Chekhov’s Gun

Posted on May 24th, 2014


Sometimes I get an urge to tell a joke so terrible and obvious that I just HAVE to get it out of my system before it becomes a corrupting influence. This is one of those occasions. I make no apologies.

Click here or on the picture above to see it.

The Right Image

Posted on May 10th, 2014


As a fan of cheap, multi-platform video games, I’ve been aware of Humble Bundle for quite some time and have also benefited from their forays into other media, such as ebooks and comedy albums. Right now, they’ve got a special Image bundle going on, allowing you to pick up such great books as Saga and East of West for a fraction of the usual cost, with the money going to the Comic Book Legal Defence Fund. It’s a great deal that’s worth checking out, and it also feels incredibly telling to me that Image should be the company to distribute their work like this.

The whole point of the creation of Image was to be a creator-first company, founded by men who were fed up of being put upon by the mainstream comics system. Most of those early comics weren’t particularly good, mainly because they were so derivative of the mainstream superhero fare that they had left behind, but as soon as they started to diversify their range more, their comics increased in quality. These days, they have a fantastic portfolio of great stuff. From The Nightly News to I Kill Giants to Three to Sex Criminals, there’s something for everyone, which probably explains why they’ve massively expanded as a commercial force.

It also seems like Image has become the default place for creators to go for mature, creator-owned work. Marvel have never really gone in for that (Icon feels like a reluctant imprint at best) but it’s the decline of Vertigo that seems to have benefited Image the most. Years ago, Brian K. Vaughan may have tried Saga out at Vertigo, but with the rise of Image as a commercial power, not to mention with DC seemingly getting more stringent in their creator contracts, going to the place where you can be most free must be incredibly desirable.

But as well as being good for creators, they’re good for readers too. They sell first volumes of their series at discounted rates, enticing in impulse buyers.They’ve pioneered selling DRM-free digital comics on their own website in basic proprietary-free formats like PDF and CBR at reasonable prices, and also frequently offering these in sales. They also day-and-date new books digitally. They’re open to new avenues of readership, and  it seems that they also realise that part of bringing in new readers is not being a dickhead and making life difficult for the customer.

Image taking part in the Humble Bundle shows a confidence, both in themselves and in their audience. They know that there’s also a great deal of quality in they books that they are offering. They also know that offering these books at a (very) cheap price will no doubt entice some people who may not have looked at these books otherwise. They also know that getting involved with Humble Bundle and the CBLDF is just straight up good PR. But they also know that offering purchasing opportunities like this to fans makes them a more desirable company, because in a digital environment where media companies want to make lives difficult for their customers, offering opportunities like this is going to lead to good vibes between customers and company.

Anyway, check out the bundle. It’s got some awesome stuff in it.

What’s This?

Posted on May 6th, 2014


Could it be the inked first panel of the next series I’m working on? You know, it might just be.

But what does it mean? Well, I can’t tell you yet. I have to finish drawing (and colouring) the thing first.

Hopefully it’ll be turning up around the middle of next month (I mean, I have drawn more than the first panel already). I may even say what it’s called and what it’s about nearer the time.