Tag Archives: janet k. lee

Weekly Graphic Novel Review: Return of the Dapper Men

It’s Wednesday which means it’s new comic book day with new releases hitting shelves, both physical and digital, all across the world. This week it’s a new edition of Return of the Dapper Men!

Return of the Dapper Men is by Jim McCann and Janet K. Lee and this edition has tons of new extras.

The graphic novel is out now in comic and book stores.

Get your copy now. To find a comic shop near you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com or call 1-888-comicbook or digitally and online with the links below.

Return of the Dapper Men



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Getting Dapper & Talking Dapper Men with Jim McCann and Janet Lee

Welcome to Anorev, a land where time has no meaning. Robots work and children play, but the play is no fun and the work is no use. A curious boy named Ayden and his robot friend Zoe know that something’s missing, but they can’t imagine what it might be… until 314 identical men in green bowler hats fall from the sky. At last, our heroes have a chance to discover what happened to their world, what might start the clocks back up again, and what tomorrow really means.

Blending clockwork whimsy with majestic art-nouveau visuals, Jim McCann and Janet Lee present a hand-crafted fairy tale in Return of the Dapper Men that feels both familiar and entirely new in a new prestige reprinting!

At San Diego Comic-Con we talked to Jim McCann and Janet Lee about their award winning series as well as what’s to come in its sequels!

Preview: Return of the Dapper Men

Return of the Dapper Men

Jim McCann (w) • Janet Lee (a & c)

Welcome to Anorev, a land where time has no meaning. Robots work and children play, but the play is no fun and the work is no use. A curious boy named Ayden and his robot friend Zoe know that something’s missing, but they can’t imagine what it might be… until 314 identical men in green bowler hats fall from the sky. At last, our heroes have a chance to discover what happened to their world, what might start the clocks back up again, and what tomorrow really means. Blending clockwork whimsy with majestic art-nouveau visuals, Jim McCann and Janet Lee present a hand-crafted fairy tale that feels both familiar and entirely new in this prestige reprinting!

HC • FC • $34.99 • 144 pages • 11.25” x 9.75” • ISBN 978-1-60309-413-9

Small Press Expo Announces Nate Powell, Gene Yang, Jim Rugg, Gabrielle Bell, Kickily, Sloane Leong and more as Special Guests for SPX 2017

Small Press Expo has announced its first slate of Special Guests for SPX 2017. The festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday, September 16-17, at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center and will have over 650 creators, 280 exhibitor tables and 22 programming slots to entertain, enlighten and introduce attendees to the amazing world of independent and small press comics.

SPX 2017 is honored to have the following creators as Special Guests to this year’s show:

NATE POWELL is a New York Times best-selling graphic novelist born in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1978. He began self-publishing at age 14, and graduated from School of Visual Arts in 2000.

His work includes March, the graphic novel autobiography of Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis; You Don’t Say, Any Empire, Swallow Me Whole, The Silence Of Our Friends, The Year Of The Beasts, and Rick Riordan’s The Lost Hero.

He lives in Bloomington, Indiana.

GENE LUEN YANG is the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. He has written and drawn many graphic novels, including American Born Chinese, which was a National Book Award finalist, as well as the winner of the Printz Award and an Eisner Award. His graphic novel set Boxers and Saints won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. He has also written for the hit comics Avatar: The Last Airbender and Superman. His latest project is the comics and coding series with Mike Holmes, Secret Coders. geneyang.com. Sunday only

JIM RUGG is an Eisner and Ignatz Award winning cartoonist based in Pittsburgh. His books include Street Angel, the PLAIN Janes, the Guild, Afrodisiac, and Notebook Drawings.

Street Angel, the deadliest girl alive, is back in a series of original hardcover graphic novels from Image Comics and the creative team of Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca. In Street Angel: After School Kung Fu Special, our skateboarding heroine, Jesse Sanchez, faces a ninja bully and battles teen angst over a big school dance. In July, Jesse joins a violent team of troublemakers in the Street Angel Gang.

GABRIELLE BELL’s work has been selected for Best American Comics and the Yale Anthology of Graphic Fiction, and has been featured in McSweeney’s, the Believer, Bookforum, and Vice among numerous other publications. Her story, “Cecil and Jordan In New York,” was turned into a film by Michel Gondry. Bell’s previous graphic novel, The Voyeurs, was named one of the best books of the year by Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, and the Atlantic. She currently lives in Brooklyn, NY. Find her online at gabriellebell.com. Saturday only
Photo by Jordan Guile

After graduating from the Maryland Institute College of Art, SAM BOSMA taught in the Illustration department from 2011 to 2013 before moving to Brooklyn, NY. At SPX 2016, his first volume of Fantasy Sports won the Ignatz Award for Outstanding Comic! He currently does background drawings for Steven Universe on Cartoon Network when not creating comics and graphic novels. He lives in Los Angeles, California.

KICKLIY is the creator of the critically acclaimed Musnet series of books. The Musnet books follow the all-ages adventures of a certain poor Mus Musculous (a common field mouse, for those of you that don’t speak Latin) on his quest to become the greatest mouse painter that ever was.

Musnet was nominated for the 2017 Prix Angouleme for Kids Comics. Kickliy is also an accomplished oil painter. He lives somewhere between Minneapolis and Giverny.

SLOANE LEONG is a cartoonist currently living in Portland, Oregon who has worked for Image Comics, Dark Horse, Cartoon Network and more. Her Ignatz-nominated short comic, A Map to the Sun, will be expanded into a graphic novel and will be published by First Second in 2019. Sloane Leong’s newest comic, A Hollowing, is a lean grim story about a young girl and her horse, the breaking down of performed domesticity and the realization of the horrors of the body.

GILBERT HERNANDEZ is co-creator of the long-running, award-winning, and critically acclaimed series Love and Rockets, which in 2017 celebrates its 35th Anniversary. His books include Marbles, Bumperhead, Luba, Palomar, Speak of the Devil,Love from the Shadows and Girl Crazy. This year, Hernandez designed clothing based on his Love and Rockets characters for men and women available at Pinup Girl.

KEITH KNIGHT, winner of the Glyph, Harvey, and Inkpot Awards, is a spectacular cartoonist whose Knight Life comic strip is read nationwide in such newspapers as the Washington Post. Keef’s funny yet hard-hitting cartoons in his series (T)hink and The K Chronicles led him to be named one of the 2015 NAACP History Makers. Knight is the illustrator of the critically acclaimed tween book, Jake the Fake Keeps It Real. He also has a new collection of Knight Life strips called the Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Behind.

Born in Palo Alto and raised in Nashville, award-winning, New-York-Times-bestselling illustrator JANET LEE is best known for her decoupage art technique. Self-taught, Lee has been drawing comics since she was old enough to hold a pencil. After working for more than a decade at the business end of publishing, Lee received her big break with the publication of Return of the Dapper Men. Since then, she has illustrated close to a dozen different books and anthologies. This year, Return of the Dapper Men returns in a new deluxe edition from Top Shelf Productions. Lee still lives and works in Nashville, in a house filled with one husband, one son, two dogs, and four very bad cats.

JIM MCCANN is an award-winning writer of comic books, television, and theatre. He wrote several critically acclaimed Marvel Hawkeye series before branching out into creating his own comics and graphic novels, as well as other projects. His first graphic novel, Return of the Dapper Men, won the Eisner Award for Best Original Graphic Album. He has since gone on to create hit series such as the space-heist Lost Vegas and the ongoing top-rated series Mind the Gap, both published through Image Comics. This year, Return of the Dapper Men returns in a new deluxe edition from Top Shelf Productions.


Around the Tubes

The weekend is almost here! I’m catching up on comics and some movies. What’s everyone else up to for the weekend?

Around the Tubes

CBR – McCann & Lee Acquire “Dapper Men” Rights from Archaia – I want more Dapper Men!

Washington Post – THE TRIAL BALLOON: O teachers, after a banner year for graphic novels, don’t ban these books – More comics in schools!

Around the Tubes Reviews

Talking Comics – Avengers #24.NOW

Talking Comics – FF #15

Talking Comics – Origin II #1

Talking Comics – Star Wars Darth Vader #1

CBR – Superman Unchained #5

Interview: Women of BOOM! – Janet K. Lee

Janet Lee_2That’s eight weeks and eight “Women of BOOM!” features, spotlighting the many kick-ass women that work at BOOM!, Archaia and KaBOOM! We’re focusing on everyone, editors, designers, writers, artists, you name it! We’re making sure to include the hard-working folks whose contributions are often overlooked in the process.

BOOM! (and KaBOOM! and Archaia) has given us unprecedented access and the chance to ask questions to their staff, and creative teams, to find out why the publisher is so successful in hiring women and their experiences in the comic industry as women.

Up this week is Janet K. Lee, an artist, cover artist, inker, colorist (and all around cool person) who has worked on Return of the Dapper Men, Wonderland Alphabet and Feeding Ground among others publishing by the company.

Graphic Policy: How did you get involved in the comic book industry? 

Janet K. Lee: I worked for several years as a graphic novel buyer for one of the US’s largest book industry wholesalers and met a number of people in the comics industry, including Jim McCann. Eventually I was promoted away from buying graphic novels, and found I had a creative hole in my life.  I started showing my artwork in galleries around the US. Jim McCann saw some of that art, was inspired to write a book called Return of the Dapper Men based on my art, and asked me to illustrate.  At SDCC ’09, Jim pitched the project to Stephen Christy, and voila! I was in!

Sometimes I feel like the “Lana Turner” of comics, but in truth I spent years networking behind the scenes.  That old adage “It takes ten years to become an overnight success” is just about right.

GP: Did you read comics growing up? Do you read them now?  

JKL: I did and I do!

I got into comics when I was five or so.  My best friend’s neighbor was a novelty salesman (you know: wax lips, pencils, cheap plastic yo-yo’s, and all that) who kept us supplied with bound collections of classic strip comics.  I started out reading Heathcliff, Denis the Menace (which I still blame for my poor performance as a babysitter), Garfield, Peanuts, Family Circus, and Bloomsbury. Eventually, I had a boyfriend who introduced me to The X-Men, and then I discovered anime and manga and eventually the amazing indie scene with books like Blankets and BOP and From Hell.

My preference still leans toward graphic novels and limited series over ongoing—I just prefer a story with a clear arc end and didn’t even go through the normal “soap” period for teenage girls. But there are exceptions: Mind the Gap, Chew, Unwritten, Invincible, Saga, Mouse Guard.  My favorite Christmas gift was a fabulous book called The Nao of Brown—stunning watercolors!

GP: How did you come to work with BOOM!/Archaia?     

JKL: Jim McCann and I considered publishers very carefully before pitching Return of the Dapper Men.  Archaia always produces such beautiful books, and we knew we wanted to do something really different with Dapper, so they just made sense.

GP: How would you describe your job for people?   

JKL: My job is to make the story come to life. If I were working on a novel, I would be writing all the narrative prose. If I were working on a movie, I would be casting, location scout, set design, costuming, and acting coach. If I were a musician, I would be the vocalist singing the writer’s hit tune. My job is to take the actions, dialog, and rough (or sometimes detailed) descriptions of the writer and express them visually.  We are a team of collaborators, and if we do our jobs correctly, together we create something more wonderful than any of us could have made alone.

GP: For people who want to pursue a career in what you do, what advice would you give them? 

JKL: Make the best art that you can possibly make. It is your calling card to the industry, so treat every project as if it were your first and last.

Be polite and kind to absolutely everyone you encounter—this is a small, small industry and every single person in it is important. Always thank people who took time to review your work; even if they hated it, they took the time to read. Network, meet, follow-up.

Know when to take advice and when to ignore it.

And MOST IMPORTANTLY: MAKE COMICS! Just do it! Learn by making mistakes. Learn by trying new things. Some of it will work and some won’t but nothing happens until you make the art.

GP: Did you have a mentor to help you break into the industry? Do you mentor anyone yourself?      

JKL: I’ve had incredible help and encouragement along the way. Jim McCann took a raw gallery artist (who thought she knew everything about making comics, and really knew almost nothing) and taught her the ropes. Jonathan Hickman pulled me aside and helped me understand business pitfalls. My editors at Boom!/Archaia, Marvel, and Image have always challenged me to try something new.

I try to pay it back where I can. I pick projects based on how I feel about the story and the way the script is written (probably a holdover from my buying days), so I find myself often working with new recruits. I love talking with people about their art and about the industry. We all succeed or fail together.

GP: Do you think women have a more difficult time breaking in and making it in the comic industry, if so why? And if yes, how do you think that can be overcome?   

JKL: I think most of the time when we ask this question, we are limiting the industry at large to just Marvel and DC- just superhero comics- and yes, there are issues there with diversity among the mainstream comics creators. But we do ourselves a HUGE disservice by defining comics by a single, limited genre, and if we open the discussion to include ALL of comics, ALL around the world, we get an entirely different picture. Female comic creators are EVERYWHERE, and we’re amazing. This week the NYT Bestseller list for Graphic Novels (top 10) includes Fairest, Saga, Drama, Persepolis (which has been there for YEARS), and Primates.  Women helped to make (or solely made) all of those.

Here’s the thing: for a long time, the direct market for comics was almost entirely focused on superheroes, and superheroes were written for men and boys. They were fantasies about heroism and empowerment and taking control in a bad, bad world—things that people in the 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, even 70’s and 80’s, didn’t realize women wanted too. So the heroes are men (mostly), and the stories center around men (mostly), and the shops where the stories are sold cater to men (mostly), and the children who grew up drawing superheroes and writing stories about superheroes and dreaming about superheroes were male (mostly). And so now (most) of creators who draw and write in a “house style” are male. And the cannon is (mostly) based on stories for men.

That’s why independent comics are so important.  I may not have grown up drawing Superman and writing stories about Spider-Man, but I did grow up making my own comics, my own way. My art is geared toward a different type of story, and these are stories that need to be told in different ways, and be published in different formats, and maybe be sold into different markets.  Right now, right this minute, we are reinvigorating genres of comics that have languished for years. We are letting the world know that comics are a storytelling medium rather than a single genre.  This is the best time to be a woman in comics.

GP: We notice that when it comes to women in the comic industry, BOOM!/Archaia has a lot of diversity present. Why do you think have they succeeded when so many other publishers struggle with this?

JKL: BOOM!/Archaia have a simple formula, I think: they publish interesting, high quality books, and they make sure people hear about them.  They prove my point: female creators are everywhere making comics, and if you open yourself to diverse types of stories, you will find the statistics are much more equal than a single genre of fiction might lead you to believe. Women make comics.Women read comics.

GP: We’ve heard horror stories concerning women in the industry, have you ever seen or been discriminated/harassed and if so, how did you handle it?

JKL: I don’t have any stories to share. Maybe I’m just lucky, I don’t know.

GP: What advice do you have for women looking to break into the comic book industry? 

JKL: Define your goals. Be true to yourself. Value yourself. Make the art you want to make—the path may take a longer, but will be more rewarding in the end. Read, read, read, read. Learn everything you can about the BUSINESS of making comics. And get out there and meet people!

Related articles

Preview – The Wonderland Alphabet: Alice’s Adventures Through The ABCs and What She Found There


Illustrated Board Book Hardcover
Retail Price: $11.95 U.S.
Page Count: 32 pages
Format: hardcover with no dust jacket (paper over board), 7” x 5” (landscape), full color
On sale in comic book shops: June 20, 2012
ISBN-13: 978-1-936393-86-2
Written by Alethea Kontis
Illustrated by Janet K. Lee
Cover by Janet K. Lee
Rating: E – EVERYONE (all ages, may contain minimal violence)

Eisner Award-winning artist Janet K. Lee (Return of the Dapper Men, Jane Austen’s Emma) brings her incredible visual flair to the alphabet by way of Lewis Carroll in this 26-letter celebration of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass. Written by New York Times best-selling author Alethea Kontis (The Dark-Hunter Companion), The Wonderland Alphabet is packaged as a gorgeous board book and is a surprising new look at one of the most beloved literary classics of all time.

‘Return of the Dapper Men’ Is More Popular Than Ever!

Official Press Release



Los Angeles, CA (February 17, 2011) – A recent spike in sales of Archaia’s critically acclaimed original graphic novel RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN has proven that the book has become increasingly popular since it was first published in November 2010, and with the second printing of the book now healthily in stock, retailers and readers can re-order the book with confidence.

As an example, during the weekend of February 5-6, 2011, sales of RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN on Amazon.com soared to its highest volume yet, ranking at #7 in the Graphic Novels category (#2 in the Fantasy sub-category), and breaking the top 1,000 of books overall, thanks in part to a review of the book on “The Totally Rad Show,” which can be seen at this link: http://revision3.com/trs/dapperman.

“The continued support and love that fans have expressed for this book along with the positive word of mouth it’s still getting months after release continues to astound and humble Janet and I as creators,” said Jim McCann, writer of RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN. “We’ve had everything from starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and Library Journal to major newspapers and webcasts, and all have been overwhelming in their praise. It’s exciting to see as we begin work on the second volume of the Dapper Men trilogy, TIME OF THE DAPPER MEN.”

A visual tour de force, RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN (hardcover, full color, 128 pages, 9.5” x 11”, $24.95), is the debut graphic novel from the minds of award-winning writer Jim McCann (Hawkeye & Mockingbird) and critically acclaimed gallery artist Janet Lee (Emma). A modern twist on classic fairy tales, this is a story about growing up, childhood fears and examining the origins of a world and the things that inhabit it. The incredible decoupage art style combines steampunk fantasy and science fiction with Art Nouveau for a truly unique and groundbreaking book, all sharply dressed in a pinstripe suit and a dapper bowler hat.

“It’s great to see that even a few months after release, RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN is selling stronger than ever,” said Archaia Editor-in-Chief Stephen Christy. “We’re happy that Jim and Janet have truly launched a new Archaia franchise with this title, and we can’t wait for readers to see what they’re cooking up for TIME OF THE DAPPER MEN and WORLD OF THE DAPPER MEN, the next two books in the DAPPER trilogy.”

Retailers: RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN is currently available for re-order. Diamond customers, use Order Code: SEP10 0782. For others, use the book’s ISBN: 978-1932386905.

Fans: RETURN OF THE DAPPER MEN is available at your local comics shop (LCS) or wherever books are sold. To find an LCS nearest you, visit http://www.comicshoplocator.com/, or call 1-888-COMIC-BOOK.

About Archaia

Archaia has built an unparalleled reputation for producing meaningful content that perpetually transforms minds. Archaia is: Artesia, Awakening, Beautiful Scars, Berona’s War, The Black Knight, Bleedout, Critical Millennium, Cyclops, The Dark Crystal, Dark Fall, Days Missing, The Devil’s Handshake, An Elegy for Amelia Johnson, The Engineer, Everlast, Feeding Ground, Fraggle Rock, God Machine, The Grave Doug Freshley, Gunnerkrigg Court, Hybrid Bastards!, Inanna’s Tears, Johnny Recon, The Killer, Killing Pickman, Labyrinth, The Lone and Level Sands, Lucid, Miranda Mercury, Moon Lake, Mouse Guard, Mr. Murder Is Dead, Okko, One in a Million, Primordia, Return of the Dapper Men, Robotika, Saga, The Secret History, Some New Kind of Slaughter, Starkweather: Immortal, Syndrome, A Tale of Sand, Titanium Rain, Trial By Fire, and Tumor.

For more information on Archaia or any Archaia titles please visit www.Archaia.com. Archaia can also be found on Facebook (facebook.com/archaiacomics), Twitter (twitter.com/archaiacomics) and YouTube (www.youtube.com/ArchaiaEntertainment).

Return of the Dapper Men HC

Welcome To The X-Men Jane Austen, Hope You Survive The Experience!

Official Press Release

Welcome To The X-Men Jane Austen, Hope You Survive The Experience!

Marvel is pleased to present your first look at the rising star artist of Jane Austen’s Emma, Janet K. Lee (Return of the Dapper Men), stunning variant cover to Uncanny X-Men #534 depicting the one and only Emma Frost!

“We’re so excited with the plans that we have for Jane Austen’s Emma, that we thought we’d have Janet cover one of our own Emmas!” exclaims SVP of Sales David Gabriel. “This variant is a fun way to draw attention to both books.”

No fan of Janet Lee’s dazzling artwork or the X-Men can miss out on incredible variant! Be sure to be the first one to your local comic shops this March to pick one up!

UNCANNY X-MEN #534 (JAN110779)



Pencils & Cover by GREG LAND

Variant Cover by JANET K LEE

Rated T+ …$3.99

FOC – 2/28/11, On Sale – 3/23/11

EMMA #1 (JAN110685)


Art and Cover by JANET K LEE

Rated A …$3.99

On Sale – 3/2/11


Your First Look At Janet Lee’s Mesmerizing Pages of Emma #1

Official Press Release

Your First Look At Janet Lee’s Mesmerizing Pages of Emma #1

Marvel is pleased to present your first look at Emma #1 from New York Times best-selling writer Nancy Butler (Sense & Sensibility) and rising star artist Janet K. Lee (Return of the Dapper Men)! This March, delve into the world of nineteenth century courtship courtesy of a Rita Award-winning author and the illustrator whose work Newsarama.com calls “truly breathtaking.” Local matchmaker Emma Woodhouse can make anyone the perfect pair – provided she can stop the men folk from falling for her first! Find out how one upstanding young woman comes to find herself stuck in a love triangle as big as an English village, only in Emma #1!

EMMA #1 (JAN110685)


Art and Cover by JANET K. LEE

Rated A… $3.99

FOC – 2/7/11, On Sale – 3/2/11

EMMA #1 Cover Read more