Alternative Comics is a U.S. independent graphic novel and comic book publisher currently based in Cupertino, California. In addition to publishing creator-owned titles, Alternative Comics is also a noted publisher of anthologies such as 9-11: Emergency Relief, Hi-Horse, Hickee, Rosetta, and True Porn.
|Country of origin||U.S.A.|
|Headquarters location||Gainesville, Florida (1993–2012)|
Cupertino, California (2012–present)
|Distribution||Consortium Book Sales and Distribution|
|Key people||Marc Arsenault|
|Publication types||Comic books, graphic novels|
|Imprints||Sparkplug Books, Manx Media|
Alternative Press was founded in 1993 by Jeff Mason — while he was still a law student at the University of Florida — in order to publish Indy Magazine, a magazine devoted to small-label music and comics. (Indy was published in print form with Founder Dan DeBono from 1993–1997 and revived as a digital magazine from 2004–2005).
In 1996, Mason made the decision to publish comics, specifically to give up-and-coming creators their first break in the industry. The company changed its name to Alternative Comics and began publishing such cartoonists as Steven Weissman, Ed Brubaker, and Sam Henderson. At this point, the company established its policy of giving creators "complete artistic and legal control of their work."
In 1999, Alternative Comics published Monica's Story, by James Kochalka and Tom Hart, which satirized the Starr Report's coverage of President Bill Clinton's affair with former White House intern Monica Lewinsky. Proceeds from Monica's Story benefitted the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. The publisher also received mainstream notice for publishing 2001's Titans of Finance: True Tales of Money and Business, by R. Walker and Josh Neufeld; and 2002's 9-11: Emergency Relief, a post-9/11 benefit anthology.
In 2003–2004, the company expanded its offerings, debuting new ongoing titles by such cartoonists as Graham Annable, Scott Campbell, Damon Hurd, Nick Bertozzi, and Josh Neufeld, as well as a number of one-shots and graphic novels. Alternative faced a major financial challenge in 2004 as a result of the 2002 bankruptcy of the distributor LPC. The company scaled back its publication schedule and was forced to cancel a few titles.
Mason operated Alternative Comics from 1993-2008, when the company went defunct.
Cartoonists who have published with Alternative include Graham Annable, Gabrielle Bell, Nick Bertozzi, Brandon Graham, Asaf Hanuka, Tomer Hanuka, Tom Hart, Dean Haspiel, Sam Henderson, James Kochalka, David Lasky, Jon Lewis, Matt Madden, Josh Neufeld, Dash Shaw, Jen Sorensen, and Sara Varon.
About Comics is a publisher of comics and comics-related material founded in 1998 by Nat Gertler. According to Gertler, it is intended to be "[neither] a mainstream comics publisher, nor an alternative comics publisher".The company has published works by such comics writers as Kurt Busiek and Charles M. Schulz, as well as producing books such as Panel One and Panel Two, featuring comic scripts written by a number of top comics writers. Several of About Comics’ bestsellers have been works that have been rediscovered and republished, including several books of little-known early comics work by Charles M. Schulz. Other About Comics’ titles include Fusion, a shared universe anthology by a number of sci-fi writers and artists originally printed by Eclipse Comics; The Weasel Patrol, an insert comic attached to Fusion written by Ken Macklin and drawn by Lela Dowling; and The Misadventures of Prince Ivan, a fantasy comic written by Diane Duane.Part of the motivation for the line is the company founder’s own interests and past success with genre specific works. The re-publication of a graphic novel adaptation of Alice in Wonderland with art by Lela Dowling proved successful when libraries discovered the book. Their steady purchases have made it one of the company’s most consistent sellers. About Comics’ other area of success has been printing books that appeal to readers with an interest in making their own comic books. The company has experimented with printing full size blank comic books with cardstock covers.About Comics founded 24 Hour Comics Day, an annual event that now includes comics creators in over twenty countries participating in the creation of over 10,000 comic pages every year.Alternative Comics
Alternative Comics may refer to:
Alternative Comics (publisher), a U.S. comic book publisher
alternative comics, a label for a range of comics, when written with extraneous capsDan DeBono
Daniel DeBono (born November 13, 1964 in Detroit, Michigan) is an American writer and novelist.Derf
John Backderf (born October 31, 1959 in Richfield, Ohio) is an American cartoonist, also known as Derf or Derf Backderf. He is most famous for his recent graphic novels, especially My Friend Dahmer, the international bestseller which won an Angoulême Prize, and earlier for his comic strip The City, which appeared in a number of alternative newspapers from 1990–2014. In 2006 Derf won the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award for cartooning. Backderf has been based in Cleveland, Ohio, for much of his career.Fred Seibert
Frederick 'Fred' Seibert (born September 15, 1951) is an American serial entrepreneur and a moving pictures producer. He founded Frederator Networks, Inc. and Frederator Studios. Seibert has held leading positions with MTV Networks, Hanna-Barbera, and Next New Networks, and is an angel investor in several technology and media start-ups. He has produced live action and animated programs for cable television, and the internet, and began his professional career as a jazz and blues record producer.Jason Lutes
Jason Lutes (born December 7, 1967) is an American comics creator. His work is mainly historical fiction, but he also works in traditional fiction. He is best-known for his Berlin series, on which he has worked for over 20 years. He has also written a handful of other graphic novels, as well as many short pieces for anthologies and compilations. He now teaches comics at the Center for Cartoon Studies.Johnny the Homicidal Maniac
Johnny the Homicidal Maniac (often abbreviated JtHM) is the first comic book by Jhonen Vasquez. The series tells the story of a young man named Johnny C. as he explores the psychological and possibly supernatural forces which compel him to commit a string of murders with which he always seems to get away. JtHM began as a comic strip in the 1990s, then ran under alternative comics publisher Slave Labor Graphics as a limited series of seven issues, later collected in the trade paperback Johnny the Homicidal Maniac: Director's Cut. The series produced two spin-offs: Squee! and I Feel Sick.Peter Bagge
Peter Bagge (pronounced , as in bag; born December 11, 1957) is an American cartoonist whose best-known work includes the comics Hate and Neat Stuff. His stories often use black humor and exaggerated cartooning to dramatize the reduced expectations of middle-class American youth. He won two Harvey Awards in 1991, one for best cartoonist and one for his work on Hate. Bagge has expressed his libertarian views in features for Reason.Real Deal (comics)
Real Deal Magazine was an independent comic book title published in the 1990s. One of the rare contemporary African-American-created and published comics, Real Deal depicted Los Angeles underworld life with deadpan visceral humor and gross-out violence (termed "Urban Terror" by the creators). Stories were by H.P. McElwee (aka "R.D. Bone") and art primarily by Lawrence Hubbard (aka "Raw Dawg").
Inspired by magazines like Mad, traditional superhero comics, and people the creators knew in their own lives, Real Deal satirized Blaxploitation movies with a mélange of stories featuring convicts, hustlers, drug addicts, crack whores, car thieves, and murderers. In the words of artist/publisher Hubbard, a typical Real Deal story began with
... an everyday situation: Going to the store, the car wash, buying some food, you have a confrontation, nobody backs down! And next all hell breaks loose!! And the main thing is none of the characters give a shit about the consequences.
Hubbard cites Mort Drucker, Angelo Torres, George Woodbridge, Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, E. Simms Campbell, and Doug Wildey as influences, while critics note the similarity of Hubbard's inking to that of Gary Panter and Raymond Pettibon.WaRP Graphics
WaRP Graphics, later Warp Graphics, is an alternative comics publisher best known for creating and being the original publisher of the Elfquest comic book series. It was created and incorporated in 1977 by Wendy and Richard Pini. The company title is an acronym formed from the founding couple's name: Wendy and Richard Pini. (In later years the capitalization was changed from WaRP to Warp, a mostly aesthetic move.)
In addition to Elfquest, Warp also published several other comic book series, including MythAdventures and related titles by Robert Asprin, and Thunder Bunny, created by Martin Greim.
Warp was also the original publisher of A Distant Soil by Colleen Doran, until Doran left under acrimonious circumstances, alleging that WaRP attempted to claim copyright on her work, which WaRP denied. Warp sued licensee publisher Starblaze Graphics for, among other issues, publication of unauthorized Elfquest reprints, inaccurate reporting of royalties, but primarily for tortious interference in Warp's contract with Doran (who was also named in the Donning lawsuit), by attempting to assume the rights to A Distant Soil. Starblaze countersued; the dispute was settled out of court by Donning and Doran in 1988. All rights previously licensed to Donning in Elfquest reverted to Warp; Warp reverted all rights in A Distant Soil to Doran.