Ian Dawe

Independent scholar Ian Dawe has been writing for Sequart since November 2013. Before that, he had a mixed background, initially in science (Molecular Biology and Biochemistry), where he earned an MSc from Simon Fraser University and then an MA in Film from the University of Exeter in the UK. He spent a decade teaching at the college level, delivering courses in Genetics, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Biological Anthropology and Film History. His academic work includes peer-reviewed papers on the work of Alan Moore, Harvey Pekar for Studies in Comics and a dissertation on Terry Gilliam for the University of Exeter. He has presented papers at several major academic conferences including Slayage 2014, Magus: Transdisciplinary Approaches to the Work of Alan Moore in 2010 (in the wizard's hometown of Northampton), Comics Rock and the International Conference of the Humanities in 2012, and at the Southwest Popular Culture Association Conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 2014 and 2015. He has contributed to several books, including a chapter about the TV show Archer in "James Bond and Popular Culture" and two chapters on Breaking Bad for "Breaking Bad and Masculinity", both now available from McFarland. At Sequart, he has authored a chapter for New Life and New Civiliations: Exploring Star Trek Comics, A Long Time Ago and two more upcoming books on Star Wars comics. He has also contributed to books on Alan Moore and 1970s Horror Comics. He is currently planning a full-length book on Better Call Saul. Ian currently lives in Vancouver, BC.

BOOKS AND MOVIES BY IAN DAWE

A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe

A More Civilized Age: Exploring the Star Wars Expanded Universe (contributor)

A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics

A Galaxy Far, Far Away: Exploring Star Wars Comics (contributor)

A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe

A Long Time Ago: Exploring the Star Wars Cinematic Universe (contributor)

New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics

New Life and New Civilizations: Exploring Star Trek Comics (contributor)

Not pictured:

MAGAZINE CONTENT BY IAN DAWE (386 TOTAL)

all2_1920The Incredible Burt Wonderstone: A First-Class Cult Movie

Everyone seems to have their own definition of what constitutes a “cult movie”. For my part, I’d define it as a movie in which the main narrative, the overall plot, isn’t very interesting, but there… [more]

Necropolitan #1 (Jan 2017).cbz - Page 1Mike Phillips on Necropolitan

Necropolitan is an exciting new comic book from publisher Martian Lit’s growing line of titles. Created by Mike Phillips, Julian Darius, and Steven Legge, the recently released Necropolitan #1 is a fresh take on the… [more]

Buffy1bCelebrating the 20th Anniversary of Buffy the Vampire Slayer

Twenty years ago, the landscape of television, drama and popular culture changed with the debut of Buffy The Vampire Slayer, created by Joss Whedon. Looking back at the first shaky season of what was then… [more]

Logan_Trailer_HPLogan: A Brilliant, Game-Changing Film

In some ways, the X-Men have always been about family. Looking back to the first Bryan Singer film from 2000, many of the dramatic tensions revolve around a group of outcasts trying to piece together… [more]

Wolverine- Old Man Logan (2008) (Digital TPB) (Zone-Empire).cbr - Page 2A Look at Mark Millar’s Old Man Logan

Mark Millar’s Old Man Logan is a bold, gripping adventure comic set against a western-style post-apocalyptic background featuring once-mighty heroes clinging to the last vestiges of their former glory. It makes Chris Claremont’s Days of Future Past… [more]

Bill_Paxton3-715x397Remembering Bill Paxton

Bill Paxton was one of those actors who was universally loved. Always a welcome presence in any film (or, indeed, TV show), a reliable character actor with strength, vulnerability and charm, but what made him… [more]

belfry_Review coverThe Belfry: A Nightmare Comic

Sometimes it’s interesting to read a comic that isn’t part of world-building or creating a complex, multi-layered world. To be sure: such complex comics are very welcome, and Gabriel Hardman and Corinna Bechko’s Invisible Republic… [more]

hiddenfigurestheblackmedia2016Hidden Figures: An Old-Fashioned Feel-Good Movie that Teaches

Hidden Figures is a harmless, old-fashioned all-ages family movie, that teaches an important historical lesson, but it’s light on its feet, entertaining and never feels like a slog. Quite the contrary: this is a very… [more]

avatars-000207112701-8nizk7-t500x500Celebrate Smodcast’s 10th Birthday with the Saga of Emo Kev

Every now and then, an artist happens onto that happy accident of inspiration, industry and style and creates something absolutely perfect. I’m sure when Kevin Smith started recording his “Smodcast” podcasts ten years ago today,… [more]

star trek nemesisStar Trek Nemesis: The End of an Era

Star Trek Nemesis, released 15 years ago at this time of year, is the nadir of the entire franchise. The 1998 Trek instalment, Insurrection, was also very weak, but weak within the normal parameters of… [more]

Necropolitan #1 (Jan 2017).cbz - Page 1Necropolitan #1: The Geography of Hell

We all think we know what hell is. (Ironically, heaven is much more difficult to define or describe, as George Carlin once pointed out.) But somehow, we all seem to “get” hell. Fire, suffering, screaming… [more]

Goddamned05_Review coverThe Goddamned #5: No Happy Endings

“I’m Cain, the man who invented murder. But God invented me, so ask yourself: who’s the real asshole here?” If readers expected the story of Jason Aaron and r. m. Guera’s The Goddamned to take… [more]

descender18_Review coverDescender #18: Back to Business

In its latest issue, #18, Descender gets back to business, driving the plot of this story forward after taking some time to develop the characters in recent issues. This issue is classic space opera science… [more]

ManifestDestiny25_Review coverManifest Destiny #25: Who Are The Demons?

It’s a very special issue of Manifest Destiny as the 25th issue makes its appearance this week. The journey of Lewis and Clark has entered a different phase, as the Corps of Discovery settles down… [more]

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story posterReconsidering Rogue One

Ever since the release of Rogue One, and its undeniable box-office success, and the tragic death of Carrie Fisher, there’s been much discussion about the future of Star Wars. The Force Awakens re-started the franchise… [more]

southernbastards16_Review coverSouthern Bastards #16: Moving the Goalposts

There are eerie and tempting parallels between Coach Boss and a certain American President-elect. Both are brutal, simple-minded, deeply insecure tyrants, and both have a tendency to move the goalposts and declare victory when an… [more]

descender17_Review coverDescender #17: Connections

Descender takes a turn in issue #17 (released just before Christmas last year). This innovative and emotional science fiction comic has spent its past five issues on “singularity” stories, focusing on one character at a… [more]

landscape-1474899549-arrival-posterArrival: Science Fiction for Grownups

Arrival, directed by Denis Villeneuve, has the structure of a magic trick. It slowly, carefully, shows us something in its first few minutes, then gives us about 70 minutes of misdirection before showing us what… [more]

cwq_ccexuauhczmRogue One Stumbles, then Soars

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is appropriately titled. It isn’t a “Star Wars movie” in that it isn’t about the Skywalker family, nor is it about the specific large mythic arcs that define that… [more]

mirihd248Star Trek Re-Watch, Episode 11 – “Miri”

The most significant event in “Miri”, the twelfth episode of Star Trek – halfway through the first season – was the arrival, behind-the-scenes, of a new producer named Gene L. Coon. Whenever the production and… [more]

Kirk_Adams_Chair_2266Star Trek Re-Watch, Episode 10 – “Dagger of the Mind”

“Dagger of the Mind” (which aired almost exactly 50 years ago, on November 3, 1966) is one of a few episodes of the original Star Trek to deal with psychology. Obviously, Gene Roddenberry had a… [more]

whatarelittlegirlsmadeofhd237Star Trek Re-Watch, Episode 9 – “What are Little Girls Made Of?”

Robert Bloch, who wrote the script for “What Are Little Girls Made Of?” was a big fan of HP Lovecraft. That’s probably the key to understanding what makes this peculiar episode of Star Trek interesting.… [more]

southernbastards15_Review coverSouthern Bastards #15: The Taste of Ribs and Defeat

Here we are again in the steaming tribal vendetta-filled world of Southern Bastards. Craw County continues, here in issue #15, to be a community that measures is worth based on the standing of its high… [more]

LakeofFire03-review coverLake of Fire #3: Oaths

The situation faced by the crusaders in Lake of Fire is becoming increasingly desperate in issue #3. Theo has been badly wounded, the Keep is surrounded by aliens intent on getting in, the people are… [more]

descender16_Review. coverDescender #16: A Real Killer

All of the characters in Descender (with the possible exception of the TIMs) have an undercurrent of rage and confusion. Their world changed so dramatically, and so quickly, with the Harvester attack that it re-drew… [more]

Romulan_Commander_on_Enterprise_ViewerStar Trek Re-watch, Episode 8 – “Balance of Terror”

“Balance of Terror” is one of those Star Trek episodes that fans often rank as one of the best of the original series, and deservedly so. It’s suspenseful, exciting, intelligent sci-fi action, essentially an extended… [more]

yoga-hosersYoga Hosers: A Kevin Smith Film, Through-and-Through

It’s difficult to review a movie like Yoga Hosers. It’s so deliberately made for a specific group of people who are immersed in jokes and references from the podcasts of Kevin Smith that one wonders… [more]

ManifestDestiny24_review coverManifest Destiny #24: Making Camp

The latest Manifest Destiny brings the “Sasquatch” story arc to an end in fairly spectacular fashion. These story arcs function quite a bit like seasons of television, and Chris Dingess has fashioned a whopper of… [more]

636083288106602353-MASCOTS-1sht-USChristopher Guest’s Mascots Delivers to the Fans

Christopher Guest movies are endearing because they’re about people who are this close to stardom, but there’s a narrow and deep chasm between them and their dreams. Even Spinal Tap (which of course was not… [more]

Ben-Mendelssohn-in-Rogue-One-Trailer-e1460230079604The New Rogue One Trailer Shows Us the New… And the Old

The new trailer for Rogue One has the distinction of explaining the film’s title (unsurprisingly it’s a callsign), and it also reveals something of the film’s plot. The character played by Felicity Jones, named Jyn… [more]

reborn01_Review coverReborn, from Mark Millar and Greg Capullo Makes Its Debut

The long-awaited collaboration between Mark Millar and Greg Capullo is now here in the form of Reborn, which debuts today. The book is certainly blessed with a deep bench of talent (Jonathan Glapion is the… [more]

Charles_EvansStar Trek Re-Watch, Episode 7 – “Charlie X”

“Charlie X”, like many of the early episodes of Star Trek, has a strong science fiction idea at its core, but stumbles a bit with the execution, producing an episode that’s intriguing but sometimes feels… [more]

Sulu_FencingStar Trek Re-Watch, Episode 6 – “The Naked Time”

By any measure, “The Naked Time” is a strange episode of television. The crew of the Enterprise is infected with some sort of virus that causes their emotions to become completely unblocked and they give… [more]

chasing-amy.15699The Great Lost Commentary Track for Chasing Amy

[Warning: the following article contains strong language. Some would call it “mature content”, but to be frank, there’s nothing mature about it. Read at your own risk.] Over a decade ago, when Kevin Smith was… [more]

LakeofFire02-review coverLake of Fire #2: Heroes

Lake of Fire, by Nathan Fairbairn and Matt Smith, seems to be mixing what we would expect from a “crusaders vs aliens” storyline (lots of fights, strange eruptions from wounds) with a fairly robust and… [more]

descender15_Review coverDescender #15: Effie

Descender’s”singularity” series continues in issue #15, with a new and interesting twist: a love story. But there’s nothing sentimental or false about this particular love story; it recounts a tragic, wise and emotionally realistic relationship… [more]

raiders_poster_1200_1777_81_sRaiders! Tells the Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made

Like many kids who grew up in the 1980s, including me, Eric Zala and Chris Strompolos liked to create little movies in their backyards with their parents’ video cameras. (Mine was a Star Trek pastiche… [more]

flos_one_sheet_fm2_for-printingFor the Love of Spock: An Imperfect Portrait of a Fascinating Man

Adam Nimoy’s long-awaited documentary about his father, For the Love of Spock, is now playing in selected theatres and is available for streaming purchase on several services, after a storied build-up and crowdfunding campaign. Conceived… [more]

invisiblerepublic11_Review coverInvisible Republic Begins a New Arc in Issue #11

The new story arc of Invisible Republic, which begins here in issue #11, is a bit of a departure from previous issues and arcs in this compelling and complex science fiction drama. Readers will remember… [more]

ManifestDestiny23_review coverManifest Destiny #23: Tales of Captain Helm

It’s become apparent that the Captain Helm story in the pages of Manifest Destiny serves, at least in part, the same function that Tales of the Black Freighter did in Watchmen. This is emphatically a… [more]

LostWorkofWillEisner coverThe Lost Work of Will Eisner Adds to an Impressive Legacy

Available now from Locust Moon, The Lost work of Will Eisner gives us a glimpse into the evolution of both an artist and a medium. The collection presents two strip-based comics runs from the master… [more]

M_113_CreatureStar Trek Re-Watch, Episode 5 – “The Man Trap”

“The Man Trap” first aired fifty years ago tonight, and what a strange episode it is to launch what has become one of popular culture’s signposts: Star Trek. Viewed as part of our Star Trek… [more]

000063.1674.16192_YogaHosers_still1_HarleyQuinnSmith_LilyRoseDepp__byAllanAmato.0.0Kevin Smith Shakes Off the Critics of Yoga Hosers

Kevin Smith’s new film Yoga Hosers was given a limited release this past weekend (alas, it’s still not playing here in Vancouver), and so far the film is most notable for the singularly vitriolic reviews… [more]

Silver Streak - Gene Wilder - Richard PryorSilver Streak: When Wilder Met Pryor

The recent passing of Gene Wilder left a lot of people reeling, having lost yet another inspirational figure from our collective youth and popular culture experience. Wilder was a gentle, kind man by all accounts… [more]

LakeofFire01-reviewLake of Fire #1: Crusaders vs Aliens in an Innovative, Compelling New Comic

There’s been quite a lot written about The Crusades, but it seems like modern historians agree on one thing: they were a great excuse for Christians of a certain persuasion to engage in some serious… [more]

ManifestDestiny22_review coverManifest Destiny #22: The Eyes Have It

Like many men of their era, Lewis and Clark were “blessed” with an overabundance of positivity and confidence (more for Lewis than Clark, but they each believed in the soundness of their society and their… [more]

descender14_Review coverDescender #14: Bandit’s Lonely Vigil

The latest issue of Descender is the third in a series of five issues termed “Singularities” by the comic’s creators, Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen, but it’s easily the most creative and appealing thus far.… [more]

descender13_Review young telsaDescender #13: Telsa

Descender #13 is ostensibly about Captain Telsa, the red-haired, firey Captain from the UGC, sent to retrieve TIM-21 and the codex he carries in his electronic DNA that may hold the key to understanding the… [more]

STRANGER-THINGS-netflix-clarkeMr Clarke from Stranger Things: The Importance of Experts

The pop cultural touchstone of the moment (or, at least, one of them) is the Netflix series Stranger Things, created by the Duffer Brothers and currently drawing the appreciative fascination of the world. With its… [more]

ManifestDestiny21_review coverManifest Destiny #21: Leadership

One of the many challenges that the historical Lewis and Clark expedition had to surmount was simple hunger. They weren’t as badly off as some, and fared far better than some of the more northern… [more]

BlackRoad04-review coverBlack Road #4: A Walk in the Snow

It’s too easy for us today to slip into a simplistic stereotype of the “dark ages”,  or the early medieval period. Barbarians roaming across the countryside, committing unspeakable acts of carnage and pillage, and scared… [more]

StarTrekBeyondPlakat1Star Trek Beyond Expectations

A five year mission may sound easy, but the first thing we’re shown in Star Trek Beyond is how long five years can really be when one has to spend it cooped up with 400… [more]

southernbastards14 coverCongratulations to the 2016 Eisner Award Winners

Our series on the Eisner Awards was never meant to be predictive of who would win — quite the contrary, we were only trying to profile some of the nominated titles, because they’re all worth… [more]

James_Kirk's_evil_counterpartStar Trek Re-Watch, Episode 4 – “The Enemy Within”

“The Enemy Within” was the fifth episode filmed for Star Trek: The Original Series, and only the third after it was greenlit, but it’s the first Star Trek episode that truly feels like Star Trek.… [more]

Harcourt_Fenton_Mudd_2266Star Trek Re-Watch, Episode 3 – “Mudd’s Women”

“Mudd’s Women” was one of the three original scripts considered by Desilu Productions as a pilot episode for Star Trek, which would have been an interesting choice to say the very least. The first episodes… [more]

Balok_puppetStar Trek Re-Watch, Episode 2: “The Corbomite Maneuver”

“The Corbomite Maneuver” does what a television pilot episode should do. It introduces the main characters and their relationships, gives them a threat that’s significant but not world-ending and provides lots of coverage of the… [more]

wherenomanhasgonebeforehd013Star Trek Re-Watch, Episode 1: “Where No Man Has Gone Before”

“Where No Man Has Gone Before” is an important part of the building blocks of what we now know as Star Trek. Filmed mostly in the summer of 1965, this episode wasn’t aired until over… [more]

originalThe Great Star Trek Re-Watch: An Introduction

The argument hardly needs to be made that Star Trek should appear on the Mount Rushmore of not only science fiction, but world popular culture. Since arriving 50 years ago this year, it has become… [more]

NSPACE_WM coverNegative Space Gets a TPB Release This Week

Negative Space, by Ryan K Lindsay and illustrated by Owen Gieni, is one of the more astute and creative explorations of depression ever committed to the page, and this week it’s available from Dark Horse… [more]

plutona05_Review coverPlutona #5: Kid Logic

The finale of Plutona’s five issue run is understandably dark, but then again, that’s basically the only place this remarkable series could go. The most interesting parts of this book have always been the relationships… [more]

Journey to Star Wars - The Force Awakens - Shattered Empire Page 1Shattered Empire Fills in Some Intriguing Star Wars Gaps

One of the great things about a mythical universe such as the one created by Star Wars is that there’s plenty of room to tell many different stories, so long as they connect neatly with… [more]

Star Wars Special - C-3PO 001 Page 1Droids, Slaves and C-3PO’s Red Arm

The role of droids in the Star Wars universe has always been fairly clear, and yet tinged with some troubling implications. They’re servants, essentially, but they’re also companions and, most interestingly of all, they have… [more]

orange-new-black-season-4-trailerOrange is the New Black Season 4: Non-Spoiler Review

Orange is the New Black was always an interesting, innovative show, both in its subject matter and even its mode of distribution (Netflix). But last season, the narrative became unfocused, the hole at the centre… [more]

ManifestDestiny20_review coverManifest Destiny #20: Big Feet and Bigger Eyes

“Captain Clark killed a curious animal… [one] never yet known in the United States.” That’s a quote from a member of the actual Corps of Discovery, and in that case it was the antelope, which… [more]

descender12_Review titleDescender #12: Brothers

One of Descender’s strongest themes has always been the notion of robots having souls — sometimes souls more pure and more sensitive than the flesh and blood humans that surround them. Our central robot character,… [more]

Rogue-One-Jyn-Ersa-Geared-UpHow Much Trouble is Rogue One Really In?

As some are no doubt aware, there’s something interesting brewing over at Lucasfilm, on the production of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The film, to be released this Christmas, tells the story of how… [more]

invisiblerepublic10_Review coverInvisible Republic #10: New Wrinkles

Invisible Republic is only just now in its tenth issue, but it feels as if there have been many more than that. The complexity of the world, and the subtlety with which Gabriel Hardman and… [more]

Paper Girls 006 (2016)  Page 1Paper Girls #6: The Horror of Adulting

Warning: If you haven’t read the first five issues of Paper Girls, this discussion will spoil a few things. On the other hand, if you have read those issues but not the latest, don’t worry.… [more]

goddamned04_Review coverThe Goddamned #4: You Don’t Mess With Noah

The Goddamned is one of two major comics that have recently offered us a reimagined version of the Biblical character Noah. The other book — Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, which was also made into a big… [more]

screen_shot_2016-05-24_at_12.31.24_pmStar Wars In May – Thoughts on the Anniversary of the Original Release

Yesterday fans all over the world recognized May 25 as one of the most important anniversaries in popular culture: the release of Star Wars on that day in 1977. This comes at the tail end… [more]

9780674744431-lgA Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 12 – Wrapping Up

Over the course of this series about the 2016 Eisner Award Nominees, we’ve been focusing on individual titles that many comics fans may have either missed or overlooked. Without question, every comic mentioned in the… [more]

March - Book Two (2015)  Page 1A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 11 – March: Book Two

The history recounted in March: Book Two is, or should be, fairly familiar to anyone with a passing knowledge of the 20th century. The Freedom Riders and the other struggles of the early 1960s American… [more]

Kaijumax 001 (2015)  Page 1A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 10 – Kaijumax

Zander Cannon’s Kaijumax is an easy comic to like, because it takes such joy in being what it is. A colourful, quick-witted satire of prison movie cliches, blended with an all-star cast of Toho Pictures’… [more]

ManifestDestiny19_review 1 coverManifest Destiny #19: Teamwork

When undertaking a task as dangerous as the exploration of unknown lands, teamwork is an absolute necessity. Other writers (such as Stephen Ambrose) have noted that it was this capacity for group unity, strong leadership… [more]

BlackRoad02-review coverBlack Road #2: A Little Kindness

It should come as no surprise that Black Road has the narrative structure of the “journey”. (The word “road” is right there in the title, after all.) While we were introduced to the characters and… [more]

9202448.tRevisit The Dark Knight Rises With Kevin Smith and Ralph Garman

Kevin Smith is naturally a positive and forgiving personality, which makes his podcasts fun, but often prevents him from really getting into a serious critique of a film, especially when it’s a film close to… [more]

1401x788-000063.1674.16192_YogaHosers_still1_HarleyQuinnSmith_LilyRoseDepp__byAllanAmatoKevin Smith’s Critic-Proof Yoga Hosers Trailer Debuts

For the past few years, particularly since the release of 2011’s Red State, Kevin Smith has led a (mostly) one-man campaign to carve his own path through 21st-century popular culture. Temporarily ditching his film career… [more]

southernbastards14 coverSouthern Bastards #14: “Homecoming” Ends

As we reach the end of the “Homecoming” story arc in Southern Bastards, it becomes fairly clear what this particular storyline has always been about. Not football, or even race, necessarily, but the rather the… [more]

Monstress01_Review 1 coverA Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 9 – Monstress

Monstress wastes no time in creating a lush, vivid fantasy world and giving us some great characters to populate it. This Image Comics release by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda builds all manner of artifice… [more]

I Love This Part - Review coverA Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 8 – I Love This Part

Comics is a diverse and flexible medium, and one of the greatest examples of that is how it can tell both big stories and small stories. Many people are aware of the degree to which… [more]

FadeOutVol1_Review coverA Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 7 – The Fade Out

The Fade Out is a comic about Hollywood, specifically that magical post-war late-1940s Hollywood that is so often romanticized. It’s one of America’s true mythic places, full of hard-drinking writers, bombshell girls (and the occasional… [more]

1-jLlSZ4w2FLMnFkNuBrKH1AA Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 6 – Two Great Web Comics

As they recognize achievement in all of the widely diverse world of comics, it makes sense that the Eisner Awards have a category for Digital/Webcomics. Two of the nominees this year are Lighten Up, by… [more]

The Spire 01 (of 08) (2015) (digital) (Minutemen-Faessla).cbz - Page 1A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 5 – The Spire

The Spire is a comic that’s overflowing with creative ideas, determined to build its own rich fantasy world and completely heedless of any limits or restrictions in terms of genre. Some comics blend genres, but… [more]

9781611801972A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 4 – The Faceless Ghost, and Other Macabre Tales from Japan

If there’s anything at all to old cliche that to understand someone, you must know what they fear and what they desire, then reading ghost stories from a different culture must qualify as some sort… [more]

Lady Killer 01 (of 05) (2015) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 1A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 3 – Lady Killer

The title of Lady Killer, by Joelle Jones and available from Dark Horse Comics, sort of says it all. This is a comic about Josie Schuller, a killer who stabs, punches, kicks and spins without… [more]

Paper Girls 001 (2015) (digital) (Minutemen-Faessla).cbz - Page 1A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 2 – Paper Girls

Another contender for the 2016 Eisner Award for Best New Series is Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang, from Image Comics. By now we’ve come to expect great things from the creator… [more]

Harrow County v01 - Countless Haints (2015) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 6A Tour of the 2016 Eisner Nominees, Part 1 – Harrow County

The nominees for the 2016 Eisner Awards were recently announced, and as always, the list of nominees provides a serviceable list of some of the best comics currently in circulation, regardless of which ones actually… [more]

BCS_210_UC_1026_0154-RT.0Better Call Saul Season Two Finale: Blind Spots

It would be so easy, as season two of Better Call Saul comes to an end, to be angry with Chuck McGill. But that would be like getting angry at a snake when it bites… [more]

netflix-better-call-saulBetter Call Saul vs Breaking Bad: Companion Pieces in a Compelling Universe

A piece by Slate magazine’s Julia Turner is making the rounds today that argues passionately why Better Call Saul is the superior show, when compared with its parent, Breaking Bad. It’s a great piece, and… [more]

1000509261001_2041300110001_Jackie-Robinson-Changing-Major-League-BaseballKen Burns’ Jackie Robinson: A Timely and Snappy Portrait of a Legendary Life

Longtime fans of Ken Burns know that the legendary documentary filmmaker can produce works of great beauty and power, but sometimes falls prey to sentimentality and repetitive, unsubtle narratives. Luckily, his new film Jackie Robinson… [more]

BlackRoad01-review coverBlack Road #1: The Viking Comic You’ve Been Waiting For

Vikings have a special place in the European imagination, to put it mildly. A crazy blend of the wild west with the notion of the Fantasy Hero archetype set to a Heavy Metal soundtrack, the… [more]

better_call_saul_2-9Better Call Saul Season 2, Episode 9: Consequences

“Consequences” is the big theme of this, the penultimate episode of Better Call Saul’s second season. We don’t often mention the creators’ names (and frankly I also ignore media from the creators of this show,… [more]

thefix01_Review coverThe Fix Is Wonderful, Outrageous Fun

When I was in Grade 12, our laid back physics and astronomy teacher once asked our class, “What do you want to do when you leave here?” One bravely honest soul replied, “I don’t want… [more]

Bob-Odenkirk-as-Saul-in-Breaking-BadLooking Back at the First Appearance of Saul Goodman

Way back in season two of Breaking Bad, in April of 2009 to be precise, we were introduced to a new character named “Saul Goodman” in an episode with the catchy title “Better Call Saul”.… [more]

goddamned03_Review coverThe Goddamned #3: The Mark of Cain

Jason Aaron’s The Goddamned is best described as a cross between the Bible and Mad Max, with all the brutality and wit that implies. But somehow it goes so far into the depths of inhumanity… [more]

Better-Call-Saul-FeatureBetter Call Saul, Season 2, Episode 8: Out of the Comfort Zone

This latest episode of Better Call Saul is easily the series’ most cinematic. There are some plot developments here, but not many. There’s dialogue, but not too much, and there could have been much more.… [more]

Negative Space #4 coverNegative Space #4: The Power of Depression

Negative Space, by Ryan K. Lindsay, with artwork by Owen Gieni, started out with a suicide attempt. It then followed our hero, Guy, through some therapy, some revelations about the nature of the world, and… [more]

Jimmy-SuitsBetter Call Saul Season 2, Episode 7: Parallel Lines

There’s no point in me doing this if I can’t be myself. Every time I try to do things someone else’s way, it blows up in my face. I’ve been trying to be the person… [more]

Snoop_Dogg_Trailer_Park_Boys-1024x863The Trailer Park Boys Return for Season 10

Trailer Park Boys has turned itself into a cottage industry. Growing organically (pardon the pun) from a short film by Nova Scotia filmmaker Mike Clattenburg, the Boys had their own Showcase TV series from 2000-2007,… [more]

cdn.indiewire.psdopsBetter Call Saul Season 2, Episode 6: Changing Masks

Though it doesn’t pass the Bechdel test (there are too few female characters to meet that very specific bar), Better Call Saul is, in its way, a very feminist show. Not just because there’s a… [more]

better_call_saul_2-5Better Call Saul Season 2, Episode 5: Shifting Sands

It’s something of an understatement to call Better Call Saul a subtle show, but the label fits. Few American TV shows have had the boldness to fold their dramatic tension into small character moments, revelations… [more]

descender11_CoverArtDescender #11: Stuck in the Middle

The moral sides are rather sharply drawn now in issue #11 of Descender. We’ve met humanoid fanatics, bent on the destruction of all robotic life (The Scrappers of Gnish) and now we’ve met the other… [more]

better-call-saul-episode-204-mike-banks-935Better Call Saul Season 2, Episode 4: Half-Measures

If there were any doubts about the nature of Jimmy McGill’s feelings for and commitment to Kim Wexler, the latest episode of Better Call Saul lays them to rest. Jimmy has made mistakes, and will… [more]

plutona04_Review coverPlutona #4: The Power of Imagination

One of the many things Plutona gets right about children is how seriously they take their imaginations. It isn’t as if they don’t know the difference between what’s “real” and what’s not — they just… [more]

better-call-saul-episode-203-jimmy-odenkirk-pre-800x600Better Call Saul Season 2, Episode 3: The Scorpion and the Frog

Breaking Bad certainly had its share of contemplative scenes, but it still had suspense, action and tension. It’s offspring, Better Call Saul is in an entirely different key, drawing out the slow game, lingering on… [more]

maxresdefault-111.22.63: A Primer for and Review of this Fascinating New Mini-Series

Hulu’s new series 11.22.63 is based on one of Stephen King’s most intriguing and absorbing novels, 11/22/63, in which a man travels back in time to stop the Kennedy assassination. That particular plot contrivance is… [more]

saul.thm_Better Call Saul Season 2, Episode 2: Let’s Be Honest

A frequent discussion point among my colleagues about Better Call Saul is the question of why Kim isn’t in Breaking Bad. She’s such an important character to Jimmy McGill, and indeed has been central so… [more]

invisiblerepublic09_Review coverInvisible Republic #9: A New Perspective

The latest issue of Invisible Republic begins with a welcome look into Maia’s past. The little incident in the fish farm that’s depicted reinforces two main character points: that Maia is a lot stronger than… [more]

ty0neic0o4jqee5oms8eWhat Marvel and Fox Should Learn from Deadpool

The breakout movie-related story of the past couple of weeks has been the astounding box-office success of Deadpool, the most popular R-rated superhero film ever made. It isn’t, in fact, the first film of that… [more]

better-call-saul-3-800Better Call Saul Goes its Own Way in the Season 2 Opener

One of the many remarkable achievements of Better Call Saul is that its drama does indeed have a final destination (it’s in the title), but it doesn’t feel inevitable. Quite the contrary — judging from… [more]

93f23d02659642f1c278148f0f788763Celebrating the X-Files Self-Aware Sense of Humour

There’s been some predictable criticism of the latest episode of the new X-Files, “Babylon”, the fifth in a short run of six, since it deals with the issue of Muslim extremists and terrorism. We should… [more]

descender10_Review coverDescender #10: Picking a Side

We’ve spent so much time getting to know the characters and their personal challenges over the past 10 issues of Descender that it’s good to be reminded in the new issue that the freaking galaxy… [more]

ManifestDestinyV3_Review coverManifest Destiny TPB vol 3 is Essential Reading

The latest, and darkest, collection of Manifest Destiny appears in stores this week, gathering issues #13-18 in a gruesome, intense and compelling TPB. Although it may be obvious to anyone who reads this comic, it… [more]

CaD9uYiWYAAT6ZxIt’s Long Past Time to Retire the Term “Graphic Novel”

In comics, we’re always struggling with titles and definition. At least, some of us struggle with these things when conversing with people outside the field of comics studies. For everyone I’ve ever met who is… [more]

avatar_x-filesWelcome Back, X-Files

Get out your plaid, your docs and your Nine Inch Nails albums, because the 1990s have returned on the new X-Files. There have been reboots and relaunches before in TV history, and certainly in film… [more]

SouthernBastards13_review coverSouthern Bastards #13: Game Time

Ah, American football. It isn’t the world’s most competitive sport (have you seen the World Cup lately?), nor is it necessarily its most violent (I’m looking at you, Australian rules rugby), but there’s something about… [more]

NegativeSpace03_LetterProof_v1 coverNegative Space #3: The Happiness Bomb

Negative Space does everything a good comic should do. It tells a great story, with clarity, uses the visual elements well (this story wouldn’t be as powerful without the art) and has some of the… [more]

Alexander-DaneSaying Goodbye to Alan Rickman

With the recent passing of Alan Rickman, it’s appropriate to recognize this versatile, powerful actor and (by all accounts) wonderful human being by celebrating one of his iconic roles. We’re referring, of course, to 1999’s… [more]

fatman-on-batmanThe 1990s Batman Commentaries You Need to Hear

It’s probably a fair assumption that many of our readers here at Sequart are fans of a certain caped superhero character named “Batman”. We have several books on the subject and lots of articles, and… [more]

andy_warholAndy Warhol: A Comics Creator?

Andy Warhol’s name is forever linked to a thoroughly modern style of artistic expression, emerging at a very significant time in the history of western culture. Mechanical replication, repetition and bold, vivid colours were hallmarks… [more]

Goddamned02_Review coverThe Goddamned #2: Sin and Redemption

Who are “the goddamned”, referenced in rm Guera and Jason Aaron’s The Goddamned? This ultra-violent re-interpretation of the Old Testament is faithful to the original text in the sense that the goddamned are really all… [more]

descender09_Review coverDescender #9: Simple Feelings

Despite the epic sweep of this science fiction adventure, the best moments in this latest issue of Descender come in the form of a simple conversation between the two TIM robots, now being taken through… [more]

Alec_Promotional_Image1Comics: The Medium of the 21st Century

I’ve put forward the theory before that comics will be the defining storytelling medium of the 21st century, just as novels were in the 19th and cinema was in the 20th. It’s a theory inspired… [more]

descender08_Review coverDescender #8: Andy’s Story

In Descender #8 we finally meet the series’ Han Solo character. There’s even a Chewie equivalent (a giant slug with six eyes but he’s still charming). One could cry foul and say that Jeff Lemire… [more]

invisiblerepublic08_Review coverInvisible Republic #8: The Maia Difference

Both Arthur McBride and his cousin Maia Reveron eventually become revolutionary leaders: this is not really much of a spoiler for the continuing saga of Invisible Republic. But it’s important to note the differences between… [more]

invisiblerepublic08_Review coverMy Pick for the Best Comic of 2015: Invisible Republic

“Beware the best-of list”, Shakespeare once wrote. Or he should have. There are deep problems with basing one’s opinion of the literature worth reading on one critic’s list of the “best” of the year, most… [more]

star_wars_episode_vii_the_force_awakens-wideStar Wars: The Force Awakens: A Powerful Family Drama About Addiction

This article is about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and discusses elements of the plot that could be considered spoilers. Star Wars: The Force Awakens needed to do a specific set of things in order… [more]

The-Martian-Matt-DamonWhy Didn’t I Love The Martian?

Of all people, I should have loved The Martian. If I were to imagine a Hollywood film perfectly calibrated to my tastes as a) someone with a background in science, b) a gigantic space nerd… [more]

the_man_in_the_high_castle_putnamcoverMan in the High Castle and The Flexibility of the Science Fiction Genre

Science fiction is one of those genres everyone thinks they know, but seems to find it difficult to pin down in terms of a definition. It’s such a porous genre, that is, one that can… [more]

TheStarsMyDestinationCoverThe Stars My Destination: A Sci-Fi Masterpiece for Sci-Fi Week

When Alfred Bester’s The Stars My Destination was first recommended to me, it was with the promise that he “packs as much world-building, plot and character into 170 pages as Asimov did in the entire… [more]

trinitylargeA Problematic Trailer for a Problematic Film: BvS

It’s a dangerous game to review a trailer, or draw inferences from one. I’ve done it here before and made some (probably) wrong assumptions about a film, as well as some (probably) right ones. (I… [more]

plutona03_Review coverPlutona #3: Want To Be A Superhero?

The Roman Empire had nothing on groups of kids when it comes to conspiracy, collusion, forming alliances and keeping secrets. That’s one of the great truths about young people that Jeff Lemire and Emi Lenox… [more]

invisiblerepublic07_Review coverInvisible Republic #7: You Can’t Leave

“I’ve been involved in several cults, both as a leader and a follower. You have more fun as a follower, but you make more money as a leader.” -Creed Bratton We have to start the… [more]

PROMETHEUS ETERNAL pdf coverPrometheus Eternal: New Reflections on a Classic Myth

Greek mythology is, it almost goes without saying, full of characters who incur the wrath of more powerful gods by violating their arbitrary rules. Most of those violations amount to stepping outside of the proverbial… [more]

spider-brainiac-600x338Sorting Through Tim Burton’s Promising Wreckage: The Death of Superman Lives: What Happened?

We have all probably heard, even if just in passing, of the great lost Superman film of the 1990s, but probably only rumours of goofy costumes and questionable casting. The recent independent documentary The Death… [more]

635560680919636292-MAD-MAX-FURY-ROAD-MOV-jy-1019-Feminism on the Fury Road: Imperfect Tropes in Mad Max

As part of my continuing effort to catch up with all the summer movies I missed (my home theatre is more comfortable, equal in quality and a whole lot cheaper than going to a theatre,… [more]

ASanotherday01Another Day, Another Dollar: Harvey Pekar’s Last American Splendor

For the last few years of Harvey Pekar’s life, he was on a creative roll. His American Splendor comic had never really gone away, but in the 1990s and early 2000s, Pekar was focusing more… [more]

8House05_Review cover8House Yorris #2: Transgression

The main theme of Fil Barlow and Helen Maier’s arc “Yorris” for 8House appears to be transgression. Little Yorris rebelled against her culture by presuming to suggest that war isn’t automatically the answer to every… [more]

Goddamned01_Review coverThe Goddamned: The Bible as You’ve Never Seen it Before

Anyone of a certain inclination who has read the Old Testament can’t help but come away thinking of it as pretty “metal”, to coin a phrase. Fights to the death, plagues, burning cities, vendettas, and… [more]

SouthernBastards12_Review coverSouthern Bastards #12: The Return of Earl Tubb

“Americans love a winner, and cannot abide a loser.” -Gen. George S. Patton We have to go way back to issue #4 of Southern Bastards to recall the story that’s picked up here in issue… [more]

descender07_Review titleDescender #7: A New and Bold Chapter

Sometimes, maybe all the time, compelling narrative storytelling is about constantly raising the stakes. For a book that started with the destruction of a major human civilization, Descender has fairly masterfully managed to raise the… [more]

Tomorrowland_posterTomorrowland: I Hope

It took some time, but I finally got around to seeing Brad Bird’s fascinating sci-fi film Tomorrowland, and this morning I am somewhat shocked to discover that, when I have a quick gaze across the… [more]

v-de-vendetta-comicRemembering the Fifth of November: V for Vendetta

It’s the fifth of November, so I offer my humble thoughts on one of the true classics of our favourite medium. This is by no means an exhaustive analysis, simply a reflection on the book… [more]

Rasputin10_Review coverRasputin #10: The River of Life and Death

As previously mentioned in our discussions of Rasputin, one of the more curious aspects of this historical figure is that we all know how he died. That’s the first and sometimes only thing we learn… [more]

ProjectGreenlight640Project Greenlight‘s Season Four Finale Shows Real Courage

For a season that crackled with energy and drama, the finale of season four of Project Greenlight ends on a note of resigned exhaustion. All the participants in this project, from executive producers on down… [more]

jacobs-ladder-movie-nurse-no-eyes-needleThe Two Films That Actually Scared Me

It seems too simple and trite to carry any real wisdom, but it’s worth repeating that horror movies need to be scary. Not just disgusting or disturbing, or visually interesting in some artistic way, but… [more]

ManifestDestiny18_Review coverManifest Destiny #18: The Dark Side

This isn’t the first time, nor, I suspect, will it be the last, when there is blood on the scales in Manifest Destiny. One of the things that makes this comic so fascinating is how… [more]

ProjectGreenlight640Project Greenlight Crashes Into Episode 7

Project Greenlight closes one chapter of the making of The Leisure Class literally with a crash in episode 7. It’s the last day of production, and director Jason Mann has essentially alienated all his key… [more]

Image-1Alan Moore and Eddie Campbell’s Snakes and Ladders Gets a Film Adaptation

Alan Moore’s Snakes and Ladders was one of his first major works dealing specifically with his unique approach to magic, following his revelation in 1995 that he himself was, in a very real sense, a… [more]

star_wars_poster_full.0.0The New Star Wars Trailer: It’s All Real

I know what JJ Abrams, his marketing team and the entire apparatus of the Hollywood marketing machine are doing with Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I’m aware, at least to some extent, of how the… [more]

ProjectGreenlight640Project Greenlight Episode 6: What’s That on the Fan?

Six episodes into the fourth season of Project Greenlight is exactly how long it took for Jason Mann to graduate from struggling auteur to Mr. Hollywood. We can see the transition in this episode’s final… [more]

ProjectGreenlight640Project Greenlight Episode 5: Adapt or Call Cut

The Leisure Class officially moves into production on this week’s episode of Project Greenlight, and writer/director Jason Mann continues to act as an uncompromising and determined filmmaker, even as the realities of time and budget… [more]

8House04_Review cover8House Yorris: Un-Bound Imagination

8House brings us yet another new world this week in the form of 8House: Yorris. For those keeping track, we’ve already seen Arclight (still a personal favourite) and Kiem, which featured some very arresting and… [more]

SouthernBastards11_Review coverSouthern Bastards #11: Serpents

Each new issue of Southern Bastards seems to get deeper, more thoughtful and more artful in its rendering of the American south. The book has always had a wonderful ability to capture the Southern Gothic… [more]

Plutona02_Review coverPlutona #2: In the Woods

Plutona continues to excel at assuming the point of view of children in a complex and difficult world. One of the great things about that particular point of view, especially with regards to this kind… [more]

ben-affleck-2-768Project Greenlight Episode Four: So Long, Pete Jones

“There’s an art to compromise,” says Pete Jones in the latest episode of Pete Jones States the Bloody Obvious, aka Project Greenlight. This week’s episode is all about how the filmmakers and producers populating that… [more]

Rasputin09_Review coverRasputin #9: The Big Payback

It’s interesting, and a little jarring, that in issue #9 of Rasputin, having spent a great deal of time in the “present”, in America, we are thrust back into the thickets of Russian folklore and… [more]

ProjectGreenlight640Project Greenlight Episode 3: Stay in Your Lane

“Movies are all about power,” Chris Moore said way back in Project Greenlight season one. That was fifteen years ago, when the issue of shooting on film vs digital wasn’t even on the table, and… [more]

11794477_1051388578204746_1735829983904578784_o-1Project Greenlight Shines So Far in Season 4

It’s been a decade since season three of Project Greenlight and viewers could be forgiven for giving up the series for dead. As we’ve written here, the series and the concept seems to come from… [more]

InvisibleRepublic06_Review coverInvisible Republic Touches Greatness in Issue #6

Everyone wants the Reveron journal. That’s been true since issue #1 of Invisible Republic, and it’s, if anything, even more true as we pass into the second major story arc here in issue #6. Once… [more]

Negative Space #2 coverNegative Space: Wonderful Comics Medicine

Like many other people who struggle with depression, I sometimes feel as if there is some sort of malevolent force lurking in the sky, consciously plotting to sabotage my happiness at every turn. This can… [more]

ManifestDestiny17_Review coverManifest Destiny #17: How Many More Monsters?

Manifest Destiny has great moments when it combines the absurd with the profound, or the fantastic with genuinely powerful character moments. And both are to be found in its most recent issue, #17. What could… [more]

thechairThe Chair Showed the Limits of Film Taste and the Director’s Role

The first season  of the Starz TV series The Chair came to an end almost a year ago, yet it seems to have generated very few ripples of lasting influence, if the blogosphere is any… [more]

Placeholder_couple_superheroWhy I Am Not A Superhero Fan

I’m fairly open about my own tastes and predilections when it comes to comics, or any other medium. I’ll freely admit to anyone who cares to ask that, while I love comics, I’m not that… [more]

Plutona01_Review coverPlutona #1: Another Great Jeff Lemire Comic

From Descender, we know that Jeff Lemire can be a very skilled science fiction storyteller, a genre quite far removed from his realist roots in books like Essex County. With his uncanny ability to adopt… [more]

The_Martian_film_posterThe Martian: Already a Problematic Adaptation

Like many fans of literate, thoughtful, plausible science fiction, I greeted the news that Ridley Scott would be directing the film adaptation of Andy Weir’s the Martian with great enthusiasm. The fact that the script… [more]

8house03_Review cove8House Kiem: Another House, Another Story

It’s fairly well established that Brandon Graham conceived of 8House as not just a connected series of stories, set in the same science fiction universe, but as a “label”, under which any number of stories… [more]

pop-cultureThe Value of Cultural Literacy

Cultural literacy doesn’t appear to be a value that all segments of society embrace. Or, at least, some groups in our world embrace it in a very different way from me. I’ve recently had a… [more]

Rasputin08_Review coverRasputin #8: A Cold Night

When I was in high school, all of us history nerds (or nerds in general) knew one thing and one thing only about Rasputin: the way he was killed. For a young and growing boy,… [more]

InvisibleRepublic_vol1-1Invisible Republic TPB Vol 1: Great Science Fiction

Invisible Republic is celebrating its first TPB release this week, collecting issues #1-5, and this is the perfect opportunity to catch up with this fascinating and intelligent science fiction comic. While ostensibly a science fiction… [more]

ManifestDestiny16_Review cover2Manifest Destiny #16: Sacrifice

Improbable as it may seem to some readers, who may be out off by the sharp turn towards fantasy taken in the previous issue of Manifest Destiny, this book is still thoroughly about America, and… [more]

c3b69c966a181d7b5bcd0dc6f5b124adComics and Literacy: Still Struggling

I recently encountered some (sadly) all-too-familiar anti-comics sentiment, and alas I think it reflects an attitude in society that has yet to pass away. When I am engaged to teach students, particularly students trying to… [more]

Descender06_Review coverDescender #6: Ostracism

A significant part of the new issue of Descender takes place fifteen years before the start of our main story, on a dusty old planet named “Ostrakon”. It’s a very clever and literate reference for… [more]

8House02_Review cover8House: Arclight #2: Rich in its Restraint

We should start this review by revising, in retrospect, some of the assumptions and conclusions I made about 8House: Arclight #1. For one thing, as some have pointed out, I’m not entirely sure what the… [more]

the-kentsMa and Pa Kent vs Man of Steel

Who is Superman, really? That’s one of the more compelling questions about one of the most interesting figures in world culture. (I don’t think of Superman as being a “comic book” character. Since at least… [more]

SouthernBastards10_Review coverSouthern Bastards #10: A Force of Nature

Coach Big is dead. That fact no doubt affects people in lots of different ways in Craw County, and the larger mythic universe of Southern Bastards. But before we get to all of that, the… [more]

Rasputin07_Review coverRasputin #7: Ghosts

“Behind every man now alive stand thirty ghosts, for that is the ratio by which the dead outnumber the living” -Arthur C. Clarke That’s a very interesting maxim to apply to Grigori Rasputin, particularly in… [more]

InvisibleRepublic05_Review coverInvisible Republic #5: One Door Opens… Then Ten Others

At the end of issue #5 of Invisible Republic, we’ve reached the end of the first story arc in style. Opening up its secrets like a very well-written television series, the big twist at the… [more]

sequentialLogo-1Ten Great Titles From Sequential’s Summer Sale

Sequential, an iPad app for reading comics, is having a great summer sale on dozens of indie comics titles this month, and if those sorts of comics are to your taste, there’s quite a bit… [more]

Aldrin_Apollo_11_original cropCelebrating Apollo 11 Day: A Short Look at Space Travel and Pop Culture

Today is an historic day in world history, and ironically it will probably be some sort of world holiday at some point in the future. But as of 2015, we’re still grappling with the historic… [more]

Lost_Soul_The_Doomed_Journey_of_Richard_Stanley’s_Island_of_Dr._MoreauLost Soul Tells the Story of Richard Stanley’s Dr. Moreau

Richard Stanley’s The Island of Dr. Moreau is one of the great unmade films in the history of science fiction cinema, yet unlike many “unmade” films, such as Jodorowsky’s Dune, this project actually did yield… [more]

nh-color-pluto-charonPluto: The Popular Culture Planet

Pluto, which our species is seeing up close for the first time this week, is a planet almost as firmly embedded in popular culture as Mars, and yet we know comparatively nothing about it. Since… [more]

BitchPlanet01_Review coverBitch Planet Studies Exploitation With Exploitation

Bitch Planet is a comic that uses the language of exploitation, visual and verbal, to discuss the topic of exploitation. And it’s definitely well-informed on that subject. Kelly Sue DeConnick’s script is full of metaphors… [more]

rdj_sdccThis Year at SDCC, Buy a Comic!

It’s that time of year again, when people from the comics and entertainment industries gather in San Diego for four days of peace, love and music… Well, not precisely that. As someone who attended San… [more]

Descender05_Review coverDescender #5: The Centre of the Galaxy

In the latest issue of Descender, we get a tremendous narrative “focus pulling”, showing us with absolute clarity for the first time where the story of TIM-21, Dr Quon, Captain Telsa and Driller fit into… [more]

Meriweather_Lewis-Charles_Willson_PealeLewis and Clark, Manifest Destiny and Thoughts on America

In the long and storied history of the United States, a key moment occurred on August 18, 1805. That day, the “Corps of Discovery”, led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, crossed the North American… [more]

8House01_Review cover8House Arclight #1: Graceful and Dignified Fantasy/Sci-Fi

It doesn’t take a great deal of exposition to build a completely original and engrossing science fiction/fantasy world, especially in comics. That principle is exemplified by the 8House series, the first story arc of which… [more]

james-hornerA Tribute to James Horner

Probably the reason why many of us know the name James Horner is because he wrote the soundtracks to some of the films of our formative years. The public at large remembers him from Titanic… [more]

Nate Piekos comic book letteringA Brief Appreciation of Comics Lettering

If comics are “Just words and pictures,” then lettering is what allows those two elements to blend into a cohesive whole. Lettering can be artful, it can serve story purpose, it can be decorative, it… [more]

Rasputin06_Review coverRasputin Is Back

Rasputin returns for its sixth issue, following one of the most dramatic and unexpected jump-cuts in the history of comics that ended the previous issue. It isn’t as if this issue walks back those surprises… [more]

InvisibleRepublic04_Review coverInvisible Republic #4: Get Another Source

As I’ve mentioned before in our discussions of Invisible Republic, one of the most interesting things about this book is the nature of the dramatic stakes. Nobody is fighting to “save the world” in the… [more]

0Project Greenlight: A Glimpse into a Bygone Era

Even though only fifteen years separates us now from the early 2000s, in terms of the production of film and TV, and the general media landscape, it seems like a lifetime in the past. In… [more]

SouthernBastards09_Review coverSouthern Bastards #9: Past, Present and Football

“But the Good Lord always gives us another chance, don’t he?” -Coach Big Here were are again, back in the tangled thicket of history, race, sex, sports, ribs and morality that populate the literate and… [more]

ManifestDestiny15_Review coverManifest Destiny #15: It Turns Out Bird Is The Word…

Manifest Destiny somehow always seems to keep one toe in historical reality, and one toe in the wildest fantastic metaphors of the all-American mind. But it has generally erred on the side of realism: even… [more]

Jurassic-Park-MovieJurassic Park, Problematic Science and Compromise

Jurassic Park and to a lesser extent, its sequels, has always been a “problem” film for me, mainly due to wasted potential and bad science. As time has gone on, I appreciate the original film… [more]

orange-is-the-new-black-s-3-posterOrange is the New Black Season 3

Like many people this weekend, I marathoned the entire third season of the Netflix series Orange is the New Black. (Many of us are also working on Sense8, which is a much more complex and… [more]

Chrononauts04_Review coverChrononauts Roars to an End in Issue #4

After four issues, which brings us to the end of the first story arc of Chrononauts, here’s the story in a nutshell: two irresponsible teenaged goofballs steal a hot car and proceed to have a… [more]

Descender04_Review coverDescender #4: Is Driller a Killer?

The cover of the new issue of Descender is adorned by a character who is rapidly becoming the “Chewbacca” of the series, “Driller”. Driller is exactly what he says he is: a robot that drills… [more]

Nameless04_Review coverNameless #4: The Logic of a Nightmare

After four issues, I can safely say that I’m still not really sure what’s going on in Nameless. Just as I get, or at least seem to get, a handle on the proceedings, reality shifts… [more]

Cartel-star-trek-iiiStar Trek III and PTSD

“The Enterprise feels like a house with all the children gone,” Admiral James T. Kirk intones in his first scene in Star Trek III, the darkest and in some ways most heartfelt of all the… [more]

Love-and-Mercy-Poster-2015Love and Mercy: The Powerful Story of Brian Wilson

There are many scenes in Bill Pohland’s new film Love and Mercy of Brian Wilson simply listening. That wouldn’t be an especially unusual choice for a film about a great composer, but the twist here… [more]

Validation188_smallValidation: A Creative and Moving Webcomic

“Validation” is one of the more gentle, heartfelt and affecting webcomics out there. (As a side note: there are quite a few webcomics! At some point, they’ll constitute a major part of the comics world,… [more]

InvisibleRepublic03_Review coverInvisible Republic #3: Fighting for History

By coincidence, for an unrelated project, I’ve been reading Philip K. Dick’s The Man in the High Castle lately, and I can’t help seeing many similarities with Gabriel Hardman and Corinna Bechko’s Invisible Republic, as… [more]

555b44acb80bcc99383a9b44_jon-hamm-mad-men-episode-14-season-7-part-2The Meristems of Mad Men

[This piece contains major spoilers for the finale of Mad Men.] In most plants, vertical growth occurs from two points, right at the tip of the stem, from the “shoot apical meristem” and at the… [more]

Style: "Mad Men"The End of Mad Men

This week, I can almost guarantee, this water cooler conversation will be repeated throughout the world: “So, what was Mad Men all about?” “I’ve no idea.” It’s been seven seasons and eight years, and this… [more]

Thomas_Alop_Vol_01_trade coverThomas Alsop: Beautiful New York Gothic

Thomas Alsop, now available in a gorgeous TPB from Boom! studios, is an example of that rich collection of fiction and art that tries to bring the ancient past to America. That impulse seems like… [more]

the-other-side-of-the-wind1The Other Side of the Wind: Orson’s Last Stand

Few films would have been as knowing, satirical, poetic and ahead of their time as Orson Welles’ last famous “unfinished” film of the 1970s, The Other Side of the Wind. In one of the great… [more]

Chrononauts03_Review coverChrononauts #3: Early Review!

Chrononauts continues to be exuberant, good-hearted fun, and as we head into the last act of this four-issue arc, Quinn and Reilly are starting to encounter consequences to their extremely irresponsible (though fun) actions. Mark… [more]

a-f-for-fakeOrson Welles at 100: Five Films to Get You Started

Orson Welles would have been 100 years old today, and there are celebrations, conferences and screenings happening all year long to celebrate the life and work of this giant of the American cinema. We’ve written… [more]

Descender03_Review coverDescender #3: Early Review

It’s becoming clear what Descender is really about as we reach issue #3, and the good news is that it’s about something very interesting. This is really a story about “descent” in the biological sense… [more]

Avengers-Age-of-UltronAvengers: Age of Ultron is Conflicted

I’m very conflicted about Avengers: Age of Ultron. Not about what sort of movie it is: this is a wall-to-wall headache-inducing, exhausting action-fest where lots of stuff blows up. I’m sure there are lots of… [more]

InvisibleRepublic02_Review coverInvisible Republic #2: From Strength to Strength

Science Fiction, it almost goes without saying, is replete with parallels and metaphors for real society and true history. Invisible Republic is literally about the process of making, recording and retaining history, told from two… [more]

ManifestDestiny14_Review coverManifest Destiny #14: Facing Fear

The first few pages of the latest issue of Manifest Destiny have a great blend of the horrific and the absurd. The tension in the sequence is built around the fact that the men of… [more]

Doctor_Horrible_BannerDr Horrible and Commentary! The Musical!

The writer’s strike of 2007 was one of the odder labor events of the past few years, and had a distinct effect on a lot of pop culture products. NBC’s The Office had a shortened… [more]

cabin-in-the-woods-2Does Cabin in the Woods Insult Horror Fans?

Almost by chance, 2012 became a pivotal year for Joss Whedon. That summer, his superhero franchise effort, The Avengers, became the highest-grossing movie of the year and of the century, changing the landscape of contemporary… [more]

Descender02_Review coverDescender #2 Shows True Promise

In the second issue of Descender, the focus is on the robot boy, Tim, rather than our human protagonist, Dr Quon. While it might seem like Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen are borrowing too heavily… [more]

Chrononauts02_Review coverChrononauts #2: The Past is History

Time travel stories are always tough to write, because most sci fi writers spend an inordinate amount of time building the “rules” of the world. Specifically, they worry about “damaging” the timeline or introducing some… [more]

The-Big-Lebowski-the-big-lebowski-30869316-1920-1200“Shut Up, Donny!”: An Existential Reading of The Big Lebowski

The Coen brothers’ most enduring film might be 1998’s improbable cult phenomenon, The Big Lebowski. Coming after the triumph of Fargo and before the inspired musical experience of O Brother, Where Are Thou?, Lebowski occupies… [more]

SouthernBastards08_Review titleThe Bastards of Southern Bastards #8

One question that keeps returning as we enjoy Jason Aaron and Jason Latour’s Southern Bastards is how much of it is specifically Southern, and how much qualifies as simple old-fashioned bastardry? Not being a southerner… [more]

Nameless03_Review coverNameless #3 Balances Sanity and Madness

The new issue of Nameless is a step up in scale and in pacing from the previous issues, There’s some plot momentum happening and certain dramatic elements seem to be moving into place for a… [more]

better-call-saul-150405Better Call Saul Season Finale: The Path Less Travelled By

Jimmy McGill is angry, Saul Goodman isn’t. Jimmy always has a joke, Saul doesn’t. Jimmy is all charm, Saul is all artifice and business. That first shot of the season, and the series, showing Saul… [more]

RatQueens10_Review coverRat Queens #10: Their Finest Hour

Let’s briefly review the strongest qualities of Rat Queens as a comic. Great dialogue, rich characters whose emotional journey is completely relatable, even as their environment is a classic action-packed magical fantasy world and conflicts… [more]

18b7388763bcee6781794b305030717a3392f74cBetter Call Saul: Poor Jimmy

I come away from every episode of Better Call Saul these days saying, “Poor Jimmy”. This, the second-to-last episode in the season, “Pimento”, is certainly no exception. We frankly haven’t seen all of Jimmy’s past… [more]

The-X-Files-I-Want-to-Believe-posterDefending the Much-Maligned X-Files I Want to Believe

With the recent announcement that there will be a new X-Files miniseries, the internet exploded this week with people aching to see Mulder and Scully in action again. It has been some time since we… [more]

SexcastleTP_Review coverSexcastle: The Best Action Movie Never Made

Sexcastle, now available as a TPB from Image Comics, is the best action film never made in the 80s. It’s Big Trouble in Little China meets Kill Bill, combining the best elements of both. The… [more]

better-call-saul-ricoThe Fabulous McGill Brothers on Better Call Saul

This episode of Better Call Saul has one of the most devastating cold opens so far. Vince Gilligan’s previous work on The X-Files and of course Breaking Bad reflects a longstanding interest in the power… [more]

InvisibleRepublic01_Review coverInvisible Republic: A Fresh and Compelling Science Fiction Comic

The new comic book Invisible Republic, by Gabriel Hardman and Corinna Bechko, offers a fresh and intriguing take on the post-Apocalyptic genre. With moody, evocative artwork and spare, confident storytelling, it has the feel of… [more]

10270519_oriA Pivotal Episode of Better Call Saul

This episode of Better Call Saul is a turning point. Forces and story elements that have been building since the series began come to a head here, and Jimmy McGill makes his last stand against… [more]

Chrononauts01_ReviewChrononauts: A Boy’s Own Adventure!

Chrononauts, the new comic from Mark Millar and Sean Gordon Murphy, is a wonderful grab-bag of genres and influences. Mixing a little bit of Stargate with a bit of Time Bandits and starring leading characters… [more]

06_breakingbadmikeMike Calls Saul on Better Call Saul

Better Call Saul has never had a more apt title than this week’s episode “Five-O”, because it’s here that someone finally “Calls Saul”. Jimmy McGill himself has never been more Saul-like than in this episode,… [more]

UnknownFive Historical Figures Who Deserve a Comic Book

Before we even start with this topic, we should probably clarify that this is call for biographical comics, not films. In recent years, after studying both media, I’ve developed a theory that dramatic biography is… [more]

Descender 001 (2015) (Digital) (Vee-Empire).cbr - Page 1Descender #1: A Great Science Fiction Story Off to a Great Start

Jeff Lemire and Dustin Nguyen’s Descender does what every successful comic does in its first issue: build the world, hook the reader, establish the themes and leave them wanting more. As space opera, it’s remarkably… [more]

star-trekHarve Bennett Left His Mark on Star Trek

This has been a tough time for us Star Trek fans. Not only did we lose Leonard Nimoy, we lost Harve Bennett, one of the important creative personalities behind Trek in the 1980s. It should be… [more]

Rat Queens cover 9Rat Queens Returns!

We should probably play a bit of catch-up for this new issue of Rat Queens. After all, issue #8 ended on a cliffhanger (as did issue #7) but that was back in October. Now, here… [more]

Scan 5Nameless #2: All Spaced Out

While the first issue of Nameless explored dream territory and the kind of dark modern-day occultism of Sandman or Constantine, the second issue literally takes right off into space, going to Event Horizon territory and… [more]

03-michael-mckean.w529.h352.2xBetter Call Saul vs “Slippin’ Jimmy”

Here we are, back in the world of Better Call Saul, where the themes of ethics and fraternal loyalty are firmly in the foreground. We learn a little more about Chuck’s specific medical condition, and… [more]

BCS coverA Look at Better Call Saul, The Comic Book

The first Better Call Saul comic book I’ve had the chance to read is an online comic, available freely from AMC, titled “Client Development”. It tells a story from the Breaking Bad days, covering scenes… [more]

Rasputin 005 (2015) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 11Rasputin Comes to an End of Sorts in Issue #5

One of the questions with historical fantasy books like Rasputin or Manifest Destiny is how close they’re going to parallel the true recorded history. In the case of Manifest Destiny, they follow the general outlines… [more]

better-call-saul-chuck1Ethics and Brothers in Better Call Saul Episode 4

Better Call Saul is going to be a show about ethics. At least, that was the prediction of some of my fellow Breaking Bad scholars that emerged from our conversations last week in Albuquerque. I… [more]

tv-better-call-saulDon’t Underestimate Jimmy on Better Call Saul

It’s easy to forget, when watching Jimmy McGill/Saul Goodman in action, that he’s one of the smartest guys in any given room. Jimmy’s street-tough use of language, his lack of “cool”, his too-formal suits all… [more]

Manifest Destiny 013 (2015) (Digital) (Minutemen-Acan).cbr - Page 1Manifest Destiny #13: Bird is the Word

It’s good to be back on the river with Manifest Destiny. After a fairly obvious break in the action in the previous issue, the boat is moving again and the men (and women) of the… [more]

Southern Bastards 007 (2015) (digital) (Minutemen-Faessla).cbz - Page 1Southern Bastards #5-7: Changes of Character

Jason Aaron and Jason Latour are the George R. R. Martins of metaphorical realist fantasy comics set in the south. They aren’t afraid to take sudden dramatic right turns, to lose characters that you would… [more]

better-call-saul-season-1-character-portrait-saul-odenkirk-590Better Call Saul Grows and Deepens in Episode 2

The second episode of Better Call Saul had some of the pacing problems that were an issue in the season premiere, but still manages to carve out a unique path through the world of Breaking… [more]

better-call-saulBetter Call Saul Opens Strong

“Spinoff!” Is there any word more thrilling to the human soul? Hi, I’ m Troy McClure.” -Troy McClure “Quality TV”, as we call the sorts of shows being produced today for binge consumption, hasn’t really… [more]

Nameless 001 (2015) (Digital) (Mephisto-Empire).cbr - Page 1Grant Morrison’s Nameless #1

When a story, in any medium, is told using the “language of dreams,” that’s usually a signal for the author to take his or her hands off the narrative wheel and let the story spin… [more]

Ego Hubris CoverHarvey Pekar Tells the Michael Malice Story in Ego and Hubris

I’ve never read a comic book quite like Ego and Hubris: The Michael Malice Story. Like so much of Harvey Pekar’s work, it’s deceptively intellectual material presented in an underground comix style (art by Gary… [more]

xch0i7woyo0uazzhfe07Greetings, Starfighter: A Tribute and a Drinking Game

The Last Starfighter was released in the summer of 1984, which back then meant that in the winter of 1985, it was making the rounds on home video. It seemed like everyone I knew that… [more]

Sex Criminals 010 (2015) (digital) (Minutemen-Spaztastic).cbr - Page 7Sex Criminals #10: Come Together

As I have probably mentioned before in discussing Sex Criminals, it’s not really about sex. Of, of course there’s a lot of sex in the comic, and that’s a major plot point, and it’s dealt… [more]

Rasputin 004 (2015) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 3Rasputin #4: Fear and Dog Healing in Moscow

Issue #4 of Rasputin is about essentially one moment, and one moment only. It’s the moment when fear transmutes into serenity. Rasputin has been poisoned, beaten and shot multiple times and even though in the… [more]

archer-wee-baby-seamus-FXArcher Deals With Child Issues in “Three to Tango”

The second episode of Archer, “Three to Tango”, picks right up from the previous, with Christian Slater (playing himself as a the head of the CIA) saying, “Wait, what happened? I thought you were going… [more]

3_1363184240_Screen shot 2013-03-13 at 14.10.18The Challenger Remembered Through a Great Scientific Drama

Today marks the 29th anniversary of the loss of the Space Shuttle Challenger and seven astronauts on launch, on January 28, 1986. It was an historic moment for the US space program, but sadly it… [more]

orsonOrson Welles Gives Peas a Chance

By the 1980s, Orson Welles was alive, creative, charming, and essentially unemployed. He had spent the last decade working on a number of projects, only one of which (F for Fake) saw release. (The most… [more]

1416896908862.cachedArcher is at Its Best in the Season 6 Premiere

Archer is such a quotable, dialogue-heavy show that sometimes it’s easy to miss the brilliance of its satire. At its best, this show is one of the most subversive and smart in the history of… [more]

tumblr_mwjmwv0CB71rqiltvo3_1280David Bowie and the Side Effects of Fame

It’s easy for us today to think of rock and roll as being a big business, staging huge shows for audiences of teeming thousands, and the people who make the music being lauded as near-Gods.… [more]

southern-bastards-comicSouthern Bastards: An Opera of the South

Southern Bastards seems like it’s very specifically about the American south. The focus on southern cooking (I can’t remember a comic book that made me hungry before, except possibly Watchmen’s references to the Gunga Diner),… [more]

image_logoImage Comics Launches Mail-Order Service: A Threat to Comics Ecology?

Image Comics announced this past Thursday that they will now be offering a direct mail service to their US customers for over 35 of their most popular titles, including Rat Queens, Sex Criminals, The Walking… [more]

Rat Queens Special - Braga 01 (2015) (Digital-Empire).cbr - Page 1A Very Special Rat Queens

The latest issue of Rat Queens isn’t the logical next story in the series (that’s coming later in issue #9), but rather a diversion to explore one particular character, Braga the Orc. Part of the… [more]

Inherent-Vice-Joaquin-PhoenixInherent Vice: Another American Masterpiece

Paul Thomas Anderson has been a director to watch, one of the true giants of the modern American cinema, for almost 20 years now. After hitting the big time with 1997’s Boogie Nights and 1999’s… [more]

and-the-oscar-goes-to-could-birdman-be-the-first-superhero-movie-nominated-for-best-picture“I’m Birdman”

Probably the only truly disappointing thing about Alejandro Innaritu’s Birdman is that we don’t actually get to hear Michael Keaton say, in that oft-imitated voice, “I’m Birdman.” Other than that, this is a technical tour-de-force… [more]

WhiplashimgWhiplash: Faster, and More Intense

Like Foxcatcher, Whiplash is also a film about power relationships between men, particularly older men and younger men. But there, the comparison ends. Where Foxcatcher is measured, graceful, distanced, studied, Whiplash is a tightly wound… [more]

TopShelfLogoIDW Publishing Acquires Top Shelf

Big news in the business side of comics: IDW has acquired Top Shelf Productions. Based in Georgia, this relatively small comics label has been responsible for some of the classiest and most high-quality releases in… [more]

deep-dark-fears-comic-illustrations-fran-krause-27__605Illustrator Fran Krause Shows Us Our Fears

We’re all afraid of something, and we can gussy it up however we want with the most intelligent and elaborate horror movies or books out there, but ultimately our fears seem to come down to… [more]

The_Fountain_graphic_novelThe Fountain Comic Book: Many Roads to the Same Summit

The Fountain, Darren Aronofsky’s heartfelt sci fi masterwork, had a difficult road to the screen. This story is fairly well known: by 2002, he had written and designed the film, hired actors and started building… [more]

6_1387196982_540x540Comics Were Everywhere in 2014… Just Think of What 2015 Can Bring

Comics were everywhere in 2014, and not just from my perspective. Check your Facebook page, or Twitter feed, and if you’re anything like me you’ll see at least one (probably three) Cyanide and Happiness, for… [more]

Rasputin 003 (2014) (digital) (Son of Ultron-Empire).cbr - Page 1Rah, Rah, Rasputin

Ah, Rasputin. One of history’s great rock stars. And like a great rock star, he died before his time, leaving behind him enough blank spaces in his biography, with enough rumour and mythology, to attract… [more]

Manifest Destiny 001 (2013) (Digital) (Fawkes-Empire).cbr - Page 1Manifest Destiny: My Comic of the Year

As I’ve written, I’m not a fan of lists or of ranking art in general, although of course I do acknowledge that there’s bad stuff and good stuff, and some great stuff. But beyond those… [more]

SteveCarellFoxcatcherFoxcatcher

The thing about Foxcatcher is that it isn’t really a sports movie, even though it features sports. (Whiplash, on the other hand, has all the hallmarks of that genre, even though it was about music.)… [more]

ONLY-LOVERS-LEFT-ALIVEOnly Lovers Left Alive: Jim Jarmusch’s Great, Comic-Like Vampire Film

Only Lovers Left Alive, like some other of Jim Jarmusch’s films, seems to borrow a great deal from the visual language of comics. With an emphasis on posing, stillness, punctuated by sudden movement, a visual… [more]

Christmas_carol_1984A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott

Pretty much immediately after the airing of A Christmas Carol starring George C. Scott in 1984 on CBS TV, it became the go-to version of the classic in my house when I was growing up.… [more]

hFrcLU4v5YBLfn3hW2yNT8bWXYGTim Burton’s Inspiring, Gentle Ed Wood

It seems to me, and perhaps this is a gross exaggeration, that Tim Burton’s best films are the ones in which he genuinely cares about the protagonist. As a filmmaker, Burton’s eye tends to wander… [more]

hammBlack Mirror, White Christmas

(In honour of the nature of this show, this will be as spoiler-free as I can make it and still qualify as a review… This should be quite a challenge.) The great thing (or at… [more]

Manifest Destiny 012 (2014) (Digital) (Minutemen-Acan).cbr - Page 1Manifest Destiny Issue #12: A Bend in the River

This is a pivotal issue of Manifest Destiny, in which Chris Dingess and Matt Roberts are clearly changing gears, in anticipation of a new and more intense chapter of the Lewis and Clark journey. Of… [more]

ODY-C 001 (2014) (Digital) (F) (Zone-Empire).cbr - Page 1ODY-C Reimagines the Odyssey

“You are my density.” That was pretty much my response to the first reading of Matt Fraction and Christian Ward’s ODY-C. And my second reading as well. This is a dense, idea-filled very “inside baseball”… [more]

BlackMirrorTitleCardBlack Mirror: The Best TV Show You’re Not Watching

Few would seriously argue that Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone is one of the seminal texts in popular culture, particularly in science fiction. Serling took TV sci fi out of the spaceships-fight-aliens-with-lasers cliche and brought… [more]

SexCriminals_09-1_300_462Sex Criminals #9: The Tale of Dr. Cocaine

I may have gotten a few things wrong about Sex Criminals, after initially getting them right. When I first started reviewing this book, I was drawn to how the characters shared their back stories, how… [more]

star-trek-posterA Defence of Star Trek The Motion Picture

I don’t like to rank art, instinctively. This isn’t a sport, and it’s not about ringing all the bells and checking off all the boxes. So, when people ask me to rank the Star Trek… [more]

ambersonspic3The Magnificent Ambersons: The Film That Made Orson Welles Cry

“In those days they had time for everything. Time for sleigh rides…” And so begins, in a haze of warm nostalgia and gentle humour, Orson Welles’ most maddening and controversial film, The Magnificent Ambersons. Viewed… [more]

SAMPLE-SLIDES.168-e1308532399731Is It Time To Retire The Concept Of “Spoiler”?

As part of my continuing series addressing important questions in modern geek culture, this time I’m going to discuss the concept of the “spoiler”. There’s a rumour, or at least a legend, that Herman Mankiewicz,… [more]

655a45_314854a0e9f84d919029825f56a19449.jpg_srz_979_1513_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srzGreenpoint of View: A Top-Notch Autobiographical Comic

One of the most interesting genres within the diverse world of comics is the autobiographical comic. Pioneered by the legendary Harvey Pekar and others, these comics are a fascinating application of the comics medium to… [more]

comic-book-men-560AMC’s Comic Book Men: Is This True Representation?

We need to have a conversation about geek culture. Sorry to put it that way, but I’m sure many would agree that modern geek culture has reached new heights of mainstream popularity, and we need… [more]

Layout 1City on the Edge of Forever, The Original Teleplay: Star Trek‘s Classic 1930s Tragedy

The final part of Scott and David Tipton’s adaptation of Harlan Ellison’s original draft of “City on the Edge of Forever” caps one of the most intriguing and emotional stories in the Star Trek universe,… [more]

nausicaa_royal_yanmaColour in The Fountain: Majestic and Artful Sci-Fi

The Fountain, Darren Aronokfsky’s 2006 science fiction masterpiece, is a true piece of cinematic art. It deals with weighty themes of love, death and the meaning of life, and it does so with a carefully… [more]

Nemo Title Cover jpgLittle Nemo – Dream Another Dream

Locust Moon’s upcoming book Little Nemo: Dream Another Dream is not simply a tribute to Winsor McCay, it’s a showcase for some of the most creative comics art being made today and a wonderfully imaginative… [more]

MD11revManifest Destiny #11: “Lewis Smash!”

With the latest issue of Manifest Destiny, the crew of the Corps of Discovery definitely close one chapter in their journey. For the past few issues, the expedition has been split, with the keelboat hung… [more]

cloud_atlas_quadCloud Atlas: A True Science-Fiction Film

Cloud Atlas, like many works of art, deliberately eludes explanation. I’ve seen this film many times and the only question I am emphatically not interested in answering is “what does it mean?” This quality probably… [more]

Solaris3Science Fiction Doesn’t Have to be Dystopian

I love Science Fiction, whether it be in literature or film/TV, but as a fan, I’m frustrated at the moment. In the past years there was been quite a lot of product in this area,… [more]

youve-got-to-be-fucking-kidding-me-5-things-you-might-not-know-about-john-carpenter-the-thing“I Know I’m Me”: Identity in John Carpenter’s The Thing

Few horror films combine gore and genuine creepy scares better than John Carpenter’s 1982 classic The Thing. The film was an adaptation of a short story called “Who Goes There?”, which should give us a… [more]

77-genesis-the-lamb-lies-down-on-broadwayThe Lamb Lies Down on Broadway: A Progressive Rock Album about Progress

Genesis, a band that’s been around longer than Crosby, Stills and Nash and has produced three times as many albums, is now enjoying a period of historical renovation. The recent documentary “Together and Apart” (that’s… [more]

tuskposter1Kevin Smith’s Tusk: Chasing Whimsy

One of my oldest and dearest friends and I went to see Kevin Smith’s Tusk last week and his (unfavourable) description of the film is that it’s “pointless”. I think he speaks for a lot… [more]

maxresdefault-1“For the Man Who Has Everything”: The Animated Adaptation

Getting Alan Moore to approve of an adaptation is like… getting Alan Moore to approve of an adaptation. So, it’s very interesting to hear that the 2006 WB Animation adaptation of “For the Man Who… [more]

sexcriminals_08Sex Criminals #8: “You Have Issues”

The Sex Criminals have issues, probably more than the number of issues already… issued. That’s what has come front and centre in the last couple of editions of Sex Criminals, and the time that Suzy… [more]

harvey_pekar ripHappy 75th Birthday, Harvey Pekar

Last week, the date of Harvey Pekar’s birth (October 8) passed again, for the fourth time since his death in 2010. This time, it would have been Pekar’s 75th birthday and many admirers, friends and… [more]

RatQueens_08-1Rat Queens #8: Violet Rebels Against Expectations

After the dark twists and turns and plot developments that featured so prominently in issue #7 of Rat Queens, ending in an attack on the town of Palisade by the tentacled god himself, issue #8… [more]

ftmwhecoverThe Last Temptation of Supe: Christian Overtones in “For the Man Who Has Everything”

On those rare occasions when I teach students about superhero comics, one question that always comes up is what defines a “hero”. Is, for example, a hero simply an individual who does heroic things? Or… [more]

ST_CityForever03_cvrAMore Fascinating Storytelling in City on the Edge of Forever, The Original Teleplay

Before I get into my discussion of issues #3 and 4 of this excellent IDW Star Trek comic series, City on the Edge of Forever: The Original Teleplay, I should correct a factual error I… [more]

C2You Can Keep Snyder’s Wonder Woman; I’ll Just Watch Buffy

A comment I often see among fans of superhero movies is “Why can’t they make one with a female lead!?” or often simply, “Why can’t they make a Wonder Woman movie?” The answer is complicated.… [more]

wonder womanIs Having No Wonder Woman Movie Better than Having a Bad One?

A recent clip of Fox Newsbots prattling on about superheroes without any tangible connection to reality has been making the rounds this week, just as has happened many times before. Among the many idiotic things… [more]

9099Manifest Destiny #10: Enhanced Solutions

In the afterward for issue #10 if Manifest Destiny, Chris Dingess writes that the men on the boat are becoming a genuine threat to the monsters they encounter, rather than the other way around. That’s… [more]

2014-The-Roosevelts-An-Intimate-HistoryKen Burns’ The Roosevelts

Ken Burns, over the course of a 35 year career, has made himself into a brand name. Apple even included a feature on their early iPods in which album covers would appear in slow, graceful… [more]

16046-23772The Best Thing About Contact was Tom Skerritt as David Drumlin

Many of us of a certain age will remember the 1997 Robert Zemeckis film Contact very well. I personally recall going to see it on opening night (which was July 11) and being profoundly inspired.… [more]

o-TRAILER-PARK-BOYS-facebookTrailer Park Boys Season 8: More Maple-Infused Drug-Related Fun. (No Spoilers)

The new season of Trailer Park Boys was released this past weekend on Netflix, with all ten episodes going live at the same moment in true 2014 style. It really is a new era for… [more]

the-martian-by-andy-weirThe Martian by Andy Weir: Superb Hard Science Fiction Storytelling

The Martian, by Andy Weir, is a rare example of excellent “hard” science fiction, great suspense writing and an old-fashioned space adventure, complete with lots of plausible and realistic science and some great characters. It… [more]

Third Man 10The Third Man: A Near-Perfect Movie

In continuation of our informal Orson Welles series, I think it’s appropriate to give a small nod to The Third Man, a film that became closely associated with him but to which his contribution was… [more]

Ghostbusters 30th AnniversaryGhostbusters the 30th Anniversary Screening

This past weekend I had a chance to take in Ghostbusters on the big screen at my local movie theatre, which was part of the celebration of its 30th anniversary. The fact that a movie… [more]

manifest_destiny_2_web_72_by_shinolahead-d6m4aiiManifest Destiny: Death is their Ally

There’s a line in Oliver Stone’s criminally underrated film Nixon in which the titular character muses to a painting of Abraham Lincoln, “What is that’s helping us? Is it God? Or Death?” That must express… [more]

coverComic Con Discoveries Part 3: American History Z and Bob the Angry Flower

There’s no denying the power and popularity of zombie stories, even if I, and others including Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman, can’t fully understand why. Obviously there’s the horror genre thrills, the sheer grotesque power… [more]

10350515_10152209315356246_4351025307162405339_nThe Fisher King: Love and Mercy

For those of you playing the home game, some time ago I did an MA dissertation on the works of Terry Gilliam. Like most things I wrote as a student, today I find my middlebrow… [more]

sexcriminals_07Sex Criminals #7: More Real Life

In a week in which many of us are wondering if there’s any justice left in this world, one bright spot is to remember that Sex Criminals was honoured with an Eisner recently, which means… [more]

Star Trek Harlan Ellison's City On The Edge Of Forever 001(2014)(Digital)(TLK-EMPIRE-HD).cbr - Page 1The City on the Edge of Forever: IDW Re-imagines Harlan Ellison’s Original Teleplay

The original draft of City on the Edge of Forever by Harlan Ellison is one of the more famous unproduced screenplays in television or indeed film history. The final episode itself was justly recognized as… [more]

Top SecretComic Con Discoveries Part 2: Ghost Cop and the Works of Arthur Ball

Many of the comics I acquired at SDCC were true flukes. Both of the books here were simply handed to me by friendly, approachable creators who were happy to discuss the work and have it… [more]

aug120121Comic Con Discoveries Part 1: The Goon and The Guns of Shadow Valley

I picked up several comics at the recent San Diego Comic Con, so I’m having a look that them all as I get some good reading time. All of these comics are first-time reads for… [more]

comics-box-brown-andre-the-giant-cover-artworkAndre the Giant: A Modest Graphic Novel about a Giant Man

They call it “the business”. That’s the first thing I learned in the wonderful new comic about the life of one of the 20th century’s famous wrestlers. It’s not “the sport”, because that would open… [more]

Guardians-of-the-Galaxy-poster-21It’s Okay to Criticize Guardians of the Galaxy

I read Julian Darius’ essay on Guardians of the Galaxy with great interest, just as I read Stephanie Zacharek’s review of the same film. Both of them have come under fire on social media (Julian’s… [more]

photoMy First Comic Con

My first experience at San Diego Comic Con was almost overwhelming. And I mean that in a literal sense: there were many times when I felt an almost irresistible temptation to “take a knee” and… [more]

10468073_700013543381961_346021762295534240_nThe Fifth Beatle Revisited: An Update from San Diego Comic Con

This has been a big year for one of the most elegant and beautiful comics to come along in some time, The Fifth Beatle by Vivek J. Tiwary and Andrew Robinson (which I had previously… [more]

nasa-mohawk-guyNASA vs Popular Culture: They’re Cooler Than You Think

Along with several others in the Sequart family, I’m going to be attending San Diego Comic-Con this week. One of the panels I’m excited to see is hosted by Seth Green and called “NASA’s Next… [more]

10502289_285570028282686_1288632860811235006_nRat Queens #7

Rat Queens continues to deliver on all cylinders: sparkling dialogue, rich characters and just the right amount of horror and action for this genre. In issue #7, more plot elements start to fall into place… [more]

3962993-08Manifest Destiny #8: Sacagawea Keeps Score

Things are getting “curiouser and curiouser” for the Corps of Discovery in Manifest Destiny #8. Aside from the usual thrills this comic provides, giant frogs, giant insects, scary jungle, etc, in this issue you can… [more]

shepherd-bookSerenity is Really Missing its Shepherd and Companion

Looking back over the now-complete series Serenity: Leaves on the Wind, which will mark the beginning of a continuing Serenity comic series, as well as the other short-run “miniseries” of Serenity comics that have emerged… [more]

American Splendor 02 (1977) (Restored).cbz - Page 6 1Robert Crumb’s Best Art Was Some of His Most Subtle

The partnership between Harvey Pekar and Robert Crumb was one of the more curious, and one of the most artistically satisfying in all of comics. Friends for years before even considering making comics together, these… [more]

Serenity_-_Leaves_on_the_Wind_006_(2014)_(Digital)_(Pirate-Empire).cbr - Page 1Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #6: We Need a Montage!

Perhaps this is the curse of episodic, serialized storytelling, but Serenity: Leaves on the Wind didn’t, it seems to me, end as strong as it started. This final issue certainly sets up a great deal… [more]

15A is for Apocalypse: A Creative and Entertaining Short Story Collection

To the best of my understanding, the notion of apocalypse comes straight out of ancient religions and people have been talking about it for millennia. The common theme is this: in the era of “great… [more]

Sex Crim 2Sex Criminals #6 Review

[If you read this comic, consider yourself guilty of the sin levelled at many a child: you've been spoiled.] Well, well, well, our friends the sex criminals return in issue #6, after we left them… [more]

f-for-fake-DI-2F for Fake: Orson Welles’ Last Movie

Years later, reflecting back on his life and work, Orson Welles would say, “I thought I was onto something,” in reference to his last completed film, 1973’s F for Fake. The relative lack of impact… [more]

Manifest Destiny 007 (2014) (Digital) (Minutemen-Acan).cbr - Page 15Manifest Destiny #7: A Different Mission

[Spoilers ahoy, Captain Clark.] It’s wonderful to be back amongst the pulpy charms and historical poetry of Manifest Destiny after a break. For those who missed the first six issues, Chris Dingess and Matthew Roberts… [more]

jason-mewesJason Mewes Survives to Age 40

The day has come that many would have bet every farm in the Midwest we would never see: Jason Mewes has just turned 40 years old. Mewes is the Sid Vicious or Keith Moon of… [more]

Strange Tales FeaturedI Read an Old and Valuable Comic… And Liked It

I was recently reading my tattered paperback copy of Bester’s The Stars My Destination for a future article and happened to check on when this very beat-up book was released. It turns out that I… [more]

18048It’s the 15th Anniversary of Free Enterprise

As with my previous recap of Chasing Amy here on Sequart, it’s time to take a trip back in time, to that dear departed 20th century. Released exactly 15 years ago this week, Free Enterprise… [more]

doctor-spektor-master-of-the-occult-1-coming--L-4TTstVMark Waid’s Doctor Spektor, Master of the Occult #1

[Mild spoilers ahead.] Mark Waid’s new reboot of the Gold Key classic Doctor Spektor: Master of the Occult brings the right level of goofy fun to a title that has languished in the margins of… [more]

y0a23AtTrailer Park Boys Live in Fuckin’ Dublin Review

I should confess a slight conflict (or confluence?) of interest when writing about Trailer Park Boys. Not only did I grow up in Nova Scotia, I hail from the exact community (Dartmouth/Cole Harbour) in which… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 031.cbz - Page 2Buffy: Turbulence

From issues #32-40, the climax of Buffy Season 8 plays out on an epic scale. We have yet to have a visit from Spike and Angel, for example, and they’ll both make appearances as circumstances… [more]

e8d38d9cf94d513273febafe4cd29e46Serenity, Leaves on the Wind #5: Love Keeps Them Flying

[This review contains minor spoilage. It’s a bit spoiler-y. (I feel obliged to put it in Whedonesque terms.)] Issue #5 of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind has a distinctly Whedon voice. I mean that in… [more]

wallHugs1American Dad Finishes its Run on Fox

Although this weekend saw the release of Seth MacFarlane’s A Million Ways to Die in the West, it also saw the first weekend without one of his other shows, American Dad, on Fox. After nine… [more]

The-Fifth-BeatleThe Fifth Beatle: The Untold Story of Brian Epstein

The Fifth Beatle is a monumental comic that combines bold styles, uses every comics storytelling trick in the proverbial book and a fast-paced style to recount ten years of history, from about 1957-1967. Those were… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 027.cbr - Page 1Buffy: Retreat

After six issues that were essentially standalone stories, some of which were very experimental one-off character or thematic explorations, Jane Espenson’s five-part “Retreat” arc is a vital turning point in Buffy Season 8. In fact,… [more]

Sensational She-Hulk 34.cbz - Page 1Is She-Hulk Too Sexy?: Goyer vs. Lee

I can’t be the only person on this planet who finds She-Hulk sexy. That combination of va-va-voom curves, strength and intelligence (the last is important) is a hugely attractive blend. So, the only question is… [more]

X-Men Days of Future Past - TPB.cbr - Page 105Claremont’s Days of Future Past: A Story About Kitty Pryde

Unlike many comics fans, I never actually read X-Men as a child all those years ago. In fact, I stayed away from most superhero titles, other than the odd cross-over with Superman and Batman when… [more]

othello-orson-welles-4Orson Welles’ Othello: A True Masterpiece

Orson Welles’ Othello, now doing a victory lap around the world in a “restored” version, is one of the boldest and most singular of all the adaptations of Shakespeare to reach the movie screen. I… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 025.cbr - Page 2Buffy: Tentacles and a Thricewise

We are almost back to the main storyline of Buffy Season 8. Just some catching up to do with Faith and Giles, and dealing with Dawn’s boyfriend issues to get through, first. Issue, #24, “Safe”,… [more]

e7eb52c0-dabd-11e3-928d-790595b088b3_batmobileWhy It Doesn’t Matter What Ben Affleck’s Batman Costume Looks Like

A rational person bases their judgement on previous experience. This applies across the board, but is often forgotten, particularly in emotional situations involving childhood memories. That’s the best explanation I can come up with for… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 022.cbr - Page 2Buffy: Out of Control

Things are starting to get out of control for the Slayer army. That’s the essential, long-range, overall story arc point made in issues #22 and 23 of Buffy Season 8. But you could be forgiven… [more]

bitwc-kissBlue is the Warmest Color: A Great Graphic Novel Love Story

Love, to this amateur, seems to have this peculiar quality of specificity and generality, at least in our memory. We remember sentiment, feeling and then some very particular moments or images. It’s like remembering a… [more]

RatQueens_06-1Rat Queens #6: Hangovers and Dark Magic

We last left the Rat Queens at a wild party, having defeated an evil army, brought one of their members back from the brink of death and they celebrated appropriately. (Or, as we soon find… [more]

Arkadin featuredOrson Welles’ Mr. Arkadin

In honour of what would have been Orson Welles’ 99th birthday today, I’d like to offer some insight on one of his lesser-known and seldom-seen films, 1955’s Mr. Arkadin. It’s impossible to meaningfully discuss Orson… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 020.cbr - Page 2Buffy: Harmonic Divergence

The next five issues of Buffy Season 8 (#20-25), seem to represent a determined and conscientious effort on the part of the Whedon crew to experiment. They revisit some old ideas, and old characters, and… [more]

23611Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #4: Where River Gets Scared

The return of The Operative in the previous issue of Serenity: Leaves on the Wind excited fans all over the world, but it sure didn’t excite the Serenity crew. Though we all love Chiwetel Ejofor’s… [more]

sw ep 7 castThe New Star Wars Cast: Lucky VII?

This photo is destined to become one of the most famous, or one of the most notorious, in popular culture. The image of the first assembly of the Star Wars Episode VII cast is right… [more]

Curt_Connors_TASM1Spider-Man and Science: Exactly Who is Responsible Enough for Great Power?

Spider-Man is kind of unique amongst superheroes in his relationship with science. No, not the science of how he actually swings on those webs without dislocating his shoulders or ripping his arms out of their… [more]

QuitterHarvey Pekar’s The Quitter: My Favourite Comic Book

I sometimes get asked what my “favourite comic of all time” is. All of us who reflect on creative works, whether that be music, film, TV, theatre, literature or any other kind of art, have… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 019.cbr - Page 18Buffy: Time of Your Life

This arc of Buffy Season 8 is complex and more than a little confusing for those who don’t pay strict attention. This has to be said up front for those playing the home game because… [more]

rat-queens-02-covA-webRat Queens: Smart, Funny, Sassy Fantasy

The slug-line description of Rat Queens that I heard continually at Vancouver Fan Expo last weekend as “LOTR as if it were written by Tarantino”. That might sound intriguing, but the more I thought of… [more]

2010 cover edited2010: The Year We Make Contact: An Adaptation of an Adaptation

For those who, like me, are longtime readers of Science Fiction, we’re very familiar that classic literature in this genre falls into a few recognizable categories. In general, either it’s concerned with plausible technology and… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 015.cbr - Page 13Buffy: Wolves At The Gate

After two big story arcs starting off Buffy Season 8, it’s really here at the third that the Slayer Army really gets “down to business”. Joss Whedon and his collaborators have set up the situation,… [more]

east_of_westEast of West #1-5: A Genre Mashup that Doesn’t Quite Work

The great thing about Westerns, as I often explain to those who don’t understand the genre, is that you can really “go there”. It’s a genre that contains within it the whole spectrum of that… [more]

Superior featuredMark Millar’s Superior: A Loving Tribute to the Super-Hero

“After all the deconstruction, Superior was planned as a RECONSTRUCTION of the superhero. A warm-hearted tribute to why we need them.” –Mark Millar, April 15, 2014 As longtime readers of Sequart may notice, I don’t… [more]

Amazon-buys-comixology-app-665x385Thoughts on Amazon, Comixology and Digital Comics

The recent announcement of Comixology and Amazon merging has some people all in a flutter once again about the rise of digital comics. Other than the obvious advice (calm down), I think some historical and… [more]

ManifestDestiny-FEATUREManifest Destiny #6: Lewis and Clark’s Dreams

The most important part of this issue of Manifest Destiny, by Chris Dingess, Matthew Roberts and Own Gieni, is the passage where we get to see Lewis and Clark’s dreams. In historical terms, Meriwether Lewis… [more]

Noah (2014) (Digital) (phillywilly-Empire).cbr - Page 1Aronofsky’s Noah: The Shaggy Dad

“NOAH!” “What?!” -Bill Cosby Darren Aronofsky’s Noah is a pretty intense comic book. That shouldn’t be too surprising to anyone familiar with his other work, particularly his films. But it bears repeating that, unlike the… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 009.cbr - Page 2Buffy: No Future For You

The next story arc of Buffy Season 8 once again hits on the main theme of this season and indeed the later seasons of the TV series: what does it mean to be a Slayer?… [more]

maxresdefaultJodorowsky’s Dune: Where Trying Matters

Francis Coppola once said (while making Apocalypse Now) that to reach for greatness and not get there is the greatest artistic sin. A film that aims for the top and doesn’t get there is “shit!”… [more]

Manifest Destiny cover featuredManifest Destiny #1-5, or “Lewis and Clark vs the Vegetable Zombies”

The slug-line description of Manifest Destiny, a comic by Chris Dingess and Matthew Roberts, is “Lewis and Clark go west to fight monsters”. That would be interesting enough right there, but thing that gives this… [more]

Serenity_Leaves_Wind_3_cover_1Moving Pieces into Place with Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #3

In the new Serenity comic, issue #3 of Leaves on the Wind, there’s a lot of ground covered in very little time. If there’s one issue where we can feel the story not exactly slipping… [more]

Sex Criminals #5Sex Criminals #4-5 Review

What’s going on with our heroes, the sex criminals, for issues #4 and 5? Well, a bit of sex, a bit of criminality, and somewhere in there a bit of reality intrudes. This continues to… [more]

serenity leaves on the wind 2Death Comes Calling for Serenity in Leaves on the Wind #2

Life and death are very much on Mal Reynolds’ mind in Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #2. Whereas the previous issue was about how life is continuing for the Serenity crew, with Mal and Inara… [more]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer 001.cbr - Page 5The Long Walk Home

“Everyone calls me ma’am these days.” -Buffy Summers Buffy the Vampire Slayer, the TV series, was about many things, including being a profoundly human and true coming-of-age story. By the end of season 7, Buffy… [more]

602519“A Will Eisner Reader”: Your Introduction to a Master

To me, he’s always “Mr Eisner”. I’m sure he would have told me to call him “Will”, but something in my upbringing would have prevented me from being so informal. He could just as easily… [more]

Serenity Leaves on the WindReview: Serenity: Leaves on the Wind #1

Of all the Serenity comics, and there have been several very good ones up until now, the new Leaves on the Wind follows most directly after the events of the Serenity film. While other books… [more]

chasing amy imageChasing Amy: A Pioneering Film Featuring Female Comics Creators

It’s easy to forget in 2014 that there was a time when comics weren’t really that close to the center of the cultural zeitgeist. But, though someone under twenty may not believe it, there was… [more]

powerpuff -LGPowerpuff Girls: Too Hot for Comics?

A small furor erupted recently when a variant cover for the IDW tie-in to the Cartoon Network series The Powerpuff Girls was withdrawn from circulation after criticism that it was too sexualized. Michigan comic book… [more]

Tales_of_the_SlayersExperiments in Slayage

Tales of the Slayers and Tales of the Vampires are two anthology comics published in trade paperback in 2001 and 2004, respectively. Both offer numerous diversions away from the established Buffy/Angel storylines and glimpses into… [more]

Joss_Whedon's_Fray_1Fray: Slayage in the 24th Century

Dark Horse and Joss Whedon first explored the “vampire slayer” world in the 2001-2003 8-issue miniseries Fray, widely available now in TPB. With an original script by Joss Whedon, conceived and written during the troubled… [more]

Heavy MetalA New Heavy Metal Movie Soon?

It was announced last week that Heavy Metal magazine had been sold from Kevin Eastman to investors from the world of music and film, who are keen to capitalize on their new acquisition. New owners… [more]

BuffySeason8_40Buffy Goes to the Comics: An Introduction

Joss Whedon once claimed that he would continue to engage with the characters of his doomed Firefly series in any possible medium, including “etchings”. As intriguing as a woodcut series sounds, either for Firefly or… [more]

Sherlock 221BReview of Sherlock Season 3, Episode 3

THESE TWO PARAGRAPHS CONTAIN NO SPOILERS In the original and highly unusual story “His Last Bow”, published in 1917 but set in 1914, Sherlock Holmes and John Watson become embroiled in espionage involving a major… [more]

batman-inc-1-variantBill Finger’s Quest for a Google Doodle

This February 8th is an historic date in the comics history: the 100th anniversary of the birth of Bill Finger (and coincidentally, this year marks the 40th anniversary of his death and the 75th anniversary… [more]

Sherlock BenedictReview of Sherlock Season 3, Episode 2

“The Sign of Three”, the middle episode in season three of BBC’s Sherlock, is mainly concerned with Sherlock’s relationships with people other than Watson. That might sound odd, considering the central event of this episode… [more]

SherlockReview of Sherlock Season 3, Episode 1

One of the things I admire the most about BBC’s Sherlock is the way they use story titles. As someone who read these stories as a youth and became very familiar with the names of… [more]

Shia LaBeoufOn Shia LaBeouf: An Explanation, but Not an Excuse

Recently, one of the big comics news stories involves actor Shia LaBeouf and his adaptation antics. To review: LaBeouf produced a short film titled HowardCantour.com, starring the fine comedian Jim Gaffigan and presented it at… [more]

Sex Criminals 3 CoverSex Criminals #1-3 Review

Sex Criminals, by Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky and published by Image Comics, is one of the most imaginative, intelligent, honest, and warmly funny comic books I’ve read in some time. It starts off with… [more]

MandelaNelson Mandela: Comic Book Hero

Nelson Mandela, who passed away last week at the age of 95, certainly lived a life with enough twists and turns of fortune and fate to be included among the great comics characters. His story… [more]

Comics Studies ReaderComics Studies Making More Inroads into Academia

It was heartening to many people in the field of comics studies to see that, this week, the University of Oregon received a grant from a private donor to create a $200,000 endowment for their… [more]

Alan MooreA Response to Alan Moore from an Emotional “Normal”

Alan Moore is not known for being shy with his opinions, especially when it comes to the cultural intersection of comics and society. For Moore, given his spiritual and philosophical beliefs, everything is radically connected… [more]

AppleApple’s Comic Double Standard

“…we do believe we have a moral responsibility to keep porn off the iPhone. Folks who want porn can buy an Android phone.” — Steve Jobs Apple has taken a firm stance against pornographic content… [more]

JFK New US PresidentJFK: Comic Book Hero

(…continued from THIS) It was a bright, sunny Friday like this one, 50 years ago, that John F. Kennedy met his end in Dallas, Texas. This is, of course, well known, and one of the… [more]

Oswald ShotLee Harvey Oswald: A Comics Villain?

This week marks the 50th anniversary of one of the most infamous days in world history: November 22nd, 1963. Based on the violent and deadly events of that day, the names John F. Kennedy and… [more]

Alan MooreAlan Moore Turns 60 Today

Today is the 60th birthday of Alan Moore, one of the strongest, most creative and unique comic voices of the past three decades. I’m sure everyone can join in sending best wishes to him in… [more]

NEWS CONTENT BY IAN DAWE (15 TOTAL)

kevin-smith-talks-clerks-3Kevin Smith’s Clerks III and Mallrats 2 Shelved – New Jay and Silent Bob Film Planned

Sometimes it’s interesting to learn about the limits of a creative person’s power, even over their own creations. We all know that George Lucas doesn’t own Star Wars anymore, for example, and technically, Disney can… [more]

FLymyoRc_400x400Happy Birthday Image Comics

This week marks the 25th anniversary of the founding of one of the strongest and most creative comics publishers, Image Comics. Founded by and for comics creators, Image was established as a home for creators… [more]

static1.squarespaceDavid Brent – Life on the Road Now Coming to Netflix in August

“I’ve got one song, it’s about rock and roll, but it’s a metaphor for sex.” -David Brent In April, we were treated to the teaser trailer for David Brent: Life on the Road, with Ricky… [more]

Elvis-nixonElvis and Nixon Trailer Promises Ironic Fun

The most-requested photo in the US National Archives is not the flag at Iwo Jima, nor is it the last photograph of Abraham Lincoln, nor one of the iconic Kennedy portraits. It’s, in fact, a… [more]

Yoga-Hosers1A Big Night at SDCC

It was a busy night last night at SDCC, particularly in the famous Hall H. One of the highlights of this year’s event was always going to be the Star Wars panel, and JJ Abrams… [more]

TwitterAdsNew.001Sequential Offers a Great TCAF Collection For Free This Month

The Toronto Comics Arts Festival (TCAF) was held last month, with its usual great success in bringing together a diverse array of comics creators from all over the world. Sequential, a free digital comics app… [more]

themartianheaderThe Martian is Revealed in a New Trailer

The trailer for the highly anticipated big-screen adaptation of Andy Weir’s The Martian went live yesterday, and gave us our first in-depth glimpse at Ridley Scott’s latest science fiction vision. The Martian is essentially a… [more]

FurryFreaksGet a Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers Collection for Free Using Sequential

To celebrate the 75th birthday of legendary underground comics creator Gilbert Shelton, Sequential, in partnership with Knockabout comics, is currently giving away a 100-page digital collection of The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers for free (until… [more]

2014-07-27 18.19.54One Year, One Hundred Articles

I first joined Sequart in November 2013, just under a year ago. In that time, I’ve written exactly 100 articles and contributed to two Sequart books (and several other books and papers unrelated to Sequart).… [more]

harlan_typeHarlan Ellison Recovering from Stroke

Many Sequart readers are fans of the work of the science fiction master Harlan Ellison. Many also know that last week Ellison suffered a major stroke, paralyzing his right arm and leg. For those concerned… [more]

rat-queens-02-covA-webRat Queens is Coming to TV

Some time ago, we reported here at Sequart that Heavy Metal magazine was about to “go Hollywood” in a serious way. And, lo and behold, here we are now seeing some of the first products… [more]

banned-comicsBanned Books Week 2014 Features Comics

This year for Banned Books Week, always an important week for libraries and literature awareness, the focus will be on comics. By encouraging people to choose and read a book that has been challenged, somewhere… [more]

action-comics-gonzalezAction Comics #1 Up for Auction

It’s always news when a copy of Action Comics #1 goes on the auction block, and that’s exactly what happened this past weekend when San Diego based collector John C. Wise put his collection up… [more]

kickstarter-badge-funded-300x286Comics Finding Success with Kickstarter

In the economic climate of today’s comics industry, where distribution is often the only thing a creator requires a big company to do, the actual production and creative costs of comics is increasingly funded by… [more]

BeyondSnowdencoverEdward Snowden Gets His Own Comic Book

Edward Snowden will join JFK, Pope John Paul II, Lee Harvey Oswald, Nelson Mandela, Brian Epstein, and Pierre Trudeau in the ranks of real-life figures who have had their stories told in the medium of… [more]

STATISTICS FOR IAN DAWE

Total Words for All Magazine Content: 455,123