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Off Panel: A Comics Interview Podcast

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

A weekly comics interview show hosted by David Harper from SKTCHD that explores the stories and creators we love, as well as the broader comics industry.

May 20, 2024

Retailer Steve Anderson joins the show to talk about what he's seeing at his comic shop chain in Maryland and Virginia, Third Eye Comics. Anderson discusses Free Comic Book May, the importance of turning your shop into a destination, being more than a comic shop, creating crossover appeal, how the year has been in his shops, standout performers, the area of effect of big hits, marketing comics, Third Eye's expansion, his product mix, what's working, what isn't, the X-Men transition, the cyclical nature of comics, and more.

May 13, 2024

Artist/writer Sanford Greene joins the show to talk about his work in this week's Doom #1 and where he's at in his career. Greene discusses the origins of his Doom book, its nature as a story, the book's focus, working with Jonathan Hickman, writing comics for the first time, his art on the book, the title's unusual nature, Doom's NBA comp, how Bitter Root changed things for him, how his career is shifting, future interest in writing, his work on Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, art style, and more, before we close with a chat about the NBA playoffs (as of May 6th).

May 6, 2024

Artist Humberto Ramos joins the show for a rare in-person episode, as we chat about his career, art, and love of comic book artists. Ramos discusses the different types of conventions, experiences, his love of art and artists, the artists that inspired him, the early days of his career, learning from each project, Mark Waid's impact, learning from his peers, becoming an influence himself, what keeps him motivated, how he views his own art, and more.

Apr 29, 2024

Cartoonist Patrick Horvath joins the show to talk about his path to comics and his IDW series Beneath the Trees Where Nobody Sees. Horvath discusses the convention experience, the appeal of comic art versus movies, the costs of creativity, learning on the job, how his route to comics changed his approach, the origins of Beneath the Trees Where Nobody Sees, thinking in story, the book's lead, serial killers, selling anthropomorphic characters, his creative process, knowing where you're going, his use of gouache, his learning curve, Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou's lettering, the book's hit nature, where he's headed, and more.

Apr 22, 2024

Artist Jacob Phillips joins the show to talk about his career and busy dance card with Newburn, That Texas Blood, and The Enfield Gang Massacre. Phillips discusses how he works, managing schedules, his speed, how coloring himself impacts his process, tackling multiple roles, how he ended up as a comic artist, illustration work, the different steps in the process, happy accidents, his work on Megalopolis, his crime heavy slate, genre requirements, balancing multiple projects, drawing for yourself, photo reference, finding solutions, his cover work, what's next for him, and more.

Apr 15, 2024

ShortBox and ShortBox Comics Fair's Zainab Akhtar join the podcast this week to talk about her journey in comics, the recent closure of ShortBox, and what's next for the Comics Fair. Akhtar discuss how things have changed since ShortBox closed, the different roles of a publisher, ShortBox's evolution, the amount of work connected to it, the path to closing, how ShortBox Comics Fair came to be, the variety of comics in the Fair, Fair comics versus ShortBox comics, production value, the quarterly boxes, staying true to yourself, her love of comics, how her experiences have changed those feelings, and more.

Apr 8, 2024

Writer Murewa Ayodele and artist Dotun Akande joins the show to talk about their careers, collaboration, and current Oni Press series, Akogun: Brutalizer of Gods. Ayodele and Akande discuss the launch of their new book, figuring out who and what to listen to, how they became comic readers, their influences, their path to comics, computer science, print versus digital, Akande's path to becoming an artist, how Akogun came to be, their own take on gods, the oversized nature of the book, the book's structure, the variant covers, how their goals have changed, and more.

Apr 1, 2024

Inklore's Editorial Director Rebecca "Tay" Taylor joins the show to talk about her career and what's going on at Inklore, the imprint at Penguin Random House that's publishing manga, manhwa, manhua, webcomics, and graphic novels. Taylor discusses what editorial really is, how Inklore fits her, where things were when she started in comics, Nightwing, her path to comics, previous roles in comics, editing single issues versus graphic novels, what Inklore is, its audience, the global aspect of her job, how Lore Olympus fits, where she finds new projects, vertical scroll to print, connecting with comic markets, the convention world, and more.

Mar 25, 2024

Cartoonist Katie Cook joins the show to talk about her career and her recently released graphic novel, Nothing Special Vol. 1: Through the Elder Woods. Cook discusses recent challenges, her early comics, the importance of newspaper comics, the art school experience, the environment when her career started, the origins of Gronk, My Little Pony's impact on her career, how her career evolved, Nothing Special's origins, getting used to the Webtoon format, how she works, converting it to print, telling your own stories, her love of Star Wars, how the job of making comics has evolved, what has her excited, and more.

Mar 18, 2024

Writer Kieron Gillen returns to the show to talk about the end of his time at Marvel and the beginning of the next creator-owned phase of his career. Gillen discusses finishing his Marvel run, the language of comics, how he's changed over this stretch, ending a story he didn't start, closing Krakoa out, the data pages, favorites and challenges from his time at Marvel, the X-Office, the con experience, The Power Fantasy's arrival, responding to your collaborators, research, pop comics, what he's most excited about next, and more.

Mar 11, 2024

IDW's Special Projects Editor Scott Dunbier joins the show to talk about his career and his work on the Artist's Editions program. Dunbier discusses the upcoming Batman: Year One Artist's Edition, the story behind the Artist's Edition, his time as an original art dealer, his path to WildStorm, his role there, that stretch at WildStorm, the origins of DC's Absolute Editions, his role at IDW, the first years of the Artist's Edition program, how he decides what to feature, digital art's impact, assembling the books, complicated projects, how much art he really has, and more.

Mar 4, 2024

Writer Brian Michael Bendis joins the podcast to talk about his current Dark Horse Comics series Masterpiece and this moment in time for his career. Bendis discusses focusing on his own work, being a night person, collaboration and collaborators, the longevity of his relationships, how Masterpiece came together, going anti-cliche, simplifying the work, building projects for collaborators, his adeptness at writing young characters, getting out of scenes, decompression, the evolution of comics, finding inspiration, rhythmic writing, the evolution of Jinxworld, helping the next generation of creators, the ups and downs of comics, and more.

Feb 26, 2024

Comic Book Herald's Dave Buesing joins the show to discuss the past, present, and future of the X-Men. Buesing discusses what Comic Book Herald is all about, the importance of helping people find where to start, how the experience has shifted his views on comics, our takes on the Krakoa Era, how it'll be viewed in retrospect, our expectations for the Tom Brevoort Era of the X-Men, and more, before we get into our X-Men Fantasy Draft, during which we both cast the comics we predict will be part of the line versus the titles we want to see, but also chat about why Uncanny X-Men is certain to return, which Krakoan had the biggest glow up, how Marvel Unlimited fits, getting trapped in expectations, and  much more.

Feb 19, 2024

Cartoonist Kazu Kibuishi joins the show to explore his journey to completing his Scholastic Graphix series, Amulet. Kibuishi discuss the early days of Amulet, the time between its conception and launch, the evolution of comics, how much Amulet changed over its creation, being flexible, the initial response to the series, how the final volume changed, his creative process, the importance of accessibility, pushing yourself, giving characters a moment, the reality behind Amulet's villain, Emily and Navin, how he's changed in the process of making Amulet, the evolution of what he wants, and more.

Feb 12, 2024

Writer Pornsak Pichetshote and artist Jesse Lonergan join the show to discuss their collaboration on the upcoming Man's Best at BOOM! Studios. Pichetshote and Lonergan discuss how they got together, Lonergan's greatness, Pichetshote's editorial background, learning from collaboration, finding different ways to do one thing, how they work together, the personal nature of Man's Best, its character designs, making pets the leads, the challenges that presents, working with BOOM!, promoting the work, the evolution of comics, and more.

Feb 5, 2024

Writer/artist Chip Zdarsky returns to the show to talk about his wider world of projects and the story behind those. Zdarsky discusses his schedule, collaboration, the wonder of Jorge Jimenez, ten years of Sex Criminals, the legacy of books, his journey as a creator, what Batman means, Newburn's position, that title's backups, Avengers Twilight's long journey to release, connections in superhero comics, Marco Checchetto's greatness, taking on major characters, finding different angles, the secret to endings, his cross country comic shop trip, what's next for him, and more.

Jan 29, 2024

Polygon's Entertainment Editor Susana Polo returns to the show to chat about the recent removal of the journalism Eisner Award and some of the things we've been thinking about of late in comics but haven't had a chance to write about. Polo discusses article creation, balancing needs, the Eisner Awards changes, its impact on the comics journalism space, whats affecting that broader area, interview approaches, her love of Poison Ivy, that character's fandom, Dark Horse Comics' hot streak, the weird stretch for comic movies, where the space is at, the return of the Ultimate universe, the differences in Ultimate Spider-Man, Batman's splintered nature, Scott Pilgrim Takes Off's approach to adaptations, the destruction of digital comics, the greatness of the current Fantastic Four run, and more.

Jan 22, 2024

My wife Amber Harper joins the show to chat about the medium from the viewpoint of a fan of comic movies and anime who doesn't read comics, before digging into three comics she read just for the show. Harper discusses her comic history, her perception of comics, how challenging comics feel to a non-reader, the comic shop experience, an unfortunate Thor read, what she appreciates about adaptations, why those appeal over comics, her take on the first volume of Runaways, its fit as a Marvel story, coloring as storytelling, standout elements, whether it made her want to read more, Danger and Other Unknown Risks, chosen one stories, how art changes the story, it being an original graphic novel, Catwoman: Lonely City, the appeal of different formats, its art, world-building, understanding superhero worlds, her comic book reading experience, and more.

Jan 15, 2024

Cartoonist Nate Powell joins the show to talk about his career and upcoming graphic novel, Fall Through. Powell discusses promoting comics, the social media environment, his love of the X-Men, how his varying interests affect him as a cartoonist, the overlap between comics and music, Swallow Me Whole's position in his career, March's impact, the big emotions of Fall Through, the universal nature of youth, the pandemic and Haim's impact on the book, Diamond Mine, his band Soophie Nun Squad, music world specifics, his process, what keeps him focused on comics, and more.

Jan 8, 2024

Retailer Patrick Brower returns to the show to talk about the year for his shop, Chicago's Challengers Comics + Conversation. Brower discusses the holiday season, his comics retail podcast, promoting comics, how the year was and its progression, product vs. process, excitement levels, what's working, building other paths, in-store sales versus online, what hasn't been working, the reasons things are a struggle, what customers are saying, awareness of titles, the conversation about the direct market, what has him hopeful about comics, and more.

Dec 26, 2023

Cartoonist Lucie Bryon joins the show to talk about her career in comics and her ShortBox Comics Fair comic (and my comic of the year), Ocean. Bryon discusses her recent trip to Japan, France's relationship with comics, her gateway into comics, why manga works so well for her, her art school experience, expressing herself through comics, learning from her own work, the origins of Ocean, finding the universal in specificity, the colors of the comic, finding answers in the work, the book's leads, bending archetypes, her comic making process, the future of Ocean, what she wants from comics, and more.

Dec 18, 2023

In a special, year-end episode of Off Panel, friend of the show Brandon Burpee returns to chat about the year in comics before we count down our 20 favorite comics of the year. We discuss the year in comics, Brandon's disconnect from the larger conversation, the perils of being overinformed, deciding what to read, how the Big Two are doing, the end of Krakoa, the Ultimate Universe's return, honorable mentions for our faves of the year, our top 20 comics of the year, and more.

Bonus! By popular demand, our lists in full can be found below.

David Harper

  1. Ocean by Lucie Bryon
  2. Damn Them All by Si Spurrier, Charlie Adlard, Sofie Dodgson, and Jim Campbell
  3. Wild’s End by Dan Abnett and INJ Culbard
  4. Impossible People by Julia Wertz
  5. Monica by Daniel Clowes
  6. Why Don’t You Love Me? By Paul B. Rainey
  7. Kaya by Wes Craig, Jason Wordie, and AndWorld Design
  8. Now Let Me Fly by Ronald Wimberly and Brahm Revel
  9. Danger and Other Unknown Risks by Erica Henderson and Ryan North
  10. A Guest in the House by Emily Carroll
  11. Time Before Time by Declan Shalvey, Rory McConnville, Geoffo, Joe Palmer, Chris O’Halloran, and Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
  12. Peacemaker Tries Hard! by Kyle Starks, Steve Pugh, Jordie Bellaire, and Becca Carey
  13. Night Fever by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Jacob Phillips
  14. Hockey Girl Loves Drama Boy by Faith Erin Hicks
  15. Clementine Book Two by Tillie Walden
  16. Lights by Brenna Thummler
  17. Roaming by Jillian Tamaki and Mariko Tamaki
  18. w0rldtr33 by James Tynion IV, Fernando Blanco, Jordie Bellaire, and Aditya Bidikar
  19. Mobilis by Juni Ba
  20. X-Men Red/Immortal X-Men by Al Ewing, Yildiray Cinar, Kieron Gillen, Lucas Werneck, and more

 

Brandon Burpee

  1. World’s Finest – Waid, Mora, and Bonvillain
  2. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – Campbell, Smith, Federici, and more
  3. Darth Vader – Pak, Roberson, and Gorham
  4. X-Men – Duggan, Cassara, Caselli, and more
  5. Local Man – Fleecs, Seeley, Simpson, and Sobreiro
  6. Daredevil – Zdarsky, Checchetto, and De La Torre
  7. Peacemaker Tries Hard! – Starks, Pugh, and Bellaire
  8. Ambassadors – Millar, Charest, Quitely, Kerschl, Coipel, etc.
  9. Radiant Black – Higgins and Carlos
  10. World’s Finest: Teen Titans – Waid, Lupacchino, and Bellaire
  11. Superman – Williamson, Campbell, Dragotta, and more
  12. Void Rivals – Kirkman and De Felici
  13. Immortal X-Men – Gillen, Werneck, and Ryp
  14. Adventures of Superman – Taylor and Henry
  15. Nightwing – Taylor, Redondo, and Byrne
  16. Dark X-Men – Foxe and Scharf
  17. Titans – Tom Taylor and Nicola Scott
  18. The X-Cellent – Milligan and Allred
  19. Jean Grey – Simonson and Chang
  20. Batman – Zdarsky and Jimenez
Dec 11, 2023

In a special year end episode of Off Panel, we look at the defining themes of 2023 in comics with the help of Books with Pictures' Katie Pryde, The Beat's Heidi MacDonald, and writer/artist Jamal Igle. Up first is Pryde (1:10), who talks about this unusual time in comics retail, what started us on this path, the exhaustion in the space, where it's manifesting itself, the metadata situation, how Books with Pictures is adjusting to it, and more. After that is MacDonald (30:01), who discusses the world of comics marketing, how the current state of social media and comic sites is affecting things, the unseen work of marketing, fitting within the distribution system, its impact, and more. And to close is Igle (1:02:15), who talks about the overwhelming fear of the unknown in comics, where and how it manifests, how it impacts things, the path forward, and more.

Dec 4, 2023

Writer Si Spurrier joins the show to talk about his dense workload of late on comics like The Flash, the Uncanny Spider-Man, Damn Them All, and more. Spurrier discusses this busy stretch, testing boundaries, the yes/no conundrum, balance within the chaos, finding his way into superheroes, delivering the necessary story, his contrarian nature, tie-ins, the X-Office, jumping on points, how his different flavors of writing impact each other, data pages, the difficulty of Damn Them All, the bad/good of that book, what he wants from comics, and more.

Nov 27, 2023

Writer/artist Skottie Young joins the show to talk about this moment in time in his career. Young discusses being a writer (but kind of not an artist) right now, storytelling, figuring out how to write, Twig's position in his career, the moment he finds himself in, not drawing interiors, Boy at the End, expectation paralysis, Stupid Fresh Mess, sustaining your career, finding new ways to excite fans, Oz's position in his career, building trust, his newsletter, the power of community, what has him excited right now, and more.

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