With its eighth issue, Si Spurrier and Jeff Stokely's The Spire wrapped up last week, bringing the the series' whodunnit to a satisfying and surprisingly emotional conclusion. Given that it starred one of my favorite queer characters in recent comics, this seemed like a great time to look back over the Boom Studio series and to try to tell you, the lovely ComicsAlliance reader, why those eight issues are worth grabbing hold of as soon as you get the chance.
It was clear during their time together working on Six Gun Gorilla for Boom Studios that artist Jeff Stokely and writer Si Spurrier immediately connected as a team. Their sensibilities merged into a captivating, personal whole, creating a wild comics that still felt as intimate as a comic about a gun-slinging gorilla possibly can.
This year the pair have returned with a new series at Boom, The Spire, an epic fantasy that thrives on the rich, beautiful artwork of Stokely and colorist Andre May. The series is at once grand, almighty and filled with character, roving from the top to the bottom of the eponymous tower to look at a large cast of characters living (and dying) within its walls. It's a giant undertaking, and one that Stokely has jumped on with breathtaking skill. We in turn jumped at the opportunity to speak to him about his work on the book.
The return of the Joker and his latest rein of crazy over Gotham comes to an end in April with the concluding chapter of Endgame in Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo's Batman #40. The effects of the Joker's assault on sanity won't only be felt in the pages of that book, but in a series of one-shots spinning out of Batgirl, Arkham Manor, Detective Comics, and Gotham Academy.
In the case of Gotham's finest/spookiest/strangest private school, the endgame plays out on the dark and sinister night of a city-wide blackout, with Joker-infected crazies at large on the streets. Holed up at the academy, students Olive Silverlock, Maps Mizoguchi and their... "friends"... tell each other scary Joker stories --- and those stories come from a team of exceptional guest artists. Series writers Brenden Fletcher and Becky Cloonan are joined by Six Gun Gorilla artist Jeff Stokely, Adventure Time character designer Joy Ang, illustrator Clio Chiang, and Anya's Ghost author Vera Brosgol. Check out our exclusive preview... if you dare.
Boom Studios has a reputation in the comics industry for publishing an increasingly diverse group of books and creators. This commitment to diversity in genre and people is reflected in an all-new initiative the publisher announced today in Previews with a letter from founder Ross Richie. While 2015 is the 10th anniversary of Boom, the publisher wants to talk about what's next rather than what's come before. They call this discussion of the future Push Comics Forward and they don't want it to be only about Boom.
Push Comics Forward is Boom's way of focusing on the ongoing conversation about diversity and the future of the industry. To learn more about this initiative and what to expect from Boom for the next ten years and beyond, we spoke with Editor-in-Chief Matt Gagnon.
Terrifyingly, it's just a few weeks until Comic-Con International annexes most of downtown San Diego and with it, our souls. But with a new comics convention comes a new offering of exclusive stuff from BOOM! Studios. The publisher of the Adventure Time line of comics as well Lumberjanes and Bee and Puppycat and others is known among rarities collectors for its convention-only releases, and they'll be back at their booth with more at this year's San Diego Comic-Con. Check out the company's latest assortment of exclusives below, including the hardcover Mathematical Edition of Adventure Time: Marceline and the Scream Queens.
A great comic book cover has a lot of work to do. It’s both an advertisement and a work of art; both a statement and an invitation. Sometimes they convey character, sometimes mood, sometimes moment. Sometimes they pastiche the classics or pay tribute to the past; sometimes they strive to show us something entirely new. Always they show us a glimpse of somewhere else through a canvas no bigger than a window pane. In Best Comic Book Covers Ever (This Month), we look back over some of the most eye-catching, original and exceptional covers of the month that was.
Some familiar cover concepts get inventive new spins in the best covers for the month of May, and we put the spotlight on great work from Dan Panosian, Mike Allred, Ron Wimberly, and Chris Samnee and Matt Wilson.
We make a regular practice at ComicsAlliance of spotlighting particular artists or specific bodies of work, as well as the special qualities of comic book storytelling, but because cartoonists, illustrators and their fans share countless numbers of great pinups, fan art and other illustrations on sites like Flickr, Tumblr, DeviantArt and seemingly infinite art blogs that we’ve created Best Art Ever (This Week), a weekly depository for just some of the pieces of especially compelling artwork that we come across in our regular travels across the Web. Some of it’s new, some of it’s old, some of it’s created by working professionals, some of it’s created by future stars, some of it’s created by talented fans, and some of it’s endearingly silly. All of it’s awesome.
Jeff Stokely has worked as a character designer for Mattel's Max Steel and Masters of the Universe toy lines and illustrated game cards for Cryptozoic and Square Enix, but some of his most striking pieces of art are his black-and-white illustrations, which paint dramatic portraits of characters like Judge Dredd and Doctor Doom or serve as poster-worthy tributes to movies like Labyrinth and The Dark Crystal.
It's rather interesting to look at the black-and-white and color portfolios on Stokely's site; in some cases, the illustrations are the same, but take on rather different tones once they've been colored. A touch of pink really can go a long way.
The future: "Blister" is an exotic frontier world originally colonized by humans after we depleted our own natural resources, but whose fertile lands have since become stained by a bloody civil war. All the action is transmitted back to Earth and directly into the minds of a depraved audience engrossed in every gruesome sight and sound from the Blister front. This is accomplished by with the service of "Holeheads" -- suicidal men and women who agree to be equipped with a surgically implanted "psychic tumors" that relay the data in real time in exchange for the chance to get themselves legally killed in a spectacularly violent fashion.