Category: Crowdfunding

Spotlight SquadCast Interview with Comic Writer and Artist Andrew Pepoy, Creator of Simone & Ajax

Spotlight SquadCast Interview with Comic Writer and Artist Andrew Pepoy, Creator of Simone & Ajax

Welcome back to another spotlight interview. In this session, we spoke with comics writer, artist, and inker Andrew Pepoy.

Andrew has been working professionally in comics for over thirty years. He has worked for Marvel, DC, Archie, and Bongo Comics, among others. He is currently running a Kickstarter campaign for his creator owned property Simone & Ajax. Simone and Ajax has been around for over twenty-five years, and Andrew is working on collected edition of four new stories, plus extras and it looks fabulous.

We talked about the series and what Andrew is looking to deliver in this project as well as his history in comics. This interview is a great discussion of what is possible in the comic medium.

You can find the audio recording of our discussion below, and we transcribed a big portion of it for you as well.

We hope you enjoy the conversation.

Pop Culture Squad: Let’s talk about Simone & Ajax. The Kickstarter is live as of the publication of this interview even if we are recording it prior to the campaign launch. How long has this new project been in the works for you and what can we expect in the Kickstarter?

Andrew Pepoy: Well there is a longer answer and a shorter answer. To give you the short answer, I have been planning this for about the last year, and really focused on it for much of this year, 2020.

The long answer is that in some ways, some of the stories in here are stories I have been wanting to tell for twenty-five or thirty years since I first created the characters.

Continue reading “Spotlight SquadCast Interview with Comic Writer and Artist Andrew Pepoy, Creator of Simone & Ajax”

Kickstarters You Should Be Backing:  August Edition

Kickstarters You Should Be Backing: August Edition

Hey everyone! Welcome back to the latest edition of Kickstarter campaigns that we think you should check out. There are lots of creators taking advantage of the slowdown in comic publishing and lack of comic conventions by running campaigns for crowdfunding their work. We have been keeping our eyes on the stream of great projects that are being offered and come up with a list of campaigns to spotlight.

Below you will find a list of Kickstarter campaigns listed by the order of the end of the campaign. We will give you the details and a quick word or two about why we like them.

Cupid’s Arrows Volume 1 by Thom Zahler

Campaign Ends: August 27, 2020

This is the collected edition of the hit Webtoon series Cupid’s Arrows by Thom Zahler. It is a fun, light hearted, but moving romance series with a great concept. There are plenty of extra options for backer rewards.

BACK IT HERE

Note: You can check out the last time that we talked with Thom about his other upcoming publication, the 5th volume of Love and Capes, here.


Continue reading “Kickstarters You Should Be Backing: August Edition”

PANDEMIX Is the Comic Anthology You Need to Be Reading Today

PANDEMIX Is the Comic Anthology You Need to Be Reading Today

We are living and surviving today in a world with a virus that has changed so much of how we were used to living. It has affected everyone in America and most of the world whether you “believe” in it or not.

Talented artistic folks have invariably impacted significantly. While many artists were used to the working at home that has become the new norm for so many more, the world is different than it was pre-COVID19, and we knew that it would be only a matter of time before we saw creative expression of what the pandemic has wrought in comic form.

That time is now. We present to you PANDEMIX: Quarantine Comics in the Age of ‘Rona!! Available Today!!!

A group of nineteen talented artists and writers have come together to share their impressions of how they are seeing the world that we live in today. It is a wonderful collected anthology of comic goodness, but wait there’s more. This self published digital edition is available on Patreon , and all proceeds go to charity with donations to The Hero Initiative.

Continue reading “PANDEMIX Is the Comic Anthology You Need to Be Reading Today”

With Further Ado #99: Jetta, Jeff and the Entrepreneurial Project that Turned Into An Artists’ Party

With Further Ado #99: Jetta, Jeff and the Entrepreneurial Project that Turned Into An Artists’ Party

It’s hard to believe that in 2020, the concept of “Archie” can mean so many different things to so many different people. To me, the first image I conjure up of Archie is that classic, squeaky clean strip about teenagers.  I read about a thousand classic Archie Comics in the orthodontist’s waiting room and a big box of Archie comics way when, and then my aunt Elissa bequeathed another big box of Archie comics to me too.

But today, it’s more likely that the images of Archie and his “pals & gals” from CW’s Riverdale are what comes to mind for many younger fans. Comic readers might think of the horrific Vampironica, or the Netflix’s Sabrina, or the new Katy Keene TV version of the characters.  (I can’t believe that the obscure character, Pepper is on TV!)  These different incarnations are all legitimate and all engaging.

Kudos to folks masterminding the Archie brand – for their creativity, flexibility and vision.

But it turns out that even the “classic” version of Archie – the house style established in many ways by Dan DeCarlo – was co-opted.  Before Dan DeCarlo started his long and impressive career at Archie Comics (MLJ), he worked on a title called Jetta Raye, the delightful teenage sweetheart of the future.  And back in 1952, that meant the 21st century.

In the 50s Jetta comic series, published by Standard/Nedor/Pines, teenager Jetta Raye went (would go to? syntax for future stories is tricky)  to Neutron High School in the year 2052.  That doesn’t seem that far off now, does it? She had a boyfriend named Arky (gulp!) and stumbled into zany adventures. To a reader today, it would seem to be a delightful mash-up of the Jetson’s and classic Archie. But the incredible part is that Jetta  pre-dated both of them!

More Jetta Raye Is On The Way

The good news is that there’s new Jetta Raye on the way. I caught up with the very creative Jeff Schultz and he told me all about it. Continue reading “With Further Ado #99: Jetta, Jeff and the Entrepreneurial Project that Turned Into An Artists’ Party”

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: Maybe Someday by A Wave Blue World

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: Maybe Someday by A Wave Blue World

Hey folks. It’s that time again. It’s time to tell you a about a Kickstarter campaign that you should be backing. We search the current Kickstarter campaigns, and when we find one we feels needs a little boost, we let you know about it.

The project we are spotlighting is Maybe Someday: Stories of Promise, Visions of Hope by A Wave Blue World. It is a comic anthology full of inspiring, forward-looking stories for tomorrow.

 

 

The campaign description states:

MAYBE SOMEDAY: STORIES OF PROMISE, VISIONS OF HOPE is a full-color anthology featuring over 25 inspiring stories about a brighter future. It is also the sequel to the New York Times featured and Ringo Award Nominated anthology, ALL WE EVER WANTED.

Like its predecessor, MAYBE SOMEDAY features stories full of hope. Instead of focusing on dystopian fiction, these stories help show the path forward to a better world. It is edited by Matt Miner, Eric Palicki & Tyler Chin-Tanner and published by A Wave Blue World.

As we were already fans of All We Ever Wanted and the publisher’s other anthologies, including Dead Beats, we wanted to do what we could to support this project we reached out to the editors Tyler Chin-Tanner, Eric Palicki, and Matt Miner to get some more info on this book.


Pop Culture Squad: What about the current state of the world makes this the right time for an anthology like this?

Matt:  If I could gesticulate wildly to EVERYTHING, maybe?  For decades we fantasized about the post apocalyptic and authoritarian worlds, because they make for fun stories – but we’re starting to really live in that scary future that used to be the thing of movies, and for some folks it’s never been that great.  I think a little positivity and hope is a much needed thing right now.

Eric: I’m fond of a turn of phrase Matt used to describe the mission statement of our first volume, ALL WE EVER WANTED. Our goal was to tell science fiction stories that were “less Mad Max, more Star Trek.” Now, I look out my front door and I see a world practically on fire, and people not too far removed from Immortan Joe in positions of power. We don’t need to dramatize the dystopia we’re already living in, which makes now the perfect time to start thinking less about what the present is and more about what the future could be. Continue reading “Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: Maybe Someday by A Wave Blue World”

With Further Ado #97: What is Graham Nolan up to?

With Further Ado #97: What is Graham Nolan up to?

Back in my college days, I dated this intoxicatingly beautiful blonde who went to school at Buffalo State College. One time, when I was visiting her, it was during a vicious snowstorm.  It was nothing new for Buffalo, but I was astounded. There was so much snow.  In fact, I still remember the local kids throwing snowballs at my bus as it rolled into town. The amazing part was that the kids were throwing down at the bus. The snow along the roads was heaped so high that it was higher than the bus!

Comics creator Graham Nolan had a similar cold-weather experience in Buffalo, but the difference is that it sparked his uber-creative mind, and he has created a new comic from his wintery experience.  The Chenoo is his newest project. The backstory is fascinating. Nolan’s approach to business is ambitious, and I’m betting comic itself will be a pretty good read too.

A Hidden Entrepreneur

One of the courses I teach at Ithaca College is called Hidden Entrepreneurs. The basic premise is that not every entrepreneur is like ‘that guy’ who shows up in front of the sharks on TV’s Shark Tank. Continue reading “With Further Ado #97: What is Graham Nolan up to?”

Creators are Caring for Comic Shops

With the mass chaos and uncertainty that the physical comic book industry is in as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis, comic book writers and artists are finding unique ways to try to help comic shops. As we have detailed earlier, comic professionals are also affected by this pandemic in real financial terms. As their income streams dry up and “pencils down” orders are given, the community searches for ways to survive.

We are confident that the medium of sequential art will not go away, but it may emerge from this crisis altered. Will it be for the better? It is impossible to tell. In the meantime, the community is trying to support each other.

Today, we want to highlight some of the innovative efforts to support both creative talent and comic shops.

Love and Capes Returns

We told you in an interview earlier that cartoonist Thom Zahler has been working on the new Love and Capes: The Family Way series, and selling small print run single-issues at conventions. IDW will be collecting and printing a Trade Paperback this summer, but with all conventions on hold, Thom came up with an inventive way to get the story and get new inventory into the hands of comic shops that are still open in whatever form.

He is offering a way for comic shops to order the individual issues directly from him, and is, even, offering a way for the issue covers to be customized. Comic Shops can get all the details and links to the order forms on Zahler’s website. Orders are being taken until Friday 4/17 at Noon!!

Fans can reach out to their Local Comic Shops and encourage them to order the new content.

#Creators4Comics

An event is going over in the Twitterverse. Over a hundred comic creatives are auctioning off artwork, books, and experiences through the #Creators4Comics. The auctions will end on Monday 4/20. The funds raised will be donated to The Book Industry Charitable Foundation, an organization that supports independent booksellers, including comic shops. Continue reading “Creators are Caring for Comic Shops”

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: The Middle Age: Volume 2 – Hardcover Collection

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: The Middle Age: Volume 2 – Hardcover Collection

Hey folks. It’s that time again. If it’s Friday, it must be time to tell you a about a Kickstarter that you should be backing. We search the current Kickstarter campaigns, and when we find one we feels needs a little boost, we let you know about it.

This week we are spotlighting The Middle Age: Volume 2 – Hardcover Collection.

Continue reading “Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: The Middle Age: Volume 2 – Hardcover Collection”

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: “What Fresh Hell Is This?” 9 Levels of Studio Hell!

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: “What Fresh Hell Is This?” 9 Levels of Studio Hell!

Hey folks. It’s that time again. We search the current Kickstarter campaigns, and when we find one we feels needs a little boost, we let you know about it.

This week we are spotlighting What Fresh Hell Is This!. It is a comic anthology collection that will be published in digital and traditional print formats.

Continue reading “Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: “What Fresh Hell Is This?” 9 Levels of Studio Hell!”

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: DEATH TRAP (Interview with Matt Miner AND Laura Palmer)

Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: DEATH TRAP (Interview with Matt Miner AND Laura Palmer)

This is a special edition of our Kickstarter boost posts. We were able to speak with the writer of the latest campaign and the musician behind the video theme. This is the perfect combination of what we are about here at Pop Culture Squad.

This week we are spotlighting Death Trap. It is a comic story that will be released digitally in four individual issues and then printed in a collected edition.

What is Death Trap?

According to the Kickstarter campaign page:

Death Trap is the story of a young woman named Ollie who grew up in the Strongin Circus crime family, surrounded by sideshow freaks and weird clowns and a huge albino dancing bear named Wojtek.  Her Dad’s killed by a rival crime family at Davenport Amusements, and ends up haunting his old Mercury Cougar muscle car.  So Ollie and her dad’s ghost team up for some sweet, sweet, revenge.

It sounds super cool and the various reward tiers are full of excellent material. We are stoked to see this project get funded.  At three days into the campaign, they are at about 20% of their goal.

Continue reading “Kickstarter You Should Be Backing: DEATH TRAP (Interview with Matt Miner AND Laura Palmer)”