19th Dec2014

Episode 111 – Pledging to the Wytches with Scott Snyder!

by Chris Thompson

With Scott Synder …
 
Following on from my last episode with the legendary Carlos Pacheco at NICE Convention in Bedford (which you can still listen to here), this week I’m back just in time for the holidays with the long-awaited follow-up to Episode 100 with Scott Snyder (Batman, American Vampire, Wytches).
 
Scott and I discuss the overwhelming response to Wytches, his future plans for Batman, what teaching means to him as a writer, and address a few of the rumours he’s been attached to lately. If you only listen to one podcast this year then you’ve been missing out!
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes. You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Scott Snyder Twitter: @Ssnyder1835
 
And if you missed my first chat with Scott about his work, you can listen to that right here:
popculturehound.net/episode-100-going-batty-beyond-with-scott-snyder

Off
18th Sep2014

Episode 101 – Introducing Pop Culture Hound with Greg Ruth!

by Chris Thompson

With Greg Ruth …
 
How do you follow up the amazingly frank Episode 100 with Scott Snyder (which you can still listen to here)? I really don’t know … So instead, I’ve decided to do something completely different with Episode 101, and get my good friend Greg Ruth (Conan, The Lost Boy, Indeh) to interview me!
 
Taking the approach that 101 usually indicates an introductory unit, Greg and I chat about what comic/s meant the most to me growing up, how an Aussie like myself ended up at a comic shop in London, where the Pop Culture Hound name came from, and why old books just smell so damn good! It’s either going to lose me a lot of listeners or, somehow, help you all feel more connected … I’m hoping for the latter.
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes. You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Greg Ruth’s Twitter: @GregRuth
Greg Ruth’s website: www.gregthings.com
 
And if you missed my first chat with Greg about his work, you can listen to that right here:
popculturehound.net/episode-60-discovering-the-lost-boy-with-greg-ruth

21st Aug2014

Episode 98 – Comics & the CBLDF with Charles Brownstein!

by Chris Thompson

With Charles Brownstein …
 
After last episode with Dark Engine‘s Ryan Burton & John Bivens (which you can listen to here), I’m finally back with Charles Brownstein, Executive Director of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF).
 
Charles & I discuss his background in comics, how he ended up working for the Fund, what the organisation stands for, and some of the current problems they are facing. It’s a fascinating glimpse into a vital, yet often overlooked, aspect of the comics medium.
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes. You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Charles Brownstein Twitter: @C_Brownstein
CBLDF Twitter: @CBLDF
CBLDF website: cbldf.org

19th Mar2014

Episode 80 – Celebrating Hellboy Day with Mike Mignola!

by Chris Thompson

With Mike Mignola …
 
After last week’s chat with Jai Nitz (which you can still listen to here), this time I check back in with Mike Mignola on the eve of Hellboy Day. Mike & I first spoke on the landmark 50th episode a few months back (which you can find right here), so it was a pleasure to speak again.
 
Mike & I discuss how he feels after twenty years, why he still struggles with confidence in his work, what he still wants to achieve, and why Dave Stewart is the best colorist in comics. It’s the perfect way to celebrate 20 years of Hellboy from Mike Mignola & Dark Horse Comics.
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes. You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Art Of Mike Mignola’s Twitter: @artofmmignola
Art Of Mike Mignola’s website: www.artofmikemignola.com
Dark Horse Comics’ website: www.darkhorse.com

24th Jan2014

Episode 73 – Comic Book Babbling On with Clifford Meth!

by Chris Thompson

With Clifford Meth …
 
Following on from a series of epic new year podcasts – including last week’s chat with the talented Fred Van Lente (which you can listen to here) – this time around I have the pleasure of speaking with writer, journalist and comics campaigner Clifford Meth!
 
Cliff and I talk about his background in and out of comics, the debt we owe all the creators who came before, the state of comics journalism today, and what made now the right time to finally release Comic Book Babylon. It’s a fascinating discussion with a guy who has been in the trenches for a long time and counts people like Harlan Ellison as friends.
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes. You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Clifford Meth’s Twitter: @Clifford Meth
Clifford Meth’s website: thecliffordmethod.blogspot.com
 
You can purchase the book for your Kindle here: www.amazon.com/Comic-Book-Babylon-ebook
Or get one of signed limited edition copies from Aardwolf right here: aardwolfpublishing.com/ap

16th Nov2013

Episode 64 – Like a Shaolin Cowboy with Geof Darrow!

by Chris Thompson

With Geof Darrow …
 
Hot on the heels of my last episode with Riley Rossmo (which you can listen to here) and my recent film podcast (which you can listen to here) I bring the world of comics and film together with the legendary Geof Darrow (Hard Boiled, Big Guy & Rusty The Boy Robot, The Matrix) to discuss the long-awaited return of his Shaolin Cowboy from Dark Horse Comics.
 
We discuss his early years in advertising and animation; working with fellow legends like Jack Kirby, Jean Giraud (Moebius) and Frank Miller; his concerns about how people might interpret and view his work; plus his efforts to raise funds and awareness for PROTECT.
 
To get in touch, send feedback or submit projects for consideration, please email reviews@popculturehound.com. And if you missed last week’s episode (or any others) you can find them right here or subscribe via iTunes.
 
You can also support the Pop Culture Hound podcast by clicking here to make a donation or pressing the DONATE button below. Your contributions are greatly appreciated and will help us maintain the site, get new equipment, and encourage us to keep going on those cold lonely nights.





 
Chris Thompson’s Twitter: @popculturehound
Orbital Comics’ website: www.orbitalcomics.com
 
Geof Darrow’s Facebook: www.facebook.com/geofdarrow
Geof Darrow’s website: www.geofdarrow.com

09th Nov2011

Event – Comic Gosh!p Book Club (Batman: Year One)

by Chris Thompson


Although I missed the inaugural get-together of Thinking Comics‘ new comic book club last month, I was more than ready for the second one tonight (November 9). This time around the focus was on Frank Miller and David Mazzucchelli’s Batman: Year One, as well as Josceline Fenton’s excellent webcomic, Hemlock. Josceline herself was on hand to share insights into her work, though I can’t say the same for that slacker Miller.
 
I arrived about 5 minutes late and things were already well under way. In total I counted just over 30 people, so there were a number of us standing (or leaning) on the periphery. Not bad for the second meeting of a group discussing comics. There were also tea-making facilities and some yummy Bat-cake for afterwards, thanks to the fine people at Gosh! Comics London.

A lot of interesting points were raised by those in attendance, and there was a definite freedom to speak up if you felt inclined or just listen quietly if you preferred. I’m used to going to events at Orbital Comics here in London, but at Gosh! I felt a little out of my element. Fortunately that didn’t last long and I was starting to ease in by the end. I’ve collated some of the thoughts and findings in bullet point below for those who couldn’t make it and are interested …

 

BATMAN: YEAR ONE by Frank Miller & David Mazzucchelli with Richmond Lewis (DC Comics)

  • Mazzucchelli’s work on Year One was compared to Alex Toth, Milt Caniff and various European styles.
  • John Miers suggested that (at least in Frank’s mind) the Batman saga is book-ended by Year One and Dark Knight Returns since they both appear to take place in the same universe.
  • The fast pacing of the book helps you to fly through it, and that could only be achieved in a comic book. The comic form also allows for two distinct narratives – Jim Gordon and Bruce Wayne – with a possible third in the form of Selina Kyle.
  • I mentioned that Mazzucchelli was most likely chosen for the storytelling he brought to the book. Batman and Bruce Wayne were always more or less prominent depending on who was providing the narrative. For example, in the closing moments of the book when Gordon loses his glasses, everything is seen in brief flashes and shadows without any great detail. This is something Miller probably couldn’t have achieved himself.
  • There were some obvious comparisons to Taxi Driver, especially when Bruce heads into the night incognito and ends up tangling with the hookers and their pimp. Perhaps Frank was channeling a little Travis Bickle?
  • If Year One is the beginning and Dark Knight Returns is the end, then did someone at DC consider All-Star Batman & Robin to be the middle arc? That’s what Steve at Gosh! suggests.
  • It was noted that the colours had been re-done for the trade paperback, and the efforts had been quite worthwhile. Unlike George Lucas and Star Wars, sometimes it doesn’t hurt to go back and fix things.
  • There was also a great discussion about whether Batman is actually a super-hero … Is it powers, the costume or the heroic acts that make a hero super? The concensus, I believe, was that actions mattered most, so by that count Batman is a super-hero. I’m sure there’s still some who disagree though.

 
 
HEMLOCK by Josceline Fenton (hemlock.smackjeeves.com)

  • Josceline started doing comics when she was about 10 based on a How To Draw Manga book her father bought. She’s trying to move away from the direct manga influence, but it’s still what she’s known for.
  • The idea for Hemlock first came up in 2006, then resurfaced again in 2008 with Starvation Soup.  It finally came back as its own series (with changes) because Josceline loved drawing The Witch (Lumi).
  • The Snail House (Richmond) became a much bigger part of the story due to public response. She hates drawing him because he’s so big, but it’s what she constantly gets asked for.
  • The inclusion of the tale of Baba Yaga comes from her Scandinavian heritage and stories she used to hear as a child rather than any ifluence from Mike Mignola or Hellboy. Josceline’s Swedish ancestry seems to inform quite a lot of her work.
  • One person noted the unique use of sound effects, and how each one felt different and special. Josceline said this was probably because her typography had been criticised by teachers at school, so maybe she tried extra hard.
  • It used to take her about two hours to complete a page, but now it takes about a day. It’s most likely due to her being a perfectionist and feeling the pressure as her audience increases.
  • The Snail’s language doesn’t really mean anything, but there are some particular symbols that do. He has a symbol for most of the main characters and one for saying hello … apparently it sounds like clicking if you say it right.
  • Josceline has a large collection of art books and takes a lot of inspiration from fashion art and historical design. I sense a call from Project Runway imminently …
  • Hemlock is planned as a series of six volumes overall. She is currently working on Volume 4 online and Volumes 1, 2 & 3 are now available in print (www.lulu.com/spotlight/mildtarantula).
  • Her original art is done on A4 (slightly larger than the finished product) then scanned in before gray-tones and captions are added. It’s actually intended for print and not for the screen, but the webcomic seems to be working.
  • Although she tries to stay a couple of updates ahead, Josceline hasn’t been doing well at that of late. The original pages she showed us were actually from the next update due later this week!

 

So, there you have it … If you were curious about Batman; Year One or Hemlock then you have some food for thought. And if you were curious about Comic Gosh!p then you now have some idea about the length, breadth and depth of our coverage. Next month’s meeting, to be held on December 14, will cover Scott McCloud’s Understanding Comics, as well as John Miers’ Babel (www.johnmiers.com), so why not come along?

One last thing I’ll leave you with is this great interview I found with Josceline Fenton earlier this evening. It clarifies and expands upon some of what was discussed tonight, as well as raising some new topics. Enjoy!

www.graphic-e-y-e.com/2011/10/interview-josceline-fenton.html