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Astronaut Academy: Zero Gravity by Dave Roman

Astronaut Academy: Zero Gravity by Dave Roman

Astronaut Academy: Zero Gravity by Dave Roman is a collection of Roman's webcomic Astronaut Elementary.  It's a wonderfully produced book with a great cover featuring Roman's art set off by a metallic silver cover.  The book doesn't change the structure of the webcomic -- a series of short stories, each told from the perspective of different characters at Astronaut Academy.  The stories build together to form an overarching plot for the book yet still retain their own element of closure.

Roman has a cheerfully cartoonish style of art with just a touch of manga influence.  Just the character designs in this book alone are fun but Roman crafts a number of interesting personalities to round out the cast -- from the former space hero turned student Hakata Soy to introspective space walker Doug Hiro to new teacher Senor Panda (still not extinct!).  

Issue #2 of Outbound: The Science Fiction Comics Anthology

Outbound #2: The Science Fiction Comics Anthology

This spring saw the second issue of the Boston Comics Roundtable group's Outbound: The Science Fiction Comics Anthology.  The first issue came out in the fall of 2009 and it's pretty nice that the Boston group was able to get the second edition out the door in about six months.

Astounding Space Thrills by Steve Conley

Steve Conley is one of webcomics' godfathers and while he's not unrecognized, he doesn't get nearly enough credit.  His groundbreaking comic Astounding Space Thrills existed both on and off the web and last year a collection of the offline comics was published.  You can also still read the webcomic archives online.

ComixTalk for Monday, March 15, 2010

Crimson Dark by David Simon

AWARDS: The Doug Wright award nominees -- which honor English-language Canadian comics -- were announced last week. Kate Beaton's book Never Learn Anything From History is up for the Pigskin Peters Award (for unconventional, "nominally-narrative" comics); and among the finalists for finalists for Best Emerging Talent is Adam Bourret  for his comic I'm CrazyI gave I'm Crazy a mixed review, but Bourret certainly was a brave story-teller in his book and showed a lot of potential.

PLUG ONE: I haven't mentioned David Simon's Crimson Dark webcomic in quite awhile which is a shame because it's still one of the best 3d art webcomics I've seen.  Not sure how it's working, but Simon started a "club" for supporters to subscribe to at $2 to $5 a month to help him with having the time to produce Crimson Dark.

PLUG TWO: The Covered blog which spotlights re-dos of classic comic book covers by new artists.  I would love to see a webcomic spin on this.

INTERVIEW: Brigid Alverson has an interview with Dirk Tiede of the cop-supernatural thriller hybrid tale of Paradigm Shift.

TOOLS: Scott McCloud experiments with a simple browser-based drawing tool called Harmony.

Missile Mouse: The Star Crusher by Jake Parker

Missile Mouse by Jake Parker

Missile Mouse: The Star Crusher is a household favorite here.  Both of the x-girls (especially the youngest) raved about the book.  It's a really exciting tale, jam-packed with action and plot points.  Creator Jake Parker has tremendous art chops and visually this book is like a revved-up Saturday matinee special. 

Comix Talk for Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Short post today -- I recommend the following three things:

PODCAST: An interview with Jon Rosenberg of Goats in this edition of The Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast.

CRAFT: Wow, John K has an excellent and extensive tutorial on facial expressions, well worth reading.

REVIEW: El Santo praises Evan Dahm's epic fantasy webcomic Order of Tales.


The Boston Comics Roundtable, in partnership with River Bird Studios, is pleased to announce the release of the premier issue of Outbound, a Science Fiction anthology. Outbound is a spin-off of sister publication Inbound, the anthology of comics from Boston. Outbound contains comics and short stories from a mix of Boston-based creators and artists all over the world, from Australia to South America, including a cover from talented Uruguayan artist Marcelo Buchelli.

Zap! Pow! Keen! An Interview with Chris Layfield and Pascalle Lepas

Zap! is a science fiction webcomic hosted on Keenspot.  Written by Chris Layfield and drawn by Pascalle Lepas since 2003, the webcomic has continued to improve, particularly on the visual side.  (Don't despair the lengthy archives, there is a great overview of the storylines for new readers who want to quickly get up to speed).

I got a chance to interview Chris and Pascalle by email this month.

First and Last: Zortic

Zortic by Mark Mekkes started on Keenspace in 2000 before getting snapped up by Keenspot. Here's a snapshot of artwork from the beginning and very recently:

Very first Zortic
Very First Zortic

(Above, part of the very first Zortic. Below a very recent Zortic)

Very Recent


And just as a bonus here's a Zortic from a storyline parodying the DaVinci Code which works in a Websnark essay.

First and Last: Killroy and Tina

Justin Pierce has crafted a fun tale of superheroes, aliens and fantasical elements called Killroy and Tina. Here's a snapshot of one of the very first ones from when Killroy and Tina appeared on Keenspace (top) and one of the more recent editions (bottom).

Very Early K&T

Very Recent K&T

(We interviewed Justin about a year ago - you can read it here.)