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THIS WEEK IN COMICS! (3/28/12 – The Secret Life of a Licensed Comic)

What you are about to see is considered by some to be the best serialized comic book of the '00s.

Yes, The Winter Men - a story of Soviet super-soldiers adjusting the best they can to later life. An old-fashioned critics' darling and a perfect labor of love, as far as genre comics go. Its creators are writer Brett Lewis and artist John Paul Leon, who met as students at New York's School of Visual Arts, where Lewis -- himself an artist at the time -- studied under Walter Simonson and may have planned to draw some iteration of the comic himself. Little of Lewis' work as an artist is available for perusal; it can most easily be sampled in Paradox Press' 1997 anthology The Big Book of Martyrs. Provided it's the same guy.

I often feel the need to qualify things about Lewis; reliable sources are limited. As far as I know he's only ever given one major, career-spanning interview -- via a 2011 episode of the Bagged & Boarded podcast -- though it's safe to say he's been around for even longer than The Winter Men, the prolonged production of which involved rejection by the proverbial 'every publisher in town' before settling at Vertigo in the early part of the '00s. It then found itself transferred to sister imprint Wildstorm for its actual serialization, beginning in 2005, which wound up lasting until 2009 through format changes that ultimately resulted in the release of six individual comic books and a softcover compilation now fetching online prices of nearly $50.00 new.

So, the question is - why can you buy a similar collection for Lewis' next big comic for less than two dollars? Why can't I even find a review of the whole thing?

Fall Out Toy Works was published by Image from September of 2009 through July of 2010; it was five issues. Lewis is indeed the writer, through a potential hint at the project's relative obscurity can be glimpsed at his fourth-credited position on the cover above. Top-credited Pete Wentz was the bassist and primary lyricist for the band Fall Out Boy, the ostensible driving force behind the project; possibly in some effort at egalitarianism, his cover credit was re-issued collectively to "Fall Out Boy" beginning with issue #2, though it was perhaps too little too late, as the band went on 'indefinite hiatus' around that time. Nonetheless, fashion designer Darren Romanelli and visual artist/longtime Image contributor Nathan Cabrera remained credited as well in their capacities as co-creators (if not active creative participants) in what was meant to be part of a cross-platform fantasy barrage, inspired by cyberpunk anime and Disney movies and Blade Runner and song lyrics and a tour, I guess, which never happened.

In short, it was a licensed comic - the sort of thing that crops up at lot in Lewis' oeuvre. In 1996 he was editorial director of Motown Machineworks, a company which released comics through Image with the partial aim of producing movie vehicles for black stars. In 1998, Lewis worked with a different packager, Flypaper Press, on the Image series Bulletproof Monk; for his troubles was denied onscreen credit in the resultant Chow Yun-Fat vehicle. For a while Lewis was an editor at Marvel Music, focused on branded releases of comics featuring Alice Cooper, the Rolling Stones and others, though it seems none of the projects he worked on were released, or maybe even completed. At another time he was active in Allstar Arena, a publisher of sports comic books for release in stadiums, as far as I can tell - he and Leon seem to have collaborated on The Mailman, a sci-fi comic starring Utah Jazz power forward Karl Malone, though for the life of me I can't find a copy. Lewis also wrote Scooby-Doo and The Powerpuff Girls for DC's all-ages line, and an anti-bullying Spider-Man comic for Target stores, though maybe the most memorable of all these ventures came in 2010 2006, when Marvel released The Halo Graphic Novel, in which Lewis collaborated on a short story with no less than Jean "Moebius" Giraud.

Still, the best of these projects tend to be viewed with suspicion by connoisseurs, even those that prefer superhero comics of the sort that surrounded The Winter Men on the racks. Those are 'real' comics, aimed primarily at people who already read comics, while licensed comics aim for a wider, pre-established, casual audience, and carry a mercenary scent that overrides the desires of even funnybook populists. How much can a Brett Lewis really do if he's at the beck and call of fucking Fall Out Boy? How much of anyone's personality can persevere when occupied with supplementing the enjoyment of people arriving by way of devotion to something else? Hell, most of you reading this probably feel the same way about most Marvel and DC comics, smothering as they can be of the individual voice - and in its carefully tailored English-Russian cadence, the way in which its characters spoke, The Winter Men was all about voice.

And yet, Fall Out Toy Works is very much of a piece with that earlier series. Following a nondescript initial pair of issues -- concerning a sensitive maker of sentient robot toys who finds himself involved with a drowsy-eyed industrialist in a scheme to invent a real-feeling artificial woman for the latter's private life, the content notable mainly for Lewis' enjoyable deployment of accents, ranging from a Rabbi diamond manufacturer's patter to a hostess club employee's wildly eccentric Japanese-English -- the series' third chapter suddenly shifts its focus to an 'interlude' of the sort its writer used to fine effect in The Winter Men. Having successfully manufactured a 'real' girl in the Pinocchio mold -- Tiffany Blues, named for the Tiffany Blews cut off 2007's Folie à Deux -- the toymaker finds himself infatuated. He dreams of man-on-robot sex, and spends a troubling day of hooky with the free-spirited automaton, who sort of wants to be happy with her insanely rich boyfriend but also wants to dance and laugh and have experiences that aren't programmed into her.

The industrialist -- who controls the very sun that shines onto the metropolis of the comic! -- tracks the couple down and directs his robot goons to give the toymaker a sound thumping. A typical drama-building device, but... there's two complicating factors.

First, prior to the attack, the toymaker's Jiminy Cricket-like insect smartphone had suddenly stopped acting like his conscience as in the first two issues, turning to the reader on page three and decrying the usage of dreams in fiction as bullshit distractions from the meat of a scenario. He then announces the issue's title, and thereafter becomes a type of over-critical reader's surrogate, or maybe a frustrated editor, drawing our attention to the artificiality of the comic's narrative devices. You, the genuine reader, could probably write it off as yet another curious upheaval in a series that had already seen two colorists and two letterers participate under the supervision of two editors and two art directors, with production of its anime-look art housed in Singapore's Imaginary Friends Studios, where penciller Sami Basri would eventually step aside for one Hendry Prasetyo as of issue #4.

There was a three-month gap between issues #2 and 3.

The second complication was that in that time between issues, Lewis was present in a bar which was robbed, and he was beaten into a coma.

While unconscious, the toymaker dreams of Moebius, Lewis' own cohort, imagined as "Dr. Giraud," a Tezuka-like compassionate scientist dedicated to the pursuit of unrepeatable logic and the re-organizing power of movement, of dance. A giant robot attacks, and the teddy boy from the Folie à Deux album cover -- designed by Luke Chueh, another name of many involved -- stares at a clock and a fish. The clock begins moving when the fish stops, automation overcoming organics. The story seems to have stopped too, much to the cricket's dismay, though I don't know how much of Lewis' script had already been turned in for production. The teddy boy cries nonetheless.

The comic continues to grow away from its original concept in issue #4, released two months after #3. The image of the sun recurs as eggs for breakfast by a ready-made servile wife: a symbol of male desire for power over society and women. The toymaker becomes obsessive while the industrialist cooks up a scheme to simulate outside experiences in his increasingly agitated robot lover by drugging her with additional memories, swapping out the linearity of experience with realistic dreams of living other lives. The toymaker's ex-hostess club girlfriend leaves him, continuing the theme of commodification of women, but now placing part of the onus on the comic's ostensible hero. Images become dominant, and fragmented.

As I hope I'm getting across, it is impossible to read this stuff the same way once you've become aware of its writer's situation at the time. Lewis told the Bagged & Boarded folks that his injuries left him temporarily with little grasp of linear time, acutely conscious of certain memories. These later issues of this tie-in comic seem responsive to that, if perhaps only through some quantum heave, though it is known that the fifth and final issue, released another three months after the fourth, was written during Lewis' recovery.

By its author's own tally, the script for #5 came out to 78 pages. The issue begins with the toymaker -- accompanied by weaponized chibi sidekicks and clad in mecha armor worthy of M.D. Geist -- assaulting the industrialist's headquarters, severing the umbilical cords connecting Tiffany to her dreams so that tachyons spill into the room and everyone's thoughts become real. The centerpiece of the issue is a five-page speech by the robot woman, holding forth on religion, memories, society, education, automata - pretty much everything, in a cascade of text pasted over altered and re-purposed images from earlier issues. Note how much of the above panels from issue #4 anticipate the background of these issue #5 scenes, creating a series of way points for the attentive reader to follow, coloring the connotations of the speech itself.

It's by far the most interesting use of art in the series, still adhering to an anime realism, but running alongside the text now as a solidification of abstract notions suggested by the text. Unavoidably, the reader notices hospitals, images of violence, fucked-up memories. Elsewhere, the cricket frantically comments on the cliches we're seeing - men confronting men over a woman. Tiffany repeats her displeasure again and again as the men witness the romantic and familial disappointments of their lives manifested in front of them. Oddly, it's suddenly very much like the narrative breakdowns memorable from some feature anime, Akira and the like. Eventually the girl gets up and leaves on her own, and men sort of wander away, their conflict stalled and this cross-platform tie-in comic's narrative left dislocated, though its themes remain quite intact.

Originally, the series ended with a one-page denouement seeing Tiffany and the toymaker reuniting in the glow of late-realized love; it's the most artificial thing in the whole robot-obsessed project, seeing the 'nice' guy -- long ago proven to be extremely creepy, all things considered -- bagging the gal who's finally puzzled out how awesome and sweet he really is. At risk of sounding dramatic, it read to me like a betrayal of the series' progression, its evolution into conflict.

The collected edition, however -- which, a tie-in to the last, sports a backmatter conversation between Wentz & Romanelli that acknowledges the existence of the comic itself in approximately one paragraph -- changes this ending. Or, rather, it deletes the epilogue, so that what you see just above is the last six frames of the story, with the cricket laying smashed on the ground, memories leaking from his hand, as the teddy boy, the icon of the band's own presence -- fittingly, a peripheral presence in the whole story -- laments the situation and justifies his own aloofness.

Things don't end as much as stop, which completes this odd, troubled work very nicely. Fall Out Boy is silenced, alas, but Brett Lewis is still around.


PLEASE NOTE: What follows is not a series of capsule reviews but an annotated selection of items listed by Diamond Comic Distributors for release to comic book retailers in North America on the particular Wednesday, or, in the event of a holiday or occurrence necessitating the close of UPS in a manner that would impact deliveries, Thursday, identified in the column title above. Not every listed item will necessarily arrive at every comic book retailer, in that some items may be delayed and ordered quantities will vary. I have in all likelihood not read any of the comics listed below, in that they are not yet released as of the writing of this column, nor will I necessarily read or purchase every item identified; THIS WEEK IN COMICS! reflects only what I find to be potentially interesting.



The Art of Daniel Clowes: Modern Cartoonist: You've heard plenty about this already, so note only that this Alvin Buenaventura-edited hardcover monograph from Abrams is now imminent, if not impatiently waiting on your warm, soft arms in stores where it showed up last week. Original art and rarities are promised at 9 1/4" x 12", as are essays by Chris Ware, Chip Kidd, Susan Miller, Ray Pride and our own Ken Parille, plus a new interview with the artist and an introduction by comedy writer George Meyer; $40.00.

Rohan at the Louvre: Being the fourth exhibit from NBM's line of English translations for comics produced in association with the Louvre, and, more importantly, the first to come from an artist best known for drawing people being kicked in the face. Hirohiko Araki is the creator of JoJo's Bizarre Adventure, a never-ending boy's action saga that's been running in one form or another since 1987 and enjoys some appreciation in North America for a special blend of boundless energy and manic creativity, which appears to be manifesting in the 'art' comics realm as an almost Shintaro Kago-like desire to fuck around with the comics form in striking and rather gross ways - I won't soon forget a woman's cheeks flaking loose into pages from a book. The plot involves a manga artist confronting a cursed painting (IN THE LOUVRE) that triggers bodily mayhem of a type sure to warm the hearts of old souls who remember the author's early '80s bio-mutation opus Baoh. Delightfully, this is the actually the second manga-character-romps-in-a-Western-museum original in as many years -- owing to last November's release of Professor Munakata's British Museum Adventure, from 2001 Nights artist Yukinobu Hoshino and the British Museum Press -- but the potential for wondrous insanity is squarely on the present. Samples; $19.99.



Sharknife Double Z: Elsewhere in international manga influence, artist Corey Lewis and Oni Press offer a sequel to a well-received 2005 fight comic (re-releasing this week with a new cover) concerning a restaurant busboy who transforms into an ultimate fighter when peril awaits. Lewis has a really energetic style and a good grasp of crazy shonen manga fight pacing, so this will probably be a breezy 136 240 pages of entertainment. Preview & interview here; $11.99.

Garbage Pail Kids: I was a little young for the great Cabbage Patch Skirmishes of those early '80s winters, but like so many of my peers I was just old enough to appreciate the classic gross-out art of John Pound, even divorced from the initial parodic signal of Topps editors Mark Newgarden & Art Spiegelman. Exposure to anti-Garbage Pail jeremiads in the Catholic school newsletter probably helped; I don't recall any Congressional hearings, but this stuff really did freak some authority figures out, albeit the same authority figures that vehemently insisted Beck's Loser was a siren call for teenagers to commit suicide several years later. Maybe we were born and bred as fodder for Pound, Tom Bunk, Jay Lynch and others, all of them showcased in this 5 1/2" x 7 1/8" Abrams collection of Series 1 through 5, 1985-86; $19.95.

B.P.R.D. - Hell on Earth: The Pickens County Horror #1 (of 2): In more contemporary horrors, the Mignola wing of Dark Horse now begins alternating a B.P.R.D. side-story with the main continuity for a little bit. The co-writer is now editor Scott Allie, the artist is Jason Latour, and the subject matter is vampire kinfolk holed up down south. Preview; $3.50.

Gone To Amerikay: It's good to see that Vertigo continues to pursue original graphic novel projects, particularly those promising 144 pages filled with art by Colleen Doran, colored here by José Villarrubia. Written by Derek McCulloch, it's a period(s) piece(s?) about the experiences of Irish immigrants to the United States over the course of a century; $24.99.

Sláine: Books of Invasions Vol. 1 (of 3): Now here's a different kind of Celtic tale, from Simon & Schuster's line of 2000 AD releases. It's the start of a 2002-06 storyline for writer Pat Mills' long-lived barbarian character, with the 'realistic'-yet-somehow-completely-and-I'd-argue-self-awarely-artificial stylings of artist Clint Langley present and accounted for; $19.99.

The Push Man and Other Stories
Abandon the Old in Tokyo
Good-Bye and Other Stories: Big vintage manga drop from Drawn and Quarterly, although maybe these Yoshihiro Tatsumi collections are additionally 'vintage' in tracking probably the most successful attempt by a non-manga-dedicated publisher to tap into the J-comics boom by contextualizing manga in a manner which the publisher's established audience might find interesting and appealing. I know the pendulum has swung a ways on Tatsumi, but I really like these lil' nasties, culled from a variety of years and sources; they strike me as scenes from a medium's troubled adolescence, as if the SuspenStories of EC had been allowed to develop further out into gloom and muck, albeit by the parameters of developing popular manga aesthetics. Anyway, now it's all in softcover, in anticipation of the publisher newest Tatsumi release, the anthology Fallen Words, due next month; $16.95 (each).

Dororo Omnibus Edition: Of course, you can always go back to the 20th century's pop manga source with this 848-page all-in-one Vertical compilation of Osamu Tezuka's fantastically berserk 1967-69 action comic, something of a partial precursor to Black Jack in its weird medicine but rather unique among translated Tezuka works in the velocity of its sword-swinging bloodshed. A hell of a piece, minor or not; $24.95.

Torpedo Vol. 5 (of 5): Finally, in a reprint-heavy week, we have IDW wrapping its collections effort on this Jordi Bernet-drawn crime comics classic, 144 pages to end ya; $24.99.


CONFLICT OF INTEREST RESERVOIR: John Benson follows up his contributions to 2010's excellent Four Color Fear: Forgotten Horror Comics of the 1950s with a solo editorial excursion, The Sincerest Form of Parody: The Best 1950s MAD-Inspired Satirical Comics, culling choice bits from humor magazines by Atlas, Charlton, Harvey and the like; $24.99. And readers that missed out on Thomas Ott's 2005 collection of wordless works can now enjoy a softcover edition of Cinema Panopticum; $16.99


34 Responses to THIS WEEK IN COMICS! (3/28/12 – The Secret Life of a Licensed Comic)

  1. Chris Pitzer says:

    Just wanted to say thanks for that piece, Joe. I enjoyed reading about a comic I didn’t know existed.

  2. Joe McCulloch says:

    I am now told Sharknife Double Z is actually 240 pages; adjust your expectations accordingly.

  3. RickV says:

    Go figure I had no idea Winter Men was rare when I bought it on a lark for the JPL art for like 15 dollars in November.

  4. Joe McCulloch says:

    I suspect it’s at the point where demand is both present but dispersed, so that online sellers feel confident enough to jack up the price while individual copies are probably still sitting around in not a few stores… anyway, I doubt it’ll be too much of a problem to just track down the six individual comic books…

  5. Tucker Stone says:

    I believe those high online prices might be a reflection only of Amazon’s decision to not stock the title, as it is easily available through the regular distribution network. There’s a perception of unavailability spurring that price increase, but it is a false one.

  6. Kim Thompson says:

    It’s vanishingly unlikely that Amazon made a “decision to not stock the title.” Far more likely is that all the remaining copies have been assigned to the direct market and WildStorm’s bookstore distributor doesn’t have any to resell to Amazon — so it’s out of stock for Amazon, and on-line sellers selling through Amazon feel free to ratchet up the price.

    If you’re a publisher who caters to both markets and you end up with limited quantities of a book, you sometimes have to decide which market you’ll give those copies to. And the direct market often has an edge because sales to DM retailers are virtually all non-returnable, whereas sales to bookstore aren’t. So you’ve got your pick between sending your last 500 copies to Diamond, who’ll sell all 500 and pay you and be done with it, and sending them to your bookstore distributor, who might sell all 500 of them and in six months you got 300 scuffed and bent copies back, and get several thousand bucks chopped out of your next payment.

    Of course, for all we know Diamond may be down to their last 20 copies of WINTER MEN too.

  7. Scott Grammel says:

    The Dororo material looks fun and interesting, but the fact that the story was never completed and even this omnibus volume is still in paperback will probably keep me from reading it. Oh, and there’s another Bulletproof Coffin comic coming out this week (liked, but wasn’t completely happy with the previous issues’ art, so I think I’m done with the series).

  8. Sean Michael Robinson says:

    Dororo is a lot of fun–super wacky, aesthetically appealing kid’s adventure comics. I’m mainly happy for this new edition so they can correct the horrid printing of the first volume.

  9. Joe McCulloch says:

    I’ll add that while Dororo’s ending is somewhat open, it does reach a natural stopping point in terms of character arcs and plotting… it doesn’t end on a cliffhanger or mid-story or anything.

  10. Anthony Thorne says:

    What was wrong with the printing of the first volume?

  11. Sean Michael Robinson says:

    Oh, the usual. They changed printers (?) or something between series productions and the new printer half-toned the artwork for the entire book, so instead of looking at lines you’re looking at a bunch of dots–even on the digital font. I know a lot of people are less sensitive to something like this than other people, but it drove me crazy trying to read it. If I remember correctly, the second volume has the same problem but a finer screen for the half tone, and by volume 3 they had finally fixed the problem.

  12. Sean Michael Robinson says:

    I should add that one of the reasons little things like this drive me crazy is that there is no reason for it–someone checked the wrong check box while outputting the files, and suddenly every copy of a book is like looking at a line drawing through a screen door. The waste of it is just maddening. (Yes, I know, I put an unhealthy amount of energy into things like this…)

  13. Mike Baehr says:

    Correction/clarification: John Benson provided editorial consultation and contributed to the back matter for Four Color Fear, but the book was edited by Greg Sadowski.

  14. One correction, the Halo graphic novel that feature Lewis’ and Moebius’ contribution (as well as Tsutomo Nihei and Simon Bisley!) came out in 2006, not 2010 as you state.

    And thank you for the review of Fall Out Toy Works. I had been curious about it when it came out, as Winter Men is one of my favourite comics of the 2000s, but had been turned off by the involvement of some band I didn’t know, and the complete lack of reaction from anyone who read (or maybe just the fact that nobody seemed to have read it). I will now be on the lookout to find it cheap somewhere.

  15. Joe McCulloch says:

    Sheesh, it’s just a week of errors for me… thanks for the correction, and the kind words.

  16. The confusion may be due to the fact that the Fantagraphics website lists Benson and Sadowski as co-editors of the book (and in that order).

  17. Joe McCulloch says:

    No, it’s just a matter of imprecise wording; I wrote a pretty long essay on that book last year, so I know what everyone did. I’ll fix it when I can. I’ll fix everything! I’ll fix it so you love me again, Maribelle!!

  18. Iestyn says:

    I went through a period of downloading all the free comics on comixology and read the first issue of this (it’s probably still there).

    I don’t know why, but it reminded me of a weird comic I picked up that was drawn by Kyle Baker that was about life in the hood and had a rap tape with. My memories are really sketchy but I think it was part of Marvel’s music line.

    Weird Marvel comics don’t get talked about enough. I wait for the day you review Street Poet Ray.

  19. Joe McCulloch says:

    Oh yeah, Break the Chain! with KRS-One… that was them.

  20. Richard Baez says:

    I wait for the day Joe reviews Yuppies From Hell.

  21. I just listened to that podcast with Brett Lewis. It is incredibly terrible. The host is so fucking annoying, and the interview is just so random and scatter shot. The information Lewis gives is actually pretty interesting, but I wish someone else had talked to him.

  22. Chance Fiveash says:

    In a strange transition, I just had a discussion about Boogie Down Productions (KRS-1) today with a friend. Weird (but a cool weird, since I dig the comic you referenced). Anyhoo, I really liked DORORO by Tezuka…and this new edition is actually a reversal of Verticals policy…considering they have split two of Tezuka’s books in two volumes that they intitially published in one book: Ode to Kirihito and Apollo’s Song.

    I also recommend the recent DORORO (well, 2007) film, it’s great fun.

  23. Iestyn says:

    Yeah it was. Which is weird because I only ever knew who KRS 1 was because of a free tape I got with Deadline (uk comic that had tank girl and many other great comics. God I miss deadline – d’isreali daemon draughtsman, wired world, shaky Kane. Why is no one collecting that stuff?)

  24. Briany Najar says:

    Yep, Deadline was so sweet.
    Hugo Tate was in there too, and those little “Loaf” cartoons that I’m sure were by Brendan McCarthy.
    Deadline was where I first got wind of Jodorowsky, they ran an article on him in one of the early issues, and Hewlett’s marginalia alerted me to the Pixies, for what that’s worth.
    They used to sell it in newsagents, along with Escape, Crisis, Revolver, Toxic, Blast…
    Buster, Topper, Whizzer & Chips, Bunty, Jackie, Eagle, Beezer, Twinkle…
    and Look-in.
    I don’t really miss Look-in, though.

  25. Iestyn says:

    Yeah deadline was cool.
    Hugo Tate was the best. It was also where i first read some Love and Rockets!!
    I always wanted to get copies of the Atom Tan fanzine that they advertised. Then there was Heartbreak soup as well. I got a couple of those from bargain boxes.
    Back the. It seemed like there was such a healthy UK mainstream. There were all the newsagent lot including the war digest mags – always great art. But then there were the A1 collections and even some of the Marvel UK stuff.

  26. Briany Najar says:

    A1, yes, they had some great stuff in there. What was that Glenn Fabry thing? Brick Top? He really had some magnificent chops by then, and it was in a realistic contemporary setting, too.
    I only managed to get hold of 3 issues of that, a fact that I still regret.
    It was square-bound, all black & white (?) and had US format sized pages – I wonder if that was so it could be marketed “across the pond,” and if so, did it get anywhere?

  27. Briany Najar says:

    I’ve seen scans of AtomTan, and it’s well worth tracking down.
    Hewlett’s pre-Tank Girl art was looser, brushier, and even more clearly influenced by McCarthy.
    It’s got a nice blurted-out small press zine feel that suited him well. I wish he’d done more like that – tragically, however, Pop-culture HQ had other plans for him.

  28. Joe McCulloch says:

    A1 had a surprisingly healthy presence in US shops, judging by the number of issues I’ve found in back-issue bins. Some of that material had a small resurgence in the mid-’00s via Atomeka – there was actually a comic book-format Bricktop collection in ’04, which I’ve got stored away somewhere…

  29. Iestyn says:

    Yeah, but them how many other comic creators have been lost to the production of Chinese Opera performing at the Royal Opera House.

    Didnt Martin Millar’s Lux and Alby comic come out through a link up between Atomeka and eclipse?

    Do you remember the spellbinders stuff from slightly later?

  30. Iestyn says:

    I remember going to UKCAC and Hewlett and Martin were there. This was around the time of when they were planning the tank girl movie. They looked so bored and hacked off. They’d started doing a new strip (fireball I think it was – madcap violent version of wacky races) and then got pulled back on to tank girl. This was the period when it got allow coloured and more serious.
    Then spent the convention wearing suits that they were trying to get as disgusting as possible. I seem to remember them asking people to break eggs on them…
    I also saw someone fall asleep with their mouth open who then had their mouth used as an ashtray.
    Does anyone remember the Trident line of comics then? Particularly the Saga of the Man Elf?

  31. Iestyn says:

    That’s also where I first saw Savoy comics. I got a Lord Horror comic from them and a massive Hawkmoon comic. Each page was A3 size so it spread out to A2. Beautifully drawn.

  32. Pingback: The Critics Speak! Reviews of ROHAN AT THE LOUVRE Hit The Web! : NBM Blog

  33. Michel Fiffe says:

    The Mailman? Or Man Against Time?

    JOG, I got you:

  34. Michel Fiffe says:

    Nevermind! Listening to that [excruciating] podcast now, which cleared it up. I’m also looking it up right now, and I think Lewis must’ve pulled a “Floyd Farland” on that comic.

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