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Gordon McAlpin

Comix Talk for Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I think we'll be doing the rolling blog post today - check back often (or at least when I tweet "done!")

Breathers by Justin Madson is a great sci-fi story.  I've been buying the issues and I still will probably get the complete volume now that it's out.

NEWSPAPERTRON READY: I saw that and GoComics announced that they are merging their sites on June 1, 2011.  On that date, will survive and I guess will go away?  Does that really make sense? Isn't the most natural URL to keep?

KNOW YOUR HISTORY: For a guy who reviews webcomics, El Santo also makes a good comics historian.  This time he gives a history lesson on Green Lantern (last time it was Red Tornado).

CATALOG OF BROAD SHOULDERS: Gordon McAlpin got some great reviews for his first print collection of his webcomic Multiplex, including from yours truly.  Good news for Gordon -- the book is getting its first listing in the June edition of Diamond Comics PREVIEWS catalog AND it's a Staff Pick.  Hopefully that will lead to more folks checking it out.

Enjoy The Book: Multiplex In Print

Gordon McAlpin is the creator of Multiplex, a webcomic about the staff at a neighborhood theater.  I first encountered McAlpin's work when he was creating the short nonfiction comic pieces under the banner of Stripped Books.  Those works, although perhaps dated now were a clue that McAlpin had ambitions to create quality work.  So I was a reader of Multiplex from the beginning (ComixTalk has interview McAlpin twice, once in 2006 and once in 2008).  McAlpin recently put out a book collecting the first year of the webcomic, titled Multiplex: Enjoy Your Show: Book One.

Thursday Already?

It is just one of those weeks - next week looks like it might be a lost cause too.  Anyone want a guest blogging spot next week? Have your computer talk to my computer.

I am going to blog about your insolence!

In the meantime I wanted to plug Gordon McAlpin's Multiplex book Enjoy Your Show which definitely deserves a full review (hopefully soon!).  When the comic started I mistook it for another comic about movies when all along it's an epic tale about people who work at a movie theater (many of whom love movies).  This is a collection of the first year -- some of the art definitely looks like it, but the writing and pacing is already there.  A really well done production of a book too. And look Bryan Lee O'Malley gave it a plug -- "Multiplex perfectly portrays the real foibles and friendships of a lousy job with a couple of perks. Also, it looks round and colorful and sweet, like delicious candy. I recommend reading Multiplex over getting an actual job."

One more note -- former ComixTalk contributor Derik Badman has a new column up at the Hooded Utilitarian called Permanent Ink.  Please go check it out - Derik is a very engaging writer who brings thoughtful, knowledgeable criticism to comics.


The title of this post is slightly off. Webcomic drama as we used to know it never really went away. In fact, it’s been growing behind the walls, not daring to spread out. There may not be large message board battles like the time that one guy took on that other guy back in Ought Five, but the seething hatred in the community still least for two well-know creators.

Tom Brazelton, the unassuming Iowan creator of Theater Hopper, and gentle Gordon McAlpin of Multiplex fame, have been battling behind the scenes for years. What? That’s impossible? NO. THAT IS AN INCORRECT ASSERTION.

Muliplex Book Giveaway Contest

 Enjoy Your Show by Gordon McAlpin

One of my current favorite comics is holding a contest.  Gordon McAlpin's new Multiplex book, "Enjoy Your Show" looks great.  He's giving away 5 copies - entries are due by September 22, 2010.  Read the giveaway details at Goodreads and enter to win (The giveaway is valid for Goodreads users in the US and Canada only).

Comix Talk for Friday, July 09, 2010

C'mon weekend!  Okay this first story struck me as a great project.  Jennifer Ouellette writes about a collective effort to create a webcomic telling the amazing story of 20-something Dutch primary school teacher, Hanny van Arkel, who discovered a strange blue/green smudge on an image of what was otherwise a standard spiral galaxy now referred to as "Hanny's Voorwerp."  The full comic will be released at Dragon-Con in Atlanta, Georgia, this fall.

MILESTONES: Wow, it's the FIFTH anniversary of Gordon McAlpin's Multiplex.  Congrats!  If you're not reading this smart comic about the crew working at a local multiplex definitely check it out.  A wonderful combination of character-driven and movie culture comedy.

iWEBCOMICS: Lauren Davis notes the release of a new version of the controversial webcomic app from Dale Zak. Noted without comment from me today as this is a topic that requires more time than I have this morning.

THE MORE YOU KNOW: Yesterday we noted Paul Bryant Johnson gave a class at a summer webcomics camp.  Today he posted online his presentation on "Finding the Balance Between Words, Pictures and Time in Making Comics."



  • Peter Conrad writes "I took down last year because of some hackers who used the site for nefarious purposes. I've relaunched it with way more content, and I'm uploading stuff every week now!"  Peter is another long-time webcomic creator who I'll always remember for creating Zeenster - an app to read comics on the Palm OS.
  • Tommie Kelly writes "I did the webcomics Road Crew and From Rags To Rockstars.  I have a new webcomic... There are about 70 strips online at the time of emailing and it updates five times a week. Mon to Fri...  It's called Something Wonderful and it deals with religion, beliefs, new age, spirituality and Mac owners among other things."
  • Stephanie O'Donnell writes "I'm Stephanie O'Donnell, artist for the webcomic Perfect Agent.  It is written by Greg Carter (creator of Abandon and Love Is In The Blood). It started last year and we're now 2 full stories in."


  • Hey it's San Diego Comicon time again -- FLEEN is all over getting you your guide to webcomic booths so be sure to check in there before you go!
  • Also in new webcomic convention on the block news, Intervention added award winning Sci-Fi author (and soon to be Webcomic author) Ben Bova to its inaugural lineup. Bova, Rob Balder, and Bill Holbrook will be debuting their new online webcomic collaboration at Intervention called Duel in the Somme.

Comix Talk from the Airport

I'm leaving on a jetplane... actually I know when I'll be back again which is why posting might be light until the end of the month.  Although I am led to believe they have a series of tubes in Asia too so I'm counting on that.

BUSINESS  I guess the big news over the weekend was the by-now-well-covered announcement from DC that it won't be holding monthly contests anymore at its Zuda property. I generally am suspicious of contests but on the other hand experimentation is necessary.  So hopefully we´ve all learned a bit from Zuda part 1 and DC will try something else interesting for Zuda part 2.

INTERVIEWS  Liberally borrowing from Brigid´s Paperless Comics because this is a great batch of interviews she linked to from TGT Webcomics with creators at C2E2 includingGordon McAlpin (Multiplex), Ed (Ed Contradictory), Michael A. Kandalaft (That Monkey Tune), Tony and Sarah (The Angry Penguin), Josep (Space Punks!), Joe and Phil (Digital Pimp), Brad Guigar (Evil, Inc.), Kris Straub (Starslip), and Scott Kurtz, (PvP).

FROM THE MAILBAG  Rina Piccolo writes to announce her new webcomic Velia, Dear.  The comic is about a young woman named Velia who leaves the inner city to take care of her aging Italian mother.  There´s already a few strips up in the archives and it´s a great premise and Piccolo is already a pro and shows it in this new project.

Comix Talk for Monday, March 29, 2010

So here's a good question worth a think. Salon just let Reuben Bolling know it's canceling it's contract for Tom The Dancing Bug (which apparently means This Modern World is the last comic at Salon?)  Tom the Dancing Bug is a smart, funny comic and the question now is -- what's the business plan for Bolling going forward?  Seriously, if there's one cartoonist who I would volunteer time to help brainstorm and execute a new business model for, he'd be on the short list. 

Penny Arcade - Penny Arcade Expo: Hope PAX East was awesome.  I'll jealously read the reports trickling in today as attendees tell their tales of brushing against the PA crew and breaking into spontaneous nerdcore beatboxing in the hallways.  In honor of the recent PAX East here's a link to Geekosystem's Top 10 Most Obscure PA characters.

Also, the Penny Arcade crew announced they would not be making a third installment in their videogames series but you can still read Macgasm's refresher review of the first two episodes of On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness here.

OTHER CONVENTIONS: In other con news, I'm still trying to make sure my schedule allows me to attend, but it looks like Rob Balder of Erfworld will definitely be there.  Where? At Intervention of course. And don't forget the Comics Events calendar for dates for comic conventions and other events

Milestones: Gordon McAlpin finished Book Four of his Multiplex webcomic.  This comic has gotten better and better -- McAlpin does the character-driven material as well as the movie-driven stuff.

REVIEWS: El Santo reviews Evan Dahm's Rice Boy - it's another example of why El Santo is one of the best reviewers in comics right now.  (My review of Rice Boy is here.)

INTERVIEWS: Sequential Tart has an interview with Rene Engstrom, creator of the completed webcomic Anders Loves Maria.

Opinion: I'd rather have Tatsuya Ishida on the editorial pages than most working editorial cartoonists.  Ishida is at least as opinionated as 3/4 of them and his art runs laps (MULTIPLE FREAKIN' LAPS) over all of them. 

iWEBCOMICS: Johana Draper Carlson talks about Alex de Campi’s Valentine comic, particularly the effort de Campi's making to bring it to multiple platforms simultaneously.

AROUND THE BLOGS: Last week, Howard Tayler had a great post on ideas and their value in the world - worth reading still.  And Tom Spurgeon lists the webcomics suggested by readers of his site, The Comics Reporter.  Not a bad list...

THE MAILBAG: Jason Whitley wrote to alert us to the return of Sea Urchins, which apparently used to be a newspaper-only comic (there's a book collection of these available here).  The comic is by Whitley and Scott Eckelaert, but so far there's not much in the way of comics up on the website.

NOT WEBCOMICS: I've still only read one Scott Pilgrim book, but the trailer for the movie looks like great fun.  

Comix Talk for Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Freak Angels by Warren Ellis and Paul Duffield

It's day 4 of Snowapalooza in Washington DC.  I consider this a trial run for if I ever decided to move to Canada and so far... I don't think I'd make it.  But being snow-bound has been great for catching up on comics.  I also wanted to flag a few features at ComixTalk -- the calendar of comic events is available here, but you can also add it a number of other calendar programs and I'm always interested in co-maintainers.  In fact I'd be very happy to see other blogs and sites join me in maintaining it and embedding it on their sites too. I also set up a hub page for the four webcomic titles that have run at ComixTalk over its 8 year history - click to discover work from Ryan Estrada, Kris Straub and Bryant Paul Johnson.

Awards:  The Webcomics List, a hybrid tracking, popularity and news site for webcomics had a forum-organized awards program this year.  It felt a lot like the old WCCAs. This Week in Webcomics covers the resultsGunnerkrigg Court won the nod for Best Comic and Moon Town won for Best New Comic.  Coyote has a review of Moon Town here.

iWebcomics: So I'm kind of already burnt out on the iPad hype.  I want to wait until the thing is available to think more about it.  Others are though: Erik Larsen has an essay about it and Gizmodo salivated over how comics will look on the tablet device.

Dead Trees: Tyler Page talks numbers, costs and quality for taking the Print-On-Demand route for volume 2 of his Nothing Better webcomic.  And starting this week, for a couple of months, Gordon McAlpin is working full time on Multiplex — and, the Multiplex: Book 1 print collection.  This is all due to the funding he raised for the book through a Kickstarter drive.


  • The recent rock concert contest storyline at Ornery Boy has been great - both funny and Michael Lalonde has done an awesome job with animating key panels.  If you're going to do a flash comic than use it!  Ornery Boy makes great use of Flash's capabilities.
  • It's a been awhile since I've linked to Freak AngelsThings are happening again in the storyline and although I'm a bit annoyed that after a few years we still don't really understand the full logic of the "package" of the freak angels and their world, it's a hell of a comic.  I'll also just flag again that what Avatar is doing here seems like a pretty good model for a publisher-creator relationship in the webcomic world.  I'm not sure I've seen anyone else quite match it yet.
  • The latest issue of Dark Horse Presents is out with webcomics from Graham Annable and others.

Shout Out To Kickstarter Projects

I've seen a few more efforts to pre-fund comic books by webcomic creators recently and thought I'd search through (a site designed for artists to get commitments from readers towards pre-funding a project) to see if I was missing anything.  Not as much as I thought!  If you're looking for a way to gauge interest in a project and at the same time get commitments to buy seems like a handy way to do it.

Still seeking funding:

Publish Tom Brazelton's Theater Hopper: Year 3
Goal $3500 by December 31st

Publish 2 of Box Brown's comics!
Goal $2500 by January 15th

Kel McDonald's Sorcery 101 Book 1
Goal $7000 by January 31st

Met their stated goals:

Publish Gordon McAlpin's Multiplex Book 1
Goal $7500 by December 12th

Publish Becky Dreistadt's Tigerbuttah
Goal $5000 by January 16th.