Out Now: Darth Vader #20

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Start of a new arc in an over-sized issue. END OF GAMES is basically where everything goes climatic. This issue has a tight focus, and features some of my favourite scenes of drama in the entire run, so I hope you enjoy them as much as I did writing them. Plus, a back up story about BeeTee and 000 which explores their origins a little, with the usual helping of murder. 

If you want to know more, I did a long interview here.

It’s available from your local comic shop or digitally. Preview here.

Writer Notes: The Wicked + the Divine 19

Spoilers, obv.

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Out: Cinema Purgatorio #1 and The Wicked + the Divine #19

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New book time! 

When Alan Moore asks you if you want to be part of an anthology, you say yes. In my case, you say “Yes”  and contribute a story that is basically R-rated Pokemon in the style of The Fast and the Furious, in a Mad Max universe.

It’s also a device for me to talk about videogames, in the broadest sense. I hope it works for those who are complete obsessives of the form and those who know absolutely nothing. It starts iconic and light, and then builds to something which I’m still not exactly sure about. It’s its own world, that just happens to map onto a cultural history of the art form I spent the majority of my adult life writing about.

Primarily though? It’s funny. I hope you like it.

Oh – here’s a big interview about it, which talks a lot more about it, as well as capturing some of the tone of the book.

In passing – Ignacio Calero is a force of nature, and I think people are going to flip over him.

You can buy it from your local retailer, or via Comixology or DRM free from Comics Cavalcade.

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And Rising Action continues over in WicDIv, where I’m sure everyone just talks reasonably and talks it out. My proudest element is having a scene set in a south London fried chicken place, which is apex Write What You Know. Lots of fun stuff, I think. Hope you enjoy it.

(Plus – that Kris Anka cover, right?)

You can get it from your local comic shop, or digitally either from Comixology or direct from Image. The actual Preview is here.

Out: The Wicked + the Divine 18, the WicDiv Hardback, Darth Vader 19 and Mercury Heat 9

I’ve been travelling recently, so haven’t been updating as much. I’ve basically locked the workblog down in a way which makes it really hard to update for security reasons. However, as this is basically more of a JUST THE FACTS sort of place, I figure that’s fine. That said, some big books have come out for you to nose at…

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Once more, we return.

After our hiatus, we kick off RISING ACTION. we’re all back. The issue is designed basically as a clean jumping on point for those who wish to dabble (or those who wish to give the book another spin). It’s also designed to be just the most enormous rock and roll thing we’ve ever done. If something can explode, it will explode. When working it out, my style sheet is basically “Taylor Swift’s Bad Blood video for 5 issues.” After the blue period, I think it will prove a necessary catharsis. You should enjoy it. “Enjoy” remains the most loaded word in the WicDiv lexicon, of course.

(Here’s a new interview over at the Daily Dot where I write more)

I only realised after the majority of the hyping was done that we should have just described it as a WICDIV CIVIL WAR. I never said I was smart.

You can get it from your local comic shop, or digitally either from Comixology or direct from Image.  We did a special trailer for the issue you can read here, and the actual Preview is here.

Hope you enjoy it. Good to be back.

Yes, it’s the hardback of the first 11 issues of WicDiv. This 400 page over-sized tome includes everything in the first two trades, plus a bunch of extra material – primarily my 36,000 or so words of writer notes. 

And most importantly, shiny on the cover. SHINY ON THE COVER. WE HAVE THE SHINY. PRECIOUS, MY PRECIOUS, etc.

It’s also available on Comixology.

Here’s the end of our THE SHU-TORUN WAR arc, where all the plots come to a climax and we send things hurtling towards the next arc. It’s a crammed one, certainly. 

It’s available from your local comic shop or digitally. Preview here.

Approaching the mid-way point in this, where we continue to have a lot of silly Sci-fi action fun. I especially enjoyed the last splash page.

Available at your local shop or digitally.

Digital Comic Sale

There’s a digital sale going on of all of our stuff. If you want to catch up on WicDiv before jumping aboard 18, or grab all of Phonogram or… well, who am, I to tell you how to devour your comics? DEVOUR THEM ANY WAY YOU WISH.

In short: digital comics, with about 50% off. All of WicDiv so far for $15! All of Phonogram for $18! And try out Jamie’s own Suburban glamour for four dollars.

You can get from Comixology here or Image directly here.

End on the 14th. CONSUME CONSUMERS!

Out Now: Mercury Heat TPB

The Mercury Heat TPB is out today, which collects the first six issues and the FCBD issue of the series. Mercury Heat is, of all the books I’ve been doing, the one that’s most under the radar. Which is a little odd as “Sci Fi action police series set on Mercury” isn’t exactly me at my most pretentious.

Mercury Heat came from around 2008, when William and I were first talking Uber. He wanted a female-lead action story. Whatever genre you like. Go play.

I came up with a semi-hard sci-fi piece of ultraviolent satire, in the mode of 2000AD and Warren Ellis’ early-00s action-movie-on-paper with a splash of overthought out World Building. If it came out when I wrote it (in 2010) it would have been worryingly prescient, I fear, but even now you get to see the horror of a world where all jobs are basically ran by a glorified Uber app.

(As in, the taxi series. Not my other Avatar comic.)

I talk about it a bunch more here, and the FCBD book is also available to read online for free which includes a lot of yabber about the world-building and everything else.

You can get it via your local comic shop or whatever bookseller is your choice.

Out Now: Mercury Heat #8 and Darth Vader #17

And it’s a big sci-fi week, it seems.

MERCURY HEAT #8 is the second part of the second arc, and very much where we dive head first into the situation we set up last time. It’s (er) an unannounced crossover with another Avatar comic, except clearly not exactly that simple. How we walk the line between the content of that book and our one is where a lot of the fun is. There’s stuff in this issue which makes me laugh, just because how hilariously Nahuel has rendered it. Hope you like it. I suspect this is the most fun I had with an issue last year, in terms of writing.

Available at your local shop or digitally.

The second issue of Darth Vader’s THE SHU-TORUM WAR drops, where Vader deals with the fallout from his trying to crush pesky rebels beneath the Imperial Jackboot.

It’s available from your local comic shop or digitally. Preview here.

London Film & Comic Con

It’s London Film & Comic Con this weekend, and I’m popping along for a while.

Here’s my schedule…

SATURDAY 27th FEBRUARY

12-2pm: At Table.
3-5pm: At Table

SUNDAY 28th FEBRUARY

11pm: Writing for Star Wars panel: John Ostrander, John Wagner and me.
12:30 – 2pm: At Table.

Hopefully see some folks around.

Out: Siege TPB

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Steve Morris talked a little about it over at Comics Alliance this week.

It’s essentially a distillation of everything Kieron Gillen’s ever worked on at Marvel, blended up with a bunch of hallucinogenic items leftover from the third volume of Phonogram. Sounds interesting, right?

Which sounds about right.

I keep on meaning to make writer notes on this – I’ve started on doing some for Immaterial Girl, but Siege has lagged behind. There was a bunch of things I was playing with, which I suspect may be fun to talk about. Or maybe really annoying. Possibly both.

I think it’s a giggle, in my particular mode. It’s a swansong to my time with the Marvel Universe, consisting of a series of alternate takes on stories I never got to tell, and is a big massive metaphor of what it was like working in the MU. It features some of the worst puns I’ve ever written and an ending which made me tear up when writing it.

It’s been fun. Hopefully Siege shows that.

Siege is also available on Comixology.

Modded

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I wrote a little overview of MODDED over at Bleeding Cool, which is very much me in bumbling ramble mode. It also features an unfortunate metaphor involving a jar of wasps and a penis (mine). Probably best to read it all there, but I’ll pull out a few random quotes to go along with the art from the preview.

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“Modded is R-rated Pokemon in the style of the Fast & The Furious in a Mad Max universe. It’s written by me. I’m the Eisner-Award losing writer of various bits and pieces.

Like the art? Of course you do. Ig‘s a monster. You’re all going to fall in love with him. He’s got that level of inspired brutality and unleashed invention that a project like Modded demands. The creative process basically goes “Dude! I need a monster!” and Ig sends me a monster and I go “Dude! That’s a fucking monster!” and Ig gives me the thumbs up, and then we hold each other for a while.

Well, that’s all you need to know, right? It’s in Cinema Purgatorio, out soon, buy it.

Byeeeee!”

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It’s also a chance to play in a form I’ve got enormous fondness for which I’ve never really had a chance to actually do – namely, the serial short-form comic. I suspect I’ve written more short-form work than most writers who’ve worked recently in the American superhero-mainstream. While I ran a mile from the once-traditional British Writer2000AD Future Shock training programme, my own dirty black and white photocopied zines used the form exclusively. I’ve grabbed the chance to do any short comics I can, most regularly in the back of the single issues of Phonogram. But to do a pop, dirty, regular comic? Never. Which means I desperately want to do it. In writing terms, I’m the guy in the bar who ends up inserting a delicate part of their anatomy in a jar full of wasps just because they’ve never tried it before, and you’ve got to try everything once, right, right?

So Alan Moore comes up and offers me a jar full of wasps? You better believe my cock is going in.

Metaphorically.

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Modded is set in a world which fundamentally ended 37 years ago, with the Etheric Invasion which destroyed the world (aka the arrival of Space Invaders). Are you the sort of person who just went “Space-Invaders? What about Pong?” Well, I suspect this is the book for you, because the difference between Pong’s impact and Space-Invader’s impact is exactly the sort of thing we touch on. And hey, don’t stop at Pong. Go to Space Wars. Go to Turing’s first chess program. Go to HG Wells with his Little Wars. Go to Kriegspiel. Go to the first person who sat down, carved symbol on a bit of bone and realised you could do probably have some fun with these “dice” things…

I suspect many people in comics don’t know about my awful prehistory. For a very long time, I used to be a game critic. I worked for everyone, won awards and did literally anything a critic could do. I was moderately infamous, to a level where my name still turns up in textbooks. A lot of people hated me, which was a pretty good training level for dealing with writing comics. Point being: I love games, I love what games can do and I’ve missed having a place to publicly show that. And like anyone who really loves something, I understand the ambivalent and complicated feelings that should provoke. Don’t expect anything as comfort-food gee-aren’t-we-all-so-amazing-for-having-played-D&D as READY PLAYER ONE. I’ve been away for five years. I’ve been thinking.

This is mainly expressed in the form of jokes, because life is too short and I want to have some fun with you guys.

MODDED is fun. Is “fun” still a scarlet letter in comic? I don’t think so, but even if it was, MODDED isn’t that kind of fun. Most Fun books seem to be the all-ages stuff parents would buy for their kids. Modded is the sort of Fun book that kids buy and hide from their parents. It is, appropriately for Cinema Purgatorio, illicit.

That’ll do. Lots more over on Bleeding Cool.

MODDED is one strip in the forthcoming Cinema Purgatorio, which is a black and white anthology by Alan Moore, Kevin O’Neill, Garth Ennis, Raulo Caceres, Max Brooks, Michael DiPascale, Christos Gage and Gabriel Andrade.

Kickstarter is ongoing for those of you who like collectible malarkies. Keep an eye open for it come release. I’ll let you know when you can pre-order it.