Sunday, April 29, 2007

Small Press EXTRA #5, TruFan Publications

I just received in the mail the massive 64 page mag size issue of Small Press EXTRA (SPE) #5 from TruFan Publications. I was one of the 10 lucky people to get a full color copy. That means not just color on the covers, but all the way though! Some snafu at the printer and they got 10 like this. I was lucky enough to snag one! Wow! I'm assuming everyone else gets full color covers, with black and white interiors. Still this is one fantastic small press review and news zine! And I'm borrowing this review from old time small presser (he is my age), Steve Keeter. (Until he tells me to take it down.) --AF
Just received my copy of SPE #5, and it is awesome. Cover to cover,
a stellar issue, beautifully laid out, loaded with info of interest
to your average small press maniac, great writing and great photos
and artwork throughout.

If you haven't guessed it by now, I really liked this issue!
The second part of the interview with Jim Main was the highlight, at
least for this old fan, as I greatly enjoy reading his thoughts on
small press history. Also, his plans for publishing are just
staggering, as is his amazing energy... especially considering the
problems he had with his health just a short time ago. The man is a
powerhouse, unstoppable, the best of the best, a true legend of
small press publishing.

Allen Freeman's unexpected (so soon after the event! Talk about
breaking news!) report on SPACE 2007, was very much appreciated,
very informative, and the pix were really nice. Dan Taylor seems
like a guy I'd like to meet (and hopefully will, next year, if I can
make it up there). Hey, is Larned Justin really short or is
the "unknown comic fan" just really tall? I see Tim Corrigan has
grown his hair out again...

It was good to see another take on MegaCon by Jim Pike. Really glad
that he did well with the Superior Man comics this year. He's
building a steady fan base, learning as he goes, (and I learned
quite a bit, this year, from listening to him recount his
experiences selling and promoting small press at the convention) and
can definitely include ol skeet in that list of fans.

Lovecraft! I'd heard about his participation in the amateur press
before, but you included an actual sample of his small press work!
And an intriguing text from one of his speeches. Great stuff!
Congratulations on outdoing yourself, o' Great and Mighty Gaffsam.
Looking forward to the next issue.
Send $2.50 plus some postage I assume, $2? Or get a 6 issue subscription for $15.
Or contact the guys at: TruFan Publications, 624 Metacom Ave., #103, Warren, RI 02885
(I give this mag 5 stars of course!)

Sunday, April 15, 2007

HUMPDAY by Adam Buechler

HUMPDAY is a great concept with great art to back it up. Adam Buechler has a nice style that works very well here. Just enough detail to keep the story moving along. And the story is very well done. And dare I say it "original"? Or seems to be to me. From the Press Release that Adam sent with the comic: The comic centers on a pair of blue-collar guys, an American "Dog-catcher" team working in Paris in the near future. Like manyother zombie books, it is a time where the undead roam freely, and as a result, the undead tourists have become a nuisance and an embarrassment for their homelands. They've taken over popular vacation destinations and as a result, their respective countries have sent in teams to remove them from the city. The comic is not really a horror story or even a zombie story, but more of a comedic tale about the mundane day-in and day-out of the working class. The tense or scary scenes in the comic are dealt with as though they are just everyday occurrences (which they are, of course) for the characters. Nothing out of the ordinary and really rather dull.
That said I was drawn into the story and would love to see more from Adam soon. 24 pages, digest, color cover, thick paper stock and great printing quality throughout. No price on the cover? Also I love the intro page but you should have something on the inside covers if you can, and especially on the back cover, which he chose to leave blank. Maybe talk about your other projects or something about issue #2 or perhaps the main characters in a nice pose?

I give this 4.5 stars. Adam made a common small press mistake, he didn't print any credits or contact info in the comic. You should do that to make sure people can contact you for letters of comment, or to order more of your books! Add a web site address if you can and an email address for sure. Getting feedback is important and so is selling more books! You could even get someone that likes your art and want to hire you for something so don't miss an oportunity!
Send $5 + $2 shipping to: Adam Buechler, 1582 William St., Vancouver, BC, V5L 2R2 or Email him at for payment details. (I'm sure we will be seeing alot of great things from him in the future!)

TIKI COMIX, Thru Black Holes Comix

Tiki Comix is a digest with a color wrap-around cover by Michael Roden. Michael also does most of the interior pages of crazy TIKI Gods like in "Tiki Surf Party!" a one pager done with Mike Mitchell. No real stories to speak of, just wild art involving a TIKI God. Art also by Brad W. Foster who does a very nice "TIKIMAN" inside cover pinup, and some of the usual Rodenites like Bob "X", Jeff Gaither, Jim Thompson, Tom Brinkmann, Andy Nukes etc....well worth a look if you like wacked out crazy, scary cartoonish, realistic mayhem. Greetings from ...Tiki Man was like an old photo album of Tiki Man, funny! You know these guys are having fun! About 20 pages counting the covers which are printed on the inside.
Nice printing and nice colors on the price on the cover but I'm betting $3 + $1.50 shipping would do it, or email for details. Or take your chances and send that money to: Michael R. Roden, 2018, Big Indian Rd., Moscow, OH, 45153 (I give it 3 stars as lots of tallent goes into this stuff. If only they had a real story here or there....)