Axel-In-Charge: Extending "Secret Wars," Excitement for a "Totally Awesome Hulk"
If you love the unique books that Top Shelf publishes, Friday is the last day to take advantage of its once-a-year massive $3 sale. The sale is great for two reasons, you can acquire many of Top Shelf’s new offerings at a 50 percent discount — while also helping the independent publisher to “raise funds to ‘kick start’ a full rollout for next year.”
Some of the Top Shelf offerings to consider in the 50 percent debut category, include:
There are other books to be had at even less than 50 percent, of course, including:
Since moving to Riverdale nearly two years ago, Kevin Keller has established himself as the town’s first gay resident, gotten married (in the alternate-future Life With Archie, at least) and even beaten back the forces of One Million Moms. But in Kevin Keller #5, which goes on sale Wednesday, he faces a homophobic reaction from one of Cheryl Blossom’s Pembrooke Academy classmates.
Comic Book Resources has an exclusive preview for the issue, by Dan Parent and Rich Koslowski, which finds Kevin enjoying his first summer as a lifeguard on Riverdale Beach — until he meets up with Cheryl and her snobby, trouble-making friends. One in particular, the goateed Sloan, takes issue with Kevin’s sexual orientation, referring to him as “twinkle-toes” — it is Riverdale, after all — and facetiously offering to kiss his hand.
However, apparently not all of the Pembrooke gang has a problem with Kevin: The solicitation text teases that, “to make matters more complicated, a guy across enemy lines has eyes for Kevin … a surefire way to add drama to the whole mix!” Maybe it’s Sloan; he does seem to be overcompensating for something.
Check out the entire exchange below, and read the full preview at CBR.
Given that folklore was my minor in college, I’m always pleased when a creative discussion touches upon a work that finds its roots in folk or fairy tales. With that in mind I recently jumped at the chance to interview J.D. Arnold & Rich Koslowski regarding their new book from Top Shelf, BB Wolf and the 3 LPs (released in June). As described by Top Shelf: “A farmer and family man by day, blues musician by night, and a drinker of fine spirits at any hour, BB’s life seemed simple. But this fragile peace comes crashing down when the LPs decide to take his land by any means possible. When all is lost, BB lashes out, setting into motion acts of revenge only a Big Bad Wolf could unleash.” In addition to discussing this tale of blues and racism, the creators detail a musical project connected to the book that will be available at San Diego. Top Shelf offers a seven-page preview of the 96-page book here.
Tim O’Shea: Rich, as the guy behind Three Geeks and Three Fingers, are you un-nerved or reassured at how the number three seems to track you down, even when you’re not writing the story?
Rich Koslowski: Well, it was all part of a “grand master plan” I had in mind with the magical number 3. Seriously. It kind of got derailed, though, when I did The King with Top Shelf. Couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get that book out there.
I’ll have to see if I can get that big idea back on track somehow.
Not since Green Jellö headbanged their way into our hearts* has the story of the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf gotten this kind of makeover: Writer-artist Rich Koslowski (Three Fingers, The King, The 3 Geeks) has teamed up with writer-retailer J.D. Arnold for the new Top Shelf graphic novel BB Wolf and the 3 LPs. (What can I say — Koslowski likes threes.) The book reimagines the venerable fairy tale through the lens of the blues. The duo talk to Alex Dueben about the project at CBR. I liked this bit from Arnold about how he hooked up with Koslowski:
I wrote this particular story about 5 years ago. I then sat on it for about a year, maybe a little less, searching for the right artist. It was in San Diego, at Comic-Con, in 2007 I think, that I met Rich Koslowski. I’d just finished reading “Three Fingers.” I have to say that I had not been that impressed by a graphic novel in a long time. I was instantly a huge fan. I knew right away, upon reading “Three Fingers,” that Rich’s style would be perfect for BB Wolf. But if not for my wife Katie, I doubt I would have ever screwed up the courage to approach him. Practically dragged by the hand, she led me to his booth. I’m sure I seemed the typical, sweaty-palmed fan boy. “Hi Mr. Koslowski. I’m a big fan. Will you sign my book for me?” Gah. I’m embarrassed just writing about it. And I don’t even think I had the nerve to ask him to look at my work then and there. It was many weeks later, after constant nudging from Katie, that I finally sent an email to Rich, asking him to look at the script. For some reason, maybe he was bored, maybe he remembered the pitiful stuttering fan and took pity, I don’t know, but he did agree to read it. The rest is history, I suppose.
Go, read the whole thing.
* Okay, so there’s Fables too, but I really wanted to link to that Green Jellö video.