cover by Todd Webb
|The Inside Poop|
Megazeen 5 featured our first full-color cover, so we wanted to get an artist of some caliper for the event. We needed look no further than Todd Webb, who did his own spin on the "angel wing musician" thing. I seem to remember disagreeing with Crossett on this cover, that he was concerned it looked a little too much like a kid's comic with that cover. But that's Todd's style, and we stuck with it.
comic featured the final installment of 6th Seal of Revelation,
which sadly was not the ending. From there it was to spin off into a
continuing web comic, but it didn't happen. Mark Melton would continue
to contribute regularly to Megazeen, but it was the last we saw of John
Finlay, at least as of this writing.
Tom Hall also wrote Fanboys From Hell, illustrated by Tyler Clair Smith, his first and sadly only MZ contribution. In hindsight, this comic should not have been condensed- the art was not intended as two four panel pages but as 6 full splashes with some anchoring text. If this book is reprinted, I hope to be able to show these pages as they should have been displayed. Tyler's artwork got cramped for the sake of page count. It was a mistake.
Makoto returned with another Double Cross. We LOVED Double Cross. It was raw and indy and weird, and we loved that more girls were getting on the MZ train.
At the end of the book, Jamie Cosley and I teamed up on a strip called Fantasy and Reality that dealt with temptation. It was a last minute thing because I had miscounted the pages and needed a filler quick. I came up with the idea during the sermon at church that Sunday. Jamie also did a comic on temptation in the inside cover, and the back cover was a full color strip by Shuric, from Russia. The English translation was a little weak but it got the point across, and his artwork is wild.
also interviewed Joe Spicer, artist from Roaring Studios and
Star Cross Studios, about art styles, testimony and the ever
popular "Why do YOU think Christian comics suck?"
At the time, Pete had formed a company called Quest Comics. This was NOT the Quest Comics that printed Pakkin's Land. Pete had come upon some money and decided start a Christian comics publishing company. He had printed a few issues of Soldier of God and three anthology comics called Chronicles.
Pete complained that we had interviewed Chris and Erica Well in a prior issue, who (and I quote here), "have done NOTHING in Christian comics, yet you continue to ignore me." Pete complained that we interviewed Mike Miller in issue 4 and allowed him to bash Pete without actually naming him. Pete had been shut down by Wizard Magazine and not allowed to clear his name when Hart Fisher ripped him in an interview and would not print a retraction. Pete had been involved in some particularly ugly battles on the Christian comics Yahoo Group, which was the only real online forum we had at the time. Pete had an axe to grind and nobody was letting him grind it.
Enter Megazeen. I had no problem with Pete. Actually, when I joined the Yahoo Group years ago, Pete was the first guy to contact me personally, by email and by phone. He seemed eager to help promote Megazeen at some shows. When I did a pinup for him at his request, he paid me for it- and I had never asked for payment nor expected it. I considered Pete a friend. And that's the truth.
But I did not interview Pete to be his friend. I have lots of friends that I've never interviewed. I did it because I knew Pete would be interesting. I wanted to interview people that wouldn't just say the same old thing, and I knew I could count on Pete to be frank and emotionally charged, and that he had some good insider info on the industry to share.
This was also, to me, an excellent time to touch base with him. Quest Comics had just folded under the controversy, and Pete's faith had suffered. He had actually formed a new secular company and was developing new comics. In fact, one of my friends had submitted work and was waiting for his overdue payment, which seemed to him to be stalled behind a wall of excuses.
So I interviewed Pete by phone, and recorded every word. He was a little nervous that I'd twist things, so I assured him that he'd see the copy before it went to print, to assure him that I was printing his words and not anything fabricated.
The truth came out. He talked about his history with comics. He talked about Hart Fisher (publisher of Boneyard Press), and Mike Miller and the mess at Yahoo. But the anchor was the following quote: "To me, contracts are worth nothing more than toilet paper." The truth came out.
Pete was emailed the text as promised and approved. A week later, he suddenly asked if he could rewrite certain aspects of the interview. Now, I'm no Dan Rather (bad example), but no self-respecting journalist would ever allow a change of a spoken word, no matter how dumb it might have been. That and Megazeen #5 had already gone to print. So my answer was, no, sorry.
Pete was furious, and demanded that the full interview should be dropped and all copies of Megazeen #5 should be destroyed. My answer was, no, sorry. His next email was laden with curse words and designed to make me feel guilty. I stopped responding.
Megazeen #5 came out and made its debut at Wizard World Philly in 2003. Ironically enough, we made a new friend there named Hart Fisher. We shared a good laugh.
you can buy a copy here.
|content © 2007 The Megazeen / artwork © 2007 individual artists|