Comics Alternative Interviews: Jason Shiga

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“The universe will kick you in the nuts”

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Time Codes:

  • 00:24 – Introduction
  • 02:12 – Setup of interview
  • 03:50 – Interview with Jason Shiga
  • 58:26 – Wrap up
  • 59:54 – Contact us

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For this interview episode, Paul and Derek have the pleasure of talking with Jason Shiga. The first volume in his Demon series comes out this week from First Second, and the cartoonist goes into a lot of detail about the efforts that eventually led to this publication. As listeners of the podcast well know — since Demon was first discussed on the show back in December 2014 — the title began as a webcomic, with Jason self-publishing individual issues in pamphlet form as the story progressed. This endeavor eventually caught the attention of First Second, and now we have the first in a four-volume paperback series.

The guys spend most of their time discussing the unique premise of Demon, a fast-paced adventure that questions our foundations of morality, and artist’s continued use of his protagonist Jimmy Yee. This is a character that readers might recognize from earlier works such as Bookhunter, Empire State, and Meanwhile, and Jason describes his narrating strategies as similar to Tezuka’s star system. Paul and Derek also ask Jason about his penchant for experimenting with form, his use of the webcomics platform, and his ambitious new project, “The Box.”

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About Derek Royal

The Comics Alternative is a weekly podcast focused on the world of alternative, independent, and primarily non-superhero comics. (There’s nothing wrong with the superhero genre…we just want to do something different.) New shows become available every Wednesday…much like the comic books you get. Episodes feature reviews of graphic novels and current ongoing series, discussions of upcoming comics, examinations of collected editions, in-depth analyses of a variety of comics texts, spotlights on various creators and their oeuvre, roundtable discussions with prominent critics and scholars in the field, and interviews with the artists and writers who make all of this possible. Along the way, Andy and Derek will talk about the various books that they are reading; the many pop cultural references that, for better or worse, inform their lives; and the unpredictable (and inexplicable) weirdness that seems to creep into each episode. In essence,The Comics Alternative podcast is brilliantly simple: Two guys with PhDs talking about comics.

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