Hey Poppers welcome back. This episode I have interviews with Pat Shand, writer for Zenescope. Pat and I talk about the Zenescope universe, strong female characters and Pat’s love of poutine. Also I have a conversation with George Wassil about his comic Oh, Hell. A comic I highly recommend you check out at Kickstarter. Finally I have a talk with Luke Mckay and his line of comics that he has created and his interesting style of comics. You can check out this fine creators at their twitter accounts, @PatShand, @OhHellComics and @lukmckay
Publisher: Oh, Hell Comics
Writer: George Wassil
Layouts, Pencils, Inks: Dave Hamann
Color Art: Michael Birkhofer
Lettering: Troy Peteri
Your parents have had it with you. Where do you go where you have no where else to go. Well they send you off to boarding school and that school is in Hell and there you you don’t want to fail.
Our story revolves around Zoel and she hates the world. As George Wassil told me in a interview for my podcast. When your life starts out as a dumpster baby life your pissed about life in general. Zoel adoptive parents have had it with Zoel and decide to send her off to a boarding school. A school that I believe that parents have not idea about is actually in Hell. Yeah that is right the big burning inferno below and you don’t want to fail at this school.
The action gets rolling right from the start and only slows down for only a few panels in the book. Of course you can not go to any school and have bullies and finding a new rival. Zoel rival is Alesse, a spoiled popular rich girl that has gotten everything she wants and expects to get no matte what. Zoel and Alesse have a instant hate on for it other and waste little time showing it. The other two main characters are Zipper with a seedy past and Carl the kid that looks out of place. At this academy discipline is expected and demanded and not following the rules you are gently remind, okay not gently. If a gas fog that makes your skin burn and cough up blood is gentle, then yeah. Gentle
I love this book and dam glad I picked it up. The story by George Wassil is very well done and has the feel of someone very comfortable in writing for this medium. This is a story of a girl that wants to be loved but because of the live she has been raise hides it behind anger and a tough exterior. The character dialogue is easy and simple to read. Now you may think that is a shot at the writing but it is not. It is very refreshing and a joy to read. You do not have to figure out what is going on with a bunch of unnecessary dialogue. Right from the start I felt sorry for Zoel and you can see the sadness in the writing and dialogue.
The art by Dave Hamann is great and he can really bring out the emotions of the characters. In one simple panel where Zoel and Zipper discuss the markings on his arm you can see that Zoel and Zipper have a connection. Their is a understanding that you can actually see in their faces and eyes. Well done Sir. I can not really pin point the style of Dave Hamann art but it does have the feel of a lot of the newer generation of artists out there today.
Oh, Hell is presently on Kickstarter and they are looking to raise money to help self-publish and distribute a soft cover edition of Oh, Hell Volume 1 so click the link and take a look. Drop some cash if you can.
One last thing. I have to check this out to see if George has had any thought of calling Image. This is one book that should have a shot at a larger audience and I think Image is the company to do that. Image has been having great success at helping independent writers and creators with there work. So Image take a look at this book and give a run, even a short one.
So in the end I give Oh, Hell 4 1/2 pops out of 5.
Is this a perfect book. No simple because perfection is hard to reach. But is one very well done book.
Remember comics are to be enjoyed not destroyed.
Well another year has come and gone and this years Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo 2014 was bigger, longer and packed with more media guest from TV and film. More artist, writers, creators from some of your favorite comics, web series and authors. Also a large group of independent comic book creators and artist. The venue also keeps expanding with a large tented area to hold more panels and events. Also there is a good chance you have to battle some weather conditions. This year a small snow storm. Hey that is spring in Alberta. I spent the weekend walking the floor, seeing panels and talking to comic creators. Each year the amount of cosplayers continue to grow both with the amount of people coming out dressed up and creating amazing costumes. In the coming weeks I will be posting some the great work created by some really artistic people. Every aspect of the pop culture was represented at the show. Not only were your regular cosplayer making the rounds. Young and old came out to show their love for everything that revolves around the geek culture. Attending this year was three of the top cosplayer out there today. Lindsay Elyse, Monika Lee, Jessica Nigri. I got my picture with Monika Lee and I have to say is pleasant, fun and made everyone that came to see her feel very comfortable.
Among the media attending were Sean Astin(Lord of the Rings, Goonies, TMNT), Michael Beihn(Terminator, 24, The Rock), Bruce Campbell(Evil Dead, Burn Notice), Bill Paxton(Aliens, Agents of Shield, Big Love), Sigourney Weaver(Alien, Aliens, Avatar), Matt Smith(Doctor Who,Clone) and Karen Gillan(Doctor Who,Oculus,Guardians of the Galaxy. So many more to list but to find out more head over to my podcast, The Pop Culture Cafe’s Podcast.
From the world of comics J. Scott Campbell, Nick Bradshaw, Terry Dodson, Keven Eastman, Ray Fawkes, Mark McKenna. Again the show had many of the top name in comics both artists and writers. I had the pleasure of talking to Pat Shand from Zenescope Comics about the world of Grimm Fairy Tales and creating strong female leads. I had a great conversation with George Wassil about Oh Hell. George was excited about the world he help created and I am happy to help him spread the word. Go by and check out Kickstarter and help out if you love independent creators. I had a small chat with Nick Bradshaw and what do two Canadian boys talk about first, not comics but the amount of snow each side of the country gets the most. Eh!
The Calgary Expo once again put on another great show. This is my 3rd year I have gone and the show gets bigger and better. Better organize and each day you can see how the people in charge make changes to make it run smoother. The volunteers deserve a great deal of thanks. These people spend long days making it pleasurable for us all. I did unfortunately see one poor girl getting harassed at our wait to get into the Doctor Who panel. I finally had to go over and tell the guy to leave her alone and if he wanted to complain go to the higher ups. That incident pissed me off. But overall the general public were great.
So much to see and do. That is the catch at such a big con, so much to see and no time to see it all. In my option that makes a great con. I took in the Greg Rucka panel that was such a great experience on writing not just for comics but anything at all. The Doctor Who panel was the high light of the whole con for me and the Corral was packed with some many coming to see their Doctor.
Finally two things that really made this years Calgary Expo really stand out. The first was talking to a guy from Calgary, I am from Edmonton and the two cities have a great and long rivalry. But for use it was just two guys that love the world of comics. The memories of our youth and the memories that were created because of that medium. The days of the old musky smell of the books. The simple joy of those books long ago and the chance to share that joy with someone like yourself, no matter where they come form.
The last and most important for me. I found a book that help create my love of comic books, Sci-Fi, and the world of fantasy. When I was a young fellow the book that I read again and again. That sparked my imagination, my love of art and my youthful dreams of living among the stars, Star-Lord by John Byrne, Terry Austin and Chris Claremont. I almost passed by this book. But I had to have it in what ever condition. I asked the seller if I could open it and take a look and he agreed. Opening the first page brought me back to happier times and smell of those old pages made my problems of my world disappear. Once again it was me and Star-Lord flying around the universe. Seeing that book again help me capture a very special and happier time for me.
So, Calgary Expo. Thank you. You help this old man feel like a young kid again.