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In this episode, Thien and Rina have the great pleasure of talking to exciting and extremely talented comic artist Michael DeForge. We talk to him about all of the projects he's busy working on these days, his comic "Lose #3" published by Koyama Press, co-editing smutty comic anthology "Thickness #2" with Ryan Sands, and pigging out in Canada. Also, Thien and Josh talk about their time at the Alternative Press Expo and all the exciting comics they got at the show! This one was fun! So listen!


Rina, Thien and Josh recorded the Comix Claptrap live at the 2011 Alternative Press Expo (APE). Here is a recording of what ensued. As usual, the sound quality is not the best, but why would we do things differently just because it's live, right? Our guests were Mike Dawson (Troop 142), Scott Campbell (Zombie in Love), Levon Jihanian (Danger Country) and Esther Pearl Watson (Unlovable). Listen as we talk about their current and upcoming projects, intersecting art and comics-making, thoughts on the APE show, and the experiences with youth organizations. It was fun so you should listen!


Recorded a couple days before SPX, Thien and Rina discuss Rina's experience of being an Ignatz judge and of course all hell breaks loose. We apologize in advance. (Rina has actually recommended that you just skip that part and start the podcast at the 10:00 minute mark where they crank call one of their favorite cartoonists in Chicago.) They spend the rest of the podcast with a fun, spirited discussion with cartoonist's cartoonist, Chris Cilla about his Ignatz-nominated book The Heavy Hand, his comics influences and working with publisher and our dear friend Dylan Williams. Also, somewhere in all of this Josh recommends the latest Jacques Tardi book.

Also we want to take the time to ask you to donate to the Dylan Williams Scholarship Fund, bid on some wonderful art pieces or buy books from Sparkplug Comic books to help Dylan's family. The links are below.

Sparkplug Comic Books online store:

The Divine Invasion - Fundraising auction for Dylan:

IPRC, The Dylan Williams Scholarship Fund:


Dylan Williams was a talented comic artist, a passionate publisher and above all else our great dear friend. Dylan passed away this weekend. There are not enough words in the world to say how much we will miss him and his enthusiasm for comics, creativity and life in general. Last year at APE, Thien moderated a panel about the Bay Area comics scene then and now. Dylan, along with Bay Area comic artists Susie Cagle, Ben Catmull, Andrew Farago and Hellen Jo talked about their beginnings and participation in the indie, small comics community. The interview gives just a tiny glimpse at how influential and important Dylan was to comics and the many lives he touched.

Dylan would post about the Comix Claptrap on the Sparkplug Comics blog. He lovingly compare us to Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis and say that Thien's podcast personality resembled the likes of Henry Rollins, Bill O'Reilly and Alger Hiss. Against his better judgement, he would sometimes actually listen to the show, and say that his favorite parts were when Finn would cry or scream in the background.

Dylan, we love you and we thank you for your heart, laughter and generosity.


Exclusives! Scoops! HOT HOT HOT cartoonists! We have it all here in this episode of the Comix Claptrap. Excitement abounds as the ever-so talented comic artist Craig Thompson comes out of his work-tank to discuss his forthcoming, highly-anticipated graphic novel Habibi. It's stunning, people! Just stunning! We talk about his 7 years of making this epic novel and how awesome it is being a rock star cartoonist. We also bother another awesome cartoonist while they are stuck in a pretzel, and talk to Josh about, well, no new comics. Listen to this! We are proud and the most professional we have ever been!


Season 4 begins, finally! Thien returns from his Level Up! tour with Gene Yang, and Rina takes a break from ridiculous non-comics obsessions to interview thee "Kick Ass" Annie Koyama, publisher of  Toronto-based Koyama Press, one of the most exciting publishing houses to start up in recent years. We talk about the experiences that jump-started her career in comics, the artists that she's worked with, and of course Toronto comics gossip and hockey/baseball mania. We also continue our fun segment, the Comix Cranktrap and crank call a "Giant" in the Asian pop culture/lifestyle magazine industry. And yes, we talk to ever so jovial, Josh Frankel about Comic Con, new books from Kate Beaton and Lewis Trondheim and the latest industry news. We've called this one the "Womyn Empowerment" episode! So Respect, sista!


We end our unbelievable 3rd season with an intense conversation with gifted cartoonist and influential editor of the Kramers Ergot anthology series, Sammy Harkham. We discuss his latest comic, Crickets 3, the writing process, some exciting projects in the works, and Rina's favorite, LA cartoonists gossip. Also, the always-delightful, Josh Frankel talks about new comics and new comic stores in Berkeley, while Rina and Thien talk about the excitement of Wondercon. Also, to end the season just right, we added a new segment to the program called the Comix Cranktrap. This is one of our very favorites, we think it'll be yours too. Listen!

Cover image of Crickets 3, by Sammy Harkham


In this episode, Rina and Thien get the chance to talk to exceptional cartoonist, Eric Haven about glaciers, Race Murdock, rapidographs, killing off respected Bay Area cartoonists and the tv show Mythbusters. Also, our buddy, Josh Frankel gives us a Comic Relief update and talks about a new graphic novel by Jay Hosler. Before that though, Rina ponders whether she has become an Enabler or not. Give it a go! It's fun!


We can't think of a better way to celebrate Valentine's Day than with a lively conversation about love, marriage, parenthood and of course comics with the one and only Adrian Tomine. We discuss his latest book, "Scenes From an Impending Marriage", which humorously documents the dramas and DJs that he and his wife encountered on their way to the altar. Also of course we talk with Josh Frankel, our resident New Comics wizard about new and upcoming comics, as well as his magic-game addiction. So break out the heart-shaped candy and listen in! Love is definitely in the air!


In this episode we talk to one of the smartest men in comics, Tom Kaczynski who just came out with a new mini-comic, Trans Utopia. We talk about his comics-making process, as well as his newly-formed comics publishing company Uncivilized Books which has produced books by Gabrielle Bell, Jon Lewis, and Daniel Thomas Wieken. Also we "try" to talk new comics with Josh, and debate about comics laureates and the fine art of critiquing comics. Have a listen, this one was fun!


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