We’re living in an exciting time for comics, with plenty of independent creators being able to get their work in front of an audience and engage with people around the world. A number of apps for independent comics have started to be developed, and one of the most promising is Macroverse. The brainchild of M2, Macroverse is a phone app that allows comics to be consumed in a creative format. Creators Eben Matthews and Adam Martin teamed up with comic artist Steven Perkins to produce an original comic for Macroverse called DeadTown. I enjoyed talking to all three of them about how the app can help indie creators and the hope that Macroverse can become the Netflix of comics.
What I enjoy about independent comics is the amount of freedom writers have to explore different genres or bring them together. History and fantasy are two of my favourite subjects, so any story that combines them gives me something to invest in. It’s why I was interested in reading Donnie Souza’s Untold #1, which is set in a World War 2 era world where humans, elves and other fantastical creatures are fighting side by side. Untold deals with themes of patriotism, post-traumatic stress disorder, racism and what it means to come home after a long time fighting. Souza sent a copy of Untold #1 to The Comic Vault in exchange for an honest review.
Food and comics are two of my biggest interests, so I’m always looking for an excuse to combine the two together. It’s why I’m kicking myself for only recently discovering the Chew series created by John Layman. The series follows Tony Chu, a Food and Drugs Administration agent who solves crimes by getting psychic visions from the food he eats. His power puts him a variety of messed up situations that involve cannibalism, gun fights and murder all in an effort to uphold the law. Chew: Volume 1: Taster’s Choice introduces the character’s world and it’s one of the most original, entertaining stories I’ve ever read.
Some of the most interesting stories feature strong POC protagonists, which is why I’ve enjoyed reading Saladin Ahmed’s Abbott series, which features tough as nails reporter Elena Abbott. Set in 1970s Detroit, Ahmed’s comic weaves together occult and noir themes to create a political thriller with memorable characters. Abbott #2 picks up from where the first issue started and it’s safe to say there’s a mystery that needs to be solved.
The desire to earn more money is felt by many people, whether they want to become successful or afford new things. Currency makes the world go round and it could be argued that money is the root of all evil, but what if money was the root of all power for some? What if the urge to accumulate more wealth became a visceral need to dominate your fellow man? Such questions form the basis of Jonathan Hickman’s The Black Monday Murders Vol 1: All Hail, God Mammon. Money and blood go hand in hand and no price is too high for the characters of this dark and disturbing graphic novel.
The comic book industry is built on collaboration, with writers and artists working together to create something magical. The same can be said for indie comic writers and bloggers, which is why The Comic Vault is open to promoting independent comics and graphic novels. I’m pleased to reveal an interview with indie comic writer and pop culture website editor, Casey Bowker, who has created his first comic called Hollowed. He’s looking to get the series up and running through Kickstarter and he chatted to The Comic Vault about why he wanted to become a comic writer and how the industry has changed for independent writers.
The 1970s were a time of great cultural upheaval, from the Vietnam war, to the rise of disco. The decade provides fertile storytelling ground for Abbott #1, written by Saladin Ahmed. The comic features strong-willed reporter Elena Abbott investigating a case that forces her to confront her past. As a black woman in 1970s Detroit, Abbott faces a hotbed of racism and political change that tests her resolve and Ahmed makes sure she’s up for the challenge.