175: Tonight, by Ken


Ludochat & Chums
Thoughts Bubble


Big week, and any of these could be my lead story. Let’s go with the trade…

Hello, you beautiful monster, you.

Ludocrats is a seventeen years in the making sort of book which simultaneously feels like it was conceived of and created across an intense, overstimulated weekend. Otto Von Hades, Professor Hades 0-k and friends are the aristocrats of the ludicrous, protecting the universe from the forces of all that is fucking boring. Across the run was had trouble describing it. Here’s what we put on the back cover…

That’ll do.

It’s in comic shops and digital now. You can order it from book shops or online retailers, which is likely trailing a week. Here’s bookshop.org for those in the UK.

The end of an arc and the start of one. DIE 15 wraps up THE GREAT GAME, with all our cast at one another’s throats. ONCE & FUTURE starts the third arc, as we start to explore A PARLIAMENT OF MAGPIES.

These are two of the favourite books I’ve ever written, in completely different ways.

Preview for DIE 13 here, and you can buy digitally here. Preview for O&F 13 here, and digital here.

Oh – Boom apparently sent a “Thank you” variant to each retailer who orders the book, which looks like this. ..



Thought bubble this weekend. They broadcast their schedule, in which I did quite a few things. Firstly…

I ran a one-off DIE RPG game for the lovely Matt Fraction, Marguerite Bennett, Chip Zdarsky, Emma Vieceli and Ed Brubaker. Rather than the standard game set up I ran one from the Arcana, based around everyone being people who are connected to a successful imaginary indie comic together before being sucked into the awful world of DIE. You might imagine this gets a bit meta. You’d be wrong. It gets a lot meta, and is a delight.

(Also, if you’re interested in seeing how I run a game of DIE, this is a good document.)

Oh – while there’s a lot of great stuff on their channel, as we’re talking RPGs, I’d direct you to this Marvel Superhero RPG session being ran by Al Kennedy for Al Ewing, Becky Cloonan and comics heartthrob Jamie McKelvie. I’ve still got to watch this, but can’t wait.

I was also part of this edited bit of a conversation about endings. I’ve not watched this, but I’m aware that on the day I was very much in the more voice of basic practicality corner. Hopefully fun.

And then there was the Thought Bubble dancefloor.

This was something of a battle. I’d spent the best part of 2 days actually working out how a bunch of people could quasi-DJ on twitch, wrote up the requisite massive e-mail, turned to twitter to discover twitch had just started cracking down on music streams, rendering the whole exercise pointless. I laughed.

Instead, we went to a simple B-plan. They’d be a spotify list. People would listen to the playlist. I’d add stuff to it live, as prompted by the DJs. There’d be a zoom room folks who wanted to dance silently together could join. I’d stream that room (without sound, as there was no sound) to twitch. We’ll see if it’ll work.

It worked. It made me have a lovely time and made me miss people more intensely than anything else this year.

You can listen to the full playlist here.

In terms of “abstract” timeslots, it was this. I include everyone’s first/last song so you can keep track, as we certainly didn’t stick to time exactly.

8:30-9:00 - Kieron Gillen. (The Boys Are Back In Town to I’m Not Okay (I Promise)
9:00-9:30 - Al Ewing (Nobody To Love to Work Bitch)
9:30-10:00 – Dearbhla Kelly (WAP – Fun Version to Run Away With Me)
10:00-10:30 – Sarah Gordon (Think About Things to Movies)
0:30-11:00 – Jules Scheele (Express Yourself to We Didn’t Start The Fire)
11:00- 11:30 - Ivan Salaczar (Real Magic to Once I Had A Love)
11:30 – 12:00 – Al Ewing (Eve of the War to Philadelphia Freedom)
12:00-Close – Kieron Gillen & random suggestions from everyone else (Pull Shapes to Close)

You may note one song isn’t on the list: Tonight, by Ken Laszlo That was by Umar Ditta, and I accidentally copied it across from his Italio playlist, like a fool. Booze is a bad wingman.

Here’s the playlist again…

Sniff. It was a time.


This was the messiest week in a while. The bedding in continues, and basically works, but I’m also reminded that it’s not a one-strike solution. Still, any progress is progress.

Last week was primarily DIE 16 which I polished up on Monday, went through editorial yesterday and is presently in Stephanie’s hands. As we said in the back of the new issue, we’re planning to return in April. Trade out before Christmas. Stephanie is excitably sketching the new status quo, which makes me happy. Not much happy in the issue, of course. After the higher scale emotional adventure, this one turns to horror, and turns hard. It also has a handful of images that I can’t wait to see what Stephanie does with them.

Next I moved to Once & Future 18, which is the end of A PARLIAMENT OF MAGPIES. I smile a little that in the week where the start and the end of an arc come out I’m writing the end and the start of the other book. That’s aligned in a fun way. Last issues of an arc are, unless something has gone drastically wrong, normally some of the quickest to write. All the pieces are in place, and I know the moves, and it’s a question of doing them. As such, I expect the script should be all wrapped up by Friday.

Hmm. Writing all that makes me feel like I’ve been productive, when I feel like I’ve been slacking. I need to be kinder with myself. If you’re wired like me, you should try that too.

Speak soon.

Kieron Gillen