A Chat with… Freddie E Williams II

In this instalment of A Chat with… I’m joined at Books, Films and Random Lunacy H.Q. by Eisner Award winning comic book artist Freddie E Williams II for a “Turtle-y Awesome” interview.

 GB: Hey Freddie, thanks for taking the time to have a chat with me today.

With the eagerly anticipated second volume just around the corner, what better place to start than with ‘Batman/TMNT’?

How cool is it to be teaming up with writer James Tynion IV again and heading back to Gotham City via NYC?

 FEWII: Super cool! I wish we could do this book forever! Both James and I are very excited to be able to return with volume 2, we had so much in mind from the last series, and it is great to explore several themes we couldn’t fit in the first time around! We’re both really excited and feel lucky we’re getting to do this sequel, and I hope there are 4 more sequels after this!

GB: Just between you, me and the Internet, are there any cool pizza-flavoured tid-bits you can share from ‘Batman/TMNT volume 2’?

 FEWII: There are fewer than the first volume, less pizza eating in this go around- if you go back in the Batman / TMNT volume 1, and pay attention to the Pizza “brands” I created, they are named after people working on the project with me:

TeeTee’s Pizza = My wife Kiki (who is my full time art assistant and business partner)

Pizza Wick = My awesome Editor Jim Chadwick, who hired me for the Batman / TMNT series

Pina’s Pizza= (at the time) the Associate Editor for Batman/TMNT

Pizza The Fourth = Series writer and awesome guy James Tynion

(In Volume 2, check out issue 3 for a pizza reference for Liz Erickson, the new Associate Editor for Batman / TMNT)

GB: Let’s wind the clock back to late 2015 when ‘Batman/TMNT volume 1’ was released. I, like countless other fanboys and fangirls across the globe was fit to burst with geeky glee when I read the heroes in a half shell would be teaming up with the caped crusader. I was expecting something nostalgic and pulpy, a shell-raising thrill-ride through Gotham City in the Batmobile. But the mini-series was so much more than that. As well as those fun, light-hearted elements, the story had a harder, gritty edge to it and a cinematic layout that made for a stunning visual narrative. 

Was it always your intention to give the book such atmospheric depth or was that something that happened organically as the book took shape?

 FEWII: First off, thank you, I appreciate that – my goal was to do the best I could do – to pour ALL I am artistically into Batman/TMNT. It was to connect with how much I love those original Eastman / Laird Turtles issues, and the grittiness of Gotham City, and the heavy atmospheres of Batman and his rogue’s gallery.

This was the first series I’ve illustrated in the laborious Ink Wash style, and it was a challenge to keep up that level of detail, especially compared to my previous much less detailed rendering styles, on books like Robin and the Flash but my love and passion for the characters kept me going, into the late morning deadlines. I just wanted it to be the best thing I’ve ever drawn.

 

GB: Another mini-series you’ve recently Illustrated is ‘He-Man/ThunderCats’. Could you tell us how that action-packed and unapologetically 80s crossover came about?

FEWII:  About the time I was wrapping up issue 5 of Batman/TMNT volume 1, I sent an email to my DC Editor’s asking if they had another project in the works with me in mind, then listed a few IP’s that I would love to work on. In that email I mentioned, if they were looking to do reboot of ThunderCats, or especially a crossover with He-Man and the ThunderCats, that I’d be VERY excited to be apart of it! I had no idea, but around that same time, DC was in talks with Mattel, about a possible crossover, and then it all clicked together – it’s hard for me to believe my luck – wow!

 

GB: With the huge popularity of ‘He-Man/ThunderCats’ and ‘Batman/TMNT’, you could easily be crowned the King of Crossovers at the moment. What in your opinion is the key to creating a good crossover title?   

FEWII: Am I the king of Crossovers? I’d love to be thought of with that title, that’d be awesome!

On the visual side, I think it’s being really passionate about the characters, treat them with respect and think back to what you would have wanted to see when you were a kid, try to tap into that, and it’s a great guide for what may be cool! 🙂

Something to note here is that I usually pride myself on keeping characters “on model” and checking reference to be sure costume details are correct. I’m usually successful at that, but a HUGE exception, where I screwed up, is at the end of ‘HeMan/ThunderCats’, issue 1, on the final page, I referenced the WRONG version of the Ancient Spirits of Evil, drawing the 2011 versions, instead of the classic cartoon Ancient Spirits of Evil! Do’h, totally my mistake! We fixed it in the second printing of issue1, and for the collected trade paperback, but I feel like a dork for messing that up!

GB: No worries dude, I’m sure everyone’s forgiven you. 🙂

 

 GB: Another comic book you’ve worked on recently was ‘Jonas Quantum,’ a series written by Marc Guggenheim who also has a not-so-secret identity as a TV producer/screenwriter It’s documented that the character of Jonas was Marc’s brainchild, but how much input did you have on the book in regard to world building and plot.

FEWII:  Jonas Quantum is the only creator owned book I’ve worked on in more than 10 years, and collaborating with Marc is fantastic, he’s got high concepts flying around all over the place and very open to suggestions / input! My main contributions are visual, which was a lot of fun Kirby kind of gadgets, big fight scenes, and trying to visualize the abstract and fantastic ideas Marc would come up with.

Unfortunately Jonas Quantum got completely overshadowed by the announcement of Batman/TMNT, so not many people have gotten a chance to read it, but I had a great time working with Marc, and would love to do so again!

 

GB: Let’s talk about your How-To book, ‘The DC Comics Guide to Digitally Drawing Comics,’ could you tell us how that project was conceived and your writing process for it?

FEWII: Before I even broke in at DC Comics (which was late 2005) I was putting together the pitch / how to project, that would later become “The DC Comics Guide to Digitally Drawing Comics”. Originally I was going to pitch the book to publishers (along with Adobe) myself, just to gauge interest. Then in mid 2006, when DC Comics offered me an exclusive contract, it prompted me to ask about the how to pitch. I was asking if I would be free to publish that work with another publisher – or if that would somehow be blocked by the exclusive. They are different kinds of work, drawing comics vs writing a how to book, but there would be comic book art in the how to book, which is an uncomfortable overlap, and I didn’t want there to be a conflict.

When I brought this up, the legal guy at DC, said “why don’t we publish it here?” And that hadn’t even occurred to me! Of course I had several of their how to books already, and they are great, so I was happy for mine to be apart of that family of books!

I showed them the pitch, and travelled to New York (where DC Comics was located at the time) to give them a demonstration. All of that went well, and the book got a green light.

I was really lucky to have John Morgan as my editor on The DC Comics Guide to Digitally Drawing Comics, he was a HUGE help focusing the book, and giving it a more ordered formatting. We’re still friends all these years later!

 

GB: People can quite often accuse artists like yourself who mainly draw digitally of cheating, just because they don’t create all their work with pen and paper, but nobody ever seems to accuse authors of the same when they write their novels using computers instead of quill and ink. What are your thoughts on this debate?

FEWII: Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I’m cool with people thinking what they think.

 

GB: One of your first big breaks in mainstream comics came in 2005, when you began illustrating ‘Seven Soldiers: Mister Miracle’ written by Grant Morrison. Were you nervous about working with such an iconic writer so early in your career with DC or could you not wait to sink your teeth into the opportunity?

FEWII: Whoooo boy, was I ever nervous! Everything about it made me nervous, my first work at DC Comics, the tight deadline: I had 3 weeks to draw 30 pages (6 pages in issue 2, 24 pages of issue 3), though in a much simpler style… I was working at Hallmark Cards full time, it was during the holidays, and I was working from a script by the legendary Grant Morrison, I was a wreck! I’m glad I was working with the amazing colorist Dave McCaig, he really saved me on those pages!

 

GB: You’ve worked for both Marvel and DC on many projects over the years, are there any major differences between how the two comics leviathans operate creatively?

FEWII: The vast majority of the working relationship comes down to how the Editor operates, no matter the company. I’ve been really lucky to work with amazing Editors, Peter Tomasi (before he became a writing juggernaut), Mike Carlin, Joan Hilty, Mike Marts, Jim Chadwick, just to name a few. All create unique work environments, I owe my career to all of them.

Because I’ve always been very deadline focused and I stay in contact with the team frequently, and I understand the chain of command, where I will give input and try for what I think is the best creative choice, but I understand they have ultimate say in all matters, my Editorial experiences are healthy and friendly.

 

GB: You’re an award-winning artist, an adept world-builder and we know from your How-To book that you’re also a skilled author. Do you have any plans to start scripting comics in the future?

FEWII: I’ve written a couple short stories, but I don’t know if I have the chops to script a full series or an on-going – I bury myself in the construction of the motivations of the characters, and make things to big for myself… I think I’m pretty good at co-plotting with other writers, and good at picking things apart and contributing to pacing, and I enjoy those things, so I think I’ll stick with that for now.

 

GB: Do you have any other creative ambitions that you are yet to explore either inside or outside of the comics industry?

FEWII: All I’ve ever wanted to do is draw comic books. Occasionally it’s fun to see my work on a shirt, or a Blu Ray cover, or on a poster or something like that – but I just want to draw comics for the rest of my life. It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do.

 

Batman/TMNT 2 issue #1 is out on 6 December and issue #2 is released two weeks later on 20 December.

 Follow Freddie on social media…

 Twitter: @Freddieart

Instagram: Freddieart

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FreddieArt

 

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A Comic Book Review: Future Echoes Omnibus by Al Davison & Yen Quach

*Contains mild spoilers*

Future Echoes is the new 3 issue mini series by Al Davison and Yen Quach that tells the story of a sceptical professor who is left questioning his beliefs, his senses and the boundaries of reality itself when he enters a suspected haunted house.

The first issue of Future Echoes introduces the reader to Harlan Woodbine, a straight-talking pragmatic professor who happens to use a wheelchair. We first meet Harlan when the contractors renovating an old mansion that once belonged to renowned artist Mortimer-Samson Vine suddenly down tools and report paranormal goings-on. Harlan and his high-tech team of scientists are urgently called upon and head to Paris to investigate.

Harlan is a fiercely logical and highly educated man who has no time for tales of things that go bump in the night and is determined to find a rational explanation for the claims.

So with the use of sophisticated technology and some mobility-aiding mod cons, Harlan moves in to the archaic building overnight to conduct numerous tests and analyses. But when a brutal thunderstorm throws his world into turmoil and a pretty young lady appears before his eyes, Harlan realises this case may not be as clear-cut as he once thought.

In the opening panels of issue two the reader sees a flabbergasted Harlan get to know his fiery new housemate; a beautiful, paralysed redhead named Amelia Stone. Harlan is forced to re-assess everything he believes, as Amelia states she is being held prisoner within the walls of the mansion in the year of our Lord 1895. The pages turn and the pair of confused companions debate each others existences, their sanities and the very nature of time as untold revelations come to the fore.

The third and final chapter of the tale is an enthralling roller-coaster ride that sees backstories filled in, plotlines tied up and dimensions hopped before culminating in a twist that would leave even the most deductive reader’s mouth agape.

Al Davison and Yen Quach’s mini series is a tale overflowing with creative innovation from its composition to its narrative structure and is nigh impossible to fault.

The inspired decision for Davison to draw the male characters and Quach to illustrate the female characters gives these comics a truly unique look. The varied and contrasting styles the two creators utilise across the 3 issues somehow never seem to clash and achieve many nuanced page layouts.

Their choice to share the writing duties was equally effective and gave the dialogue an organic flow.

However, the true innovation of this story is most apparent in its protagonists. Two characters with disabilities who haven’t simply been added to the plot for a bit of token diversity or tear-jerking tragedy, they are three-dimensional creations upon whom the entire story pivots. It is a perfect example of the kind of inclusive, multifaceted work that needs to be seen across other mediums and the powers-that-be within those mediums should wake up and take note.

Future Echoes is a time-twisting, genre-bending tale of limit-defying romance that is like nothing else found in comics today.

 

 

 

 

As Cool as ICE: My Thoughts on The International Comic Expo 2017

Ever since I first opened the pages of Moore and Gibbons’ classic Watchmen and fell headfirst into the intoxicatingly creative anarchically unique world of comic books I’ve been fortunate enough to attend countless cons. But for some reason known only to the pop-cultural gods, I’d never made it to the gloriously geeky extravaganza known as the International Comic Expo. However that all changed on Saturday 9th September when I made my way into Birmingham for ICE 2017.

I rolled into the convention rooms with a smile on my face and my big hat atop my head; wasting no time I zoomed down the isles to where the rows upon rows of indie creators were sitting behind tables selling their passionately crafted wares. The first talented individual whose work caught my eye was Dublin-based writer and artist Anthea West. I picked up a copy of her spine-chilling and perfectly paced horror anthology Sleep Tight, as well as a beautifully rendered print. Take it from me, if Anthea’s creations are anything to go by, Ireland’s independent comics scene is strong indeed.

I then turned the corner and had the pleasure of meeting Steve Poulacheris, co-creator of the wonderfully psychedelic Vanilla Magazine. I was drawn over to the table by the magazine’s main feature, an interview with iconic writer and Northampton’s foremost magician Alan Moore. But after a quick glance through it’s pages, I realised that was just one of the many jewels to be found in Vanilla.

 I snatched up my copy and spent the following afternoon relishing every page. It was bursting at the margins with exquisitely crafted comic strips, articles, interviews and artwork; all of which was produced by Steve, his co-creator Andy Williams (who I met and chatted with later that day) and their talented band of counter-cultural cohorts. A great mag that would leave anyone with a penchant for psychedelia hungry for more.

 

From there I made my way over to the signing table of Freddie E Williams II, the internationally acclaimed comic artist who has illustrated such titles as He-Man/Thundercats, Legendary Star-Lord and my personal favourite miniseries of 2016, Batman/TMNT.

Meeting Freddie was a true thrill, above the hubbub of the con we talked about the Turtles and some of their best incarnations as he signed my copies of Batman/TMNT. I tried not to geek-out too badly whilst telling him how much his work inspires me and he was even kind enough to give me an incredible print of Leo, Raph, Mikey and Donnie fending off the Foot Clan.

Oh yeah, and we also discussed another outlandishly cool thing that I look forward to telling you all more about in the very near future.

 

Another highlight of the event was checking out The Geek Syndicate’s panel featuring the co-creator of The Walking Dead and current Comic Book Laureate Charlie Adlard, co-founder of Time Bomb Comics and veteran writer Steve Tanner, emerging indie talent Jane Straw and author and artist of Elsie Harris Picture Palace, Jessica Martin. Barry and Dave filled the room with their trademark blend of nerdy knowledge and unbridled hilarity as they and their guests presented a S.W.O.T (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) Analysis of the British comic book scene.

They covered countless topics over the course of their talk, from the ghettoisation of comic shops and the lack of mainstream advertising, to the reasons why the UK is yet to embrace this particular art form in the same way that Europe has. They then asked why the powers-that-be in comic publishing and retail don’t stock titles by genre and how much easier life would be if they did. But the funniest moment of the talk came when Charlie Adlard went into a rib-tickling rant about Hollywood stripping our favourite superheroes of all their tongue-in-cheek charm and turning them into stone-faced sticks-in-the-mud.

This marvellous convention also gave me the chance to catch up with and meet some mates including artist, writer and renowned hat-grabber Al ‘The Astral Gypsy’ Davison who made my mom’s day with a fantastical watercolour. I finally got the chance to meet The PxD himself, Pete Davis and chat about his amazing artwork on The Axeman Cometh. I also swung by my ol’ pal Stu Perrins’ table to see what was new in his extraordinary imagination,  and of course, I couldn’t help but check in with the ever-energetic reporter Olly MacNamee. After Olly and I refuelled with some snacks, he introduced me to Joel Meadows of Tripwire Magazine. I’ve admired Tripwire’s array of creative content for years and it was great to meet and glean some inspiration from one of the brains behind the remarkable mag.

I could write all day about the fun I had that fine Saturday in Birmingham, but I’ll sum it up with a simple statement…

There ain’t many comic cons as cool as ICE.

Moore Monsters

It’s been a few weeks since my last blog post, I’ve been collaborating with my mate and sickeningly talented illustrator, Nathan Moore perfecting our debut comic strip ‘The Minor Disasters Department.’ As well as working away on a couple of new projects that I’m excited for you to see when they are unveiled very soon. But in the mean time, dear reader, I thought you might like to check out this quirky little poem packed with in-jokes that I wrote about the aforementioned Mr Moore.   

Nathan Moore does often draw

At a desk in his humble abode

He’s drawn his idols’ faces,

Far-out fantasy places

And a portrait of old Mr Toad.

Mr Moore doesn’t play,

He crafts a sketch every day

And it’s true drawing monsters

Really is his forte.

He draws some to summon laughter

And others to terrify

But his favourites are the ones

That start off as penii

He doodles demons by day

And scribbles werewolves by night

He even based one monster

On a Quorn chicken bite.

He sketches vampires at work

And ghouls at home

He probably even draws his monsters

On the porcelain throne.

From a quickly etched creature

To an alien illustration

Mr Moore has a monster

For every occasion.

With such a fast output

And such dedication

Is there anything else

We could ask of dear Nathan?

Except for

A few Moore

Monsters.

Big Announcement: Tamworth Literary Festival – Geek Fest

Ah, dear reader, I’ve been waiting to tell you about this for a while and it gives me a stupendous amount of pleasure to finally announce that myself and the extremely talented artist and writer Nathan Moore will be among the guests at The Tamworth Literary Festival’s Geek Fest on the 9th of August 2017.

Now that I’ve got that cool bit of news out in the open, allow me to tell you a bit more about this exciting new event and how my name found its way onto the bill. A few months ago myself and my aforementioned extremely talented mate Nathan Moore started working on a number of different collaborative projects including a comic strip about a duo of inept deities.

A couple of weeks after, I received a phone call from the good folk at The Tamworth Lit Fest (a fast-emerging literary organisation who are doing big things on the creative scene in my neck of the woods) and they kindly invited Nathan and I to debut our comic The Minor Disasters Department at their Mini Comic Con. We will also be selling some limited edition print runs of my prose stories that have been wonderfully illustrated by Nathan’s own hand, so we’ll have something for everyone.

Geek Fest is an exciting new free event that will be taking place at Ankerside Shopping Centre in Tamworth on Wednesday the 9th of August. It will be packed with all the thrills and spills of your favourite comic con on an intimate scale with some of the best local comic book writers, artists, TV and movie actors there on the day. No ticket required, just turn up and have fun!

Guests include internationally acclaimed artist and writer, Al ‘The Astral Gypsy’ Davison. Al has collaborated with some of the greatest writers in the comic book industry including Neil Gaiman and Mike Carey and his work has appeared in award-winning titles such as Hellblazer and The Unwritten for DC/Vertigo. He is also  the author and illustrator of the groundbreaking graphic novel autobiographies The Spiral Cage and Muscle Memory.

Tamworth-based author Simon Goodwin of Papercraft Heroes will be chatting and selling his latest Papercraft creations.

Actor Martin Ballantyne who has appeared in the Harry Potter Franchise and Christopher Nolan’s blockbuster The Dark Knight will be showcasing his awesome movie memorabilia collection.

Local actress Margaret Jackman of Game of Thrones fame will be at the signing table, discussing her role in the smash-hit TV show, and that’s not all the GoT goodness you can expect from Geek Fest. The Tamworth Lit Fest will also be revealing an unmissable Game of Thrones exclusive…

Want to find out more? Get you’re butt down to Ankerside on Wednesday the 9th of August.

 

Like The Tamworth Lit Fest on Facebook

Follow The Tamworth Litfest on Twitter: @TamworthLitFest

For more info email: tamlitfest@gmail.com or call: 07562653565

 

 

Skulduggery Pleasant, (My Grandad) and Me

Allow me to tell you a story; a true story about my Grandad, Skulduggery Pleasant and how those two incredible entities combined to have a profound impact on my life.

Before I delve too deeply into my love of Derek Landy’s dead famous bestselling series of books, I must first fill you in on the kind, hilarious clever wizard of a man who I had the honour of calling my Grandad.

Pete Bastow was so much more than a grandfather to me he was also a wise and supportive father who was always there when I needed him and a mad best mate who taught me to find humour in every aspect of life.

I am blessed to have thousands of amazing memories of him tucked snuggly away in the treasure-trove of my mind, but out of all those reminiscences the ones that remain most vivid are the countless hours we spent reading.

I’ve always loved stories and the intoxicating joy of immersing myself within their worlds, but as much as I adore books, the act of reading has proven consistently difficult for me. As regular readers of this blog will know, I have a condition called Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy which affects all four of my limbs and means I am a fulltime wheelchair user. One of the most unfortunate side effects of my disability ensures that I am a painfully slow reader, which for someone with my voracious appetite for fiction is most uncool. So unlike most Grandads, mine didn’t stop reading to me as soon as I was out of nappies, he continued every evening and weekend until reading became one of our things, along with quoting movies, watching sitcoms and taking the Mickey out of life in general.

Now the background to this yarn has been sufficiently filled in, let me take you back to what would become a very memorable day in 2007. I was rolling past my local branch of Waterstones when I was stopped in my tracks by the display in the shop’s window, a poster that read Skulduggery Pleasant: The new novel by Derek Landy accompanied by an enticingly placed stack of hardbacks.

I know they say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover but come on, have you seen it? The now iconic image of the skeleton detective in his exquisitely tailored suit and fedora with a magical flame emanating from the fingers of his gloved hand, I was hooked before I’d even finish the blurb.

I took the tome back to my own partner in crime and the very next day my granddad and I ventured into the Skulduggery Pleasant universe for the first time. We loved it. This new title was laugh-out-loud funny, relentlessly fast-paced and delightfully violent with some of the best dialogue I’d come across in any work of fiction. Derek Landy’s gorgeously sharp prose not only introduced me to his quirky, crazy and truly original cast of characters, but it also made me discover YA literature as a medium which in turn inspired me to become a writer.

Over the next 7 years and 12 books (if you include two spin-offs and a World Book Day short story) Mr Pleasant, his fiery young protégé Valkyrie Cain and their badass band of associates became like old friends to us. We’d read about their latest adventures over cups of tea on lazy Saturday mornings, or with an ice-lolly on the back yard on bright summer days. We’d howl at the exploits of Scapegrace and Thrasher as my ol’ man slurped back his red wine and we’d spill biscuit crumbs between the pages, as we hurried towards the next mind-melting plot twist.

We finished book 9 Skulduggery Pleasant: The Dying of the Light in mid-2014 and as the cover slammed shut, an era ended.

I’d grown from a geeky 10-year-old with an overflowing imagination to a still geeky windswept and interesting 18-year-old with blazing creative ambitions. Just a few months later my mad wizard of a Grandfather had left this mortal coil and those memories of Skulduggery and crew became more poignant than ever.

Then came the recent release of Skulduggery Pleasant: Resurrection and the subsequent Molotov cocktail of emotions that exploded within me. In one way I was ecstatic at the prospect of re-entering the realm of magic, mayhem and mischief that had inspired me so much and in another way I was heartbroken that my Grandad, Dad and bestest mate wouldn’t be here to narrate this new edition to the series and share in its thrills and twists.

But as it reads on Resurrection’s cover, ‘You can’t keep a dead man down.’ And if magic exists which if Derek’s musings are to be believed, it most certainly does, then I’m sure my ol’ man will be reading it alongside me from behind this earthly veil.

Thanks for the memories, Derek.

Love and miss you every day, Grandad.

 

A Comic Book Review: The Axeman Cometh by Darrell Smith & The PXD

The Axeman Cometh is a Southern Gothic Noir comic book by writer Darrell Smith and illustrator the PXD. The story chronicles the journey of Robert Flint, a private investigator who is hired by the influential southern debutant Virginia Westmire to track down the man who murdered her family.

When the comic opens Flint’s been on a quest to catch the Axeman for months, has followed his blood-soaked trail to Jacksonville Mississippi and as Flint begins to recount the chain of events that led him to this point the reader is treated to an exhilarating tale of mystery and horror.

Smith’s precise and sharp writing approach makes for a pacy read; while his easy-flowing conversational style transports us back to 1920s America, his exquisite plotting allows him to subtly drop in clues and plot twists right under the readers nose. The tale has a thread of intrigue running straight through it which is only enhanced by the PXD’s beautifully rendered illustrations.

The artist’s work on this title is nothing short of breath-taking, his depictions of the characters and settings have a cinematic flare that puts the reader in mind of a Hitchcock thriller but it is the attention to detail in every page that gives the project it’s visual depth. Expertly concealed within the backgrounds of each panel is an individual shout out to everyone who backed the book’s creation on Kickstarter. Some are understated, some are humorous and others are gorgeously innovative.

From a visual perspective hats must also be tipped to Rob Jones of Madius Comics whose clear and skill full lettering aided the narrative’s smooth flow. A considerable creative salute is also in order for the story’s colourist Saad Azim whose addition of a vivid and unique palette works on multiple levels.

The Axeman Cometh is a darkly powerful Southern American yarn full of inventive techniques; it shall doubtlessly prove to be a refreshing addition to the independent comics industry and will keep you guessing ‘til the very end.