Aaron is joined by two friends and talented artists, Kevin Bandt and Alex Harner, to discuss Asterios Polyp by David Mazzuchelli. First printed by Pantheon Books in 2009. Asterios Polyp is a fascinating example of comics as literature. It tells the story of an professor of architecture, the titular Asterios Polyp, whose entire life is wiped away in a fire. With nothing but the clothes on his back, he travels to a random rural town and attempts to restart his life while reflecting on his failed marriage and career. Mazzucchelli weaves this story through a complex display of symbolism, artistic design, and narrative structure. Aaron, Kevin, and Alex all push their tiny brains to the limit as they try to absorb, understand, and explain the depth of Asterios Polyp.
Aaron is joined the Sara Rude to discuss her favorite comic, Lumberjanes, by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis, Shannon Walters, and Brooke A. Allen. First published by Boom! Studios in 2014. Lumberjanes is an all ages comic that follows a scout troop at an all girls summer camp. When the girls notice strange and magical animals infesting the surrounding forest, they decide to investigate the mysteries surrounding the camp. Aaron and Sara discuss the storytelling style of this comic, whether or not it is strictly a "girls comic", and highlight some of their favorite jokes.
Aaron is joined by returning guests Alex Harner and true crime author Seth Ferranti to talk about the classic X-Men story Days of Future Past by Chris Claremont and John Byrne. First published by Marvel Comics in 1981. Days of Future Past is one of the most influential X-Men stories ever published and tells the story of Kitty Pryde going back in time to prevent a dystopian future where Sentinels have overthrown the government and mutants are hunted and enslaved. In addition to the comic series, Aaron, Alex, and Seth talk about the recent film adaptation.
Luke Thompson-Moritz returns to talk with Aaron about izombie, written by Chris Roberson and illustrated by Mike Allred, with colors by Laura Allred. Published by Vertigo in 2011. The second volume of the comic expands to scope of the ongoing plot, as well as delving deeper into the back stories of our beloved supporting cast. In addition to discussing the comic, Luke and Aaron also talk about the recent, well received television adaptation of the same name. The show differs drastically from the comic, so needless to say, there is much to discuss.
Aaron is joined again by Jon Parrish and Josh Blasingame to discuss volumes 3 and 4 of Skullkickers by Jim Zub, Edwin Huang, and Misty Coats! The adventure continues in Six Shooter on the Seven Seas where are heroes stow away on a ship full of lady pirates. Then, in Eighty Eyes on an Evil Island, they are washed ashore on a strange jungle island. Aaron, Josh, and Jon discuss how the series maintains it's clever comedic tones while building the mythology and continuity of the world.
Aaron is joined by Time Albaugh, Alex Harner, and artist extraordinaire Kevin Bandt to discuss Battling Boy by Paul Pope. Published by First Second Books in 2013. Battling Boy is 12 years old going on 13. In order to become a man, he must prove himself a noble hero. Battling Boy's father, a powerful cosmic warrior in his own right, sends him to an Earth like planet that is besieged by monsters. There, Battling Boy begins his journey into adulthood. Battling Boy is a humongous homage to the superhero stylings of Jack Kirby and presented in this all ages book for kids. Pope deftly gives us classic superhero archetypes mixed with a young boys adventure style comic that is pure perfection on every page.
Aaron is joined by longtime collaborator and friend, Chris McJunkin to talk about Preacher by Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon. First published by Vertigo in 1995. Preacher is the epic story of Reverend Custer who, after being imbued with a supernatural entity, goes on a journey to literally find God. Preacher is easily one of the most popular comics published in the last 30 years and many greater people than Aaron and Chris have talked about it, but that doesn't stop them from rambling for two solid hours about the whole series and it's place in pantheon of great comics.
Aaron is joined by two very special guests, Anthony Mathenia and Seth Ferranti to discuss Criminal by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips, and Val Staples. First published by Icon in 2006. Criminal is a classic pulp style crime fiction comic about Leo, the best thief in the city, who also has a reputation as being a coward, because if things go wrong on a heist, Leo will be the first one to cut and run. Of course, as the story develops, we learn that there’s certainly more to Leo than his reputation would have you believe. Leo is convinced by a crooked cop acquaintance of his to take part in a big heist. As always happens in pulp crime stories, nothing goes the way it’s planned, nobody can be trusted, and we what these characters are really made of.
Anthony Mathenia returns to talk with Aaron about Miracleman book 3, written by Alan Moore and illustrated by John Totelben. Moore brings his epic deconstruction of the superhero genre to a finish with an apocalyptic conclusion. Aaron and Anthony discuss how Moore transforms his superhero book into a mythological representation of good and evil and whether or not human morality still fits in there somewhere.
Jon and Luke return to talk with Aaron about Peepo Choo Volume Three by Filipe Smith. In the third and final volume of Peepo Choo, Milton's disillusionment with life in Japan begins to wane as he develops a real friendship with Reiko. Meanwhile, Jodi befriends Morimoto Rockstar and gets caught between the serial killing vigilante, Fate, and the murderous Yakuza.