Vaughan & Chiang's "Paper Girls" Builds a Familiar Yet Disconcerting World
Like all right-thinking people, James Biggie and Frankie B. Washington love a good giant-robot story, especially when the robot’s beating up on giant monsters. That’s why they’ve created a webcomic about just that. Inspired by ’80s cartoons and toys like Gundam, Voltron and Mattel’s Shogun Warriors, Robot God Akamatsu tells the story of an enormous, mechanical god who once protected Atlantis from monstrous threats and has returned to present-day Boston to serve the same purpose.
How that will impact the lives of college drop-out Jin and his super-scientist father is something that Biggie and Washington are just starting to explore, so now is a perfect time to check out the series. It uses Issuu as an interface and requires using your mouse to scroll around the page, but once you get used to that it’s an easy, intuitive way to read a comic on the screen. Part One, Part Two, Part Three, and Part Four.
If you’re a fan of BPRD, you know that the above image is from that comic and not Guillermo del Toro’s giant-monster film, Pacific Rim. You also know that Guy Davis is pretty great at designing giant monsters.
What you may not know is that Davis is the concept artist for Pacific Rim. No concept art has been shared yet, so this completely slipped by most of us. The other thing you may not know is that he’s been working on the film for almost a year, but is now done with his part of it. The movie doesn’t come out until next year, but seeing it is suddenly even more exciting; something I didn’t think possible in a project involving del Toro and giant monsters.
To wrap up our Halloween treats today, our own Sean T. Collins and artist Isaac Moylan share a comic called “I Remember When the Monsters Started Coming for the Cars.” Check out the complete story after the jump.
Today at the New York Comic Con, IDW announced that everyone’s favorite Japanese city-stomping giant monster, Godzilla, will return to comics in February 2011. Although they didn’t announce the creative team, they did show off one of the book’s covers by Goon creator Eric Powell (right).
And he’ll be joined by some of his friends from the movies, including Mothra and Rodan. “We wanted Godzilla to return to comics, but this time we wanted him to have some company,” Chris Ryall, editor-in chief for IDW Publishing, told MTV’s Splash Page. “I think fans will be pleased with the monster guest appearances, which will really offer something for every fan of these films. There are the classic characters, but there are also a few surprises, too.”
Of course this isn’t Godzilla’s first foray into comics; he’s appeared in Japanese manga, as well as series from Marvel and Dark Horse in the past. I guess we won’t see him fight the Avengers this time around, will we?
After self-publishing his work for a few years, this past November, SLG Publishing released Chris Wisnia’s 96-page Doris Danger: Giant Monster Stories. As we quoted Wisnia when the book was first announced: “I made this book for people like me — people who love Jack Kirby, robots, low-budget 1950’s sci-fi films; realistic, somewhat non-stop army, secret society, AND spaceship action, absurd conspiracy theories, romance, bad dialogue, ridiculous plot lines, seventh grade humor, kitsch, and of course…GIANT MONSTERS!” I email interviewed Wisnia back in November about the project. Before jumping into the interview itself, Wisnia wanted me to mention: “My website is www.tabloia.com, where you can find plenty of tidbits and bonus features. OH! And SLG is sending out free audio commentary CD’s, narrated by myself, to readers.”
Tim O’Shea: After years of self-publishing, how did Doris Danger land at SLG?
Chris Wisnia: I self-published about a dozen books from 2004-2007, but it was very expensive. Around 2006 or so, I began taking my books around at conventions, and showing my work to publishers, with the hopes of getting picked up by someone. I’d left a few things with Dan Vado at SLG, for maybe a year or so. For some reason, I didn’t get the impression he was interested in anything.
Then in 2008, at Wondercon in San Francisco, I went and re-introduced myself, and he remembered me (or my work). I told him I’d emailed a few times and not heard back. And he said he never got any of those emails. And he gave me his card. It was then I realized I’d been emailing the generic SLG “info” site administrator or whatever. When I wrote his actual address, he wrote me back within the day.
Doris Danger Giant Monster Adventures
Written and Illustrated by Chris Wisnia (with some inking by Dick Ayers!)
This is kind of an appropriate book to be talking about just after Thanksgiving. Like that meal, there’s some pretty good stuff here, but what makes it great is the sheer quantity of it.
The concept is that it’s a collection of material from an old ‘50s comic called Doris Danger Seeks… Where Monsters Creep and Stomp. There aren’t just stories, but also letters pages, covers, pin-ups, and a couple of historical essays. According to the introduction by the fictional editor of this stuff, it was rounded up by “historians, archeologists, museum curators, a dental hygienist, and literature professors (who) have been painstakingly traveling the globe to recover the lost adventures of Doris Danger.” If DDSWMCAS had been a real comic, that endeavor and this collection would be disappointments. Out of the hundreds and hundreds of issues that “existed,” a little less than a dozen stories made it into this volume. That’s not really the point though.
If I lived in the crazy-ass world where Tabloia Weekly Magazine once existed and ran an ongoing, non-fiction feature called Where Monsters Creep and Stomp, I suppose I’d be sad that more stories didn’t survive, but I’d also be happy to get whatever I could. Since I don’t, the stories in Giant Monster Adventures are more than enough to satisfy. They’re enough to stuff me full and make me lie down for a contented nap.
Wait… non-fiction? Read on, after the break.
SLG announced earlier this month that they will publish Chris Wisnia’s Doris Danger: Giant Monster Stories in November. As you can probably guess from the title and the images above, the book features a lot of Kirby-inspired giant monsters.
“I made this book for people like me — people who love Jack Kirby, robots, low-budget 1950’s sci-fi films; realistic, somewhat non-stop army, secret society, AND spaceship action, absurd conspiracy theories, romance, bad dialogue, ridiculous plot lines, seventh grade humor, kitsch, and of course…GIANT MONSTERS!” Wisnia said.
If you’d like to get a sense of what to expect, check out Wisnia’s website, where you can buy some of his previous monster comics.
Marvel.com has started posting episodes of the 1970s Spider-Man TV show from Japan. Gasp and marvel as Spider-Man rides around in a flying Mach 5 and teams with Voltron to fight the evil Iron Cross Army.
The first episode, titled “The Time of Revenge Has Come! Beat Down the Iron Cross Group!” is available now, with more to come each Thursday.