Paul and Derek are pleased to have on The Comics Alternative the great cartoonist, Roz Chast. Her new book, Going into Town: A Love Letter to New York, was recently released by Bloomsbury Publishing. The Two Guys have been longtime fans of Chast’s offbeat and hilarious New Yorker strips for years, and they spend a good bit of time talking with their guest about how she has translated that sense of humor into a long-form narrative. They also talk with Chast about her previous book, Can’t We Please Talk about Something More Pleasant?, her memoir on living with aging parents, and how her mother and father find prominent places in the latest work. Along the way, Chast discusses her process of writing — she indiscriminately explores narrative paths to see what does and doesn’t work — her unique non-comic-book community of cartoonist colleagues, and her experiences editing last year’s Best American Comics volume. And of course, she spends a lot of time talking about her experiences and love of Manhattan, complete with its mind-blowing variety of restaurants, its subway system, its out-of-the-way specialty shops, its giant waterbugs, and the annoyance of rat afterbirth. Yes, rat afterbirth.
The guys are back with another great guest for The Comics Alternative Interviews. This time, Gene and Derek talk with Shannon Wheeler, the creator of Too Much Coffee Man (Dark Horse Comics) and last year’s Astounding Villain House (Dark Horse Comics), as well as the illustrator of God Is Disappointed in You(Top Shelf). The conversation gets going by jumping into the Bible and how both Shannon and Mark Russell re-present the Old and New Testaments — and with strict fidelity of content — with a humorous yet straightforward manner in God Is Disappointed in You. Sure to be loved by atheists and Judeo-Christians alike! The Two Guys with PhDs also ask Shannon about his cartooning for The New Yorker, his penchant for clowns and death, the fine art of one-panel gags, and how his New Yorker rejects find new life in the collections I Thought You Would Be Funner and I Don’t Get It (BOOM! Town). They also talk with him about his work at Dark Horse, specifically Astounding Villain House, learning that Shannon has bigger long-range plans for that series. Oh, and there’s that Portlandiathing, too. There’s a lot of laughing in this episode, probably at least as much as you’ll experience when reading Shannon’s books. So join the fun and listen to the Two Guys’ conversation with a creator whose name is synonymous with the caffeine jitters!