Benjamin Percy writes riveting, thought-provoking fiction: his novel Red Moon uses werewolves to explore our fear of terrorism, The Wilding depicts a suspenseful family hunting trip in the wilderness, and his upcoming book The Dead Lands is a post-apocalyptic adventure story inspired by the historic Lewis and Clark expedition. Percy has written two issues of Detective Comics (#35 and 36) and will soon take on the DC Comics series Green Arrow with artist Patrick Zircher. Nothing But Comics emailed Percy to ask him questions about how he came to write comic books, his prose and comics work, and his plans for Green Arrow.
All this month, Nothing But Comics is celebrating the 75th anniversary of the DC Comics superhero, the Flash! As part of our “Flash February” celebration, we contacted Steve Korté – the librarian for DC Comics and a past editor of several books on the history of the company and its characters – to get his thoughts on the history of the Flash.
Malevolent cosmic deity and comics connoisseur Cthulhu likes to critique comics via Twitter (@ClockpunkEllis). Cthulhu also reaches out to comics creators on Twitter to ask them tough, personal questions. This week, Cthulhu contacted Fred Van Lente, the writer of great comics such as Ivar, Timewalker, Conan the Avenger, and Resurrectionists, among others, to ask him a tough question about time travel.
Comics creator and upcoming Howard the Duck writer Chip Zdarsky ran as a mock candidate for Mayor of Toronto in 2010, and Howard the Duck was a write-in candidate for President of the United States in 1976, so Marvel Comics super-villain M.O.D.O.K. reached out to Zdarsky via Twitter to ask the obvious question:
Inspired by this week’s celebration of Presidents Day, Nothing But Comics! perused the adventures of the DC Comics character Prez Rickard. Created by writer Joe Simon and artist Jerry Grandenetti and debuting in the comic Prez #1 (August-September 1973), the young, idealistic Prez is elected President of the United States, becoming – as the cover for the first issue proclaims – the “First Teen President of the U.S.A.” However, the events depicted in Prez #1 make it doubtful that Prez was actually a teenager when he was elected President, and a subsequent adventure written by Neil Gaiman also suffers from a narrative flaw regarding Prez’s age and the year he was elected.
In his essay “Supernatural Horror in Literature” (1927), author H. P. Lovecraft distinguishes weird fiction from other terror fiction, and stresses the importance of mood, or “atmosphere,” as a component of weird fiction:
“The true weird tale has something more than secret murder, bloody bones, or a sheeted form clanking chains according to rule. A certain atmosphere of breathless and unexplainable dread of outer, unknown forces must be present; and there must be a hint, expressed with a seriousness and portentousness becoming its subject, of that most terrible conception of the human brain – a malign and particular suspension or defeat of those fixed laws of Nature which are our only safeguard against the assaults of chaos and the daemons of unplumbed space.”
Creating “a certain atmosphere of breathless and unexplainable dread of outer, unknown forces” is an essential skill for writers of weird fiction, including weird comics, and one technique used to establish supernatural dread in a story is the use of arcane language. Comics creators use arcane language in a variety of ways to instill a dread of supernatural danger in readers.
Malevolent cosmic deity and comics connoisseur Cthulhu likes to critique comics via Twitter (@ClockpunkEllis). Cthulhu also reaches out to comics creators on Twitter to ask them tough, personal questions. This week, Cthulhu contacted Ming Doyle, the artist of great comics such as The Kitchen and Mara. It was recently announced that Doyle will be writing the upcoming DC Comics series Constantine: The Hellblazer, starring occult anti-hero John Constantine, so Cthulhu contacted Doyle to ask her a tough question about Constantine.
Last month, Nothing But Comics! was honored to commission a cartoon by artist KC Green. An Oklahoma native who now lives in Massachusetts, Green has created a variety of delightful comics that include the eclectic webcomic Gunshow, an adaptation of the classic novel The Adventures of Pinocchio, and (with artist Anthony Clark) the Western fantasy webcomic Back, among others.
Nothing But Comics! emailed Green to ask him a few questions about his work, his hobbies, and any advice that he could share with new creators.
Malevolent cosmic deity and comics connoisseur Cthulhu likes to critique comics via Twitter (@ClockpunkEllis). Cthulhu also reaches out to comics creators on Twitter to ask them tough, personal questions. This week, Cthulhu contacted Chris Burnham, the artist of the DC Comics series Batman Incorporated and the co-creator (with Grant Morrison) of the upcoming Image Comics series Nameless, to ask him a tough question.
In the publication information provided in their respective comic books, publishers Image Comics and BOOM! Studios advise readers to call phone number (203) 595-3636 in order to get “information regarding the CPSIA on this printed material.” Nothing But Comics! was curious about why this information is listed in the Image and BOOM! Studios comics, but not in the comic books of other publishers. Our investigation revealed that both Image and BOOM! Studios are going beyond the requirements of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), and that the two publishers are using the same printing company.