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Saturday, Mar 28 2015

Issue #034: Alex de Campi

In Which Our Guest:

Alex de Campi, comic book writer and creator, joins us to talk about comics… 1) he Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire 2) The Kitchen by Ollie Masters (writer) and Ming Doyle (artist) 3) Kill 6 Billion Demons, Space-Mullet!, Sexcastle 4) Moomin comic strip by Tove Janneson 5) Question Time: What’s the most unusual thing you’ve read late 6) What we’re looking forward to next


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Show Notes for Issue #34 of the Comics Squee Podcast


Warning! Warning! Excessive tangents ahead. Comic book writer and creator Alex de Campi is joining us once again. So I hope you’re sitting comfortably, lovely listeners and precious patrons.

This is issue 34 of the Comics Squee podcast. Each show our panelists, masters of the mesmeric trick known as invisibility, discuss the comic books, graphic novels, and general sequential art geekery that excites them.

Our superpowers are tangents and tentacles.

Returning once again to our revolving 4th chair this issue is Alex de Campi. Her latest project is writing Archie versus Predator, plus her latest creator-owned project No Mercy. Alexis’ recent Wonder Woman story in Sensation Comics #7 was much acclaimed. Her other projects span the range from My Little Pony to the Grindhouse horror series. Quite the range. For those of you fans of pulp pamphlet parlay keeping score at home, this is Alex de Campi’s third appearance on The Squee; she joined us back on shows 8 and 18, when she recommended ALL THE THINGS.

In this issue of Comics Squee we have: Finnish whimsy and satire ; a trio of web books ; reflection on ghosts from the past who haunt us; and a tale of 3 wives taking up the family business.

  1. April: The Underwater Welder by Jeff Lemire (starts at 00:02:52.083)

    Podcast-Track-Image-Underwater-WelderThis book is about a man who’s an underwater welder. He’s in his 30’s and about to become a dad. His own father disappeared 20 years ago on Halloween, and he’s been emotionally distant from other people since. One day while he’s welding, underwater, hand has a minor accident. He sees a pocket watch like his father’s and he starts to remember more about what happened with his father’s disappearance.

    The story moves between contemplation, memories, and flash backs. With a variance in art style to represent whether what we’re seeing is ‘real’. The ending is presented in a way that lets you wonder if it really happened or if it’s the product of an oxygen-starved brain.

    Jeff Lemire’s art is lovely. It’s all black and white. The panels are very straightforward, which makes it easy to read and works fine with the story.

    Underwater Welder is more of a cathartic read. April’s looking forward to picking up Lemire’s other comics.

  2. John: The Kitchen by Ollie Masters (writer), Ming Doyle (artist), Jordie Bellaire (colorist) (starts at 00:10:16.917)

    Podcast-Track-Image-The-KitchenKitchen is an 8 issue limited series and John’s really been enjoying it so far. It’s essentially about 3 mob wives whose husbands get sent to jail. One of them decides they have to keep the businesses going until their husbands get back. They start collections, running money, and soon they branch out and diversify. Things get violent as their authority is challenged. And then it turns in another direction when their husbands get out of jail only to find their good little wives have decided they don’t need them anymore.

    This is a fun, well written book. It’s no secret that John is a fan of crime fiction and The Kitchen has been right up his alley.

    The art is nice and the colors are gorgeous. It’s just fabulous over all.

    • 2a) Tangent 1: Toddlers & amp; Tiaras on Pit Bulls (starts at 00:14:57.826)
  3. Alex de Campi: Three Webcomic books(starts at 00:15:35.500)

    Alex pre-planned her tangents in the hope that they would be more concise. She chose three books to talk about, two of which are still free as webcomics. And we managed to get them all out before the return of Princes Thunderfists.

    • Podcast-Track-Image-Kill-6-Billion-Demons

      Kill 6 Billion Demons by unknown creator (starts at 00:15:35.500)

      You can read this webcomic for free at The author’s name is nowhere on this, a bit of a masked creator.

      A barrista gets transported to the crossroads of the worlds where there are vapor angels, demons, gun witches, and all manner of unusual people. The art is gorgeous and the world building is magnificent.

      The hover over/alt text on the images and the posts that go with each comic are all ‘in character’ for the story. Which is unique to webcomics and wonderful.

      The story pacing and world building makes Alex want to rend her garments in grief that she’ll never be able to create something so wonderful.

    • Podcast-Track-Image-Space-Mullet

      Space-Mullet! by Daniel Warren Johnson (starts at 00:20:02.000)

      You can read this webcomic for free at

      The main character is a former marine who quit after something he saw after subduing a riot on a certain planet. He is now a space trucker. With a mullet and a paunch. And a space-ape friend.

      Daniel’s writing and art are tight. There’s a Japanese influence, but the style is his own.

      Space-Mullet! has specific arcs with great closure. Including one that made Alex very weepy.

    • Podcast-Track-Image-Sex-Castle

      Sexcastle by Kyle Starks (starts at 00:23:02.000)

      This was realesed in mid-March by Image. It is a black and white graphic novel, but it’s small – about the same measurements as a paperback book.

      Alex describes Sexcastle as, “The Kurt Russel film that John Carpenter directed in his sleep one night.” It’s very ’80s over-the-top action move about the world’s most dangerous assasin and is like an action movie fever dream.

      Do NOT assume your local comic shop will have it as they either under order or don’t order at all one shot graphic novels by people they’ve never heard of. So GO, demand Sexcastle.

      Daniel’s writing and art are tight. There’s a Japanese influence, but the style is his own.

      Space-Mullet! has specific arcs with great closure. Including one that made Alex very weepy.

    • 3a) Tangent 2: Mullets! In! SPAAACCCEEE!!! (starts at 00:25:39.500)
    • 3b) Tangent 3: Captain Harlock live action/3D movie (starts at 00:26:22.250)
    • 3c) Tangent 4: Rocket Salvage by Yehudi Mercado (writer) and Bachan (artist) (starts at 00:26:49.250)
    • 3d) Tangent 5: Vandroid by Tommy Lee Edwards, Noah Smith, and Dan McDaid (starts at 00:27:33.000)
  4. Chriss: Moomin comic strip by Tove Janneson (starts at 00:02:04.108)

    Podcast-Track-Image-MoominThis classic, whimsical comic strip and characters are huge in Europe and the collected strips are published in America by Fantagraphics.

    Moomin was created by Finnish artist Tove Janneson. And it has that same everyday adventures askew that Pippi Longstocking has.

    The Moomins are hippo sort of characters, and everyone in their world is sort of an animal person. There are human-like characters but they don’t look standard human. Everything is very whimsical and satirical. Moomin and Moominmama just want a quite life in the countryside, dreaming and planting potatoes. But Moominpapa and Snorkmaiden crave adventure and fame.

    The Moomins are popular enough that you should be able to find them in your local library’s collection.

Question Time: What’s the most unusual thing you’ve read lately (starts at 00:38:47.250)


  • Alex de Campi:

    Kill 6 Billion Demons ; the Japanese epic Tale of Genji ; and the Archie Versus Predator title she’s writing.

  • John:

    Colder written by Paul Tobin

  • Chriss:

    The Empty by Jimmie Robinson

  • April:

    Welcome to Forest Island by Bwana Spoons; Very Casual by Michael DeForge

What We’re Looking Forward to Reading Next (starts at 00:56:21.125)


  • Alex de Campi:

    More time to watching more Arrow; picking up Nameless ; catching up on Saga and Lazarus ; the second arc of Wicked + Devine

  • John:

    Conclusion of Mind Management

  • April:

    Max Fraction’s new run on Casanova

  • Chriss:

    Little Nemo: Return to Slumberland #4

Closing (starts at 00:48:54.123)

  • Alex gives you your comics buying schedule (starts at 00:48:54.123)
  • Tangent 6: Toddler attack & Unico manga (starts at 00:50:38.250)

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