There’s actually quite a lot of new news this time, but thankfully, it’s mainly told in pictures so you can skim read and not worry about my nonsense too much.
On The Dancefloor
Bet you Look Good
Jamie’s just put this online. I’m excited.
The first thing Jamie did when meeting me was show him the pages he was working on. They were early versions of the comic that eventually became his excellent urban fantasy Suburban Glamour, which he released between the first two Phonograms. So far it’s the only work he’s written solo.
One of the best things of working with Jamie is that he’s a writer. I say this not in the way that many frustrating artists are – as in, they wish they were writing so push collaboration to the point which reveals why they are not in fact writing– but as he understands writing, why images are placed in an order, how stories work and how they don’t. And so, he puts all his energies towards the execution. It takes a hell of a writer to draw like Jamie does.
I’ve spent all the time working with him saying “You really should write something” while handing him another fucking script. Devil and angel. You can choose which is which. Originally WicDiv was planned to be structured like the Losers – where Jock was on every second arc. The idea being, Jamie could write something or work with something else. In the end, Jamie decided he wanted to concentrate on this single large statement. Once more, the execution.
However, he’s free now and him and Matt are going to fly. I can’t wait to read the thing.
What’s it about? Oh, I can’t say that. I’ll give you two things.
i) No, it’s not called 2020.
ii) No, the letterer isn’t called 2020.
NYCC next week. We’re throwing a party on Saturday night. Do come. There will be dancing.
The first batch of advance tickets will be for sale on Eventbrite at 6pm GMT on Saturday 28th (i.e. 1pm EST, 10am PST).
I’ll send a small supplementary newsletter then with the link, as well as posting it.
We’ll be reserving some for sale on the door.
Hmm. What shall I wear?
Oh, here’s an idea.
To celebrate the end of WicDiv, we’ve put two of the WicDiv T- designs as seen in the comic on our Threadless shop. As always, they’re available in a mass of colours and different garments (T-shirt, tank, sweatshirt and hoody) in various cuts. T-shirts are $20 and other garments are (er) other prices.
Do you want direct links? I can do that for you.
Clicking is very tricksy.
WRITER: Kieron Gillen
ARTIST / COVER A: Stephanie Hans
COVER B: Anna Dittmann
DECEMBER 04 / 32 pages / FC/ M / $3.99
“SPLIT THE PARTY,” Conclusion
Forget escaping DIE.
Cripes. End of second arc. I better get on planning the next one, eh?
Also… TeamDIE is experimenting with the joys of Merch.
DIE PIN - $9.99
JANUARY 29 / pages / / M / $9.99
Either buy one to decorate your lapel or 2,000 to make an improvised suit of scale mail. Either way, this is genuine DIE merchandise that’s guaranteed to not drag you screaming into a world of dark horror fantasy adventure. We promise. No, really.
DIE T-SHIRT - $25 SM-XL
JANUARY 29 / pages / / M / $25.00 / $30 2XL-3XL
MEN’S AND WOMEN’S SIZES AVAILABLE (S-3XL) The first official DIE clothing! Clearly eventually we want to do a suit of full plate armour (+4) with “I <3 DIE” engraved on it, and these fine T-shirts are a first step towards that. Join us. Wear us. Available in a range of colors including black, black, and black, as we are total goths.
Now, I always say “do pre-order” but for Merch, it is likely more crucial. You do this by talking to your retailer. You may need order-code for these. The badges is OCT190253 and the T-shirts have an order code for each size, which can be found by looking here. I say “Maybe” but you’ll likely just be fine in talking to them. They are very lovely.
Worth stressing - these drop in our gap month of January, so won’t be there for Christmas.
Oliver MacNamee writes some more of his Arthurian annotations for Once & Future, this time going into Gawain’s history as a Knight. I admit, in the research, he’s one of the characters I felt for most, in terms of how their role has been kicked around and repositioned over this whole period.
Also, Boom have released a lettered preview of Once & Future 3. It’s a little early to actually include it as a picture in the newsletter, so click through for it.
You may have seen the photos on Instagram of my mob doing Murder Mystery parties. We’ve done one every year, for three years. They’ve always been from Freeform Games, who are doing a Bundle of Holding Sale. There’s some for small groups and some for large groups, and if you’re Party Curious I highly recommend their work.
Just when writing this I find myself thinking about Over The Border by Saint Etienne.
They were always the ex-music journalist band who remained most music journalist – the name-check of Dexys half way through this happens just as I found myself thinking it akin to Dexys spoken-word tracks like Reminiscence (Part Two), and I swear that’s the sort of trick of cognitive manipulation they could pull off. I never actually released the Immaterial Girl playlist, as it was not exactly one which would be of any use to anyone other than me, in terms of pure abstract connection single-dose single-subject Phonomancery (As the song says: “It would be there for me. It would be there for me.”) Over the Border was on it, and a song so on the nose for Immaterial Girl that it almost renders the whole thing pointless.
But I watched as interest as people of the generation a few before me approach a point in their lives. Seeing them hit their forties, and the work they did in response to it. They were my canaries. These feelings are inevitable. I watched T2 (not a great movie, but I recognise entirely where it came from) and The World’s End (Half a great movie, half a genuinely bad one) and took notes.
It’s about those twenty years. Writing this in the 20 year anniversary of Spaced, this seems more pointed. It would be inevitable I’d do something from the same place emotional place. I’d like to do it as well as I can.
Rue Britannia was about a 10 year gap, and being confused by a certain perspective hitting you for the time. Perspective is a loaded word coming from the mouth of an older person. It normally means “I was wrong, and now I’m right.” I don’t mean that. I mean recognising the truths that mattered to you from these moments, each of which you’re lived, and the new perspectives which come now, and how you all integrate them. Immaterial Girl is suspended oddly between the ten year gap of Rue Britannia and the twenty year one of the end of WicDiv and DIE. It’s simultaneously Emily’s Rue Britannia and perhaps Kohl’s early-DIE. Over the Border is just like that – a song precisely about being a certain kind of teenager leaving school and sung by people forty years older, and the question mark in there.
I had forgotten until this second that the album it came from was Words & Music. I swear that this
DIE was my attempt at this kind of book, but I can see it haunting my other work right now. I was just reading Sean Dillon’s piece on Peter Cannon: Thunderbolt in the new PanelxPanel, which takes a hard turn and compares its multidimensional story to It’s a Wonderful Life or A Christmas Carol. That’s entirely correct. Cannon, away from the formalism, is someone looking at how else he could be. That’s the machine at the heart of DIE too.
This is going nowhere, and has no conclusion, by the way. I just wanted to walk with it for a while, and let it transport to you wherever it takes you to. I recommend you do too. Music is magic. I may have said that one before.
Oh – DIE 8 is out next week. Comps arrived, which look great. Also the final WicDiv Trade.
This week is mainly aligning everything to the final approach to NYCC. I’m ahead on actual scripts, so all I want to do is polish up Once & Future. It’s really about the work around it – various pieces of essay stuff, various long pitch-style things I owe people and similar.
There is one bad piece of news, which some of you may be aware of. Stephanie broke her leg in two places in Japan. She’s back in Toulouse now, and unfortunately won’t be able to make it to New York. It’s one of her favourite things in the year, so this is hard for her. She sends love to everyone, and hopes she’ll see everyone soon. She’s working on an exclusive print online, so people will be able to get a little Stephanie into their lives via that.
I’d write something about politics here, but chances are, it’ll all be obsolete by the time you read it. I’ve thought the last few years have increasingly felt like walking into a boardgame six hours in, and players have been reduced to trying increasingly baroque edge-case interpretations of the rules, and we’re just standing, watching, confused, and hoping the rules lawyers in the room can work out who’s actually cheating. The clarity of the decision of the Supreme Court felt like clean light. I hope for more of that.