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The Comics Alternative


The Comics Alternative is weekly podcast focusing on the world of alternative, independent, and primarily non-superhero comics. (There's nothing wrong with superhero comics. We just want to do something different.) New podcast episodes become available every Wednesday and include reviews of graphic novels and current ongoing series, discussions of upcoming comics, examinations of collected editions, in-depth analyses of a variety of comics texts, and spotlights on various creators and publishers. The Comics Alternative also produces "special feature" programs, such as shows specifically dedicated to creator interviews, webcomics, on-location events, and special non-weekly themes and topics.

 

Mar 27, 2015

The Two Guys with PhDs are glad to have on their show Noah Van Sciver, the creator behind the series Blammo as well as the recently published Saint Cole (Fantagraphics). The guys talk with Noah about the genesis of Saint Cole and how this became his follow-up graphic novel to The Hypo: The Melancholic Young Lincoln. For that matter, they're even more curious to know why the artist chose our depressive sixteen president as his first long-form focus. While historical narratives aren't unusual for Noah -- he addresses the great 1863 Denver fire in his comic, A City of Whiskey and Fire (with Daniel Landes) -- he's quick to point out that he's not a historically based cartoonist, as, for example, you might find in someone like Rick Geary. In fact, Noah tells Derek and Andy that he resists any kind of pigeonholing, even bristling at any attempts to place his work in the company of Robert Crumb or Chester Brown. He prefers to be a chameleon, changing up his subject matter at will, much like Leonard Zelig does in Zelig. And here is where the Two Guys demonstrate their characteristic talents for taking their interviewees into unlikely tangential realms. Throughout their conversation, Woody Allen becomes the topic that the guys keep returning to, especially since Noah is a big Allen fan. The creator even reveals that he's currently working on project in the vein of Stardust Memories, a story about a successful artist who goes to a convention but feels alienated from his fans while he depressively reevaluates his life. But the conversation never evolves, or devolves, completely into a Woodyfest. There's plenty of talk on Van Sciver's Blammo series, his AdHouse collection Youth Is Wasted, his strips 4 Questions and Rufus Baxter, the World's Oldest Unknown Rock Star for Westword, the Denver comics scene, his relationship with Kilgore Books and Comics, his desire to create a comic with a large ensemble cast, and his upcoming project for Fantagraphics, Fante Bukowski. So all in all, in this interview you get previews, you get insights, you get laughs, and you get a little cinematic Woody. What more could you ask for?