Tag: Nelson Blake II

Graphic Interview

This year’s Baltimore Comic Con was an absolute pleasure, as always. Had a great time, and the reception for me, artist Nelson Blake 2nd and Top Cow was very much appreciated. I signed pretty much non-stop when I was at the table, got to catch up with a bunch of friends, and attended the Harvey Awards. Also got to see my nephew, Leif, and his girlfriend, Rachel, whom I hadn’t seen in about four years (they live in Hawaii, but Rachel is doing an internship on Capitol Hill).

I did a few interviews while at the show, including one for XM/Sirius satellite radio, and this video interview with Brett Schenker of the Graphic Policy website. Graphic Policy has been a supporter of my work and of Top Cow’s publishing line, running our previews and some very fair, very well-informed reviews. Check out Graphic Policy at www.graphicpolicy.com



Should’ve brought my sunglasses to the interview. Other than that, I really enjoyed it, as Brett asked a number of intriguing questions, covering topics beyond the standard questions about what I’m working on. Hope you like it.

Cheers,
Ron


Magdalena #2 Preview

I have two books hitting stores this week: Magdalena #2 and the Witchblade Vol. 7 trade paperback. First up, Magdalena, the opening sequence of which you can see by clicking the simply amazing Ryan Sook cover pictured below.

Response to the first issue was pretty overwhelming and extremely gratifying. We got a wealth of positive reviews, and the issue sold out at the distributor level within a week or two of release. Issue #2 picks up pretty much right where we left off, with Patience and her mentor Kristof confronted by a demonic presence on the island of Elba. The rest of the issue takes us inside the Vatican, including a glimpse of a hall that isn’t part of the usual visitor tour.

The art is by the regular team of Nelson Blake the 2nd (pencils), Sal Regla (inks) and Dave McCaig (color). As great as I think issue #1 looked, I’d venture to say issue #2 looks even better, as the artists get a little more used to the book and to each other. We’re just getting started on Magdalena, so I hope you stick with us for the duration.

Cheers,
Ron


Holy day

Magdalena #1 hits stores this week. I think it’s a pretty sweet book, but I’m probably a little biased. So maybe I’ll just leave it at saying Magdalena #1 is a book that I’m proud of, and I hope you pick up a copy. Putting a new title on the stands is always a risk, even more so if it’s not a Big Two title. I’d like to write Magdalena for years, but the only way that happens is if we sell enough copies to justify its existence.

I’ve previously linked to Magdalena preview pages and interviews. With the book debuting today, a few more have gone up.

Here’s a video interview that Sara Lima of Comic Vine conducted with me and artist Nelson Blake 2nd at C2E2.

And a podcast interview with Josh Flanagan of iFanboy:

Early reviews have also started to appear online, and I know a few more are due soon. The first batch:

  1. Multiversity Comics: http://www.multiversitycomics.com/2010/04/advance-review-magdalena-1.html
  2. Comic Addiction: http://www.thecomicaddiction.com/reviews/2010/4/21/magdalena-1.html
  3. Broken Frontier: http://brokenfrontier.com/reviews/p/detail/the-magdalena-1
  4. Cosmic Book News: http://www.cosmicbooknews.com/reviews/magdalena1_review/
  5. Graphic Policy: http://graphicpolicy.com/2010/04/21/review-magdalena-1/
  6. Newsarama: http://www.newsarama.com/comics/Magdalena-1-review-100421.html
  7. Weekly Crisis: http://www.weeklycrisis.com/2010/04/magdalena-1-review.html
  8. Geeks of Doom: http://geeksofdoom.com/2010/04/21/comic-review-the-magdalena-1/
  9. Omnicomic: http://www.omnicomic.com/2010/04/review-magdalena-1.html
  10. Comic Vine : http://www.comicvine.com/news/review-the-magdalena-1/140971/
  11. Pendragon’s Post: http://pendragonspost.blogspot.com/2010/04/comic-review-magdalena-1-top-cow.html
  12. The Weekly Crisis: http://www.weeklycrisis.com/2010/04/comic-book-review-power-rankings-for_22.html
  13. Quarter Bin: http://thequarterbin.com/2010/04/23/magdalena-1-2/
  14. Crave Online : http://www.craveonline.com/entertainment/comics/article/the-magdalena-1-review-100759
  15. Geek Week : http://www.geekweek.com/2010/04/comic-book-author-ron-marz-has-done-something-quite-interesting-with-his-latest-series-for-top-cow-magdalena-marz-has.html
  16. Comic Attack: http://comicattack.net/2010/04/magdalena1/
  17. Gaming Angels: http://www.gamingangels.com/2010/04/guest-review-magdalena-1/
  18. NEW Newsarama again: http://www.newsarama.com/comics/best-shots-comic-reviews-100426.html

I found the Multiversity reviewer’s comparison of Magdalena to Buffy the Vampire Slayer interesting. I expect there are similarities, but as I said on Twitter, I’ve never actually seen an episode of Buffy in my life. I can definitely say there won’t be any romances with vampires in Magdalena. In fact, no vampires at all … at least until issue #7.

Cheers,

Ron


That’s the Chicago way

Yes, that’s a reference to Sean Connery in “The Untouchables.”

I’m headed to the new C2E2 convention in Chicago this weekend, put on by Reed Exhibitions, the same folks who put on the New York Comic Con. C2E2 is being held at McCormick Place on South Lake Shore Drive. I’m looking forward to actually being in Chicago. Wizard’s Chicago convention was/is held in Rosemont, outside the city. Though there are now more hotel and restaurant choices in Rosemont, for a long time attending that show was like being marooned on Comic Island. Pretty much the only other people you encountered were there for the con. Well, except for the year that one of the hotels was also playing host to a Beatles convention, which meant a lot of people sitting in the halls at 3 a.m. playing “Blackbird” on acoustic guitars. Badly.

I only made it into Chicago from Rosemont once, when artist and Chicago resident Gary Gianni picked me up and gave me a tour of the city. We ended up eating at a Thai restaurant not far from Wrigley Field. Great night.

Top Cow will be debuting Magdalena #1 at C2E2. The issue won’t be in comic stores until next week, but we’ll have copies for sale at the show, with a C2E2-exclusive variant cover (shown below). The series artist, my buddy Nelson Blake 2nd, will be at the show as well, and we’ll be signing all three days. I’m pretty damn pleased with how the issue turned out.

I’m also looking forward to meeting Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs, a big-time comics fan, and a Top Cow fan in particular. I’ll be joining Lance for his panel Saturday afternoon, and then he’s going to sit in for the Top Cow panel Saturday evening. Note that Saturday’s programming continues even after the convention floor closes.

My complete C2E2 schedule looks like this:

Friday

4:30-5:30 p.m., signing at Top Cow booth with Nelson Blake 2nd.

Saturday

11:30-1:00 p.m., signing at Top Cow booth with Nelson Blake 2nd and Troy Peteri.

3-4 p.m., panel with Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs, Phil Hester, Mark Waid, Nelson Blake 2nd and Matt Banning.

7:15-8:15 p.m., Top Cow panel with Filip Sablik, Phil Hester, Nelson Blake 2nd and an appearance by Lance Briggs.

Sunday

11:30-12:30 p.m., signing at Top Cow booth with Nelson Blake 2nd.

If you’re at the show, please come by and say hi. More info on C2E2 here:

Cheers,

Ron


Two new previews

Preview pages for Angelus #3 and Magdalena #1 were just released.

Issues #1 and #2 of Angelus sold out at the distributor level, so hopefully that’s a good omen for issue #3, which includes appearances by Jackie Estacado, a.k.a. the Darkness, and Tom Judge, who seems to have something of a cult following in the Top Cow Universe. It’s still very much the story of new Angelus host Dani Baptiste, but the issue also lays a little groundwork for this summer’s Artifacts series. It also contains one of my favorite lines of dialogue I’ve written in a while, something that would not be printable in a family publication. You can check out the Angelus pages, with art by Stjepan Sejic, here


The Magdalena preview shows pages 1-4 of issue #1, which is a sequence that was added after I completed the first draft of the script. We decided to include an introduction that would be the Magdalena concept more accessible for new readers. So these four pages serve that purpose, as well as introduce a plot thread that will pay off later in the series. The art is by Nelson Blake 2nd (pencils), Sal Regla (inks) and Dave McCaig (colors). You can check out the Magdalena pages here.

Angelus #3 will be in stores April 14, while Magdalena #1 will be in stories April 21. Advance copies of Magdalena, with a con exclusive cover, will be available at the C2E2 convention in Chicago, April 16-18, which I will attend along with Nelson and other members of the Top Cow herd.

Cheers,

Ron


Uncovering some “Artifacts”

First, sorry to have disappeared for a few days. The combination of a pretty nasty virus inserting itself into my laptop, and the deadlines that led to me pulling out of Seattle’s Emerald City Comic Con, stalled the regular updates here. The good news: I’m already committed to Emerald City for 2011, the first time it’ll be a three-day affair; and, my laptop seems to be back in working order. So expect regular updates as well.

DarknessDespite missing the con, I was at least able to participate in the Top Cow panel on Saturday via cell phone. You can read the details here.

Every publisher saves their announcements for conventions, and this was no different, as Top Cow named my first artistic collaborator on the upcoming Artifacts series, the 13-part event intended to redefine its universe. Joining me for issues #1-#4 will be penciler Michael Broussard, who is just coming off of a pretty stellar run on The Darkness with my buddy Phil Hester. I’m absolutely looking forward to working with Michael again. I wrote one of his first published jobs, the Marvel-Top Cow crossover book Unholy Union, which featured Witchblade, the Darkness, Hulk, Ghost Rider and even a couple pages with Doctor Strange. I’ll take advantage of even the slightest opportunity to write Doctor Strange, and Michael’s Doc pages are among my favorites. Michael was even kind enough to do a Doc piece in my sketchbook. Once that sketchbook makes its way back from the West Coast, I’ll use the blog to show off some of the art within.

Michael’s work certainly has what a lot of people might call a “Top Cow style,” meaning something in the same ballpark as that of Top Cow founder Marc Silvestri. I think there’s a perception out there, at least in some people’s minds, that the Top Cow studio somehow imposes a stylistic edict on its artists. Not true. Top Cow has launched a pretty impressive collection of artistic careers, including Michael Turner, Brandon Peterson, David Finch, Mike Choi, Francis Manapul and Billy Tan. True, many of those guys share a certain sensibility, which is understandable given that all had some tutelage under Silvestri. But you also have to factor in current artists like Stjepan Sejic, Kenneth Rocafort and Nelson Blake the 2nd, who have pretty diverse styles.

Unholy Union

Michael is one of those rare artists who emerged with a great deal of polish, even at the beginning of his career. Most guys slave away for years, getting better in little steps until they’re finally ready for professional-level work. Michael showed up at that level already, and has only gotten better since. I’m looking forward to working with him again a great deal. At one of the previous Emerald City Cons Michael and I were able to take a walk around town prior to the show opening. We ended up at a coffee shop, talking at length about art styles, influences and storytelling.

Why only issues #1-#4 of Artifacts for Michael? We’re going to be splitting up the series between four art teams, both for scheduling purposes and as a reflection of traditional three-act story structure. Crossover/event series are notoriously difficult to keep on schedule, as the shipping woes and artistic musical chairs of some Marvel and DC projects can attest. The intent is to circumvent that by having three art teams working at the same time, getting ahead so we can continue to ship on time. The art teams for issues #4-#7 and #8-#12 will be announced in due time, and we have something pretty special planned for issue #13. Artifacts #1, by me and Michael Broussard, will be out in July.

Cheers,

Ron


More free stuff

Magdelena cover by Ryan sookI was actually planning a piece on the Hellboy: Weird Tales story I did with Jim Starlin, showing off some of the artwork in glorious black and white. But that’ll have to wait until next week, because Newsarama popped up the entirety of my Magdalena story with Ryan Sook today, and I didn’t want to let it pass without comment.

You can find the complete, 11-page story here.

It’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever done, in large part thanks to Ryan’s amazing art and Dave McCaig’s perfect color. I remember talking to Ryan after the whole story was completed, and he raved about Dave’s color work, saying it the best interior color he’d ever received. I think Ryan is hands-down one of the best artists working in the business right now, so I was absolutely thrilled to have him on the story. And Dave was the perfect complement. Everything was spot-on. Sometimes all elements of a story and creative team just clicks, and you wind up with something special. Or at least special to me.

The story appeared in the First Born: Aftermath issue, and while it put a coda on Magdalena’s involvement in that tale, it was really about her ongoing relationship with her “employers,” the Catholic Church; hence the title, “Crisis of Faith.” I think the story works pretty well as an appetizer for April’s Magdalena ongoing by me, penciler Nelson Blake 2nd, inker Sal Regla and that McCaig guy on colors again. Ryan Sook on covers, of course. Story elements introduced in “Crisis of Faith” will surface again in the ongoing series.

“Crisis of Faith” grabbed a Harvey Award nomination as Best Story or Best Issue or something. Didn’t win, of course. Not with All-Star Superman in the running. Still, nice to see the story get a little recognition. And nice to have it getting wider exposure on Newsarama now. If you like what you read there, I’d venture to say you’ll like the Magdalena series. Assuming you want to take that plunge, tell your retailer, so we can pump up those initial orders. Every sale counts in this market. You can also place an order with Discount Comic Book Service, which is doing a promotion with Magdalena #1, signed by me, for 99 cents.

One more thing. It just so happens that today, about the same time “Crisis of Faith” was appearing for free, I was downloading “Love,” the new album from Angels & Airwaves, also for free. The band is offering up “Love” gratis – 11 new tracks. You can download it here.

There’s a donation button on the site. You can give whatever amount you want, or just take the free album. I donated. Hope you will too.

Cheers,

Ron


Wednesday was Ron Marz interview day

AngelusOr at least it seemed that way, as three interviews hit the ’net on the same day, despite the interviews themselves being conducted at widely varying points in the last few weeks. Interviews do tend to come in bunches, as new books are released or announced. Today’s trio was spurred by different projects, though the questions overlap a bit here and there.

First up, Newsarama interviewed me and artist Nelson Blake 2nd about our upcoming Magdalena book. [link]

Next, CosmicBookNews.com got into everything from Angelus to similarities between Witchblade and Green Lantern. [link]

And finally, ComicAttack.net covers Witchblade, Artifacts and even creator-owned work. [link]


  • Featured Content

  • Mail Marz

  • Ramblin’ Ron @Twitter

    Error: Twitter did not respond. Please wait a few minutes and refresh this page.

  • Categories

  • Copyright © 1996-2010 Messages from Marz. All rights reserved.
    iDream theme by Templates Next | Powered by WordPress