GlitterBomb Vol 1: Red Carpet Review

Glitterbomb is the about a middle-aged actress named Farrah Durante who is desperately searching for her next role in Hollywood where youth is preferred over experience. Her emotional distress and frustrations attract something disturbing from the deep water that is looking to clean up the scum of the entertainment industry and the celebrity-crazed culture in general.

Writer Jim Zub (Wayward, Thunderbolts) and artist Djibril Morissette-Phan (The Ultimates, Archie) let you know in the first few pages the type of comic this is going to be which is gritty and raw. Some excellent opening dialogue with Farrah talking to her scum bag agent and the skill of Morissette’s art is evident right away.

Glitterbomb page

Glitterbomb page 2.jpg

We learn Farrah was once on a fairly popular TV called Space Farers about 20 years ago. It seemed to be the highlight and stifling of her career and turns out it wasn’t the greatest experience working on set with certain cast members.

On top of trying to find work to pay the bills and rent Farrah is a single mother to her four-year-old son Marty who is being constantly watched by his babysitter Kaydon. Kaydon watches him for long periods of time and Farrah is late with payments for her time and even late for compensation for the extra time.

This to me as an outsider from the Hollywood culture this comic seems like the most accurate depiction of how people treat each other and how business is handled. We all see bits and pieces of it in the media and online, but this feels authentic. I believe I read in an interview that Jim did that he said he had some friends or contacts that told him stories that helped influence Glitterbombs story.

It’s a very well-told story about real human emotions that deal with rejection, finding something you thought you have lost, resentment, hatred, jealously and insecurity. You really feel bad for Farrah then all of a sudden towards the end of the arc you go wow this is going to be interesting.

Glitterbomb Vol 1 is a part of Image Comics $9.99 (USD) initiative for first volume trade collections that they started a few years ago which is great It’s Certainly worth the price. The art, lettering, colours and writing are on point and is a different comic experience I enjoyed.

The next arc in the Glitterbomb universe will be “The Fame Game.”. The first issue will be out September 30th, 2017. You can pre-order now at your local comic shops.

If you missed the single issues of volume 1 pick up this trade and get caught up in time for the release of The Fame Game, you will not be disappointed.

9.5/10


If you are an aspiring comic book writer (like myself) or artist check out Jim Zub’s blog about the creative process, the economics of comics, how to “break in” to the business and more here

 

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A Brief Conversation I Will Never Forget

I had mentioned in my last post about having the pleasure and honour to meet legendary comic book artist Mark Bagley. For anyone unfamiliar with Mr.Bagley he is the creator of CarnageThunderbolts and has drawn Spider-Man for the majority of his career on multiple titles. His longest run on Spider-Man was on Ultimate Spider-Man with Veteran Marvel writer Brain Michael Bendis (111 consecutive issues 116 total!).

I was the first person to get a sketch from him at the con and some books signed. The photo at the top is the commission he drew for me. I had originally wanted carnage seen as he was only doing head sketches he quickly advised me to pick something with more detail in a respectful way which I appreciated, so I choose Wolverine because of that’s my favourite Marvel character. I am also very nervous/star struck when meeting Mark. So he starts sketching right in front of me, and I am in awe of his speed and lines. He also warned me that his first sketch of the day usually isn’t his best I, of course, am just happy this is happening right now and say I’m sure it will be great and that he’s the first artist I’ve ever gotten an original sketch from.

So I am standing there in front of the table just watching again with amazemenI as i see logan gradually appear on my blank variant sketch cover of Age of Ultron #1. After a few minutes, he says “so do you have any questions? Feel free to talk”. Every artist is different I have heard of many who need complete concentration to finish a commission, and some don’t. So we start talking about the new Venom movie, the Logan movie and the fact fans aren’t a fan of his new costume design for the Scarlet Spider and how he was going back to the original costume from the 90’s.

Really nice guy and chat. Once he finished and signed my commission, i had a few comics to sign.

 

death of spider

thunderbolts.jpg

When I presented this next book to get signed something happened that I had never experienced before.

the change

Soon as Mark saw the comic, he said right away “I hate that cover, The comic and the story” This caught me off guard, you could see the disgust with his own work in his face. I, of course, had no idea this would happen and would never want to upset any creator. He obviously wasn’t mad at me, but it certainly stirred up a defence and reaction in him. He elaborated a little bit then he said something that has been stuck in my head since the early morning of the con.

“Now think about this. Mediocre people think they are great. Great people are never satisfied with their work. Think about it, like really really think about that!”

Now you might be thinking he hasn’t said anything new. Which in just pure words that’s true. When Mark told me this though I saw a passion and conviction in his eyes I have never seen from an artist of any kind. I heard something in his voice that resonated in my ears and memory. It was a long day, and lots of stuff was going on at the con I could have easily forgotten this encounter, but I didn’t and that says something to me.

I got a rare glimpse of what separates the average creator from the legends. To me, he was reminding himself not to be like that version of himself back in 93. I know a lot of creative people will do this but I think Mark is one of the few that takes it seriously.

As someone who’s on a writing journey, it’s incredibly inspiring especially coming from an artist. He didn’t even know I was an aspiring writer, but this can certainly apply to any area in life. It was really cool and unexpected I’m extremely grateful.

Let’s be honest about perfectionism though it is useless, at a certain point you have to say well this and that has to be done by this date. So you have to expect this is the best you can do on a particular project. you can then look back and say ok I have the same amount of time for the next one but I’m not going to this-this and that and in theory, it should be better than the last until you go back and pick apart that very same project and do better on the other. That to me makes more sense than being a perfectionist. You look back far enough on your work and ya there is going to be a certain project that reminds you of how much you used to suck personally.

Now that I think about it the best are never really satisfied with their work even things that have received praise and critical acclaim they are constantly trying to improve.

This meeting is one I will never forget and will stay with me my whole life. A super cool moment at my town’s  first comic-con. This is why I encourage people whether they are fans or people trying to make it in comics to go to cons you never know what’s going to happen or how it will affect your life!