battles involving the game. Falynn gives you all the info you ever needed to know about bats as well as her love of mac and cheese. And Dave talks about his all ages tale of friendship, fun and frolic! Do yourself a favor and go check out the extensive catalog by First Second. You won’t be disappointed. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Comics Alternative Interviews: Box Brown

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Time Codes:

  • 00:24 – Introduction
  • 02:14 – Setup of interview
  • 02:57 – Interview with Box Brown
  • 53:28 – Wrap up
  • 54:53 – Contact us

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On this episode of the interview series Derek talks with Box Brown, whose new book Tetris: The Games People Play has just been released from First Second. As the two discuss, this is a detailed history of the famous video game and the cultural, business, and political contexts swirling around the program’s creation. Box shares his experiences and fascination with the game, explaining the genesis of the project and the research that went into it. Whereas his previous First Second book, Andrea the Giant, focused on one figure, the new work synthesizes the lives of everyone involved in the creation of Tetris including its designer Alexy Pajitnov as well as the many key players at Nintendo, Mirrorsoft, Andromeda Software, Atari, Bulletproof Software, and Elorg, the government bureau tasked with overseeing the profits and negotiations surrounding any computer products coming out of the Soviet Union. But Box also focuses on the psychology of gaming and role it plays in our lives, using Tetris as his illustrative example.

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Comic News Insider Episode 723 – NYCC Pre-Show w/ Conor/Lizzie Boyle!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 723 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: Batman Beyond Rebirth #1, Josie and the Pussycats Vol 2 #1, Surgeon X #1, Tank Girl Gold #1, Teen Titans Rebirth #1, Aftermath, Timeless, Westworld

Conor and Lizzie Boyle come all the way over from the UK to do the podcast! Okay, they just happen to be in town but they return to CNI to join Jimmy for some NYCC talk, their comic imprint Disconnected Press and Conor’s other comic work. Plus, Jimmy has a few episodes of Luke Cage left to watch and briefly chats about it sans spoilers. News includes: Disney is doing a live action (kind of) The Lion King,  Comixology Originals brings original content, The Dominators will dominate as bad guys for the CW superhero shows, Adventure Time and Archer are ending, Iron Fist will debut on Netflix next March, DC Comics is bringing back the Wildstorm imprint, and Dark Horse Comics is collaborating to release a special Hellboy Reserve Pinot Noir. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love! Also, get a hold of us!

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Deconstructing Comics #515: Box Brown talks “Tetris”

TetrisIn his new nonfiction graphic novel Tetris: The Games People Play, Box Brown explores not only the amazing story of the creation of the popular game and the fight over the rights to it, but the larger point of how and why humans began to play games.

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Comics Alternative Episode 143: A Publisher Spotlight on Retrofit Comics/Big Planet Comics

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Fearless Symmetry

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The Two Guys are back for yet another publisher spotlight, and this time they are looking at the 2015 releases from Retrofit Comics / Big Planet Comics. The episode begins with a brief interview with Box  Brown, the founder and editor of Retrofit Comics. He discusses the origins of Retrofit as a Kickstarter campaign, his education as a publisher, the ensuing partnership with Big Planet Comics, and the philosophy behind and publishing trajectory of their efforts. After that, the guys discuss the 2015 releases (so far) from Retrofit / Big Planet, beginning with Kate Leth’s Ink for Beginners: A Comic Guide to Getting Tattooed. Andy points out that Leth’s work is one of a growing number of informational or expository comics to be found out there, and that tattoo parlors around the country would do well to stock this small book. Next, the guys turn to Box Brown’s An Entity Observes All Things, a collection RetrofitHeadof nine short stories, all with a sci-fi or futuristic themes of some sort. Some of their favorites include “Mundo Jelly,” “Voyage of the Golden Retriever,” “Memorexia,” and the title story. Then they look at perhaps the most experimental, and the smallest, book of the lot, Niv Bavarsky’s Piggy, a disparate series of stories and drawings in mini-comic form. The unconventional nature of Piggy is then contrasted to the more genre-based comics of the week, Laura Knetzger’s Sea Urchin and Jack Teagle’s The Unmentionables. The former is an autobiographical account of the author’s inabilities concentrate and relate to others — represented effectively by a sea urchin inside her brain — as well as a speculation on her place in the world. The Unmentionables is a fun, action-packed story of a group of pro wrestlers who become crimefighters, and its origin-story feel promises more installments to come. Finally, the Two Guys turn to what may be the two most ambitious narratives of the week…or so Derek feels. Olivier Schrauwen’s Mowgli’s Mirror is a wordless, almost treasury-sized comic about a young man in a jungle — no overt links to Kipling’s stories — searching for companionship and finding unexpected encounters. As the title suggests, there are parts of the narrative that are symmetrical in nature, but in this aspect the book doesn’tBigPlanetHead hold a candle to the final book discussed in this publisher spotlight, Matt Madden’s Drawn Onward. As we have come to expect from Madden — see, for example, 99 Ways to Tell a Story and A Fine Mess — this book is an experiment in form, where the second half of the narrative mirrors the first half…or vice versa. Depending on how you read it, it’s a story of either connectedness or alienation. Either way, it’s a self-reflexive tale where the narrator uses her art to make sense, and perhaps even transform the meaning, of experiences that unsettle her. In wrapping up the episode, Andy and Derek also talk briefly about some of the other books that Retrofit / Big Planet have been putting out over the last couple of years. (Box Brown and Jared Smith, the head honchos of the two respective presses, sent the guys a large package containing their back catalog.) Among the earlier titles they mention are James Kochalka’s Fungus: The Unbearable Rot of Being, Sam Alden’s Wicked Chicken Queen, Anne Emond’s Debbie’s Inferno, Josh Bayer’s Theth, and issues #1 and #2 of Box Brown’s Numbers. If you didn’t know anything about Retrofit Comics / Big Planet Comics before, then there is no excuse not to be turned on to their stuff after this episode. Go get it!

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A big THANK YOU to Box Brown and Jared Smith for their abundant generosity.
And be sure to check out the websites of both Retrofit Comics and Big Planet Comics for a full range of their publications!
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Comic News Insider Episode 589 – CNI Favorites of 2014!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 589 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Jimmy is joined in studio by The Beat’s own Heidi MacDonald and frequent co-host/pal Jon Hoche! They dive in deep and have a lengthy/lively discussion on their 2014 favorites in comic books, TV, animation, film, video games and more. So much love shown to a lot of the people and things we loved in 2014. Did we leave anything out? You’ll have to tune in for that answer and let us know your picks of the year! We do cover some news as well that includes: Image Expo announces massive slate of titles to be released, Emerald City Comic Con partners with ReedPop, animated Vixen series coming to the CW Seed, and Kate Beaton’s new collection Step Aside, Pops will be released from Drawn & Quarterly this September. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Comics Alternative Podcast Episode 84: Reviews of Andre the Giant, Shackleton, and Southern Bastards #1

Shoeshine Boy

AndreOn this episode of The Comics Alternative, Andy and Derek discuss three new titles, and boy, do they have great time! They begin with Box Brown’s new graphic biography from First Second, Andre the Giant: Life and Legend. While neither of the Two Guys are big professional wrestling fans, they did grow up in an era where Andre the Giant was a significant cultural figure, covered in news programs, Shackletonstarring in films and television series, and appearing on The Tonight Show and Late Night with David Letterman. Next they look at another historically based comic, also published by First Second: Shackleton: Antarctic Odyssey, by Nick Bertozzi. This work focuses on the expedition that Ernest Shackleton took to the South Pole between 1914 and 1916, intending to traverse the Antarctic on foot. As the guys point out, this is another of Bertozzi’s comics about historical explorers, a previous title being 2011’s Lewis and Clark (also from First Second). Finally, Derek and Andy wrap up SouthernBastardswith a fun discussion — beginning with references to a dog taking a dump — of the new series from Jason Aaron and Jason Latour, Southern Bastards (Image Comics). Both of the guys are familiar with the Southern setting serving as the backdrop of this comic — Derek is from Charlotte, NC, and Andy has been living in South Carolina for a number of years — and they can relate to where the two Jasons are going. Derek, in particular, is excited to see Aaron back on a creator-owned, non-superhero title, and both are enthusiastically on board for what appears to be another great Image series.

This episode’s incidental music is brought to us by
T-Bone Burnett’s The True False Identity

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Comic News Insider Episode 540 – TCAF: Sports vs Comics Panel w/ Wai Au/Box Brown/Reinhard Kleist/Jesse Lonergan

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Comic News Insider: Episode 540 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Jimmy flies solo to bring you his final TCAF (The Toronto Comic Arts Festival) interviews. This is the panel he did called Sports vs Comics with Wai Au (FujoSports!), Box Brown (Andre the Giant), Reinhard Kleist (The Boxer) and Jesse Lonergan (All Star). We chat about their sports comics, why sports comics aren’t as popular in North America, sports they played, other sports they’d like to make a comic about and more!  Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Comic News Insider Episode 539 – More TCAF w/ Box Brown/Eric Kim/Jesse Lonergan/Rebecca Scoble & Lianne Sentar

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Comic News Insider: Episode 539 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: Deadly Hands of Kung Fu #1, Justice League United #1, The New 52: Futures End, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. finale, Arrow finale, Once Upon A Time finale, Warehouse 13 series finale, Godzilla

Jimmy flies solo this week so as not to make the episode too long. He forgets how long winded he is so the episode will still be LONG. Thanks to Producer Joe for the editing magic. However, it’s chock full of more TCAF (The Toronto Comic Arts Festival) goodness! Interviews with Box Brown, Eric Kim, Jesse Lonergan, and Rebecca Scoble/Lianne Sentar. News includes: DC to launch weekly digital first Wonder Woman series, Dynamite Entertainment announces new titles including Bob’s Burgers, Captain Victory, Terminal Hero and Steampunk Battlestar Galactica 1880, John Layman/Rob Guillory’s Chew coming to tabletop games, and Lumberjanes is going to a full series. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Come back Friday for the Sports vs Comics panel that Jimmy moderated with Wai Au, Box Brown, Reinhard Kleist and Jesse Lonergan! 

Comic News Insider Episode 536 – TCAF w/ Darwyn Cooke/Nicholas Gurewitch/Kazu Kibuishi/Mike Maihack/Renee Nault

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Comic News Insider: Episode 536 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: No reviews this week as it’s a TCAF recap!

Producer Joe joins Jimmy to discuss their recent jaunt to The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) in Toronto. They give their recap and thoughts on the terrific show. Such a great time! Thanks to everyone involved for such a well run and fun festival. Great interviews included in this podcast are with Darwyn Cooke (Parker), Nicholas Gurewitch (Perry Bible Fellowship), Kazu Kibuishi (Amulet), Mike Maihack (Cleopatra in Space) and Renee Nault (Witchling). News includes: 3 DC titles (iZombie, FlashConstantine) picked up for TV runs, Marvel’s Agent Carter is coming to TV as well with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. getting a second season pick up, More Marvel films from Fox including X-Force, Gambit and Deadpool, Usagi Yojimbo returns with a sci-fi twist, the Finger family is not okay with DC Comics, and the smallest comic might be in your hair. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Tune in later this week for some special podcasts! First up on Friday is a lunch interview with Becky Cloonan (By Chance or Providence, Batman) and Renee Nault (Witchling). Started out as just a recap and turned into a wonderful conversation about self publishing, advice for tabling at a show, and some of their upcoming projects. Then on Sunday, we’ll release the spotlight panel that Jimmy moderated with German cartoonist Reinhard Kleist (The Boxer, Cash: I See A Darkness). He’s a talented, smart and funny man with a great career. Hear them discuss it all! 

Then come back next week for even more TCAF interviews with Jesse Lonergan (All Star), Eric Kim (Nitro Battlers), Box Brown (Andre the Giant), Lianne Sentar/Rebecca Scoble (Sparkler Monthly) and the Sports vs Comics panel that Jimmy moderated. 

Comic News Insider Episode 535 – TCAFfeinated!

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Comic News Insider: Episode 535 is now available for free download! Click on the link or get it through iTunes! Sponsored by Dynamic Forces.

Reviews: Amazing Spider-Man Vol 3 #1, Battlestar Galactica Six #1, Dexters Laboratory Vol 2 #1, Southern Bastards #1, V-Wars #1, Vertigo Quarterly Cyan #1, Amazing Spider-Man 2

Producer Joe joins Jimmy in studio to talk about their upcoming trip to The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF).  Jimmy will be moderating 2 panels (info below) and they both will be conducting many an interview. They pay tribute to their friend Jamie Dallessandro and send love to his family/friends. We lost one of the best of us. The guys go on to chat about Free Comic Book Day, Star Wars Day, Fox canceling Being Human, the CBR forum revamp, the ET video game cartridge dump and Jimmy makes up a new gaming company called Atario. News includes: Star Wars VII cast revealed, Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Superheroes announced, SyFy developing comic book based shows, Yahoo developing sci-fi comedy, 11th Doctor gets terminated, Carlton Cuse remaking The Returned, and Kevin Smith gets Krampus for Christmas. Leave your iTunes comments! 5 stars and nothing but love!

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Jimmy’s TCAF Panels

I’ll be moderating a couple of panels at TCAF this weekend. Come on by and check them out! 
Sports Vs. Comic Books: Making Peace Between Schoolyard Enemies 
Jocks Vs. Nerds is an engrained trope, but times have thankfully changed. The North American comics industry is catching up to its European and Japanese compatriots, realizing that blending popular sporting events with comics and graphic novels goes together like peanut butter and chocolate, and the result are great comics that appeal to an entirely new artist. Join authors Box Brown (Andre The Giant), Reinhard Kleist (The Boxer), Wai Au (Fujosports), and Jesse Lonergan (All-Star) for a spirited discussion of this emerging genre of comics!
@ The Pilot Saturday, May 10 11am-12pm
Spotlight: Reinhard Kleist
This would be a feature interview with Kleist about his work and career, with a special focus on The Boxer, which is debuting in English at the festival.

@The Marriott 50 Saturday, May 10 12pm-1:15pm

More To Come 61: SPX 2013

More to come

Recorded by the Comics World division of Publishers Weekly Magazine, it’s More To Come! Your biweekly dose of insider comics publishing news, discussion and controversy.  Starring Heidi MacDonald, the Eisner-nominated blogger of ComicsBeat.com, Calvin Reid, Senior News Editor of Publishers Weekly and Kate Fitzsimons, More To Come’s intrepid producer!

In this week’s episode, the More To Come crew interview indie publisher and cartoonist Box Brown of Retrofit, Dan Nadel of Picturebox and Josh Kramer of The Cartoon Picayune and discuss news and views from the Small Press Expo, comics at the Brooklyn Book Festival, DC‘s changing presence at New York Comic Con, the implications of Marvel’s Ghostrider settlement and much more on PWCW’s More to Come

Stay tuned for our next regularly scheduled episode – there will definitely be More To Come!

 

Catch up with our in depth comics news, reviews and previous podcasts at PublishersWeekly.com/Comics

Subscribe to More To Come on iTunes