Without Fear

Ryan K Lindsay – Writer

Month: March, 2015

ECCC Announcement: NEGATIVE SPACE from Dark Horse in 2015

NEGATIVE SPACE is a 4 issue miniseries from Owen Gieni [art/colours] and myself, with Ryan Ferrier letters, and edited by Daniel Chabon. It launches at Dark Horse Comics later this year.

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Guy Harris sits down to pen his suicide note and gets writer’s block.
He goes for a walk to clear his mind, and only finds a world more confusing.
Thinking along the lines of a Cronenberg/PKD mash up, this emotional story delves into corporate greed as we observe Rick, a superior agent of Kindred Corp, having Guy tailed and anxiously awaiting his final note. For what reason, well, it’s worse than what you could imagine. This warped tale packs in deplorably low lows and insanely chaotic highs.

I spoke with CBR all about the book, what it’s about, why I want to write about feelings all the time, and how much Owen Gieni is crushing on the art.

The creative team for the book is this emotional heist crew:

negspace2coverOwen Gieni is the colourist for SHUTTER, MANIFEST DESTINY, and DEBRIS at Image Comics.
Ryan K Lindsay is the writer on HEADSPACE [a Monkeybrain original collected into tpb at IDW and out on April 29th with art by Eric Zawadzki and Sebastian Piriz], DEER EDITOR [a one-shot at his own Four Colour Ray Gun imprint he kickstarted to great success and featuring Sami Kivela art], and FATHERHOOD [a one-shot at Challenger Comics with Daniel Schneider art].
Ryan Ferrier is everyone’s favourite person in comics.

Stay tuned for more news on NEGATIVE SPACE over the coming months as we prepare to launch.

Daredevil Reading — BOOKS

I can’t just tell you to read all of Daredevil [though you should] because that’s not helpful in the slightest.

And I won’t just tell you to read my favourites, because I’ve probably done that before, and it’s not helpful.

We are gathered here today because the Netflix Daredevil series is about to start. As such, I wanted to drop a few recommendations in regards to what will go well with the show [or what I think the show will be]. Without fear, let’s move forward:

FullSizeRenderTHE MAN WITHOUT FEAR – Frank Miller takes more than the issue Stan Lee and BIll Everett gave themselves to tell the origin of Matt Murdock and how he became Daredevil. With art from John Romita Jr, this book is pretty fantastic. In fact, Romita Jr is by far and away the star, and it’s worth reading along for the kinetic energy and iconic moments along. Because you’ll notice it’s one of the few books Miller made in a row not cited as a classic of the form. And it’s not as good as YEAR ONE or DKR but it is very cool [the more I think about it, the more the style and energy grows on me and I find myself forgiving the really fractured narrative structure that does not help things] and it seems like it’ll be hugely in line with the show.

FATHER – Joe Quesada’s slightly revisionist run at the character. After he’d reinvigorated sales with Kevin Smith in the relaunch [a fun tale but not something I’d recommend Daredevil_Father_Vol_1_5to go with the show], Quesada did this more personal mini dealing with Murdock and his father. There’s a lot of heart in this book, and a lot of shadows. Murdock is portrayed as this bruiser of a bloke – Quesada think that the son of a boxer might inherit that mesomorphic frame once he started working out. The visual, while not cannon, is very damn amazing and imposing. I think the tone of this book would inform the show well.

Lark and Brubaker’s run – putting this run before Maleev/Bendis because I just love it that much. Prison, old superheroes done modern but still goofy [which is how I’d see them on the show for sure – a mix of insane but still weird and wonderful and yet grounded enough to work]. This is noir, this is crime, this is what I really truly want the show to be. And this run has a lot of Kingpin, sans Elektra, and I think that’ll help inform the show. Just trust me and dive right in. Continuity, whatever, Daredevil is a blind dude, who fights, Page One, go.daredevil-116

Yes, the Maleev/Bendis run – okay, probably do this one first. It’s high crime [think THE WIRE before Lark/Brubaker get all Hammett up in Hell’s Kitchen], it’s gorgeous, and it’s one hell of a long story, again with lots of Kingpin. Lark/Brubaker also told one story, but broken into a trilogy of sorts. Besides some detours, this run is one epic mammoth crime tale. Which is pretty damn cool. I won’t be surprised if the show is as dark as this, as grounded, and as iconic.

Give some Stan the Man issues some love – just because. It’s the foundation and while the book has veered far, sometimes it’s interesting to note where it all started. You can probably jump around, not everything was awesome. Read the first Namor issue, get deep into that Mike Murdock insanity [I hope the show gives us a hint of how unhinged Matt Murdock is], there’s goodness to be found in random places.

As for Frank Miller, you can try his original run, but I’m not sure it’ll be good as lead up to the show. I don’t know, I keep flip flopping about it. In the end, I’d need to see the show to see if this’ll help. The show has Stick, which is in this run, and Kingpin is the big bad [as in the show] but the Kingpin arc heavily features Elektra, as well as some other weird stuff that I don’t think will get a run on the show. So I’m voting to wait on this one. It’ll be great for reading after this season, I think, but for now, let’s leave it off the table – or, know it’s amazing but won’t necessarily be the intro to the show you might want/need. I feel they might save Elektra  for Season 2 [feeling that = me hoping it real hard]. The tone will all be there but I don’t think content wise it’s for this season, to be honest, and I think it’ll work great post-S1 [pure speculation] so take this paragraph with a grain of salt.

dd-quesada-772aaAs for the elephant in the room, BORN AGAIN, I just don’t see that story hitting this season at all. It’s a masterpiece [until the final reel, Nuke sucks, come at me, brocetera] but I don’t see this influencing the small screen nearly as much as peeps like Lark and Bendis, et al.

But don’t let me stop you reading any Daredevil. You want to get into the San Fran days with Black Widow, roll on, soldier. You’ve heard gigantic words used on the Samnee/Waid run, shine on, brother. Wanna get down with the insanity of the Gerber run, aw yeah, do that. I would tell you to hold off on the Chichester run because I think Marvel would be crackers not to mine his use of Typhoid Mary for a later season [with obvious grabs from Romita Jr/Nocenti who created that character], but I guess only time will tell.

The above runs, though huge, will get you set up for the Daredevil show. I think. You can also hit my link farm to get the more didactic news on our man Murdock. Then just get ready for what’s sure to be blind good times.

Daredevil Reading — LINKS

I’ve spent a good deal of my adult life writing/talking about Daredevil. I have no regrets.

With the Marvel/Netflix show fast approaching, avow yourselves of these words/columns/books/interviews/chats/lists by me and get caught up on the Scarlet Swashbuckler. Go buy some new trades, go read some old friends, go gift some knowledge to a peep, go online and ask some questions, go become a hornhead like me/us.

Below I present to you a series of links to stuff I’ve written or been a part of about Daredevil. Read the links below and get caught up on the best Daredevil stuff right before the show starts so you can settle in, know the lay of the land, appreciate the no doubt myriad easter eggs coming, and get down with my favourite character in all of literature.

BUT FIRST, BUY MY BOOK ABOUT DAREDEVIL HERE – The Devil is in the Details: Examining Matt Murdock and Daredevil – edited by me, with essays by me, Tim Callahan, Julian Darius, Kevin Thurman, Forrest Helvie, and more – available from Sequart

Okay, here’s the Daredevil links, enjoy.

THE DAREDEVIL DIALOGUES — a longform discussion I did on CBR way back when with Tim Callahan who invited me in for a guest column to chat with him about Daredevil and we ran long. Way long. So for a month, Tim posted all about us and Daredevil and we got through all of the first volume.

PART I – PURPLE MEN AND HEPCATS – In which we discuss the Stan Lee era, gush over Mike Murdock, and wonder if Daredevil really is a noir character or not.

PART II – THOMAS, CONWAY, AND GERBER IN FRISCO – In which we discuss the post-Stan era, with DD in San Francisco, his dating times with the Black Widow, and why Steve Gerber’s run is a spectacular failure.

PART III – FRANK MILLER RISES – Yep, the Miller works, and it’s all important, do not miss this one.

PART IV – TECHNODEMONS FROM FRANCE – In which we discuss Nocenti’s run, I get way down on my love for Typhoid Mary, and her ‘final’ issue which is an insane piece of cape debauchery, and it becomes clear I am the only person who dug on Laurent Levassier.

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ROBOT 6’s SIX by 6 – SIX LARGELY IGNORED DAREDEVIL STORIES WORTH TRACKING DOWN

In which I discuss 6 Daredevil books that get little to no press, no one knows about them, even less people gush about them, and you need to track them down post-haste.

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OPENING CONTRACT DAREDEVIL #82 by me + Dan Hill

In which Dan and I spent a long time discussing one panel from the Lark/Brubaker run on Daredevil (SPOILERS – my favourite run of all time) and we discuss how this very first panel of their run sets everything up tonally.

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ManWithoutFear.com Interviews Ryan K Lindsay

In which I discuss my love of Daredevil, and I generally feel honoured to be among those interviewed by this Daredevil fan site – PROTIP: click through to the site and just read it all, every post, thank me later.

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ComixTribe Interviews Ryan K Lindsay

In which, I drop a little more knowledge about my book [sorry, peeps, always be closing], and I discuss what Daredevil would look like if I got a chance to write the book.

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MY TOP 10 DAREDEVIL RUNS

In which I let you know which 10 runs I dug the most, in order, and why. It’ll tell you just as much about me as it does our man Murdock but it’ll also give you some ideas of what to buy or reread as we get closer to the show.

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The Spire Discusses Daredevil with Ryan K Lindsay

I had a big chat with Steve Morris after the first pieces of this show dropped on us. A good chat centred more around the specifics of the show, or what we then knew of it.

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I am pretty insanely excited about this show. I hope you are too, and if not, again, read the links above, you soon will be.

Let’s do this.

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RKL Annotations – Headspace #7

We gave Sebastian an issue on which to shine and dear lord did he supernova.
HEADSPACE #7 available on ComiXology now for 99pence.

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Art by Eric Zawadzki + Sebastiàn Piriz, colours by Eric Zawadzki + Marissa Louise + Dee Cunniffe, letters by Eric Zawadzki, edits by Dan Hill, back matter design by Christopher Kosek, logo design by Ryan Ferrier, and written by me.

COVER
I’ve never once asked Eric what he’s going to do for a cover, I never proofed or approved any thumbnails. I stand back, get out of his way, and await with glee what comes in.

The colours on this are sickening. And they reflect [see what I did there?] the tone of the final pages of this issue perfectly.

I also love how Eric draws hair.

PAGE 1
This first panel, man, should be the end of the story. The goal met, game over, man, game over. Alas.

I feel I rarely take my time with first pages. I like to jump right in, in media res, really slam the reader straight away. I wanted to slowly take it all in, this page, just build. Though with my captions all over it because I am not Brisson or Barbiere and I lack confidence in myself.

I also hope the change in look for Shane doesn’t lose anyone. I like the idea that his human body ages, changes, etc, but the form he was in is what got injected into the Cove and that’s how he stayed.

PAGE 2
There’s a lot of exposition snuck in here – I hope I snuck it in, otherwise I just rubbed it all over your snout, sorry.

But it’s gotta be Shane catching up in crazy time and so we much keep that pace. All the things of the Cove, all the science, it’s all dropped here like bombs on a WWII coastline. I’d like to say that’s style and confidence but it’s really just me having to cram it in because the science of the Cove was never the story, Shane is the story, so I want to get back to him front and centre as soon as I can.

That line McEwan says, y’know, that line, heh, that’s stolen from a flick called STICKMEN and boy do you need to hunt it down. It’s a kiwi flick about playing stick [pool] and it’s fantastic and hilarious and it’s certainly not here to fuck spiders.

Sebastian drew one hell of a severed leg.

PAGE 3
And here we set the ticking clock for the final scenes of the entire story. The building is going to blow, just run, right?

It was fun to write McEwan’s mindset here, he’s ready to die because he’s accepted himself as the villain. So what does that say about him and his organisation? And what does that say about Max who wants to tear this organisation apart?

So many thoughts to ponder.

Also, this beard by Seb is just so damn good. Look at the weave and weight of it, it’s glorious, truly.

PAGE 4
Here’s the transition out of Marissa’s colours and into Dee Cunniffe for the rest of Seb’s pages. Bet you didn’t even notice.

Trying to get McEwan to drop the info that ties things together so Shane connects what’s going on was bloody hard. I’m not convinced I ‘nailed’ it but I’m happy enough with it.

Hopefully the Pac Man mug distracts you from most of the mealy mouthed stuff 😀
Did you also notice he grabs his coffee from the fridge? Just something this character absolutely would do. Seb actually shot me an email to make sure I hadn’t flubbed that in the script, I said, no, ha.

The way Seb draws the Max/Id flashback panel inside a spread of Shane’s mind is just masterful. Completely layered imagery, plenty to bite off and chew, and completely not in the script, from memory.

I love the posture on Shane in that final panel. I’m only just realising now how much I love it. So. Good. He’s thin, he’s tense, he’s wiry. Ugh, perfect. [Note: that is now currently my twitter avatar]

PAGE 5
I dig the jump to this page. The colours, the bald Shane, the layout, it’s all a jarring change. Good.

WAIT! That silhouette on the right looks like someone’s rocking a Quatto on their abdomen, haha 🙂

PHILIP K DICK KLAXON. Because time is indeed a flat circle.

Once that second last panel clicked into place, I really liked how the dialogue balloon and the caption box play together. Only in comics, peeps.

PAGE 6
That compound – where does Seb find the time to construct such things?

The way Seb makes the maid walk past the room is great. Yet I still have no idea what that art on the walls is.

Realise now it’s a huge mistake that I had Zara cleaning off page and he talks about it, while the maid cleans in front of him. It’s confusing and I only noticed it right now 😦

Max descending from the roof like a secret agent spider came out just right, though.

PAGE 7
There’s some BREAKING BAD level colour theory going on with those kitchen gloves right here.

The slanted panels for Zara running really add speed to the motion. I must remember that, it came out well. And I’ll always love Seb’s jagged panel borders for when the business gets real.

PAGE 8
This page is heartbreaking, and a masterpiece of layout. The emptiness at the top, the triangular/pyramidal feel, though with Zara captured at the bottom, a prisoner, and those eyes.

That final panel holds every emotion I could have dreamed to capture on the page.

PAGE 9
That red is a slam cut straight up. Zawadzki in the house.

Then we get the red sky, the razed Cove, and Shane, back, bearded, and we know the showdown is coming. This whole page is barren of life.

PAGE 10
Back on that pier, right where we started.

And much like the first page of this issue, we take our time navigating through the destruction. There is balance to what we do. There is also now a felled giant ogre cyclops, again, blame Zawadzki 🙂

PAGE 11
I figure there were more of those animal headed creatures left behind [they were actual tiny robtos, so they would remain – it’s all science, you wouldn’t understand] and Max’s brain just absorbed them, and is enjoying them. Totally all masochistic.

And now we end up back at that church. I love all these Max’s and how they get their Andrew W.K. on.

PAGE 12
We’ve seen captions similar to these before, in this location. That’s as far as I’ll take out my trumpet and lay my lips to it.

This final scene, yet another pyramid, of the Id on this ghastly throne is all you need in order to know you have to come back for one more issue, right? Shane is a flipped man, in so so many ways, and here it all comes colliding.

I love finding great issue end points and Headspace doesn’t get much better than this. Though I am proud of all our issue close points, and that’s because in the planning phase I strongly break the issues down together as one large whole, and I map out issue breaks as one of the first things for each issue, and then build to them [pfft, fart noise – I say like every other pro doesn’t].

Oh, and I’ve loved writing all the ‘NEXT’ captions but this one is my favourite, natch.

BACK MATTER
As always, all hail Christopher Kosek, Designer Supreme of Carpenter Cove.
In which I open bare my cowardice for all to see.

Stephen Hawking declaring “There is no god” was my jam for a good month.

PARTY TRICKS was a great Aussie show, track it down.

ELEKTRA has been phenomenal, and kinda only got better, but apparently now it’s cancelled. Get down on it.

Who knew Tom Jones would get a run in this book, haha?

ESSAY
Dan Hill. Narratives. Reddit. References. Enjoy?

PIN UPS
Owen Gieni has a sick and twisted mind. This pin up appeared out of nowhere and stunned me for a good night. A slick idea with this train I wish I’d seen earlier and could have stolen for the book. Truly.

Also, Owen’s art with my words — yup, stay tuned #ECCC 😀

One issue to go. Shane, the Id, rumble in the Cove. I guarantee, because you demand, satisfaction.

We’d also appreciate it if you spread the good word. Indie books live and die on the vine due to exposure and word of mouth. Hit up twitter with #headspacecomic to share your thoughts. Chat with myself @ryanklindsay or Eric @ericxyz and let us know your thoughts. We love to chat about the stuff we create. Or just about other stuff. Tell your friends about the book on Facebook, or in person, actually phone a friend to talk about Headspace, or gift the comic to someone. It’s all appreciated.

We’ll see you for #8 very soon. Til then, have a think about our trade collection from IDW bringing you the entire story at the end of April [LINK]. Talk to your LCS about preordering it from Previews now, and tell your friends how much they need this in their life, and just stock up for Xmas, or get in for an Xmas in July now.

And if you’ve come this far, oof, thank you.

CRIME FACTORY 17 Out Now – FLETCH

Crime Factory is a superb online crime mag you have to get down on.
CF 17 just went live. Do it.

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I wrote an article in it about FLETCH the movie and the way it mashes up crime and comedy in this perfect weird blend.

T’was truly a blast to write and I think you’d dig it.
No, not you, the one in the back. “You, there! Why don’t you ever comment or share the link? You are here every week, I assume you have reasons, yes? Oh, no. Oh…well then, good day, sir.”

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