Metal. Monsters. Mayhem.

Graphic novels / comic books

Thunder God Thursday: Thor hits the funnybooks

Artist Oliver Coipel revamped Thor’s look for Marvel Comic’s reboot of the series, written by J. Michael Straczynski, in 2007.

Author’s note: a few things have changed since this was written, namely the resurrection of Thor by Marvel Comics in the acclaimed run on the new title by J. Michael Straczynski, alluded to in the comments from Tom Brevoort below. Also, there were new incarnations of Norse myths in independent comics, such as Grant Gould’s The Wolves of Odin.

And one other thing, what was that?  Oh yeah, a blockbuster movie based on Marvel Comics’ Thor, starring Chris Hemsworth as the titular thunder god, who returns to the big screen as the big guy in The Avengers.  If you want to see how the god of thunder went from medieval god to modern superman, read on…

The Modern Edda: Norse myths in comics

Though their names leap out at us from the days of the week, Norse gods were relatively obscure until recently. Opera figures of Siegfried and Brunnhild were one tentative step into this pagan world, but it took another form of entertainment to plunge a new generation into the old myths: comic books.

To read more, click here.


She did it — now she needs to hang on

Well, many of us predicted it: Rachel Deering managed to get to $20,000 in pledges for her Kickstarter campaign to fund the remaining five issues of her “lesbian werewolf epic,” Anathema.  A huge and hearty congratulations to her.

Now comes the hard part.  I don’t mean the writing, lettering and publishing, which Rachel will undertake (though the publishing duties have now been picked up by Comix Tribe — a huge coup for Rachel).  No, the challenge now is to ensure the total stays above that mark until the campaign closes on April 30. If any pledges are reduced, bringing the total below $20,000, none of the money is collected.

That’s already happened once — for a very understandable reason. One prospective donor who had pledged $1,000 reduced it to $45 upon learning he would soon have a baby to support. Great news for the donor, on which Rachel and other pledgers offered congratulations; but a snag in the fundraising all the same.

To read more, click here.


If you think comic books are expensive, try publishing one

Creating your own comic book series can be an all-or-nothing endeavour. Just ask Rachel Deering, the woman behind Anathema.
Telling the story of Mercy Barlowe, a woman whose lover, Sarah, is burnt at the stake for being a lesbian, the first issue shows us how Mercy seeks out supernatural help to rescue Sarah’s soul from a sinister cult. (You can read the As You Were interview with Rachel on her career and her own experience with homophobia here.)

To read more, click here.


Norse code

ONE of the reasons Stan Lee and Jack Kirby were able to cast ancient Norse gods as modern comic-book superheroes was that they were comparatively unknown, Richard Wagner and the names of our weekdays notwithstanding. Here, then, are a few terms so you can tell your Asgard from a Hel in the ground.

To read more, click here.


Werewolf Wednesday: Grant Gould’s The Wolves of Odin

I had the opportunity to interview comic book writer and artist Grant Gould a few years ago about his labour of love, The Wolves of Odin.  Since then, he’s continued it as a webcomic and worked on a sequel volume, Marauders of Midgard.  I thought I’d post this 2009 interview ahead of Grant’s upcoming appearance at C2E2, the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo.

Grant will be in Artist Alley at table H9, where he will have his artwork for sale. He’ll also be doing custom sketches during the show, so if you’re interested, visit him at his table and sign up early, as spots may fill up fast. (By the way, also attending is last week’s Werewolf Wednesday interviewee, Rachel Deering. Visit her at booth 719.)

In the meantime, if you haven’t read The Wolves of Odin, here’s what you need to know: Vikings. Werewolves. It’s all good.

To read more, click here.


Werewolf Wednesday: Rachel Deering’s Anathema

Welcome to a new feature here at As You Were: Werewolf Wednesday. In which we reserve a day for that greatest of monsters, often overlooked thanks to shambling zombies and flawless vampires. Our first feature in the series is with independent comic book writer and letterer Rachel Deering.

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If you’re tired of garden-variety werewolves, comic creator Rachel Deering has a new one for you: a lesbian shapeshifter out for revenge against religious zealots and fighting members of a sinister cult for her lover’s soul.

Rachel, 29, was born and raised in a small town in northeastern Kentucky. Her passion for comics took root at age seven, when one of her uncles gave her his old collection, and horror was front and centre. It was love at first sight.

“It wasn’t a very large collection, maybe ten or twelve magazines,” she says, “but they were all quality.” Among the titles were genre staples such as Heavy Metal, Creepy, and Tales from the Crypt.

“Not exactly light reading, especially for one so young as me. I read every single issue until the pages were falling apart.”

To read more, click here.


Zombies, werewolves and writing, oh my!

Things have been quiet here at As You Were this week, but that’s because I’ve been working on two interviews to bring you, both with writers of new monster tales.

To read more, click here.