Rich Tommaso Archives - Robot 6 @ Comic Book Resources

HeroesCon ’14 | More day 1 photos

Francavilla-banner

As I noted in the intro to the first round of HeroesCon 2014 Day 1 photos, I tried to cover a lot of ground in taking photographs. It turns out I got around to so many people on the first day that I needed to split the photos into two posts. Now on with part II!

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Best of 7 | ‘Empire,’ ‘Justice League United,’ ‘Elektra’ and more

bestof7-april27

Welcome to Best of 7, where we talk about “The best in comics from the last seven days” — which could be anything from an exciting piece of news to something great fans are doing to an awesome comic that came out. So let’s get to it…

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Comics A.M. | American Library Association honors ‘March,’ ‘Relish’ and more

March: Book One

March: Book One

Awards | March: Book One, by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell, was honored this morning at the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia with the Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award, recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults. Other youth media winners include: Lucy Knisley’s Relish, the Alex Award as one of the 10 best adult books that appeal to teens; Chip Kidd’s Go: A Kidd’s Guide to Graphic Design, a finalist for the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults; and Brian Selznick, recipient of the May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award. [press release]

Passings | One of Fiji’s best-known cartoonists, Laisiasa Naulumatua, was remembered by his former editor as someone who relied on humor rather than venom to make his point. A number of former government officials, including a former prime minister, came to pay their respects to the cartoonist, who used the pen name Lai, at his funeral on Saturday. [The Fiji Times]

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Start Reading Now | Two crime comics from Rich Tommaso

From "The Mysterious Case: Sam Hill 1939," by Rich Tommaso

Thanks to a tweet over the weekend from Ed Brubaker, I discovered that Rich Tommaso is serializing a pair of crime comics online: The Mysterious Case: Sam Hill 1939, a follow-up to The Cavalier Mr. Thompson: A Sam Hill Novel; and Killer in My Sleep, which the cartoonist describes as “a straight-crime thriller about a serial monogamist/assassin set in the decade of the nineteen-sixties.”

On his blog, Tommaso also unveils some test covers for Killer in My Sleep, all of which are pretty sharp.

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Food or Comics? | Caviar or Cavalier Mr. Thompson

Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a splurge item.

Check out Diamond’s release list or ComicList, and tell us what you’re getting in our comments field.

Conan the Barbarian #8

John Parkin

If I had $15: Whoah, another tough week to narrow things down. Is every Brian Wood-written title required to come out the same week of each month? Do Dark Horse and Marvel get together and plan it that way, so that people who only buy Wood comics only have to go to the store once a month? I think more than half the DC titles I buy come out this time every month, too. So yeah, lots to pick from …

Anyway, I’d start with one of those Brian Wood comics, Conan the Barbarian #8 (Dark Horse, $3.50), which features Vasilis Lolos on art. Lolos drew one of my favorite issues of Northlanders, “The Viking Art of Single Combat,” so it’s cool to see the two of them working together again. I’d also get a comic I’m sure will be popular with a few of my colleagues, the first issue of the new Stumptown miniseries by Greg Rucka and Matthew Southworth (Oni Press, $3.99). Next I’d get Manhattan Projects #6 (Image, $3.50); this issue turns the focus from America’s secret science program to Russia’s secret science program. Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra are having a lot of fun with this one. Finally, I’d get Uncanny X-Force #31 (Marvel, $3.99), which really picked things up last issue … and this is a comic that’s usually running on twice as many cylinders anyway.

If I had $30, I’d also grab two finales from DC Comics — Shade #12 and Resurrection Man #0 (both $2.99). Honestly, I never expected to see a Resurrection Man comic again, much less by the guys who wrote the original, so the fact that we got a good run of 13 issues is a pleasant surprise. Shade, of course, was planned as 12 issues from the beginning, and was a nice return to the Starman-verse by writer James Robinson. That leaves me room for three more $2.99 comics, which means I’m going to bypass X-Men, The Massive and Avengers Assemble this week (let’s assume that I’ll one day spend my splurge money on the trades) and instead go with Chew #28 (Image, $2.99), It Girl and the Atomics #2 (Image, $2.99) and Demon Knights #0 (DC Comics, $2.99).

Splurge: Assuming I wouldn’t spend my unlimited gift card on single issues, I’d be looking at the first Bucko collection from Dark Horse ($19.99) and Fantagraphics’ Is That All There Is? trade ($25).

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Food or Comics? | Pete and mirliton

Welcome to Food or Comics?, where every week we talk about what comics we’d buy at our local comic shop based on certain spending limits — $15 and $30 — as well as what we’d get if we had extra money or a gift card to spend on a splurge item.

Check out Diamond’s release list or ComicList, and tell us what you’re getting in our comments field.

The Amazing Spider-Man: Hooky

Chris Arrant

If I had $15, I’d first snap up a book I’ve been trying to track down for years: Amazing Spider-Man: Hooky (Marvel, $4.99). This 1986 lost classic features Bernie Wrightson drawing a webhead story featuring monsters and alternate worlds – looks like a real gem. Now to convince Marvel to republish John Paul Leon’s Logan: Path of the Warlord… Next up would be Secret Service #1 (Marvel/Icon, $2.99). I’ll buy pretty much anything Dave Gibbons puts out these days, and seeing him with Mark Millar is bound to be a unique experience. Next up is Saga #2 (Image, $2.99); Brian K. Vaughn is really setting up a world – like a sci-fi sitcom here, with loads of direction to go in. Lastly I’d get Conan the Barbarian #3 (Dark Horse, $3.50). Can I admit I might like this more than Northlanders? Brian Wood’s definitely expanding how people think of him with this story, and Becky Cloonan is making a lot of editors look foolish for not putting her on these kinds of books sooner.

If I had $30, I’d start out with Secret #1 (Image, $3.50). Manhattan Projects seems more up my alley than this story, but Jonathan Hickman’s built up some credit in me to try anything new he puts out even if I’m not too interested. Next up would be Northlanders #50 (DC/Vertigo, $2.99), which I’m sad to see go. I think this will be one of those series that achieves more popularity after it’s over, and it’s a shame DC can’t find a way to continue it. After that it would be Glory #25 (Image, $2.99). I was a bit shaky on the story after Joe Keatinge’s first issue, but everything after has really put the pieces into place and Ross Campbell seems to be finding his footing to really land the superheroics of this story. Last up would be Secret Avengers #25 (Marvel, $3.99); Rick Remender’s clearly put his own spin to this series, so much I’m surprised Marvel didn’t use this as a chance to renumber the series… but I’m glad they didn’t.

If I could splurge, I’d throw money at my comic retailer for Pete and Miriam (Boom!, $14.99). Big fan of Rich Tommaso, and he seems to be honing his craft like a knife, creating more pointed and poignant stories here. And Miriam, she’s a real gem.

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Rich Tommaso brings Pete and Miriam to BOOM!

Rich Tommaso has had a varied career—his Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow (written by James Sturm) won an Eisner and several Glyph awards, and he has had a long relationship with Gary Groth and Fantagraphics; currently he is re-coloring Carl Barks comics for Fanta’s collected edition of Barks’s works.

Yet for some reason, Tommaso has had a hard time getting his work published in the U.S.—until now. Yesterday, BOOM! Studios announced that they will publish Tommaso’s graphic novel Pete and Miriam in March under their BOOM! Town imprint. Pete and Miriam has already been published in French, and his bio lists a Spanish edition due out in 2013. “I kept working on it because I had this contract in France but no one was biting on it here,” Tommaso told Tom Spurgeon in an in-depth interview at The Comics Reporter in November. “I went to Angouleme last year and it was amazing how many people came up to me and talked to me about the book. They wanted to know when a second one would be out. There was a lot of excitement for it.” Let’s hope American readers warm to it as well—Tommaso is an artist whose time has come.

Rich Tommaso turns to Kickstarter for new project

Rich Tommaso is the latest comics creator to turn to Kickstarter to fund one an ambitious graphic novel. Tommaso, who won an Eisner and two Glyph awards for Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow, has been publishing his indy graphic novels at his own website Rich Tommaso’s Web of Comics, and he is also busy re-coloring the Carl Barks comics that Fantagraphics is publishing in glorious archive editions.

Tommaso’s Kickstarter project The Cavalier Mr. Thompson is something that has been, well, kicking around in his head for about 10 years. Here’s the gist of it:

The Cavalier… is a story loosely based on the life and works of hard-boiled crime writer Jim Thompson, who was raised in West Texas during the 20’s and 30’s. At the same time, Cavalier’s story is very much my own; the cast of characters, their family backgrounds, their motivations, likenesses, personalities–were all my creation. The breakthrough on this project came about when I was reading a biography of Jim Thompson and I discovered how his relationship with his father uncannily mirrored mine with my father. It was this personal connection that spurred me on and got things rolling on Cavalier. The story is set in Big Spring, Texas during a time in America when things were slowly sliding toward what would come to be known as The Great Depression. So, The Cavalier Mr. Thompson is one part American History, one part American Crime Novel.

If that piques your interest, check out the 75-page excerpt he has up on his site. The Kickstarter is to pay the printing costs of the book, which will be distributed by Fantagraphics; interestingly, it looks like the book is being published in the usual way in France and Spain. And check out the goodies for donors, which include everything from a watercolor print to a scene from the graphic novel rendered in Sculpey clay.

Comics A.M. | Alvin Schwartz passes away; Martin leaves Daredevil

Alvin Schwartz

Passings | Alvin Schwartz, the prolific writer who penned Batman comics and the Batman and Superman comic strips for DC Comics in the 1940s, passed away Oct. 28 after a long illness. He was 95. Before leaving comics in 1958, Schwartz wrote for most of DC’s titles, including Aquaman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and The Flash. [News from ME]

Creators | Tucker Stone talks to Mark Waid about his work on Daredevil, and Waid confirms that Marcos Martin, originally announced as the artist on every other arc, won’t be working on the book after issue #6: “Unfortunately, it was something that came up while we were working. He’s doing 4, 5 and 6. When he came on, I don’t think things were firmed up with his next project and now they have. I salute him, and I think it’s going to be great and I want to see him go off and do creator owned stuff. But my heart breaks.” [comiXology]

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Rich Tommaso sets up another round of comics

Rich Tommaso set up his own webcomics site about a year and a half ago so that he could post his comics; despite an Eisner award for his work on Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow and numerous other accolades, he has had trouble selling his work to print publishers. Which just goes to show you what a bunch of losers they are, because Rich’s work is beautifully drawn and his stories are well told.

Anyway, if you haven’t seen his site, or if you have but it’s been a while, now is a great time to check it out because he is launching two new stories, Dry County and Yearling. With just a cover and one page up of each, it’s a bit hard to see what Dry County is about, but Yearling is clearly a superhero comic, and it has a female lead. Tommaso says it’s going to be like a crime novel: “Like a Batman Detective comic, only my hero would actually DO SOME INVESTIGATING.” What could possibly go wrong? I can’t wait to find out!

Rich Tommaso on re-coloring the Carl Barks comics

When I heard that Rich Tommaso was re-coloring the complete Carl Barks comics for Fantagraphics’ archive editions, I was curious about how that would work and how it would affect Tommaso’s own work: He shared an Eisner award with Jim Sturm for Satchel Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow, and he has a rich selection of other comics on his website. Although he was just back from Angouleme, Rich was kind enough to answer some questions about his process and how it is changing his own art style.

Brigid: How did you get this gig?

Rich: For years I had been doing some freelance work in the way of lettering (for foreign books translated into English) and spot illustration for Fantagraphics Books and then, last summer, totally out-of-the-blue, Gary emails me asking if I’d like to try-out for a “secret” coloring gig. About a few weeks later, they sent me about ten pages of Donald Duck comics for me to test out coloring—finally breaking the surprise of what the secret was. Based on my ability to capture—as closely as possible—the look of the original, hand-separated colors on the computer, I got the job.

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