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Off Panel: A Comics Interview Podcast

Off Panel is a weekly interview show where host David Harper welcomes guests from comics and beyond to talk the stories behind what they do.
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Now displaying: 2019

An interview show getting the story behind the comics we love.

Oct 14, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Dave Baker joins the show to talk about his Kickstarter for his comic with Alexis Ziritt, Night Hunters, and what drives him as a creator. Baker discusses the NYCC experience, his different interests as a creator, existing in different sides of comics at once, his love of Todd McFarlane, charting his own path, the story behind Night Hunters, working with Ziritt, partnering with Floating World, the stresses of Kickstarter, con life, the value of having a con crew, and more.

Sep 30, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, The Beat's Heidi MacDonald returns to the podcast for a bit of a New York Comic Con precap and check-in on the world of comics. MacDonald discusses her view on cons, the celebrity circuit, how that scene is changing, how The Beat works, adjusting to the new media landscape, the state of comics right now, New York Times bringing the best selling graphic books back, changes at Diamond, the three publishers she's most intrigued by, what we're looking forward to at NYCC, and more.

Sep 23, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Matt Kindt joins the podcast to talk about his career and the upcoming Folklords at BOOM! Studios. Kindt discusses his early comic beginnings, art school, his desire to learn new things, the origins of Folklords, Matt Smith's greatness, the idea of quests, fighting boredom, HEK Studio, his mech story in the upcoming HEK Treasury, his love of Ninjak, and more.

Sep 16, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, comics critic and letterer Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou returns to the show to chat about his Eisner winning comics magazine, PanelxPanel. Otsmane-Elhaou discusses the Eisner win, how he manages the magazine, where its feature comics come from, comics marketing, the PxP redesign, the advantages of doing a paid PDF instead of a website, the upcoming PxP pocket books, the appeal of lettering, what his approach is, lettering tips, the start to the Dallas Cowboys season (note: this was recorded right after the Patriots signed Antonio Brown, so knowledge of his situation was limited), and more.

Sep 9, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, retailer Brian Hibbs returns to the podcast to talk about how the year is going for his two San Francisco comic shops, Comix Experience and Comix Experience Outpost. Hibbs discusses the impact of House of X and Powers of X, their weekly nature, the limit to the ceiling of those titles, what could have been done to reach that ceiling, Once & Future and print run games, whether DC and Image reducing their lines has helped, exploding graphic novel sales, his graphic novel clubs, the growth of speculation, transitioning HoX/PoX readers into Dawn of X readers, and more.

Sep 2, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, my pal Brandon Burpee joins me for a little something different, as we did a House of X and Powers of X focused episode themed after ESPN's Pardon the Interruption. What does that mean? Each topic is timed, as we discuss our feelings on the titles overall, our opinion on the Moira retcon, what we think Moira's sixth life was, the data pages, the MVP of the titles so far, our favorite changes to the larger X-Men story, Chimera mutants, Destiny's position, how many of the X-Men titles that follow we'll be reading, and a whole lot more. Needless to say, spoilers will be discussed.

Aug 27, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, the writer and artist of Pumpkinheads, Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks, join the podcast to chat about their new graphic novel. The pair discusses what they liked about each other's work before working together, why these characters spoke to them, Deja's greatness, whether this was the first comic Rainbow wrote, their visit to a pumpkin patch in Nebraska, chapter breaks, the map in the book and its importance, building the cast of the book, what impressed them about each other once they had worked together, and more.

Aug 19, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, artist Charlie Adlard joins the podcast for a chat about ending The Walking Dead and what comes next for him. Adlard shares why exactly The Walking Dead ended, ending with issue #193, the surprise ending, his emotions related to it, the pressures of an endless deadline, the power of inking, having longevity on a project, the freedom The Walking Dead provided, telling your own comic stories, his love of the French comics scene, what he wants next from comics, his fondest memories from The Walking Dead, and more.

Aug 12, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, artist Cliff Chiang returns to the podcast to chat about ending Paper Girls. Chiang discusses how much they had sketched out from the jump, the callbacks in the finale, telling a long running story in 2019, building a community, the look of the covers, Jared K. Fletcher's impact, Matt Wilson's secret power, those two being co-creators rather than hired guns, the difference of creator-owned, staying on schedule, what he learned during the series, what's next for him, and more. Oh, and in case you are concerned, we do not get into spoiler territory for the comic in this episode, keeping it to generalities and emotions related to the issue within.

Aug 5, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Phillip Sevy joins the show to talk about his new series Triage and his unique path to comics. Sevy discusses his foundational comic pieces, what made him want to draw comics, how his comics nostalgia fed into Triage, what he learned as a SCAD student, the Top Cow Talent Hunt, the impact Tomb Raider had on him, the story behind Triage, the value of representation, the theme of identity, the trading cards he made for Triage, and more, before we close with a brief chat about the glory of House of X #1 and Powers of X #1.

Jul 29, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, designer Tom Muller joins to walk us through his work on the X-Men relaunch in House of X and beyond. Muller discusses how much of his workload is comics, how he decides which projects to take on, when he came onboard for the X-Men books, how his initial "X" is carrying throughout the books, the initial wave of X-Men logos, how he and line maestro Jonathan Hickman worked together, whether this project felt different than usual, design as storytelling, the Big Two and design, his fake House of X/Powers of X billboards, the importance of taking in other media for creatives, and more.

Jul 22, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, artist Steve Lieber joins to chat about his new series, Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen and his position as a trusted mentor in the comic book world. Lieber discusses the attention paid to Jimmy Olsen, the title's development, DC's reaction to the book's oddness, how he and writer Matt Fraction collaborate on the title, the importance of pie, his Jimmy Olsen memories, becoming a "funny" artist, the key to making comedy work, his love of helping others, how much the industry has changed, specialization in the comic industry, comic marketing, his advice to newer creators, and more.

Jul 15, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, The AV Club's Oliver Sava returns for our annual chat about the state of superheroes. Sava discusses where superhero comics are right now, DC's big changes, Marvel and DC's current architects, Bendis killing it on DC, Immortal Hulk, the coming Hickman era on the X-Men, Tom Taylor's greatness, recent moves by creators, house styles in art, The Joker and Harley Quinn's immense presence, Ink and Zoom's launch books, Squirrel Girl's coming end, what we're excited for on the horizon, and more.

Jul 8, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, comic retailer and the founder of ComicHub, Stu Colson, joins to talk about ComicHub - a hybrid point of sale and marketing solutions systems (of a sort) and why he decided to create this potentially game changing new system for comic shops. Colson discusses how he got into comics retail, the differences between American and New Zealand shops, what exactly ComicHub is, its origins, how it aids in discoverability, his partnership with BOOM! Studios, developing partners, comics being slow to change, managing sell-through data, prospecting for new customers, his hopes for the future of comics, and more.

Jul 1, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, cartoonist Brenna Thummler joins the show to talk about her path to comics and her graphic novel, Sheets. Thummler discusses her education and pre-comics plans, her original desire to not work in comics, what finally connected her to comics, illustration as storytelling, her first comic experience, her approach as a comics outsider, the development of Sheets, letting the art speak first, character acting, her colors, having her book represented on Free Comic Book Day, its upcoming sequel, Delicates, some spicy peanut butter takes, and more.

Jun 24, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, writer Christopher Sebela joins to talk about his writing on titles like Test and Crowded. Sebela discusses his recent efforts to take weekends for himself, getting out of the house on dog walks, his project notebooks, how they help his process, putting himself into his work, working at a test marketing firm, what his Test pitch is, its origins, what's next for Crowded, the book's cast, the success of creator-owned books, merch in comics, how much he's working on at on time, and more.

Jun 17, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, retailer Jacob Sareli joins to talk about his shop Comikaza, the first comic shop ever in Israel. Sareli discusses how he got into comics, the Israel comics scene, how he ended up taking over Comikaza, how the shop has evolved, what's working for his shop, the impact of manga and kids comics, how the past couple years have been, what he'd like to see more of, what doesn't work in his shop, Free Comic Book Day's impact, his shop's demographics, and more.

Jun 10, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, artist Michael Walsh joins the podcast to talk about his work and the upcoming Black Hammer/Justice League: Hammer of Justice! Walsh discusses his fantastic author photo, finding a balance between his desires as an artist, the types of stories he's worked on, his experience on Secret Avengers, photo reference, adapting The Last Jedi, reflecting on his work, working with Jeff Lemire, the challenges of Black Hammer/Justice League, coloring himself, talent versus work, what he turns to if he needs a push as an artist, horror comics, Emily Carroll's greatness, and more, before we dive into five questions about Michael Walsh, the person.

Jun 3, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, the CCO & Editor-in-Chief and CEO & Publisher of Vault Comics - Adrian and Damian Wassel - join the podcast to talk about the world of Vault. The Wassels discuss how they decided their roles, why comics, why sci-fi and fantasy are their brand, what makes a Vault comic, where Myriad - their YA imprint - fits in their efforts, their perspective on the larger comic marketplace, design and production value, their approach on digital, what they've learned in the process of running Vault, creator relations, how they find collaborators, expanding the Vault footprint, building an audience, and more.

May 27, 2019

In this week’s episode of Off Panel, Andrea Demonakos joins the podcast to talk about the world of merchandising and White Squirrel, her company that's designed to help artists sell their products online. Demonakos discusses Toronto's part in her comic background, her varying roles in the comics and how they helped her better understand that world, running Vancouver Comic Arts Festival, the origins of White Squirrel, the evolution of cons, what merchandising does for creators, managing Kickstarters, where White Squirrel is headed, the future of merchandising, and more.

May 20, 2019

We have a special and atypical episode of Off Panel this week, as artist Jen Bartel joins the podcast for a deep dive discussion about how to get started as an artist. Bartel discusses the value of art school, developing your voice and style, having a day job, the tools of the trade, whether sequentials are essential, creating your portfolio, cover work, where fan art fits in a portfolio, the impact of social media, where conventions fit in, communicating with collaborators, the value of working with an editor, managing your own schedule, the importance of paying attention to the larger industry, and more. This is a beast of an episode, but if you're interested in working in comics, there's a ton to learn from here.

May 13, 2019

In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Robbie Thompson joins the podcast to talk about his Marvel mini-series Meet the Skrulls. Thompson discusses shipping, fandom, why he wanted to write comics, the greatness of Javier Rodriguez, the origins of his current Marvel mini-series Meet the Skrulls, this being the most him Marvel project he's had, the themes of family and identity in the book, Niko Henrichon's art, the nuance of Skrulls, individuating shapeshifters, and more, before we close with five questions about Thompson, the person.

May 6, 2019

In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Jody Leheup joins the podcast to talk about his Image series, The Weatherman. Leheup discusses the stories that made him, his time at Marvel editorial, what he learned during that time, spinning plates, the origins of The Weatherman, Nathan Fox's impact, Tom Muller's design, the complexity of series lead Nathan Bright, the troubling death from the first issue, our relationship with animals in fiction, the season model, what's coming next, marketing the book, and more.

Apr 25, 2019

In this week's episode of Off Panel, former Marvel editor and the guy behind Comics Experience, Andy Schmidt, joins the show for a Marvel Cinematic Universe power rankings episode. Schmidt discuss the overall quality of the MCU, how being a former Marvel editor changes his viewing experience, Avengers Endgame expectations, and more, before we rank a whole lot of MCU related topics, like our favorite deep cut characters, the best castings, scores and villains, our favorite random moments, things that we were surprised worked, our favorite MCU movies, and more.

Note: This was recorded well before the release of Avengers: Endgame, so no spoilers are discussed here.

Apr 22, 2019

In this week's episode of Off Panel, writer Vita Ayala joins the show to talk about their work. Ayala discusses old video game loves, their gateway characters, the power of spinner racks, the importance of representation, bringing your worldview into your work, The Wilds, Emily Pearson's art, adding depth to reads, working at Forb idden Planet, how that changed their perspective about comics, DC's Talent Workshop, doing fill-in work, telling Livewire's first solo story, working with varying publishers, the con experience, the glory of cats, and more.

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