Tag Archives: mike zeck

We Live

Spider-Man’s Black Costume Origin Page Sells for $3.6 Million

Page 25 from Secret Wars #8 was a hot item at Heritage Auctions recently. The page by Mike Zeck features Spider-Man in his “black costume” and recently sold for $3,360,000. That costume would turn out to be a symbiote that would later go on and create Venom.

Bidding opened at $33,000 but quickly rose as the comic page saw a bidding war that set records.

Moments before page 25 went up for auction, page 24 sold for $288,000.

That’s $3,648,000 for two pages from the iconic comic. The original owners name wasn’t revealed but purchased the pages in the 1980s and held on to them ever since.

Preview: G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero Yearbook #3

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero Yearbook #3

(W) Larry Hama (A) Ron Wagner, Mike Zeck (CA) Roi Mercado
In Shops: Sep 29, 2021
SRP: $5.99

Relive the classic era of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero in this very special reprint of Yearbook #3. Featuring the classic tales “Hush Job” and “My Dinner with Serpentor” — plus TONS of extras — Living Legend Larry Hama and his top-notch team of artists take us on an unforgettable journey that features spies, ninjas, soldiers, swords, guns, and… PIZZA! It’s all here in this must-have comic for long-time collectors and new fans alike. Includes a brand-new cover by superstar-artist-in-the-making Roi Mercado!

G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero Yearbook #3

John Beatty, Klaus Janson, Tom Palmer, John Workman, and Mike Zeck Head to Baltimore Comic-Con

Celebrate comics at the 20th annual Baltimore Comic-Con on October 18-20, 2019 at the Inner Harbor’s Baltimore Convention Center. The Baltimore Comic-Con presents some of Marvel Comics‘ most venerable creators: John Beatty, Klaus Janson, Tom Palmer, John Workman, and Mike ZeckTickets can be purchased online now to avoid lines at the show!

John Beatty

John Beatty got his first break working for Marvel and DC Comics when he was 19. The year was 1980 and the decade that followed is now referred to as the “Bronze Age” of comic books! Beginning with short filler stories for DC Comics anthology books, Beatty soon found himself as the finisher on the JLA working over George Perez. However, the run was limited to 4 issues due to Marvel Comics offering him the inking duty over his favorite character, Captain America, with his long-time mentor and collaborator, Mike Zeck. Coming off of a 2.5 year run on Cap, Zeck and Beatty were tagged to do the art on the first major clash of heroes and villains, Marvel Super Heroes: Secret Wars! which saw the change of Spider-Man’s costume to black in issue #8 of the series, something that turned into a bigger deal as Venom. After Secret Wars, the team of Zeck and Beatty produced the hit limited mini-series and a graphic novel starring Marvel’s newest “A-List” character, The Punisher. The last major work the team produced was Captain America Annual 8. Covers for Captain AmericaG.I. Joe, and many other titles were a staple of work for the team during the ’80s. Beatty continued projects for Marvel, including Thanos QuestSquadron SurpremeVenom: The Madness, and others. At DC Comics, John was the inker for Batman: Year 3 and the first 5 issues on the new Batman title, Legends of the Dark Knight. Eight years of work on various Batman titles with writer Doug Moench and penciler Kelley Jones became well-known in the ’90s, including the last 2 installments on the Vampire/Batman GN series, other Batman graphic novels, and a 3-year run on the monthly Batman title, recently reprinted in two beautiful hardcover editions. Eventually turning his sights on DC Licensing, Beatty has produced vector ink and color for style guides, from movies to animated series to products such as toys, cards, packaging, and clothing, among other things. This is uncredited work, but is still being used. Traditional inking is still Beatty’s main love, and he continues to practice it and teach those around him who want to learn.

Klaus Janson

Klaus Janson‘s storied career begins back in the 1970s, when he got his first professional comics credit on Marvel’s Jungle Action, and he’s built a long line of comics work ever since, with noteworthy penciling or inking runs on titles such as Marvel’s Defenders and Daredevil, and DC’s Detective Comics and Batman: The Dark Knight Returns. His artistic skills see him regularly as a penciller, inker, and colorist, and he regularly teaches courses, both publicly at venues such as the School of Visual Arts, and privately at comics publishing events and conventions. You can find examples of his recent work on DC Comics’ SupermanConvergence: Batman and Robin, and New Challengers, and Marvel’s Amazing Spider-Man.

Tom Palmer

Tom Palmer is best known for his significant contributions as an inker to many noteworthy titles and runs. He worked over some of the largest artists in the industry on Marvel’s The AvengersX-MenDoctor Strange, Daredevil, Tomb of Dracula, and X-Men: The Hidden Years.  His approach to inking changed the way the industry approached the task, working in a style closer to a painter than how the typical inker completed their jobs at the time. He is highly regarded by the artists whose pencils he inked, including luminaries such as Neal Adams, Gene Colan, John Buscema, and John Byrne.

John Workman

John Workman managed to turn a love for the comics form into a career. During the past five decades, he has held the position of editor, writer, art director, penciler, inker, colorist, letterer, production director, and book designer for various companies. He created (with some help from Bhob Stewart and Bob Smith) the offbeat stories in Wild Things (with much of that material having first appeared in Star*Reach and Heavy Metal) and both wrote and drew the comics series SindyFallen Angels, and Roma. In 1991, he reflected on model Bettie Page in Betty Being Bad (Eros), and later produced the hardbounds Heavy Metal: 25 Years of Classic Covers and Innocent Images: The Sexy Fantasy Females of Viper and Kiss, as well as The Adventures of Roma, a reformatted graphic novel version of his earlier series. He continues to write and draw and to do a whole lot of lettering for a number of comics companies on an international level.

Mike Zeck

Mike Zeck began his storied career in comics with Charlton Comics with their animation-related line of titles before moving to Marvel Comics to leave an indelible mark. Zeck provided art to unforgettable characters and titles such as 1987’s “Kraven’s Last Hunt” in the Spider-Man titles, “Circle of Blood” in The Punisher, and the classic Secret Wars featuring Zeck’s design on the classic black costume for Spider-Man (and later adopted by Venom). Zeck’s work has graced the pages and covers of AquamanBatman: Legends of the Dark KnightGreen LanternG.I. JoeG.I. Joe: Special Missions, Lobo, Deathstroke The TerminatorThe Eliminator, and too many titles to mention here. His creator-owned project Damned, appeared from BOOM! Studios.


In addition to on-site CGC grading, this year’s confirmed guests for the show include: Joel Adams (Savage Eve), Neal Adams (Detective Comics), Zeea Adams (Neal Adams Monsters), Scott Ethan Ambruson (Destiny, Queen of Thieves), Art Way Alliance, Brian Azzarello (Batman: Damned), Jeremy Bastian (Jim Henson’s Labyrinth: Under The Spell), Marty Baumann (Disney/Pixar), John Beatty (Secret Wars), Carolyn Belefski (Curls), Ziggy Blumenthal (Operation Pajama Pants), Russ Braun (The Boys), Brett Breeding (Superman, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Harold Buchholz (MST3K), Mark Buckingham (Justice League Dark), Cullen Bunn (Harrow County, courtesy of AfterShock Comics), Greg Burnham (Tuskegee Heirs), Buzz (Superman: Coming of the Supermen), Jim Calafiore (The Mike Wieringo Tellos Tribute), Chris Campana (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Joe Carabeo (The Legettes), Richard Case (Doom Patrol), Christa Cassano (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Freshman Force), Castillo Studios, Ally Cat (Death of Love), Jacob Chabot (Ziggy Pig – Silly Seal Comics), Howard Chaykin (Hey Kids! Comics!), Frank Cho (Harley Quinn), Amy Chu (KISS: The End), Steve Conley (The Middle Age), Steve Conte (Action Figure Kingdom), Katie Cook (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic), Jamie Cosley (Star Wars Insider), Clayton Crain (Absolute Carnage: Miles Morales, courtesy of Frankie’s Comics), Kristina Deak-Linsner (Vampirella: Roses for the Dead), The Deans Family (La Moo Du Chocolat: A Shakes Adventure), Vito Delsante (Midnight Tiger: Stronger), Christian DiBari (Magdalena), Steve Ellis (The Only Living Girl), Tod Emko and Piggy (A Piggy’s Tale), Steve Englehart (Doctor Strange, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Garth Ennis (The Boys, Friday and Saturday only), G.D. Falksen (Mine!), Rob Feldman (Cyko KO), Brenden Fletcher (Isola), Chris Flick (Capes & Babes), LJ and Kayla Fowlkes (The Adventures of CHIBIWONGTONG), Shea Fontana (DC SuperHero Girls), Francesco Francavilla (Red Sonja and Vampirella Meet Betty and Veronica), Franco (Superman of Smallville), Simon Fraser (Tales of the Night Watchman, courtesy of So What? Press), Julie Fujii Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo: The Hidden), John Gallagher (Max Meow), David Gallaher (The Only Living Girl), SL Gallant (Magic: The Gathering: Chandra – Tales of Alara), Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (DC Nation), Mitch Gerads (Mr. Miracle), Gerhard (Cerberus the Aardvark), Ransom Getty (Suicide Squad Special Edition), Chris Giarrusso (Hashtag: Danger), Mike Gold (The Whisper Campaign), Jimmy Gownley (Disney Zootopia: School Days), Garth Graham (Star Power), John Patrick Green (Kim Possible Adventures), Dawn Griffin (Zorphbert & Fred), Juanjo Guarnido (Blacksad),  Laura Lee Gulledge (Will & Whit), Bob Hall (West Coast Avengers), Cully Hamner (Batman Beyond), N. Steven Harris (Michael Cray), Dean Haspiel (The Red Hook), Glenn Hauman (Mine!), Mark Hempel (Sandman), Greg Hildebrandt (Old Man Logan), Clinton Hobart (Disney fine artist), Javon and Tarik Holmes (The Adventuers of Waffle Boy), Adam Hughes (Superman), Jamal Igle (Wrong Earth), Chris Ivy (Venom: Tooth and Claw, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Klaus Janson (New Challengers), Justin Jordan (Reaver), Kata Kane (G.F.F.s Ghost Friends Forever), Chris Kemple (The Mike Wieringo Tellos Tribute), Matt Kindt (X-O Manowar), Sharlene Kindt (Dept. H), Tom King (Batman), Evelyn Kriete (Hullabaloo), Greg Land (Hulkverines, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Jeehyung Lee (The Batman’s Grave, courtesy of Frankie’s Comics), Jim Lee (Batman: Hush, Saturday only), Jeff Lemire (Black Hammer), Joseph Michael Linsner (Red Sonja), Nate Lovett (Marvel Comics Presents), Howard Mackie (Ghost Rider), Mike Manley (Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Comic), Chris Mariano (Claire Lost Her Bear at the World’s Fair), Mark Mariano (Puddleton Farm: Ewing! What Are You Doing?), Ron Marz (Turok), Xavier McLaren (The Bubbler), John McCrea (Hitman, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Bob McLeod (New Mutants), Carla Speed McNeil (Twisted Romance), Pop Mhan (Raven, Daughter of Darkness), David Michelinie (Amazing Spider-Man, Saturday and Sunday only, courtesy of The Living Corpse), Matt Miner (All We Ever Wanted: Stories of a Better World), Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez (Ricanstruction: Reminiscing & Rebuilding Puerto Rico), Mark Morales (Justice League), Jamar Nicholas (Leon: Protector of the Playground), Kevin Nowlan (Black Widow, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Jerry Ordway (Archie Meets Batman ’66), Rachel Ordway (FTL, Y’all!), Greg Pak (Star Wars), Tom Palmer (Doctor Strange), Dan Parent (Archie: The Married Life – 10th Anniversary), Paul Pelletier (Aquaman/Jabberjaw Special), Andrew Pepoy (Archie: The Married Life – 10th Anniversary), Mike Perkins (Swamp Thing), David Petersen (Mouse Guard), Kasey Pierce (Seeress, Book One: The Reckless), Mark Poulton (Koni Waves), Andy Price (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic), Dave Proch (Mango Lizard), Livio Ramondelli (Transformers), Ron Randall (Trekker), Tom Raney (Dog Days of Summer), Mark Redfield (Vampire Hunters Incorporated), Afua Richardson (Run), Rafer Roberts (Grumble), Don Rosa (The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck), Peter Rostovsky (Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Freshman Force), Jennifer Rouse (The Death of Poe), Craig Rousseau (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Dimension X), Mike Royer (New Gods), Arsia Rozegar (Man Plus), Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo), Stuart Sayger (KISS: The End), Bob Schreck (Batman: Hush), Greg Schigiel (Pix: One Weirdest Weekend), Erica Schultz (Xena: Warrior Princess), Bart Sears (Turok), Jeff Shultz (Archie Jumbo Comics Digest), Louise Simonson (Death of Superman), Walter Simonson (Ragnarok), Matt Slay (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), Andy Smith (Demi-God), Brian “Smitty” Smith (The Stuff of Legend), John K. Snyder III (Killers), Allison Sohn (The Art of Red Sonja, Volume 2), Charles Soule (Curse Words), Joe Staton (Dick Tracy), Brian Stelfreeze (Rise of the Black Panther), Jim Steranko (Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Paul D. Storrie (The Viking Queen), Karl Story (Star Wars: Age of Rebellion – Han Solo), William Stout (Fantastic Worlds – The Art of William Stout), Nathan Szerdy (Vampirella), Ty Templeton (Marvel Super-Hero Adventures, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Michael Terracciano (Star Power), David and Sarah Trustman (The Memory Arts), Timothy Truman (Grimjack), Billy Tucci (Shi), Ted Tucker (Caricatures), Mike Vasquez (Rick & Morty, courtesy of Frankie’s Comics), Brian K. Vaughan (Paper Girls), Gus Vazquez (Big Hero 6), Emilio Velez Jr. (The Dodgeball Teens), Robert Venditti (Hawkman), Doug Wagner (The Hard Place), Mark Waid (Avengers: No Road Home), Adam Wallenta (Punk Taco), Adam Warren (Empowered And Sistah Spooky’s High School Hell), Todd Webb (Mr. Toast Comics), Lee Weeks (Batman), Mark Wheatley (Songs of Giants: The Poetry of Pulp), Emily Whitten (The Underfoot), Bob Wiacek (Iron Man), Marcus Williams (Tuskegee Heirs), Javier Cruz Winnik (Puerto Rico Strong), Marv Wolfman (Raven: Daughter of Darkness, courtesy of Hero Initiative), Rich Woodall (Electric Black), John Workman (Riverdale), Kelly Yates (Torchwood), Thom Zahler (Star Trek: Waypoint Special 2019), and Mike Zeck (The Punisher).

Sleeping Giant Announces Infinity Editions

Sleeping Giant strides into the collectibles market with a new product line sure to take control of the cosmos like a Titan! Today Sleeping Giant debuts the first offering in the new Infinity Editions line, featuring autographs by acclaimed cosmic creators, as well as innovative, pristine packaging.

The Infinity Edition’s Reality (Red) offering is a copy of Thanos #13 (2017), featuring a lenticular Secret Wars homage variant cover by artist Jacen Burrows, based on the classic original image by acclaimed artist Mike Zeck. The edition is hand-signed by Thanos creator and cosmic legend Jim Starlin, Thanos writer and rising superstar Donny Cates, and original Secret Wars artist Mike Zeck. All signatures were witnessed by a Sleeping Giant representative.

The Infinity Edition  Reality (Red) is strictly limited to 100 copies, so once they’re gone, they’re gone! Housed in a handsome portfolio with a certificate of authenticity and a CGC-sized Vault System case that can be opened and then re-sealed, the Infinity Edition is priced at $149 MSRP.

The Infinity Edition will be offered by Sleeping Giant at a special price of $99.95 at the upcoming New York Comic Con on Oct. 4-7. Sleeping Giant will be located at booth #1804 for NYCC, with a wide array of products and signings by an all-star lineup of creators. The purchase of any Infinity Edition also includes a VIP membership to Sleeping Giant.

The Vault System represents a disruptor in the industry, for the first time enabling collectors to take their freshly-autographed comics, place them in a re-openable hard case with a customized label, and leave the convention that day with their collectibles completely protected. Sleeping Giant’s dedicated staff certifies every signature on the spot before placing each book in the secure, openable case. Fans can select from Sleeping Giant’s expansive line of autographed books, or utilize their own books with our cases and completely customizable certificates. Sleeping Giant is partnered with X-Ray Vision, which utilizes its patent-pending technology to deliver the Vault System, as well as innovative, attractive clear backing boards.

Marvel Reveals New Punisher #1 Variant Cover by Mike Zeck!

This August, The Punisher will embark on a brand new adventure via some very capable hands, as Marvel exclusive writer Matthew Rosenberg continues Frank Castle’s story alongside acclaimed artist Riccardo Burchielli!

The Punisher no longer has the War Machine armor, but he’s retained his newly acquired taste for big game…and he’s hungry for more. Check out a new remastered variant cover by Mike Zeck with colors by Richard Isanove, and don’t miss Punisher #1, in comic shops this August! The comic has a main cover by Greg Smallwood.

Tidewater Comicon 2016

TWCC2016-icon-web

Tidewater Comicon is a smaller con with quite a big bite. First of all, the location doesn’t hurt. The convention center is three miles away from a nice beach with a small boardwalk, amusement park, and all the seafood restaurants and bars your little tourist’s heart could desire. There is plenty to do when you’re not standing in line for creators or panels.

That’s correct. I didn’t have to wait in line for any panels or to meet comics creators even industry legends like Jae Lee (Inhumans, Batman/Superman) or Gerry Conway (creator of The Punisher, killed off Gwen Stacy, basically only Stan Lee and Jack Kirby have created more characters than him). I also had great seating at all the panels I attended, including the Punisher one featuring Conway and Mike Zeck (Secret Wars, the original Punisher miniseries) and a hilarious Q and A featuring actors Brian O’Halloran (Dante, various Hicks family members) and Marilyn Ghigliotti (Veronica) from Kevin Smith’s cult 1994 comedy Clerks.

13267801_10154291666573115_4186623861704725382_n

The creators of Patsy Walker AKA Hellcat and me. (Picture by Katie Thompson.)

Definitely the biggest highlight of Tidewater Comicon was getting to chat with comics creators (Most of whom I’ve had various interactions with on social media.) and support their work in person. Jae Lee was as kind as he was talented and signed my copy of the recent Dynamite Django/Zorro crossover comic. His covers are examples of iconic storytelling in a single image. I geeked out way too hard over meeting the creative team of my favorite Marvel title Patsy Walker AKA Hellcat, which consists of writer Kate Leth, artist Britney Williams, and colorist Megan Wilson. I got a print of a cover of future issue featuring Jessica Jones in Alias Investigations with Hellcat on her desk and found out from Leth that editorial wanted Jessica to show up in the series, and they didn’t have to fight for her inclusion. It will be nice to see Jessica off the couch in a couple months.

I also met artist Eryk Donovan and picked up a copy of the miniseries Memetic (BOOM! Studios) that he did with James Tynion. It’s a series set during an apocalypse set off by a meme of a sloth and features a gay, deaf protagonist, who finds a little love before the world comes to a dark end. I chatted with Josh Frankel, the publisher of Z2 Comics, about their upcoming slate of titles, including Legend and Hyper Force Neo. Z2 is a fun indie publisher with a wide variety of comics from spooky, Southern fried all ages comics (Welcome to Showside) to black and white noirs (Carver) and even fantasy parodies (Allen, Son of Hellcock), and I look forward to seeing what they publish in the future. On Sunday, I got to talk with comics legend Gerry Conway about his Amazing Spider-Man run, and his fight for comics creators to get fair royalties when their creations are used in films and TV shows. I even chatted with Steve Orlando about his upcoming Supergirl series while commiserating over the loss of Midnighter. (He signed the panel where Midnighter and Apollo kiss in Midnighter #12 almost immediately after having a serious conversation with someone who wanted to break into comics.)

$_1

And while I wasn’t perusing the quarter bins or looking for manga or trade paperbacks (I picked up two volumes of Y The Last Man for $7 and picked up the complete Codename Sailor V series), a nice little oasis in the middle of the show floor was the Video Game Zone. It was basically just a bunch of tables with various sponsors, some free swag including Jurassic World Legos and Legend of Zelda soundtrack albums, and loads of video games consoles from mini arcade cabinets to Xbox One and PS4’s with the latest Mortal Kombat game or Fallout 4. I stuck to the old school playing the classic Super Mario Bros 3 on the Super NES, struggling at Marvel vs. Capcom 2 on a tricked out Sega Dreamcast, and good ol’ Frogger (which there was never a line for) while waiting for a creator interview. This area was one of the highlights of Tidewater Comicon and did a nice job integrating gamers and comics fans in one happy corner.

13254051_10154295230183115_3664658429888729581_n

Welcome to Showside Live panel

On Saturday, I went to two panels: Welcome to Showside Live and the Action Lab panel because indie comics are the best. Welcome to Showside live was all about Ian McGinty‘s all ages comic Welcome to Showside about a little green monster named Kit, who wants to eat food, play video games all day, and hang out with his friends, but is actually the son of the Cthulhu-esque Shadow King. It’s a comic from Z2 comic as well as an animated pilot. Unfortunately, there were technical difficulties, and the pilot couldn’t be shown, but creator Ian McGinty, co-writer Samantha “Glow” Knapp, colorist and letterer Fred Stresing, and colorist Meg Casey put on quite an energetic panel with help of moderator Tini Howard (Poseidon IX). The team provided some great insights into the themes of the series (Basically, not being what your parents want you to be: namely evil and friends becoming a surrogate family.) as well as the process from going from a comic worked on by 3 or 4 people to a big animation project. McGinty talked about how working on licensed properties like Bravest Warriors or Adventure Time, helped him build an audience for a creator owned comic.

The Action Lab panel was pretty small and featured Action Lab publisher Bryan Seaton, writer Bob Frantz (Monty the Dinosaur), and artist/animator Sam Ellis (Archer, Bravest Warriors). Ellis is also the head of Action Lab’s relatively new animation division. Seaton laid out some of Action Lab’s summer releases, including the comics version of Nickelodeon’s Miraculous Ladybug, which is the number 1 show in France, the UK, and South Korea, and the number 3 show in the United States. Action Lab also has the license for the Miraculous Ladybug card games, which was designed by Ellis. Other comics coming up include Franco’s (Itty Bitty HellboySpot on Adventure, Sam Ellis’ Monster Dojo, and the comics adaptation of Peter David’s novel Artful, one of his rare non-Marvel comics. After announcements, Seaton, Frantz, and Ellis gave very in-depth answers to questions about the comics submission process, especially matching your comic to the company you’re pitching to. They also talked about Action Lab’s innovation in all ages comic starting with the critical acclaim of Princeless, and Seaton promised that there were more volumes of Fight Like A Girl, their mythical fight comic featuring a black teenage girl as a protagonist, coming down the line.

13254168_10154295229133115_4777715476355138011_n

The Punisher panel

On Sunday, I went to a couple panels in the big panel room. The first one was about the Punisher and featured Gerry Conway and Mike Zeck. It was pretty well-attended probably due to the fantastic reception Jon Bernthal got for his performance as the character in Daredevil Season 2. Conway talked about how the Punisher was originally intended to be a one issue villain while he set up a larger storyline featuring the Jackal and Gwen Stacy in the first “Clone Saga”. The character was rooted in the 1970s when law and order was hard to come by in New York City, and the idea of vigilantism didn’t seem so bad in the wake of the real life actions of Bernard Goetz as well as the films Death Wish and Dirty Harry and Don Pendleton’s Executioner novels. Conway gave the Punisher a moral code to make him a more balanced character, and this led to him becoming a fan favorite character, who featured in Marvel’s black and white adult comics line and eventually had a miniseries and two ongoing series. Conway summed up the essence of the Punisher by saying he was a “Rorschach test for writers and artists”, who wanted to deal with the problems of their era. He said he liked a variety of takes on the Punisher from Garth Ennis’ realism in Punisher MAX to the more over the top violence of Steven Grant and Mike Zeck’s Punisher miniseries and graphic novel.

PunisherZeck

Both Conway and Zeck said that Jon Bernthal’s Punisher was their favorite on-screen version of the character and although Bernthal is a short actor, he brings presence to the role. Conway said that if they made a Punisher film in the 1970s when the character was first created that he would have cast “tough guy” actors, like Soylent Green-era Charlton Heston, Clint Eastwood, and of course, Death Wish‘s own Charles Bronson. On the artistic side, Zeck talked about his own design for the Punisher in the 1980s and said that he wanted to make him truly look like a killer while taking inspiration from Joe Kubert’s WWI and WWII-era German anti-hero Enemy Ace. Zeck also said that the Punisher was ripe to become a breakout character in the 1980s with the popularity of Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone’s ultraviolent action films.

Conway and Zeck also talked a little about other characters they have worked on in response to fan questions with Zeck saying his dream character to work on for Marvel was Captain America, and he was happy that the character had a main role in the original Secret Wars. Conway said he was a big fan of Spider-Gwen and was glad he got the opportunity to write a story featuring her in Spider-Verse Team-Up saying that her new role as a superhero was much more fleshed out than the “nice girl” that she was back in Amazing Spider-Man in the 1960s and 1970s. He talked about enjoying the creative freedom of writing B and C list characters, like his current work on Marvel’s Carnage. Gerry Conway and Mike Zeck provided some great insights into these iconic characters drawing on their decades of work in the industry. (Conway sold his first story to DC Comics as a 16 year old!)

13221021_10154295228888115_2526290111551380163_n

Brian O’Halloran did want to be here at the Clerks panel.

The final panel I went to was a Q and A with Brian O’Halloran and Marilyn Ghigliotti. O’Halloran played Dante in the cult comedy Clerks, directed by Kevin Smith, and has played various Hicks family members in virtually every Kevin Smith film set in his cinematic universe, the View Askewniverse. Ghigliotti played Dante’s girlfriend Veronica in Clerks (Of the “37 dicks” and lasagna fame) and now works in the film industry as a makeup artist. She will be reprising the role of Veronica in the upcoming Clerks III film. O’Halloran and Ghigliotti told wildly hilarious stories about working on Kevin Smith’s films and meeting various celebrities, like Mark Hamill, George Carlin, and Alan Rickman, who gave O’Halloran some advice when he flubbed a line in Dogma. O’Halloran showed up off his Dante-esque nerd cred and gave his opinion on Star Wars: The Force Awakens, including roasting the Starkiller base while saying that Lord of the Rings and Star Wars are equally good trilogies in a riff off some dialogue from Clerks II. Brian O’Halloran is a naturally funny person, and it was easy to see from his personality why he is such a good fit for Kevin Smith’s style of writing and filmmaking. The crowd was very animated, and it showed how Smith’s films and his down to Earth, slightly nerdy protagonists have resonated with fans even 22 years after Clerks was released.

Tidewater Comicon was a nice, relaxing convention that covered a wide gamut of fandom from anime voice actors to cult comedy actors, big time Marvel and DC artists, and indie comics darlings. One slight critique was that exhibitors mostly sold single issues and not trade paperbacks, but Tidewater Comicon is a great palate cleanser after going to huge, crowded shows like New York Comic Con.

Be on the look out for my upcoming articles about Tidewater Comicon cosplayers and interviews with comics creators Tini Howard (Skeptics) and Ian McGinty (Welcome to Showside).

A Swing By East Coast Comic Con 2016

This was my first year at the East Coast Comic Con.  The event, sponsored by Crucial Entertainment at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in New Jersey, attracted a sizable crowd. It was a low key event with a bevy of writers and artists, both old and new. Mark Waid, Ann Nocenti, Cliff Chiang, Mike Zeck, Carl Potts, Simon Bisley, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez,  James O’Barr and many others attended. For the Star Trek fans, Nichelle Nichols, who was cast by Gene Roddenberry as Chief Communications Officer Lt. Uhura, fourth in command of the Starship Enterprise, in the legendary TV series, was present.

Everyone was friendly, and a few artists charged for access and signatures, but most only asked for a donation to charity for an amount of your choice. I managed to get a photo op with Bisley (I suspect the bottle of Knob Creek I gifted him helped smooth things over), and listen on his educational rants– he is entertaining as hell, and a Harley Davidson fan. I got to meet a few new people, and as I attend more and more of these events, catch up with some familiar faces.

Dan Greenfield of 13th Dimension hosted one of  many panels with Mark Waid, the Harvey Award and multiple Eisner Award winning writer, who discussed his career and his contributions to the world of comics, from the groundbreaking Kingdom Come to his ventures in self-publishing. In case anyone out there is wondering, the next issue of Strange Fruit (BOOM! Studios) is due out in two weeks.

Of course there were plenty of cos-players onsite. The best was watching the Marvel and DC players get together for group photos.  I was speaking to one of the players, and learned that there are forums where these folks gather to plan out their get-togethers at comic cons for photo opportunities. Also, for the kids (and some adults) there were lightsaber fighting lessons by New York Jedi.

Check out the slideshow, with pics and some sigs I snagged, below:


 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


 

Marvel Creators at Baltimore Comic-Con 2015

John BeattyVIP and General Admission Tickets are now available for the 2015 Baltimore Comic-Con, taking place the weekend of September 2527, 2015 at the Baltimore Convention Center. Baltimore Comic-Con is proud to welcome Marvel talent to the 2015 show: John Beatty, Greg Pak, Tom Raney, Jim Starlin, and Mike Zeck.

Starting his art career at the early age of 15, John Beatty first began inking at AC Comics. After hunting down Marvel Editor-in-Chief (at the time), Jim Shooter, at a convention, he was offered the opportunity to come to New York and get a paid try-out. Fortunately for Beatty, this worked out well, as he went on to spend 20 years working at DC and Marvel Comics on titles like Batman, JLA, The Adventures of Superman, Captain America, The Punisher, and Secret Wars. His recent work includes The Remaining original graphic novel by Kingstone Comics, and contributions to Hero Initiative projects including The Uncanny X-Men 100 Project and The Hellboy 100 Project.

Greg PakComics writer (and Rhodes Scholar) Greg Pak has been responsible for much-lauded runs on titles like Marvel’s Incredible Hulk (“Planet Hulk” and “World War Hulk”), Incredible Hercules, X-Men: Magneto Testament, and Red Skull, Dynamite Entertainment’s Battlestar Galactica, Valiant’s Eternal Warrior, and Aspen’s Dead Man’s Run. He has been named Wizard Magazine’s Breakout Talent of the Year, and his stories and characters have won numerous publication accolades as well. You can read Pak’s latest work on Marvel’s Storm, DC Comics’ Action Comics and Superman/Batman, and Dynamite Entertainment’s Turok, Dinosaur Hunter.

Tom Raney has spent much of his career working for the mid- to large-size publishers in the comics industry. A graduate of the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art, he has contributed to Marvel’s Ultimate Universe, Valiant’s relaunched titles, and Dark Horse Comics’ Star Wars among many other titles and publishers. In recent history, his artwork can be seen within the pages of DC Comics’ Threshold, Marvel’s Incredible Hulk, and Titan Comics’ Monster Massacre hardcover collection, and you can find his current work on Marvel’s Avengers Vs., and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and Inferno, and DC’s Injustice: Gods Among Us Year Four.

Jim StarlinThe multi-talented Jim Starlin has worked on both writing and creating art for some of the most noteworthy creations since his entry into the field of comics in the 1970s. The mind behind the Marvel character Shang-Chi, Master of Kung Fu, he is also responsible for a number of noteworthy cosmic characters in the Marvel Universe, including Gamora, Drax the Destroyer, and the villainous Thanos, all of whom were featured Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy feature motion picture. He developed noteworthy runs on Marvel’s Captain Marvel, Warlock, and Silver Surfer, Marvel mini-series Infinity Gauntlet, Infinity War, and Infinity Crusade, and DC Comics’ Batman, The Weird, and Cosmic Odyssey. His Death of Captain Marvel was the first Marvel graphic novel to be published. More recently, he has provided writing and art for DC’s Stormwatch and writing on Green Lantern: Mongul #23.2, and he returned to his classic villain with Marvel’s Thanos: The Infinity Revelation and Thanos: The Infinity Relativity.

Mike ZeckMike Zeck began his storied career in comics with Charlton Comics with their animation-related line of titles before moving to Marvel Comics to leave an indelible mark. Zeck provided art to unforgettable characters and titles such as 1987’s “Kraven’s Last Hunt” in the Spider-Man titles, “Circle of Blood” in The Punisher, and the classic Secret Wars featuring Zeck’s design on the classic black costume for Spider-Man (and later adopted by Venom). Zeck’s work has graced the pages and covers of Aquaman, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight, Green Lantern, G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: Special Missions, Lobo, Deathstroke The Terminator, The Eliminator, and too many titles to mention here. His creator-owned project Damned recently appeared from BOOM! Studios, and his work is featured in IDW’s Mike Zeck’s Classic Marvel Stories Artist’s Edition.

In addition to on-site CGC grading, this year’s confirmed guests for the show include: Neal Adams (All-New Captain America); Scott Ambruson (Azteca: Ciudad Paradiso); Jeremy Bastian (Cursed Pirate Girl); Marty Baumann (Pixar artist); John Beatty (Secret Wars); Gregory Benton (Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream); Christy Blanch (The Damnation of Charlie Wormwood); Mark Buckingham (Fables); Bob Budiansky (courtesy of Hero Initiative, Transformers); Talent Caldwell (Grimm Fairy Tales Presents White Queen: Age of Darkness); Chris Campana (Kantara); Richard Case (Doom Patrol); Christa Cassano (Ghetto Klown); Sean Chen (Secret Origins); Cliff Chiang (Wonder Woman); Frank Cho (Jungle Girl); Amy Chu (Strange Sports Stories); Steve Conley (Bloop); Amanda Conner (Harley Quinn); Katie Cook (Gronk); Darwyn Cooke (Richard Stark’s Parker); Todd Dezago (Perhapanauts); Joe Eisma (Morning Glories); Ramona Fradon (Spongebob Annual-Size Super-Giant Swimtacular); Francesco Francavilla (Secret Wars: Battleworld); John Gallagher (Buzzboy); Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (Batman ’66: The Lost Episode); Daniel Govar (Marvel’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier Prelude); Keron Grant (Father’s Day); Mike Grell (courtesy of Hero Initiative, Action Comics); Laura Guzzo (Princeless: Short Stories for Warrior Women); Cully Hamner (Convergence: The Question); Dean Haspiel (The Fox); Russ Heath (G.I. Combat); Eric Henson (The Perhapanauts: Danger Down Under); h-eri (Ivory Dragon Studios); Jaime Hernandez (Love and Rockets); Ken Hunt (Talon); Klaus Janson (Superman); Dave Johnson (Inhumans: Attilan Rising); JG Jones (Strange Fruit); Chris Kemple (Red Vengeance); Denis Kitchen (The Best of Comix Book: When Marvel Went Underground); Barry Kitson (Empire: Uprising); Greg LaRocque (The Avengers); Paul Levitz (Convergence: World’s Finest Comics); Mike Lilly (Grimm Fairy Tales Presents: Robyn Hood); Nate Lovett (Midnight Tiger); Kevin Maguire (Justice League); Mike Manley (Darkhawk); Mark Mariano (The Other Side of Hugless Hill); Laura Martin (Star Wars); Ron Marz (Convergence: Batman and Robin); Bob McLeod (Secret Wars); Pop Mhan (He-Man: The Eternity War); Terry Moore (Rachel Rising); Nen (The Memory Collectors); Greg Pak (Storm); Tom Palmer (The Avengers); Jimmy Palmiotti (The Con Job); Dan Parent (Archie); Brent Peeples (Legenderry: Green Hornet); Andrew Pepoy (Afterlife with Archie); David Peterson (Mouse Guard); Khoi Pham (X-Men Legacy); Andy Price (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic); Ron Randall (Convergence: Catwoman); Tom Raney (Avengers Vs.); David Rodriguez (Skylanders); Budd Root (Cavewoman); Don Rosa (Donald Duck); Craig Rousseau (Batman Beyond); Stephane Roux (Harley Quinn and Power Girl); Andy Runton (Owly); Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo); Matteo Scalera (Black Science); Jeff Shultz (Betty and Veronica); Bart Sears (Bloodshot); Louise Simonson (Convergence: Superman – The Man of Steel); Walter Simonson (Convergence: Superman – The Man of Steel); Matt Slay (The Sakai Project: Artists Celebrate Thirty Years of Usagi Yojimbo); Andy Smith (Earth 2); Matthew Dow Smith (X-Files Season 10); Charles Soule (Uncanny Inhumans); Mark Sparacio (Sgt. Rock); Jim Starlin (Thanos: The Infinity Relativity); Paul Storrie (Sheena, Queen of the Jungle); Joe St. Pierre (New Zodiax); Marcio Takara (Armor Wars); Ben Templesmith (Gotham by Midnight); Mark Texeira (Ghost Racers); Frank Tieri (Suicide Squad); Peter Tomasi (Green Lantern Corps); John Totleben (Swamp Thing); Jeremy Treece (King: Mandrake the Magician); Billy Tucci (Shi); James Tynion (Constantine: The Hellblazer); Rick Veitch (Saga of the Swamp Thing); Charles Vess (Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream); Mark Waid (Daredevil); John Watson (Red Sonja); Matt Wieringo (‘Ringo Scholarship Fund); Marv Wolfman (courtesy of Hero Initiative, Convergence: New Teen Titans); Rich Woodall (Kyrra); Kelly Yates (Doctor Who); Thom Zahler (My Little Pony: Friends Forever); and Mike Zeck (Secret Wars).

Zeck, Golden, and Witterstaetter come to Baltimore Comic-Con in 2014!

The Baltimore Comic-Con makes its annual return to the Inner Harbor the weekend of September 5-7, 2014 at the Baltimore Convention Center for its first 3-day event!

In addition to adding the much-requested Friday to their pop culture weekend of comic book goodness, they are excited to welcome back Michael Golden and Renee Witterstaetter to the show, and present the premiere appearance of Mike Zeck at the Baltimore Comic-Con!

Mike Zeck began his storied career in comics with Charlton Comics with their animation-related line of titles before moving to Marvel Comics to leave an indelible mark. Zeck provided art to unforgettable characters and titles such as 1987’s “Kraven’s Last Hunt” in the Spider-Man titles, “Circle of Blood” in The Punisher, and the classic Secret Wars featuring Zeck’s design on the classic black costume for Spider-Man (and later adopted by Venom). Zeck’s work has graced the pages and covers of Aquaman, Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight, Green Lantern, G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: Special MissionsLobo, Deathstroke The Terminator, The Eliminator, and too many titles to mention here.  His creator-owned project Damned , recently appeared from BOOM! Studios. And a new sketchbook is in the works from Eva Ink Publishing.

Artist/writer/creator Michael Golden is a legend in the comic book industry, but one that has never stopped adding to his legacy as a storytelling professional. Co-creator of the X-Men’s Rogue character, Spartan X, and Bucky O’Hare, Michael is known worldwide for his groundbreaking work on Marvel’s The ‘Nam, Micronauts, G.I. Joe Yearbook, and Dr. Strange, and is counted as one of the best cover designers and illustrators in the business. Golden’s work can be seen on the covers of Spawn, Nightwing, Iron Man, Heroes for Hire, Exiles, Demon’s Regret, Spider-Man, Vampirella, Captain American, The Punisher, and The Hulk. Recent books covering the colorful life and amazing art of Michael Golden include a Manga version of the Bucky O’Hare series, as well as the top-selling art retrospective Excess: The Art of Michael Golden, written by Renee Witterstaetter, which sold out and has gone into a second printing, as well as his recent sketchbooks Heroes and Villains, MORE Heroes and Villains, and Michael Golden: Alchemy. His upcoming book is entitled Michael Golden: Dangerous Curves.

Renee Witterstaetter, author of Excess: The Art of Michael Golden, Tex: The Art of Mark Texeira, the critically-acclaimed Nick Cardy: The Artist at War, and Nick Cardy: Wit-Lash, began the comic phase of her career working on such titles as Superman at DC Comics and Silver Surfer, Conan the Barbarian, and Conan Saga at Marvel, and then went on to spearhead the reintroduction of She-Hulk at Marvel. She then moved over to Topps Comics where she was the editor on X-Files, Jurassic Park, Xena and Hercules, and the co-creator (with artist Michael Golden) of the successful series, Spartan X.  In addition, Renee has also been the colorist on hundreds of comics from The Avengers to Spider-Man to Captain America, among many, many others.  Her newest books include Santa Confidential, by Hagar the Horrible artist Chris Browne and the sketchbook James O’Barr: Uncoffined.

This year’s previously confirmed guests for the show include: Marty Baumann (Pixar artist); Jeremy Bastian (Cursed Pirate Girl); Dave Bullock (Batman Black and White); Greg Capullo (Batman); Bernard Chang (Green Lantern Corps); Sean Chen (Amazing Spider-Man); Jimmy Cheung (Infinity); Cliff Chiang (Wonder Woman); Frank Cho (X-Men:  Battle of the Atom); Richard Clark (House of Gold & Bones); Steve Conley (Bloop); Alan Davis (Wolverine); Tommy Lee Edwards (Star Wars); Garth Ennis (Preacher, The Boys); David Finch (Forever Evil); Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez (All-Star Western); Dave Gibbons (Watchmen); Bryan JL Glass (Mice Templar); Michael Golden (The Ravagers); Cully Hamner (Animal Man); Dean Haspiel (The Fox); Fred Hembeck (Garfield); Adam Hughes (Before Watchmen: Dr. Manhattan); JG Jones (Green Lantern Corps, Batman Black and White); Justin Jordan (Luther Strode, Green Lantern: New Guardians); Barry Kitson (Empire); Aaron Kuder (Action Comics); David Mack (Shadowman); Kevin Maguire (Guardians of the Galaxy); Alex Maleev (Moon Knight); Ron Marz (Witchblade); Bob McLeod (X-Men: Gold); Tradd Moore (Deadpool Annual); Mark Morales (New Avengers); Dan Parent (Archie, Veronica, Kevin Keller); David Peterson (Mouse Guard); Joe Prado (Justice League); Brian Pulido (Lady Death); Tom Raney (Incredible Hulk); Ivan Reis (Aquaman and The Others); Budd Root (Cavewoman); Alex Saviuk (Web of Spider-Man); Andy Smith (Superman #23.1: Bizarro); Allison Sohn (sketch card artist); Charles Soule (Thunderbolts); Jim Starlin (Thanos: The Infinity Revelation); Ben Templesmith (The Memory Collectors); Peter Tomasi (Batman and Two-Face); John Totleben (Swamp Thing); Herb Trimpe (GI Joe:  A Real American Hero); Billy Tucci (Shi); Rick Veitch (Saga of the Swamp Thing); Mark Waid (Daredevil); Bill Willingham (Fables); Renee Witterstaetter (Joe Jusko: Maelstrom); and Thom Zahler (My Little Pony).

Zeismic
« Older Entries