Tag Archives: sean von gorman

Return of the Toe Tag Riot! A chat with series creators Matt Miner and Sean Von Gorman

Return of the Toe Tag Riot

Toe Tag Riot, the comic book series that the infamous hate group Westboro Baptist Church claimed would “split Hell wide open” is back for round 2 and on Kickstarter, with the Return of the Toe Tag Riot.

Guest contributor Adam Cadmon got to talk to writer Matt Miner and penciler/inker Sean Von Gorman about the series which features colors by Gab Contreras and letters by Taylor Esposito.


ADAM CADMON: So, where did the concept for a zombie punk rock band originate?

MATT MINER: I grew up in the punk scene, and never really left, so all my work has a punk rock vibe to it because that’s the world I know and love – some books, like this one, are just a pure love letter to punk rock and the accepting and cool people I’ve known through my life.

SEAN VON GORMAN: I remember at some point at a convention we started talking about what if Matt was a vegan zombie, and what he would eat? Obviously he would have to eat people because zombies can’t survive on grains. And being an ethical punk if he HAD to eat people he would pick the worst people to eat. I think there is a sketch somewhere of a zombie Matt eating a little tofu person.

MM: Oh, yeah!  I think I have that sketch around here somewhere, actually.

Return of Toe Tag Riot

AC: Why did you go with the “thinking” zombie angle opposed to the mindless eater?

MM: The undead-zombie comic has been done to death, pun intended.  With Toe Tag Riot it was kind of like “What if you weren’t always a zombie?  If you knew what you were doing, who would you choose to eat?”  I mean, everyone’s gotta eat, but they can choose a more ethical course.

SVG: I feel no epic kill is ever complete without a snarky comment like an ’80s action movie star. For example, right before a zombie punk bites into a bad dude he says something like “It was nice to EAT you!”  Wait, that was pretty good. Matt, write that one down.

Return of the Toe Tag Riot

AC: Let me springboard a little; the choice to have the band cursed instead of turned always interested me…where’d that idea come from?

MM: I don’t remember how that came about, really, but what really appealed to me about the idea was this way you see both sides of the character – the ravenous zombie and the human toll it takes on them when they eat the wrong skinhead and have diarrhea for hours.

SVG: I remember part of the initial conversation on this was that the group’s bodies would start to physically breakdown as they rotted. A punk band in a tour bus smells bad enough when they aren’t zombies.

AC: You’ve had several guest stars in the past, can you give us anything–anything at all–in terms of who we should expect as either allies or foes in volume 2?

MM: Sean and I have some rock star pals, and we like to drop them in here and there.  Andy Hurley, from Fall Out Boy, is a returning regular and the band’s number one roadie, and I sure would like to sneak GWAR into the pages at some point since they’re such a huge inspiration for this book.

AC: Are there any plans to expand the Toe Tag universe, i.e., web series, movies, etc.?

MM: Sure, why not?  Would love to see a B-movie a’la Troma Films, but, you know, money and all.

SVG: I would love to see a big screen Toe Tag Riot!  I want toys of Toe Tag Riot!  We had considered the idea of doing a series of comic shorts. There are so many horrible people out there that it’s hard to keep up with in print.

AC: Are there any upcoming projects that you’d like to talk about?

MM: I have Lab Raider out currently from Black Mask Studios – it’s the story of these 2 women who take on dog fighters and animal abusers.  These are characters I’ve written in a few series now, and this particular volume gets really weird.  Also, the new GWAR graphic novel is in production and you can pre-order that at gwarcomic.com right now!

SVG: I have School Lab Raider, basically Lab Raider but for they are kids. Which may possibly come out as a back up in an upcoming issue of Lab Raider. I also have a story in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and the Freshman Force from Devils Due that is going into its 2nd printing.

MM: I think that Lab Raider backup is scheduled for issue 3, as long as we get it in time.  Issue 1 is on stands now – get it! HEY! The Kickstarter for Return of the Toe Tag Riot is live! Click the link to learn more!


Adam is a writer, an explorer of consciousness, a dog owner (times 2) and a decent fellow if you ask him. He currently lives in a suburb about 20 minutes from downtown Atlanta.

Toe Tag Riot Returns! The Comic Westboro Baptist Church Hates is Back!

Toe Tag Riot, the comic book series that the infamous hate group Westboro Baptist Church claimed would “split Hell wide open” is back for round 2 and on Kickstarter, with returning fan-favorite guest stars and a whole slew of new bad guys on their plate.

Cursed by a witch to become zombies whenever they play their music, Toe Tag Riot uses their “zombie superpowers” in the most ethical way possible: by murdering and eating bigots, homophobes, racists, sexists, and the like. The band broke up shortly after their mid-2000s tour, but have maintained a cult following in the punk rock scene. Their reunion tour, 15 years later, is being met with jubilation from the fans and fear from those who know they’re on the menu.

Created by writer Matt Miner and artist Sean Von Gorman, The Return of Toe Tag Riot is a 4-issue digital-first offering, with a physical trade paperback accompaniment. The campaign is seeking $19,000 to pay creators, fund rewards, and assorted fees. Rewards include copies of the books in both digital and physical formats, original art sketches, the chance to be drawn in and murdered within the pages of the comic, and a limited edition 2-song cassette single of songs recorded by the band (but really by Matt and Sean’s musician friends).

Rounding out the creative team are rising star colorist Gab Contreras and all-star letterer Taylor Esposito.

The creative team of Return of the Toe Tag Riot believe in positive and progressive values, and vehemently reject racism, sexism, ableism, ageism, homophobia, transphobia and xenophobia in all forms.

The Return of Toe Tag Riot
Cover by Jonathan Brandon Sawyer with colors by Josh Jensen

Toe Tag Riot Endorses Bernie Sanders

Today Toe Tag Riot, the foul-mouthed punk rock band cursed to become zombies whenever they perform their music raised their fists and their voices to speak out in support of Vermont Senator and presidential candidate Bernie Sanders.  The band released the following joint statement:

TOE TAG RIOT may be an irreverent band of loud punk rockers that seem straight out of a bonkers comic book concept, but we’ve spent our lives fighting for equality among all people. The very real and damaging issues of racism, sexism, and homophobia are very near and dear to us as we are a band full of hetero, homo, and bisexual individuals – we are men and women, white, black, and mixed races.  We are proud to officially endorse a candidate who speaks to the things in our hearts, Bernie Sanders.

Additionally, each of the band members added their own personal endorsement:

Dickie Tagz (vocals):

Bernie’s messages on rich people sucking really hit home for me.  I mean, we struggle and fight for bookings against crappy mega corporations churning out awful pop music while we’re forced to live on Top Ramen and the brains of bigots and homophobes (see you soon, Donald!)  We work just as hard, maybe harder, than all those rich a-hole bands – we want a fair shot, dammit!

Evie Vee (drums):

I knew Bernie was my guy when I saw the pictures of him in the 1960s, defiantly chained to a black woman while protesting against segregation.  This is a man who marched with Dr. King, was arrested in the civil rights movement, and has been fighting for African Americans like me, and other minorities, his whole life.  His father’s family was wiped out by Hitler and right now we need a warrior against fascism like Bernie.

Annie Maul (bass):

I’m a lesbian woman married to Evie, the love of my life, and sometimes it’s like the whole world is against us and that totally sucks.  But here comes Bernie who’s always had the backs of the LGBT community and didn’t need to ‘evolve’ on the subject and that’s less sucky.  He was for us even when speaking out in support of gay people was political suicide.  He’s for the people – ALL of the people.  Even sometimes-zombies like Toe Tag Riot.

Paulie Propylene (guitar)

What’s not to like?  The guy was against the Iraq war from the start, he’s for total and complete equal rights and pay equity for women, and he’s the only candidate to have spoken in support of the transgender community, a subject very much intertwined in my soul.  Trans women are real women and trans men are real men and Bernie Sanders is the only politician I’ve ever seen who seems to ‘get’ that.  I’m feeling the Bern in a big big big way.

TTR BERNIEBand managers Matt Miner (co-creator/writer)  and Sean Von Gorman (co-creator/artist) add:

Toe Tag Riot Volume 1 is available to pre-order NOW with Diamond code MAR161159!  Don’t miss the comic the Westboro Baptist Church claim will “Split Hell wide open”!

Toe Tag Riot is a punk rock band cursed to become zombies whenever they play their music.  Using their zombie “superpowers” for good, they only slaughter and kill the worst of humanity: racists, homophobes and other assorted bigots – all careening to a showdown with the Westboro Baptist Chruch themselves!

The trade paperback includes issues 1-4, the rare issue #0 (a convention exclusive), and the short story printed in Alternative Press magazine #330!

tpbPrint the coupon below and bring to your local comic shop before the end of March:

ttrpreorder

Exclusive Preview: Pawn Shop

PAWN SHOP

Written by: Joey Esposito
Art by: Sean Von Gorman
Release: November 7th
Z2 Comics

PAWN SHOP presents the story of four people, in a city of eight million, whose lives unknowingly intersect through a Manhattan pawn shop. A widower. A nurse. A punk. A Long Island Railroad employee. New York City is an ecosystem where everybody is connected, if only by the streets they walk on. PAWN SHOP explores the big things that separate us and the little moments that inexplicably unite us.

Z2 Comics Announces Fall Graphic Novels including Ashes, Pawn Shop, The Abaddon, and Harvey Pekar’s Cleveland

ASHESZ2 Comics announced today their fall 2015 graphic novel slate, including a reprint of one of Harvey Pekar’s final graphic novels and three graphic novels. The biggest surprise of the bunch is a new printing of Pekar’s Cleveland, one of his last graphic novels, and a love letter to his home town. It was originally published by Top Shelf in April 2012.

Check out below for the full slate of graphic novels being released.

Ashes: A Firefighter’s Tale written by Mario Candelaria with art by Karl Slominski.

(September 22, 2015; $19.99; 120 pages; black and white)

Matt always had an easygoing life. Girls liked him, his friends were more like family, and being a firefighter came naturally. Then the accident happened. Now, after the loss of his leg, Matt struggles to cope with his new handicap as he attempts to rebuild his shattered family and once budding career. A riveting tale about perseverance, hard work, and overcoming the odds, Ashes is a gripping tale told in stunning black and white.

PAWN SHOPPawn Shop written by Joey Esposito with art by Sean Von Gorman

(September 22, 2015; $19.99; 120 pages; full color)

A widower. A nurse. A punk. A Long Island Railroad employee. New York City is an ecosystem where everybody is connected, if only by the streets they walk on. This original graphic novel is the story of four people, in a city of eight million, whose lives unknowingly intersect through a Manhattan pawn shop.

Written by Joey Esposito (Footprints) and illustrated with a gorgeous mixture of watercolor and digital elements by Sean Von Gorman (Toe Tag Riot), Pawn Shop explores the big things that separate us and the little moments that inexplicably unite us.

The Abaddon written and illustrated by Koren Shadmi

(November 10, 2015; $24.99; 240 pages; full color)

cover_updatedLoosely based on Jean-Paul Sartre’s play No Exit, The Abaddon is the story of a young man who finds himself trapped in a bizarre apartment with a group of ill-matched roommates. He discovers that his new home doesn’t adhere to any rational laws of nature and comes to realize that everyone living in the apartment is missing crucial parts of their memories and identities.

Cleveland by Harvey Pekar and Joseph Remnant

(November DATE TK; Price TK; 128; black and white)

A lifelong resident of Cleveland, Ohio, Harvey Pekar (1939-2010) pioneered autobiographical comics, mining the mundane for magic since 1976 in his critically acclaimed series American Splendor. Legendary comic book writer Harvey Pekar’s collaboration with artist Joseph Remnant, titled Cleveland, was originally published by Top Shelf Shelf Comics and Zip Comics in 2012 and includes an introduction by Alan Moore. The book presents key moments and characters from the city’s history, intertwined with Harvey’s own ups and downs, as relayed to us by Our Man and meticulously researched and rendered by artist Joseph Remnant. At once a history of Cleveland and a portrait of Harvey, it’s a tribute to the ordinary greatness of both.

Preview: Pawn Shop #4

PAWN SHOP #4

Written by Joey Esposito
Pencils, Inks, and Cover by Sean Von Gorman
Colors by Jonathan Moore
Letters by Adam O. Pruett
Price: 99 cents

A city worker tries to balance mounting bills and the hunt for happiness while caring for her sick brother.

PawnShop4_Cover

Preview: Pawn Shop #3

PAWN SHOP #3

Written by Joey Esposito
Pencils, Inks, and Cover by Sean Von Gorman
Colors by Jonathan Moore
Letters by Adam O. Pruett
Price: .99 cents

A punk tries to claw her way out of the trenches, avoiding small mistakes only to make even bigger ones.

PawnShop3_Cover

Preview: Pawn Shop #2

PAWN SHOP #2

Written by Joey Esposito
Pencils, Inks, and Cover by Sean Von Gorman
Colors by Jonathan Moore
Letters by Adam O. Pruett
Price: .99 cents

A nurse longs for the past, can’t wait for the future, and struggles to figure out the present.

PawnShop2_Cover

Preview: Pawn Shop #1

PAWN SHOP #1

Written by Joey Esposito
Art and Cover by Sean Von Gorman
Lettered by Adam O. Pruett
Price: .99 cents

A widower walks the streets of Manhattan searching for pieces of the life he led before.

PawnShop1-1